Skipton to Bolton Abbey

This dramatic ride on quiet country roads (which are hilly in places) takes you east from the bustling market town of Skipton with its impressive castle and regular outdoor market, through beautiful countryside, ending at the magnificent ruins of Bolton Abbey in the Yorkshire Dales.

Exit Skipton Station, turn right, follow the main street to the top of the town, and at the roundabout bear right. After 0.5 miles turn left on the road signed Embsay. After one mile enter the village of Embsay, turning right at the village shop and post office. Embsay Station is home to one of the attractions on this route – the Embsay and Bolton Abbey Steam Railway, where you can take a ride behind a vintage steam locomotive.

From Embsay, follow signs to Bolton Abbey along quiet country lanes with wonderful scenery all the way. You may want to stop off for an ice cream at Yorkshire Dales Ice Cream, or at Hesketh Farm Park, a fantastic working farm offering animal feeding, play areas, a straw maze and a great cafe. But make sure you leave time to explore the Bolton Abbey Estate, where the River Wharfe passes through the famous Strid Gorge. Set in 30,000 acres of beautiful countryside, there are the ruins of the magnificent Abbey, in their stunning natural setting, as well as river walks, stepping stones, cafes and picnic spots.

You can retrace your route back to Skipton, or return on the steam railway. Cycle along the bridleway opposite the Devonshire Arms, leading to Bolton Abbey Station. Part of the route can then be covered by train to Embsay Station and by bike from Embsay to Skipton. Bikes are welcome on the train.

Please note

We have taken all responsible steps to ensure that these routes are safe and achievable by people with a reasonable level of fitness.

However, all outdoor activities involve a degree of risk. To the extent permitted by law, Sustrans accepts no responsibility for any accidents or injury resulting from following these routes.

Walking and cycling routes change over time. Weather conditions may also affect path surfaces.

Please use your own judgement when using the routes based upon the weather and the ability, experience and confidence levels of those in your group.


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