Following on from my ‘Four Market Towns of Yorkshire’ article, I wanted to continue this series by highlighting some beautiful walks in Yorkshire by taking another destination from each end of our county; North, East, South and West. Yorkshire is abundant with stunning scenery and country walks for people of all ages and abilities, from tougher mountain hikes to relaxed flat terrain strolls, so this article will include walks to venture for varying skill levels. Many of these walks can be tailored to your individual skill levels or energy levels, each destination is just a brief overview of some walks and scenery that these villages/towns have to offer.
North Yorkshire: Goathland – Moors, Railway and Waterfalls
The moorland village of Goathland resides in the North Yorkshire Moors, and boasts spectacular views across bridges, along railways and through the heathers. In late summer, the heather is in bloom with unique shades of purple along the moors. Also, along the moors walk you will find the 70ft Mallyan Spout waterfall, Eller Beck and the waterfalls of Water Arc Foss where you can paddle in the Beck or relax to the sound of the waterfalls.
Goathland’s railway station may be familiar to some, having featured heavily in the TV series Heartbeat, which ran from 1992 to 2010. Another familiar prop sometimes present here is the Hogwarts Express, from the popular British film franchise, Harry Potter as the heritage station was used as ‘Hogsmeade Station’ in the early films. The ‘Rail Trail’ runs from Goathland to Grosmont, entailing a 3 and a half mile walk along the old railway line.
East Yorkshire: Flamborough Head and the Yorkshire Heritage Coast
Having visited Flamborough Head many years ago on a Geography school trip, I remembered the views of the white chalk cliffs (The White Cliffs of Yorkshire?), walks along the waterfront, the sea breeze and the iconic lighthouses.
The coastline a great place for bird watching, especially Bempton Cliffs and is most certainly a place to bring your camera for them postcard-worthy shots. The beaches of both North and South landing are a great place to explore the sea caves for the agile or try a bit of kite flying in the fresh sea air for families. Even if the weather is not in your favour, the village of Flamborough is fun to explore, with a number of small pubs or a traditional coastal meal of fish and chips.
South Yorkshire:The Five Weirs Walk – Sheffield
This cycling and walking trail follows the River Don from Sheffield City Centre to Meadowhall Shopping centre. Starting at Lady’s Bridge, the walk then heads over Cobweb Bridge, past Bailey Bridge through Attercliffe and onto Meadowhall. Along this walk you will pass the five weirs, hence the name of this walk. Sheffield, like many Yorkshire Cities, has a great industrial past, being the ‘Steel City’ there is a great deal of history to explore, especially spotting old riverside buildings along these walks. This walk also links to the Sheffield Canal walk at Meadowhall Shopping centre, which would give a nice change of scenery for the walk back along the towpath or vice versa.
West Yorkshire: Hardcastle Crags
Hardcastle Crags is a beautiful spot in the South Pennines, not far from Hebden Bridge. It features 400 acres of unspoilt woodlands with something new to see season by season. The valleys are home to all sorts of wildlife and fallen trees are left in order to provide habitats for invertebrates, birds and bats. Roe Deer can also be spotted here if you’re lucky! You’ll have to get up early, though – they’re usually roaming in the early morning or evening.
This peaceful wooded valley was once home to a railway and a 19th Century cotton mill, which was one of the first mills of the Industrial Revolution and acquired by the Nation Trust in 1950. At the heart of Hardcastle Crags is Gibson Mill, which is now home to a café and shop, and was also once a popular entertainment venue. It now features tours which tell the history of the valley and the mill over the last 200 years with changing exhibitions throughout the year.
What is your favourite Yorkshire walk? Let us know in the comments!