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Why Visit North Yorkshire During the Winter Months?

Boasting serene snowy fields, quiet beaches, and awe-inspiring castles that stand tall against the frosty skies, Yorkshire is the epitome of a winter wonderland during the colder months. We’ve compiled a list of our top 5 reasons to visit North Yorkshire this winter – so, pull on your woolly hats and head to our beautiful county for a wonderful winter retreat like no other…

Top 5 Reasons to Visit North Yorkshire in Winter

1) Wonderful Winter Walks

With snow-capped hills and frost-laden dales, the North Yorkshire Moors are transformed into a beautifully enchanted hideaway during the winter months. A seasonal walk is the best way to discover the beauty of North Yorkshire and its many miles of moorland footpaths and winding trails.

Our favourite destinations for a wonderful winter walk include:

  • The Cleveland Way – especially the beautiful sections that wind through the coastal towns of Whitby, Flamborough, and Staithes
  • Aysgarth Falls – best enjoyed after a heavy rainfall to see the falls in full flow
  • River Swale – there are some stunning circular trails around Richmond that offer fantastic views of the mighty Richmond Castle and magical woodlands
  • Hutton-le-Hole & Lastingham – a duo of idyllic villages that boast quiet fields, pretty country lands and wild moorland tracks
  • The Yorkshire Matterhorn – explore the village of Great Ayton, Roseberry Topping, and Captain Cook’s Monument

2) Coastal Delights

A wintery break in our fabulous county wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the spectacular Yorkshire coast! With stunningly serene beaches, picturesque coastal towns, and wonderful wildlife to spot, there’s plenty to see and do on the North-East coast this winter.

Our recommended places to visit along the Yorkshire Coast include:

  • Whitby – a picture-perfect seaside town, overlooked by the dramatic Whitby Abbey
  • Scarborough – boasting a lovely long promenade and quiet beach, as well as a Christmas market and ice rink in the winter months
  • Filey – home to 5 miles of unspoilt sandy beaches, Filey is arguably the best spot for a wintery visit to the beach
  • Robin Hood’s Bay – an Instagrammable coastal location which is perfect for a winter walk

3) Cosy Pubs with Roaring Fires

After a brisk winter walk, there’s nothing better than cosying up by the fire in a traditional Yorkshire inn and sipping a refreshing pint (or two!). We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to cosy pubs with roaring fires here in North Yorkshire!

Our favourite cosy pubs with fires include:

4) Seasonal Days Out in York

As one of the most festive cities in the whole of the UK, York boasts some amazing opportunities for a Christmassy day out. With an eclectic mix of boutique shops, award-winning restaurants, and cosy tearooms, there are plenty of spots to stop for a delicious hot chocolate after some much-needed Christmas shopping.

Our winter highlights in York include:

5) Fantastic Festive Events

Looking for something festive to do with your friends and family this Christmas? North Yorkshire is jam-packed full of fun festive events in 2022; from sparkling light installations to quirky Christmas markets, and everything in between.

Our recommended festive events include:

Celebrate Christmas in our Cosy Cottages

Seeking a cosy cottage break in North Yorkshire this Christmas? Look no further than Valley View Farm Cottages! We still have availability in Form (sleeps 2), Drey (sleeps 4), Granary (sleeps 6) and Holt (sleeps 6) for Christmas week, although we expect to sell out very soon – click here to book your festive family staycation at Valley View Farm today!

Fantastic Festive Events in the North Yorkshire Moors

Looking for something festive to do with your friends and family this Christmas? The North Yorkshire Moors is jam-packed full of fun festive events in 2022; from sparkling light installations to quirky Christmas markets, and everything in between. Keep reading to discover our top 10 festive events taking place in the North Yorkshire Moors this winter…

A Fairytale Christmas at Castle Howard

12th November 2022 – 2nd January 2023

This Christmas, Castle Howard will be transformed into a winter wonderland full of happily ever afters and magical fairy tales. Discover state-of-the-art soundscapes in the form of enchanted installations and projections, bringing your favourite fairy tales to life in the castle’s great halls. Santa Claus will be making an appearance, bringing a special storytelling grotto to the courtyard. You can also enjoy festive afternoon teas, mulled wines, Christmas trees and after-dark winter light displays at Castle Howard this Christmas.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Christmas at Mother Shipton's

19th November – 24th December 2022

Santa Claus is coming to town! Let your kids meet the big man himself at Mother Shipton’s magical Christmas experience. You can enjoy a personal family visit with Santa in his cosy Christmas grotto, photos inside Santa’s magic sleigh, enchanting Christmas tales from Holly Berry, letter writing to Santa at the North Pole Post Office, and much, much more. Wander through the atmospheric winter woodland and discover the glittering Christmas Village, decorated with merry displays and delights.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

York Christmas Festival

17th November – 23rd December 2022

Discover oodles of Christmas cheer in one of the UK’s most festive cities. This year marks the 30th anniversary of St Nicholas’ Fair, an iconic festive market that has been running since 1992. Stunning alpine chalets line the street selling an array of artisan gifts, creating an awe-inspiring winter wonderland. This year, a traditional Swiss chalet, The Winter Hütte, will be coming to the York Christmas Festival, offering a ‘Swiss with a Twist’ dining experience from Michelin-star chef Andrew Pern.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Santa Specials at the North Yorkshire Moors Railway

3rd – 24th December 2022

Join Santa and his magical team of elves at Pickering or Grosmont Station this December for an enchanted adventure on the Santa Express. Santa and his little helpers will be passing through the train’s traditional heritage carriages, meeting kids, and presenting them with a special gift – after all, there’s plenty of room on the nice list! There will be lots of festive fun and games onboard, with each child also receiving a North Yorkshire Moors Railway Christmas backpack.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Christmas Adventure at Stockeld Park

19th November 2022 – 4th January 2023

Yorkshire’s finest Christmas adventure and award-winning festive light display is set to return to Stockeld Park this year. Unique Christmas celebrations will be taking part across the park, seeing crowds as big as 125,000 people. Meet Santa, enjoy the wonderful winter illuminations in the Enchanted Forest, uncover the mysteries of the Snowflake Maze, or whizz and spin around the ice rink – the possibilities are truly endless! You can also purchase on of the real Christmas trees on offer, grown on the Stockeld Park Estate.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Christmas at Murton Park

3rd – 22nd December 2022

Prepare to be wowed at Murton Park with their unmissable Christmas experience this December. Meet Santa in his picturesque Long House in Murton’s festive village, sing a song with Mrs Claus, frolic around with the Murton Elves, take part in some festive arts and crafts, and make your very own reindeer food to put out on Christmas Eve. Adults will also get a free mince pie to enjoy, as they watch their children’s faces light up with Christmas cheer.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Lotherton Christmas Experience

26th November – 31st December 2022

Oodles of Christmas magic and excitement is coming to Lotherton Estate this Christmas. Embark upon an enchanted twelve days of Christmas walk through Captain’s Wood, uncover the secret fairy hideaway in the rock garden, visit Santa in the North Pole and meet the elves working away in the festive toy shop. The rooms of the Lotherton Edwardian House will be all dressed up for Christmas, with a picturesque Elf Village serving up hot chocolate and Christmas crafts.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Long Live the Christmas Tree at Harewood House

12th November 2022 – 2nd January 2023

Yorkshire’s most celebrated country house will be celebrating the Christmas Tree in the most unique way this festive season. Artists and makers from Yorkshire and beyond will come together to create a spectacular festive display of trees inspired by nature, winter, and Harewood House itself. As well as admiring the amazing art display, you can marvel upon the festive decorations in the house, enjoy kids Christmas activities, and take a wonderful winter stroll around the gorgeous gardens and grounds.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Magical Sleigh Rides at Piglet's Adventure Farm

19th November – 24th December 2022

A truly magical festive adventure awaits you at Piglet’s Adventure Farm. Check in at Elf Airlines and write your Christmas wishes to Santa, before hopping aboard Santa’s sleigh for an enchanting ride through snow-laden trees and twinkling fairy lights. Arrive at Santa’s Woodland Village and meet the big man himself, before receiving the key to the toy shop and choosing your favourite festive gift. Join the mischievous elves in a singing and dancing show, before exploring the wonderful Woodland Village. A great day out with the kids!

Find out more and book your tickets here.

RHS Glow at Harlow Carr

17th November – 30th December 2022

Let it glow at Harlow Carr this festive season! Admire the amazing after-dark spectacle of twinkling lights and discover the garden in all its beauty on the spectacular glow trail. See iconic features such as Streamside, the Queen Mother’s Lake, the Winter Walk, Doric Columns and Kitchen Garden all lit up with festive sparkle. New for this year, you can enjoy ambient music around the Queen Mother’s Lake and be wowed by the pixel lawn with thousands of dancing lights.

Find out more and book your tickets here.

Wonderful Winter Escapes at Valley View Farm Cottages

Our six charming holiday cottages are set in the heart of Old Byland, providing the perfect base for a fun festive break in the North Yorkshire Moors. We are filling up fast for the winter season – click here to book your wonderful winter escape at Valley View farm Cottages today!

Our Favourite Places to Eat in the North Yorkshire Moors

Searching for a delicious meal out during your upcoming stay in the North Yorkshire Moors? From Michelin-starred restaurants and sophisticated bistros to country inns and traditional pubs, we guarantee you’ll find somewhere to suit your taste and budget here in our beautiful national park. One thing’s for sure – you definitely won’t go hungry!

Check out our favourite places to eat in the North Yorkshire Moors below…

The Feversham Arms, Helmsley

The Feversham Arms is an AA Rosette award-winning pub, providing a premier North Yorkshire dining experience in a sophisticated setting. Using the finest locally-sourced and seasonal Yorkshire produce, the menu has been thoughtfully curated for a truly delectable meal – with exotic wines to compliment all menu items.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 10 minutes’ drive.

La Trattoria, Helmsley

For a taste of authentic Italian cuisine, look no further than La Trattoria. As an Italian bistro, pizzeria and contemporary bar all rolled into one, it’s the perfect place to relax and enjoy the best Italian food. With dedicated brunch, lunch, and dinner menus, not to mention their selection of Cicchetti (Venetian tapas), there’s something to satisfy all tastes.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 15 minutes’ drive.

The Feathers, Helmsley

The Feathers is a traditional 16th Century coaching inn, offering warm fires in the winter, a large courtyard in the summer, and spectacular seasonal menus that showcase the best of North Yorkshire. This welcoming sanctuary is the ideal place to sip on a tasty tipple (or two!), or feast on a delicious breakfast, lunch, or supper.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 15 minutes’ drive.

The White Swan, Ampleforth

The exceptionally friendly White Swan Inn is renowned for its warm welcome, hearty food, and great selection of drinks. As one of the premier ‘pub restaurant’ venues in the area, visitors can choose to feast in the recently refurbished dining room or relaxing lounge area; with the local’s bar providing a great place for a pint of real ale or a glass of fine wine.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 15 minutes’ drive.

The White Horse, Ampleforth

Nowhere screams ‘proper Yorkshire pub’ quite like The White Horse. Perched on the edge of the North York Moors, this 18th Century coaching inn boasts crackling log fires, candlelit tables, flagstone floors and beamed ceilings. Tuck into some truly delicious homemade food, or sip on a glass of local hand-pulled ale or fine wine.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 15 minutes’ drive.

The Carpenters Arms, Felixkirk

Head to The Carpenters Arms for an authentic Yorkshire dining experience. With extensive menus crafted using the freshest seasonal ingredients, locally sourced from the North, each dish is lovingly created to tantalise the tastebuds. They also have an innovative drinks menu, boasting fine wines, champagnes, and the very best local ales.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 20 minutes’ drive.

The Fairfax Arms, Gilling East

The Fairfax Arms is the epitome of a traditional country inn, nestled in the heart of the picturesque Gilling East. Feast upon the Fairfax’s excellent quality produce, crafted by talented Executive Chef, Michael Kenworthy. The bar is jam-packed full of character and charm, offering a warm and friendly welcome to visitors from near and afar.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 20 minutes’ drive.

The Star Inn, Harome

Situated just outside Helmsley on the edge of the North Yorkshire Moors, The Star is a Michelin-starred, 14th Century thatched ‘inn with rooms’. They serve modern Yorkshire food made from locally sourced seasonal ingredients, with a carefully selected collection of wines and beers to compliment the delicious dining menu.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 20 minutes’ drive.

Black Swan, Oldstead

If you’re seeking a fantastic fine dining experience, look no further! The Michelin-starred, 4 AA Rosette award-winning Black Swan celebrates the very best of Yorkshire cuisine. Their menu is constantly evolving, incorporating refreshing produce that has been grown and foraged in and around Oldstead.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 30 minutes’ drive.

Fauconberg Arms, Coxwold

If honest wholesome pub food is more your cup of tea, head to the Fauconberg Arms. They pride themselves on using the finest, locally sourced Yorkshire produce; with the pub boasting flagstone flooring, wooden beams, and cosy log fires. Relax by the fire and tuck into their light lunch menu or enjoy the lively evening atmosphere of the bar.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 30 minutes’ drive.

The Durham Ox, Crayke

The Durham Ox is an award-winning, quintessentially English 300-year-old pub, boasting flag stone floors, exposed beams, oak panels, and roaring fires in wintertime. Their menus are carefully crafted to showcase the very best in local produce, as well as stocking an exciting range of wines and cask ales. Delicious!

Distance from Valley View Farm: 35 minutes’ drive.

The Forresters Arms, Kilburn

The Forresters Arms is a traditional Yorkshire Inn set in the picturesque village of Kilburn. They serve home-cooked pub classics, delicious Sunday lunches and seasonal specials; coupled by a great selection of real ales, classic lagers, bottled beers and ciders. It’s the perfect venue to sit back, relax and enjoy a tasty tipple.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 35 minutes’ drive.

The Queen’s Head, Amotherby

Nestled in the little village of Amotherby, The Queen’s Head is one of the region’s favourite Cantonese restaurants, as well as being one of the UK’s greenest catering establishments. They create the finest Cantonese cuisine using fresh, locally sourced ingredients; as well as an excellent selection of wines, spirits, lagers, ciders, and soft drinks.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 35 minutes’ drive.

Lion Inn, Blakey Ridge

The 16th Century Lion Inn free house stands tall on the highest point of the North York Moors, offering breath taking views over the valleys below. Open fires burn in ancient fireplaces, and the original low beamed ceilings enhance the friendly, cosy atmosphere. Enjoy some truly delicious food, coupled with a good selection of quality real ales.

Distance from Valley View Farm: 40 minutes’ drive.

Discover Yorkshire at its Best with Valley View Farm

Our six charming holiday cottages are situated in the beautiful surroundings of Old Byland, near Helmsley in North Yorkshire. We still have some availability remaining for this autumn in Holt (sleeps 6), Granary (sleeps 6), Drey (sleeps 4), Form (sleeps 2), Couch (sleeps 2) and Formicary (sleeps 2) cottages.

Click here to book your autumn break at Valley View Farm Cottages today. Because a weekend in Yorkshire isn’t long enough when you see what this beautiful county has to offer!

Out with the Kids: Family-Friendly Activities in North Yorkshire

The North Yorkshire Moors National Park is well-known for being wonderful walking country – but did you know that it’s also jam-packed full of fantastic family-friendly attractions?! Boasting both countryside and coastal locations, North Yorkshire is the ideal location to whisk your family away for a fun-filled weekend or extended holiday.

Discover our guide to the top family attractions in the North Yorkshire Moors below…

The Magical Monk Park Farm

Situated in the heart of Herriot country, Monk Park Farm is a great location for a fun family day out. Get up close to a variety of animals including lambs, sheep, ponies, pigs, cattle, deer, hens, rabbits, guinea pigs, llamas, alpacas, wallabies and more in the feeding areas, before heading to the adventure playground to let the kids blow off some steam. You can explore the farm on a fascinating barrel ride, or head on a nature walk around the lake.

The Thrilling Thirsk Birds of Prey Centre

The Thirsk Birds of Prey Centre is home to one of the largest collections of flying birds in Northern England. There are around 100 birds and 50 different species to discover, with 3 spectacular flying demonstrations taking place daily; usually featuring a selection of owls, vultures, and eagles. Birds range from the tiny 16lbs Stellers Sea Eagle to the giant 2oz African Pygym Falcon – be sure to keep an eye out for the kookaburra and caracaras, too!

The Riveting Ryedale Miniature Railway

If your children are train lovers, we highly recommend a trip to the Ryedale Miniature Railway. Sundays are the best days to visit, as you can ride the real steam engines (and occasional diesel locomotive) for a small charge. Twice a year, the Ryedale Society of Model Engineers runs an annual rally, with scale model trains running to a full day timetable. These events are extremely popular with train enthusiasts!

The Lively Lightwater Valley Theme Park

With over 40 rides and attractions catered to under 12s, you’ll find adventure around every corner at Lightwater Valley. Whether your kids fancy riding on flying swings, meeting modern-day dinosaurs, or enjoying a lazy ride on the Eagle’s Creek farm tractor, there’s something for everyone here! Don’t miss the Treetop Trails for your chance to explore the giant net walk-through experience, lurking high above the theme park.

The Brilliant Big Sheep & Little Cow Farm

Big Sheep & Little Cow Farm is a unique hands-on farming experience for children and adults alike, with a range of indoor and outdoor play activities to enjoy. Children can hold and feed animals such as chinchillas, goats, pigs, llamas, and donkeys, as well as meeting tortoises and Shetland ponies. Once you’re done with the animals, let the kids blow off some steam in the Woolly Jumpers Play Barn with fun slides, swings and tunnels to discover.

The Handsome Helmsley Open Air Swimming Pool

The charity-run Helmsley Open Air Pool is the only open-air swimming pool in the whole of Yorkshire, nestled in a quiet corner of Helmsley. With its excellent water quality, lack of crowding, and constant water temperature of 28 degrees, you can head to the pool with your family and friends between mid-June to early September each year. Because nothing beats a warm swim in the open air!

The Fun-Filled Flamingo Land Resort

Flamingo Land is a fun family adventure park with over 100 thrilling rides and attractions to enjoy. Discover the UKs only motorbike launch roller coaster, the exhilarating free-falling Cliffhanger coaster, and the suspended looping Kumali roller coaster. The park is also home to the UKs largest privately owned zoo, with many exotic species including giraffes, lions, rhinoceros, tigers and more.

The Notorious North Yorkshire Moors Railway

Climb aboard a steam or diesel train on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway and experience 24 miles of Yorkshire’s finest scenery. Arrive at the 1930s-style Pickering Station and discover the history of the railwway, before passing through Levisham, Goathland, Grosmont and arriving in the seaside town of Whitby. Be sure to stop off at Goathland, which served as Hogsmeade Station in the first Harry Potter film.

Family-Friendly Breaks in the Heart of Yorkshire

Our six charming holiday cottages are situated in the beautiful surroundings of Old Byland, near Helmsley in North Yorkshire. If you’re seeking a fun-filled family staycation in the heart of the North Yorkshire Moors, look no further than Valley View Farm Cottages!

Our upcoming availability is as follows:

  • Friday 26th – Friday 2nd September at Form, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Friday 2nd – Monday 5th September at Form, Holt, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Monday 5th – Friday 9th September at Holt, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Friday 9th – Monday 12th September at Form, Holt, Couch, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Monday 12th – Friday 16th September at Holt, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Monday 19th – Friday 23rd September at all cottages

Click here to book your family break in the heart of North Yorkshire today!

Our Top 10 Walks in the North Yorkshire Moors

Is there any better way to experience the North Yorkshire Moors National Park than heading out for a wonderful scenic walk? We think not! From gentle family-friendly ambles to challenging hikes up the moors, there’s a walk to suit all ages and abilities here in North Yorkshire.

Check out our top 10 walks in the North Yorkshire Moors below…

1) Sutton Bank & The White Horse

The White Horse of Kilburn is the most northerly white horse in England. The horse dates back to 1857 and is cut in limestone and is regarded as one of the most famous landmarks in North Yorkshire. This easy 1.7-mile route takes you above the White Horse, providing you with a fantastic opportunity to enjoy one of the finest views in England.

2) Helmsley & Rievaulx Abbey

In 1131, a group of twelve French monks set about building the largest and richest Cistercian house in England: Rievaulx Abbey. It was then suppressed in 1538 by Henry VIII and left to decay. This 7-mile circular ramble from the market town of Helmsley to Rievaulx Abbey is a popular favourite, offering sweeping views of Helmsley town and castle, before reaching the tranquil ruins of Rievaulx Abbey.

3) Roseberry Topping & Captain Cook’s Monument

Roseberry Topping is a unique, half-cone shaped hill; whilst Captain Cook’s Monument stands tall, marking the land where the famous explorer grew up. This challenging 7-mile hike begins at Great Ayton village green, before passing through peaceful woodland and farmland and climbing the hill to Captain Cook’s Monument. You’ll then join the Cleveland Way as far as Roseberry Topping, with rewarding views over the Cleveland plains.

4) Wainstones Walk

The impressive sandstone crags of the Wainstones have been popular with rock climbers for years. This energetic 8-mile circuit makes for a challenging day out – watch in awe as some of the most spectacular views in the whole of the National Park unfold before you whilst crossing the Cold Moor, as you travel to the magnificent rock crags known as the Wainstones.

5) Osmotherly & Mount Grace

Mount Grace was one of only ten Carthusian priories in the whole of the UK, housing around just twenty monks in its peak. Explore the handsome village of Osmotherly and its surroundings on this easy 3 ¼-mile circular trek that explores the village’s religious past, before stumbling upon the impressive ruins of Mount Grace Priory, with impressive views over Bilsdale, Teesside and the Pennines.

6) Lord Stones Walk

Lord Stones is a set of prehistoric stones that derive from three lords, whose estate boundaries met at this point on Carlton Bank. Uncover lords, stones, and ancient ways on this 3-mile family-friendly walk, offering awe-inspiring views of Middlesborough, the Cleveland plain, Roseberry Topping and Captain Cook’s Monument. The trail begins in the privately owned Lord Stones Country Park, before leading to the notorious ancient stones.

7) Clay Bank & Greenhow Plantation

The ancient woodland at Ingleby Greenhow, AKA Greenhow Plantation, is owned by the Forestry Commission, with Clay Bank being a popular stopover and picnic site. This 3-mile circular trail takes in the dramatic views across the Cleveland plain, with the twin landmarks of Roseberry Topping and Captain Cook’s Monument standing tall in the distance. 

8) Farndale

Nestled at the heart of the North Yorkshire Moors, Farndale valley makes the perfect setting for a classic spring walk. Embark upon this easy 3 ½-mile linear route in the ‘Daffodil Dale’, running alongside the enchanted River Dove. Marvel upon Farndale’s beautifully wild daffodils on this wonderful walking route, which usually appear between mid-March and mid-April each year.

9) Hutton-le-Hole & Lastingham

Known as one of the most attractive villages in the North Yorkshire Moors, Hutton-le-Hole boasts pretty stone cottages, picturesque bridges and a beautiful beck. Admire the tranquil fields and country lanes on this charming 4 ½-mile ramble, which connects the two villages of Hutton-le-Hole and Lastingham. Make it a full day out with a visit to each village’s spotlight attraction: Ryedale Folk Museum in Hutton and St Mary’s Church in Lastingham.

10) Rosedale

From 1855-1926, Rosedale lay at the heart of the Victorian industrial era with its ironstone mines, kilns and even a moorland railway. This spectacular 7 ½-mile trek takes you from Rosedale Abbey and into Rosedale along the old railway track, boasting spectacular views of the old roasting kiln ruins. This walk is best completed on a clear day to maximise those views.

Spectacular Summer Staycations at Valley View Farm

Our six charming holiday cottages are situated in the beautiful surroundings of Old Byland, near Helmsley in North Yorkshire. We are filling up fast for the summer season, with only the following dates still available:

  • Monday 18th – Friday 22nd July in Holt Cottage
  • Friday 29th – Monday 1st August in Form & Couch Cottage
  • Monday 1st – Friday 5th August in Drey Cottage
  • Friday 5th – Monday 8th August in Form & Drey Cottage
  • Monday 8th – Friday 12th August in Holt, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Friday 12th – Monday 15th August in all cottages
  • Monday 15th – Friday 19th August in Formicary, Form, Holt, Granary & Drey Cottage
  • Friday 19th – Monday 22nd August in Form, Holt & Drey Cottage
  • Monday 22nd – Friday 26th August in Form, Holt, Granary & Drey Cottage

Click here to book your break in the North Yorkshire Moors today!

Wonderful Wildlife in the North Yorkshire Moors

Did you know that the North Yorkshire Moors is a true wildlife-lover’s dream?! From migrating moorland birds to magnificent minke whales, there’s a whole host of fascinating wildlife ready and waiting to be discovered…

Spectacular Sea Creatures in the North Yorkshire Moors

Many people aren’t aware of the vast species of whales, porpoise and dolphins that reside on the North Yorkshire coast. From June-November each year, dolphins and whales feed upon North Sea mackerel and herring, making for a truly spectacular sight. Common and grey seal colonies often reside beneath the cliffs along the coast – common seal pups can be seen in June and July, whilst grey seal pups thrive in November time.

The cliffs near Flamborough and Filey are home to the largest mainland seabird colony in Britain, with thousands of gannets, puffins, kittiwakes and razorbills nesting at the Bempton Cliffs and Flamborough Cliff nature reserves during breeding season (April – August).

Woodland Wildlife in the North Yorkshire Moors

Did you know that the North Yorkshire Moors boasts more woodland than the New Forest?! Our woodlands are teeming with a fascinating array of flora and fauna. Discover primrose, bluebells, yellow archangel, cow-wheat, violets and wood anemone; and deer, badgers, foxes, stoats, weasels, shrews and wood mice.

Our favourite woodlands for observing wildlife include:

If bird watching is more your cup of tea, head on over to the permanent Raptor Viewpoint in Wykeham Forest to witness hundreds of merlin, goshawks, common buzzards, honey buzzards, red kite, peregrine and sparrowhawks. There are also some fantastic bird hides at Scaling Dam Reservoir, Howsham Mill, Danby Lodge National Park Centre and the Sutton Bank National Park Centre.

Marvellous Moorland Flora & Fauna in the North Yorkshire Moors

The National Park’s moorland is dominated by heather, which flowers in late summertime. The moorland provides an invaluable habitat for many rare species, including merlin and golden plover birds, and sundrew and cranberry plants. Many other heathland plants can be found, including crowberry, wavy hair grass, sphagnum moss, common cotton grass and bog asphodel.

The slopes of the moorland are often covered in bracken, which attracts whincat (bird) and chickweed wintergreen (plant). Juniper, dwarf cornel, cloudberry, and bog rosemary plants can all be found in the uplands; as well as red grouse, short-eared owls, snipes, and skylarks.

June Wildlife Highlights in the North Yorkshire Moors

Summer is finally here, and the main breeding season has well and truly begun in the North Yorkshire Moors. Our wildlife highlights for visiting in June include:

  • Spot our 21 orchid species including the common spotted orchid, pyramidal orchid, spotted-orchid, bee orchid and butterfly orchid – great place for this are the Wharram Quarry reserve and Hutton le Hole.
  • Watch for nursing common seal mothers and their pups along the North Yorkshire Moors coastline.
  • Visit Marine Drive in Scarborough to catch a glimpse of the famous peregrine falcons that nest on the cliffs each year.
  • Take a stroll along the banks of the river Derwent, Rye, Dove and Esk to try and spot the otters – visitors to Nunnington Hall have had success spotting otters in the past.
  • Discover our special road verges which will be teeming with meadow cranesbill, ox-eye daisy, field scabious, yarrow, common knapweed, and meadow vetchling.
  • Visit the wonderful wildflower meadows at Rievaulx Terrace, the Yorkshire Arboretum or Little Beck Wood Nature Reserve.
  • Head to Broxa or Wykeham Forest for a glimpse of the notorious nightjar.

July Wildlife Highlights in the North Yorkshire Moors

At the peak of summer, huge oak, ashes, and beech trees are in full leaf, providing all-important habitats to hundreds of insects and birds. Our wildlife highlights for visiting in July include:

  • Look out for cotton-grass growing on the moor tops in wet, boggy areas – Blakey Ridge is a good place to start.
  • Discover a fine example of an ancient Sessile Oak wood at Bridestones, Crosscliff and Blakey Topping.
  • Admire the gnarled trunks of ancient veteran trees at Duncombe Park National Nature Reserve.
  • The rich scent of lavender will now be filling the air at the county’s lavender farms – we highly recommend visiting Wolds Way Lavender if you’re interested.
  • Take a stroll around the Goathland Tarn and admire the Common and Southern Hawkers, and Emerald, Common Blue and Large Red damselflies.
  • See if you can spot a kingfisher dashing across the water at Guisborough Forest.
  • For butterfly walks, visit Caukleys Bank near Nunnington to see ringlets, commas, meadow browns, common blues, small tortoiseshells, small pearl-bordered fritillarys, large heaths and dark green fritillarys.

August Wildlife Highlights in the North Yorkshire Moors

Inhale the scents of summer in the North Yorkshire Moors. In August, our moorlands burst into a beautiful purple haze as the heather flowers. Our wildlife highlights for visiting in August include:

  • Take a trip to Fylingdales Moor to discover a wide array of merlin, otters, water voles, butterflies, moths, adders, and orchids; and of course, the magnificent purple heather.
  • Bilberries will be making an appearance on the moorland, which can be picked and cooked to make bilberry tarts – delicious!
  • See if you can spot the day-flying moths and butterflies feeding on the nectar-rich flowers on the moorland heather.
  • Porpoise, dolphins, and seals can all be spotted along the North Yorkshire coastline, especially from the tops of the cliffs. You may even get a glimpse of the Great Skua and Arctic Skua as they migrate back to Africa for the winter.

There are many wildlife events happening in the North Yorkshire Moors throughout the year – click here for more information.

Spectacular Summer Events in North Yorkshire

Looking for things to do with your friends or family during your upcoming trip to North Yorkshire this summer?

With a whole host of family-friendly festivals and entertaining events taking place throughout 2022, North Yorkshire is THE place to be this summer! Whether you’re a keen foodie, music lover, or jam making enthusiast, there’s something to suit all ages and preferences – with oodles of fun and entertainment guaranteed…

WalkFest

This year, WalkFest will be celebrating the 70th anniversary of the North York Moors National Park with a full programme of guided themed walks. From Saturday 28th – Sunday 29th May, you will be able to follow beautiful coastal stretches of the Cleveland Way National Trail, including Saltburn to Staithes (9 miles), Staithes to Whitby (11.5 miles), Whitby to Ravenscar (9.5 miles) and Sutton Bank to Rievaulx Abbey (6 miles).

Book your walk here.

Malton Food Lovers Festival

Stretching across the streets of Yorkshire’s Food Capital, Malton Food Lovers Festival is a fun celebration of the county’s finest produce and cooking. With the spring festival held from Friday 3rd – Sunday 5th June and the summer festival from Saturday 27th – Monday 29th August, you have two chances to check out “the food fest of the north” with artisan stalls, street food, talks, demonstrations, celebrity chefs, live music and much more.

Discover more here.

York Festival of Ideas

Head on over to the beautiful city of York from 11th – 24th June for an exciting programme of over 150 free events designed to educate, entertain, and inspire. Meet world-class speakers, enjoy amazing performances, take a guided tour around York, join in with fun family activities, and so much more. Topics include archaeology, history, politics, art, health, and psychology, with something for all ages and interests.

View the programme here.

York Early Music Festival

Celebrate York’s medieval churches, guildhalls, and historic houses with fantastic classical music of the highest standard from Friday 8th – Saturday 16th July. The 2022 festival opens with violinists Paolo Pandolfo and Amelie Chemin and closes with the International Young Artists Competition. As well as music performances, you can enjoy a series of talks, workshops, and informal recitals, held in historical venues across the city of York.

Find out more here.

Castle Howard Proms

Set in the picture-perfect grounds of Castle Howard, the Proms will showcase popular classis, songs from musicals and all your flag waving favourites on Saturday 20th August. Guest soloists Wynne Evans and Marisha Wallace will share the stage with the London Gala Orchestra; with a Spitfire show, impressive lasers and a spectacular firework show to finish. A true highlight of the Yorkshire event calendar!

Book your tickets here.

Scarborough Jazz Festival

Taking place from 23rd – 25th September at Scarborough Spa, you can enjoy a weekend of fantastic jazz music from the likes of world-class performers and innovative acts. Confirmed acts so far include A Time Remembered, Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, Ben Crosland’s Solway Stories, Dennis Rollins’ Funky-Funk, Hannah Horton Quartet, New York Brass Band, Os Caras – The Edison Machada Project, and The Simon Spillett Big Band.

View the full line-up here.

The World Jam Festival

Head to Helmsley Walled Garden on Sunday 25th September for a jam-packed day full of delicious preserves. Keen jam makers from all over the world are encouraged to submit their creations, to be in with the chance to win an extra special World Jam Festival award. The Helmsley Scouts are organising a fun duck race, as well as a Mad Hatters Tea Party – with prizes awarded to the best dressed Alice in Wonderland.

Find out more here.

Discover Yorkshire at it’s Best with Valley View Farm Cottages

Our six charming holiday cottages are situated in the beautiful surroundings of Old Byland, near Helmsley in North Yorkshire. We are filling up fast for the summer season, with only the following dates available to coincide with the above summer festivals:

  • Friday 27th – Monday 30th May at Formicary & Drey
  • Monday 30th – Monday 6th June at Formicary
  • Friday 10th – Friday 17th June at Holt & Granary
  • Friday 8th – Friday 15th July at Form, Couch, Holt, Granary & Drey
  • Friday 19th – Monday 22nd August at Formicary, Form, Couch, Holt & Drey
  • Friday 26th – Friday 2nd September at Form, Couch & Drey
  • Friday 23rd – Monday 26th September at all cottages

Click here to book your summer break today!

Introducing Our Charming Holiday Cottages in the Heart of Yorkshire

Seeking a stunning rural retreat in the heart of North Yorkshire? Look no further than Valley View Farm Cottages! Our six stone-built self-catering holiday cottages are situated in the beautiful countryside of Old Byland, near Helmsley in North Yorkshire. Our friendly and affordable accommodation caters for couples, families, and groups of friends alike, providing the perfect base to explore all that Yorkshire has to offer.

Keep reading to discover more about us and our spectacular collection of cottages…

About Valley View Farm

Our self-catering cottages are set on a working farm in the heart of North Yorkshire. We are a family run business and have been welcoming guests to our neck of the woods for over 20 years. The business started out with a B&B in the main farmhouse many years ago, before we acquired six old-style country cottages – and so began Valley View Farm Cottages!

The Humble Holt Cottage

Holt Cottage is our stunning 3 bedroomed cottage, ideal for larger families or groups of friends. The cottage sleeps 6 people but can be connected to the neighbouring Drey Cottage to cater for up to 10 people if required.

The comfortable sitting room boasts panoramic views of the farmland and countryside beyond, whilst the showstopping galleried kitchen / dining area contains everything you could possibly need to cook up a delicious dinner for six. The cottage features 3 luxurious bedrooms: one double and two twin. At the end of a long day exploring the sights and sounds of rural Yorkshire, snuggle down in the most sumptuous bedding and wake feeling truly refreshed. All bedrooms have fully equipped ensuite bathrooms, complete with bath, shower, toilet, and basin – allowing you to freshen up in comfort and style.

The Fantastic Form Cottage

Form Cottage is our romantic retreat for 2, with a handsome king-sized bedroom and a private raised patio area.

The fabulous sitting / dining room is flooded with natural light, boasting 360-degree views over the patio and countryside beyond from the large open aspect window. Kick back and relax on the most comfortable furniture, with the open fireplace crackling in the background. Head into the kitchen and rustle up a tasty meal for two, before retreating to the king-sized bedroom for a truly restful slumber.

The Darling Drey Cottage

Drey Cottage is our bright and sunny two-bedroomed cottage, ideal for families who wish to discover all that Yorkshire has to offer. Drey can be connected to Holt Cottage to sleep up to 10 people if required.

Retreat to the large sitting area and discover comfortable furniture, with oodles of space and light. Cook your family meal in the fully-equipped kitchen or step out into your own private patio area, boasting rustic outdoor seating and fantastic BBQ facilities – ideal for a spot of alfresco dining. With 1 double and 1 twin bedroom, there’s plenty of space for all the family to settle down in the most comfortable surroundings.

The Charming Couch Cottage

Couch Cottage is our charming romantic haven for two, boasting a stunning king-sized bedroom and a lovely open plan living area.

The good-sized open plan living area incorporates a sitting / dining / kitchen area, making it an ideal space for relaxing, dining and cooking. At the end of a long day exploring North Yorkshire, sink down into the comfortable sofa and enjoy watching your favourite film on the Freeview TV with DVD player. Wine and dine your other half in the fully equipped kitchen, before cosying up in the king-sized bedroom with a connecting ensuite wet room.

The Gorgeous Granary Cottage

Granary Cottage is our fabulous 3-bedroom cottage for 6, with generously sized open spaces for rest and relaxation.

The large sitting room commands far-reaching views over the communal patio and Moors beyond, with access directly onto the patio. The adjoining kitchen and dining area is spectacularly spacious, containing everything you need to cook a delicious dinner for 6. The cottage consists of 3 lovely bedrooms: one king/twin, one double and one good-sized twin. All bedrooms feature fully equipped ensuite bathrooms, complete with bath, shower, toilet, and basin – allowing you to freshen up in comfort and style.

The Fabulous Formicary Cottage

Formicary Cottage is our single-storey sanctuary for two, with a large bedroom that can be made up with a king or two twin beds.

The modern open plan living area is perfect for relaxing and dining in style, opening up to the fully equipped kitchen. Rustle up a tasty dinner for two, before snuggling down on the comfortable sofa with a glass of wine (or two!) and warming up by the open fireplace. At the end of the day, retreat to the lovely king / twin room with ensuite bathroom for some much-needed rest and relaxation.

But wait … there’s more!

Want to take your faithful companion on a Yorkshire staycation? All our cottages are dog-friendly, so no need to leave your four-legged friends behind! We provide the perfect base for you and your dog to relax after a day of waggy-tailed walkies in the Yorkshire Moors.

All cottages also have access to a spectacular stone walled patio area – a stunning south-facing sun trap. Equipped with comfortable garden furniture, you can enjoy sitting out with a glass of bubbly and watching as the sun goes down over the Moors.

Spring & Summer Availability at Valley View Farm Cottages

Our cottages are filling up fast for the spring and summer seasons, with very limited availability during the school holidays. Visit our website to book your Yorkshire staycation today!