From The Heart of Yorkshire. Here we have our top ten Herriot Country experiences:
James Herriot Centre, Thirsk
The perfect family day out with some wonderful facts, inspiring stories, historical veterinary detail and interaction. There is a lovely outside area for a picnic lunch, a chance to purchase all of Alf Wight’s books (the author of James Herriot) and you may even meet his children Rosie or Jim who are often at the museum telling the stories from real life memories. If you have forgotten to pack your lunch there are some wonderful café’s, local pubs, restaurants or fish and chip shops in Thirsk which hosts a Market every Saturday and Monday. All in all a wonderful day out and much more than you first expect.
See http://www.worldofjamesherriot.comor http://www.visitthirsk.org.uk/pages/home.php
Fountains Abbey, Ripon
This place is spectacular! Don’t go half-hearted, make sure you plan to spend the whole day and really enjoy everything the Abbey and Gardens have to offer. If you are taking little ones we would recommend a pushchair which will help to carry the picnic too. There is a lot of walking and some quite steep hills. But really it is not possible to do this World Heritage Site justice on paper and so please go and see it for yourself. The Abbey with historical atmosphere blows you away followed by the view across the Studley Royal Water Gardens and so much more! If you like your Abbey’s we also recommend Rievaulx Abbey near Helmsley another amazing day out or there are another eight Abbeys in Yorkshire to choose from.
See http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/fountains-abbey/or http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/properties/rievaulx-abbey/
Newby Hall, Ripon
This is one for adults and little ones alike. There are beautiful gardens, a stunning period house and so many more unexpected activities. Children will enjoy the adventure play area, mini railway and boating on the lake. Oh don’t forget the swimsuits, there is a fountain area for splashing round and when the weather is nice this can be hours of fun. Newby Hall have many events through the year which are worth keeping an eye on including a Jaguar day for enthusiasts, Easter fun and theatre productions to mention only a few. Picnics are a good idea if the swimsuits are packed or there is a good fully licenced restaurant for a lovely lunch experience.
Northallerton Market town
A day can be spent closer to Thief Hole Cottages and what better than a bit of local shopping. Northallerton has so much to offer, choose one of the two markets day, Saturday or Wednesday and you will have a lovely day strolling through the town picking up nice bits for your evening meal or to take home. The Joe Cornish Gallery is a must and you will have already seen many of their famous Yorkshire prints on the walls of your cottage. A morning breakfast can be enjoyed in Café Natural situated about a lovely leather shop, Barkers is a must and is known as “the Harrods of the North” not to mention the arcades full of boutiques. Lunch can be taken in Betty’s, Lewis and Cooper’s, Barkers Café or a short journey North of the town there are two garden centres also worth a look around in Sam Turners and Strikes both of which offer a nice lunch time or breakfast experience. If you have missed Betty’s maybe pop back for afternoon tea as it really is a must.
Thorpe Perrow followed by The Black Sheep Brewery
Thorpe Perrow is an Arboretum with falconry and mammals found just the other side of Bedale. You will enjoy hours of walks around the woodland gardens and remember the children for seasonal occasions as the adventure comes alive around Easter, Halloween and especially Christmas. The tea room can be enjoyed for your lunch and walk it off finding the falconry area with many further animals to enjoy, it is like a mini zoo. Following your morning here why not take the short journey to The Black Sheep Bewery (just 15 minutes drive). Here you will see and learn how they brew their famous beer, with the delicious smells of the beer making in the background your evening meal here is fully recommended. Booking is advisable as they do get busy.
See http://www.thorpperrow.com/index.htmlor http://www.blacksheepbrewery.com
A day at the races followed by the Ritz Cinema experience
Check out the dates for Thirsk Races (found in your cottage) and make a day of it! This small course is one to really enjoy and they offer some super themed days from family day to ladies day with many more in-between. Fingers crossed you will be successful and pick the winning horses! Thirsk is particularly busy on a race day so booking your evening meal before hand would be a must. The Black Lion Bistro will not let you down and only a few minutes stroll from the Ritz Cinema you will be finished in time for the 7.30pm start of your film with time to pick up some popcorn! The cinema schedule is updated monthly in our cottage folders.
See http://www.thirskracecourse.nethttp://www.blacklionthirsk.co.ukand http://home2.btconnect.com/ritzcinema/cinema/ritz.htm
Hawes, The Rope Makers and The Wensleydale Creamery
Areal Extreme and Yorkshire Outdoors
A day for the energetic or children! Time to plan ahead, book your online tickets and save a little bit as this is not a cheap family day but well worth it! Set off before 9.00am and be waiting at the gates to walk in early, (online tickets also saves queuing) once again a picnic and pushchair for little legs is recommended.as there is plenty of walking. You will not be disappointed with the many rides, splash area so a change of clothes and swimsuits are advisable and the extensive zoo. Also many pubs on site so why not enjoy your evening meal before heading home and really make a full day of it!
And finally we couldn’t miss out some of the famous walks in our area. Once again there are so many to choose from but here is a really stunning choice with scenery you will never forget. With the visitor Centre at the top of Sutton Bank now offering a cycle centre, exhibitions, tearoom, picnic area and an array of information on the area and history you will feel looked after from the beginning. From here you have a huge choice of different walks all overlooking the Vale of York and Mowbray. You have to see it to believe how good it really is!
This one is for the adrenalin junkies! Not sure you would want to do these two in one day but it would be a possibility. Firstly Areal Extreme in Bedale, climbing across treetops for over two hours is perfect for older children and adults alike. There isn’t a café on site but so many to choose from in the market town of Bedale. While in Bedale look out for the award winning Cockburn Butchers for your porkpies or evening meal amenities. Yorkshire Outdoors is a 4×4 or quad biking centre in Felixkirk where you can enjoy many wild experiences from clay pigeon shooting to raft building. After a half day here you will really want to enjoy the luxury of the Carpenters Arms luxury Inn only minuets away. There is also the Gliding Club and Boltby trekking centre close by for more outdoors fun.
See http://www.aerialextreme.co.uk/courses/north-yorkshire/http://www.yorkshire-outdoors.co.uk/index.phpor http://www.thecarpentersarmsfelixkirk.com
A journey into the Dales is a must while staying in the area, with superb views and so many hidden gems, you will not be disappointed. These are only a few recommended and as I said at the beginning keeping this list down to just ten was extremely difficult! Hawes is a beautiful small market town at the end of a fantastic ride into the unknown. Here you will find the Ropemakers and famous Wensleydale Creamery where you can learn the art of cheese making followed by an outstanding lunch offered from their restaurant not to mention picking up some tasty souvenirs or a token in the shape of Wallis or Gromit.
See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haweshttp://www.ropemakers.co.ukor http://www.wensleydale.co.uk