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Rights of way - long distance routes
North Yorkshire has many long distance routes and rides which enable you to experience the wonderful diversity of landscape that the county has to offer. Below are some of the most popular routes and links to help you find out more.
The Coast to Coast Walk
Devised by Alfred Wainwright, the Coast to Coast walk covers 190 miles, starting from St Bees in Cumbria and finishing at Robin Hoods Bay in North Yorkshire. Described by Julia Bradbury (from Countryfile) as "England's signature walk", it takes in stunningly varied countryside and crosses three national parks - the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors.
The Cleveland Way
The Cleveland Way National Trail is 109 miles/176km long, arching around the North Yorks Moors and down the North Yorkshire coast. Starting in Helmsley the route takes in the natural beautiful of the North Yorkshire countryside passing a plethora of historical points of interest every step of the Way including Whitby Abbey, Scarborough Castle, Rievaulx Abbey and Mount Grace Priory, before ending in Filey. For more information visit this link.
The Yorkshire Wolds Way
The Yorkshire Wolds Way National Trail is a 79 miles/127km route across rolling hills with endless views of the tranquil countryside. Starting from the Humber Estuary, trail winds its way through some of the most peaceful countryside rich in flora and fauna, ending at the dramatic Filey Brigg Other points of interest include the medieval village of Wharram Percy and Wolds Way Lavender. For more information visit this link.
The Ebor Way (name after Roman name of York, Eboracum) is a 119km / 74 mile long distance walk starting at Helmsley heading south through the Howardian Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and taking in York before heading West to finish in Ilkley. For more information visit this link.
Centenary Way (North Yorkshire)
The Centenary Way, a route established to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the North Yorkshire County Council, runs for 134 km / 83 miles from historic York to the dramatic Filey Brigg. The route runs across the Howardian Hills taking on points of interest such as Castle Howard and Wharram Percy and linking in with the Ebor Way and Wolds Way. For more information visit this link.
The Pennine Way
The Pennine Way is one of the most famous long distance routes. Starting at Edale in the Peak District the route heads over the Pennines and into North Yorkshire for a short distance between Thorton-in-Craven and Eshton before continuing into the Yorkshire Dales National Park and the Howgills. It finishes after some 268 miles at Kirk Yetholm in the Scottish Borders. For more information visit this link.
The Ribble Way
The Ribble Way is a 75 mile route starting at Longton on the estuary west of Preston and then follows the river through Lancashire into North Yorkshire to finish at its source at Gavel Gap near Horton-in-Ribblesdale. The walk takes in various features from evidence of roman roads, ancient abbeys and landmarks from the industrial revolution and incorporates landscapes such as tidal marshes, open moorland and limestone gorges. For more information visit this link.
The Dales Way
The Dales Way is a 70 mile route heading from Ilkley in West Yorkshire passing over Cam Fell, into Dentdale then follows the River Dee to Sedburgh then the River Lune and River Kent and finishes at Bowness-in-Windermere. The section over the watershed at Cam Fell can be challenging due to the steepness of the route and its exposed surroundings. For more information visit this link.
The Nidderdale Way
The Nidderdale Way is 53 mile circular walk mostly within the beautiful Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural beauty. You can start and finish the walk in Pateley Bridge which is a great place to stay with plenty of shops including places to buy guide books.
The route follows the river Nidd and leads up the valley to impressive views above Scar House Reservoir before heading back down the valley and through the lovely village of Ripley. For more information visit this link.
The Ripon Rowel
The Ripon Rowel is a 50 mile circular walk starting in the beautiful city of Ripon and heading through the picturesque villages of North Stainley, Mickley, Masham, Dallowgill, Grantley, past Fountains Abbey and then Markington and back up to Ripon through South Stainley and Bishop Monkton. For more information visit this link.
The Six Dales Trail
A thirty eight mile walk from Otley, across the length of the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, to Middleham. Along its way the trail crosses five watersheds, separating in turn Wharfedale, Washburndale, Nidderdale, Colsterdale, Coverdale, and Wensleydale.
The trail passes through ancient dry-stone-walled sheep pastures, high heather moorland with gritstone outcrops, quiet river banks, the landscaped parkland surrounding the ruins of Jervaulx Abbey, and finally, the magnificent ruins of Middleham Castle. For more information visit this link.
A 247 mile long distance walk, based on a 1938 route walked by Alfred Wainwright. It starts and ends in Settle, heading north through the Yorkshire Dales along the eastern side of the Pennines, crosses the moors of County Durham to reach Hadrian's Wall. After following the wall it then returns south along the western side of the Pennines, through the Eden Valley and back to Settle. For more information visit this link.