Yorkshire Dales England Holidays

Inspirational cottage holidays in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales

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A cottage holiday in Barbondale, Yorkshire


The lovely Yorkshire Dales for cottage holidaysIs Barbondale in the Yorkshire Dales or in Cumbria? Well, it depends who you ask, as there seems to be some dispute! It concerns the expansion of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Either way, it’s a great destination for a let’s get away from it all family self-catering holiday. There are plenty of cottages and apartments to rent as a safe and comfortable base for days out exploring the Dales.

self catering cottages and accommodation in the Yorkshire Dales

The small village of Barbon sits at the foot of Barbondale in the Lune Valley and is approximately three miles from Kirkby Lonsdale and two miles from Casterton. Its pretty church is St. Bartholomew’s, built in 1893 and the village pub is an old coaching inn, dating from the 1600s.

This village plays host to the popular Barbon Manor Speed Hillclimb at Barbon Manor Park. Crowds come for the short but exciting hill climb of 0.5 miles. The Manor estate provides suitably rugged terrain for the challenge and the climb has a 1 in 12 average gradient. Drivers have to cope with high speeds and a very tight hairpin bend. This event occurs two or three times a year and one of the events, held in May, counts as two rounds in the British Hillclimb Championship. Barbon Manor is a private residence dating from the middle of the 19th century. Its Italian and French style is very impressive and it enjoys Grade II listed status.

Another challenge in the area is the Barbondale Round, a walking event covering a course of 22 miles, which some hardy souls run across! Cavers, too, come to this area to challenge themselves in a cave system said to be the most complex and the longest in Britain. This labyrinth of passages stretching for about 41 miles, called the Ease Gill system, runs beneath Leck Fell, Ireby Fell and Casterton Fell. Some areas can only be accessed by cave diving.

For more artistic pursuits but still in the great outdoors, the well-known sculptor, Andy Goldsworthy has provided an interesting diversion. His work with natural materials, placed in the landscape, has defined his career and his project involving the creation of sheepfolds has an example at Bardon, on the road to Dent.

If you want to browse round a local market, Thursday is Market Day in Kirkby Lonsdale. Walking round the town is a pleasant experience, whilst observing the historic buildings. However, the kids will want to make a beeline for the Enchanted Chocolate Mine at the chocolate shop called Chocolat. Faeries mine the chocolate underneath the town! If your family would prefer to learn how to paint ceramic teapots, vases and other items, the Station House Pottery Workshop & Tearooms hosts painting sessions with no booking required. If you want to join the locals for a paddle and an ice cream, the place to go is Devil’s Bridge. If you visit St. Mary’s Church and stand in the churchyard, you’ll see the exact view that J.M.W. Turner saw when he painted it, around 1818.

Yorkshire Dales activities on holiday, golfGolfers are catered for at Casterton where Casterton Golf Course welcomes visitors to its 9-hole course, driving range and par 3 course. Terrific views from the course add to the experience and there is a licensed clubhouse and dining available all day plus a golf shop, putting green and practice net. Visitors can take advantage of meal deals and loyalty card deals.

Walking in the scenic landscape is one of the most popular activities in Barbondale, of course, but there is something to do for families with children of all ages. It may not be the most famous of the Yorkshire Dales, but it has its own charm and heritage to celebrate.  Rent a cottage in the Yorkshire Dales, in Barbondale or one of the other beautiful dales and experience a very warm northern welcome. You may wish to book your holiday to coincide with the annual Swaledale festival of Dales culture and tradition.