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Picture a bustling cobbled market square, fringed by shops offering local foods, speciality gifts and arts and crafts. Add other attractions such as friendly cafés, restaurants and cosy hotels, all set against a backdrop of the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. That's Grassington, the small market town that feels like a village, and the perfect short break location from which to enjoy the many things to do in the area.
Grassington Farming still plays a huge part in the local economy. Look out for the distinctive Dalesbred sheep.
Grassington has a fascinating history. In 1282 it was given a Royal Charter for a market and fair - giving it a 'market town' status.
In 1909, Grassington's first electricity was generated from a hydroelectric plant at Linton Falls. This plant is being restored with the help of English Heritage and is due to start generating power once again at the end of 2011.
Grassington is one of the best loved of the many delightful small towns and picturesque villages in the Yorkshire Dales and is fast becoming a destination village due to its attractive location on the river Wharfe surrounded by beautiful open countryside.
Amongst the quaint streets there are numerous places to eat, drink, and take in the atmosphere of this delightful community. The charming cobbled square in the centre is surrounded by family owned shops offering quality foods, arts, crafts and gifts making it a perfect location for eating, pottering, people watching or strolling through the narrow cobbled streets. Catch your breath in a cosy café or have lunch in a traditional pub or family-owned restaurant or simply relax by the river.
Not by accident is Grassington one of Wharfedale's most popular villages and a convenient walking base for exploring Wharfedale and Nidderdale, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The area is a haven for outdoor pursuits including horse riding, fly fishing on the River Wharfe and of course moorland and riverside walking, while the nearby show caves of Stump Cross Caverns offer underground adventure.
However long your visit to Grassington, you'll find plenty of things to do. If you're interested in history, attractions in Grassington include Bronze Age burial mounds, Celtic villages and farms, settlements from the Roman era and mediaeval farmsteads. A visit to the Upper Wharfedale Museum in the square will tell you more about the village's fascinating history.
Wharfedale is perfect walking country with walks that will take you past ancient priories and churches, alongside the lovely River Wharfe and across the glorious vistas of the open fell and the natural limestone spectacle of Kilnsey Crag. For the more ambitious, the Dales Way runs from Ilkely through Grassington and across the Pennines with guided walks organised by the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
Grassington hosts a number of local festivals including the Dickensian Festival just before Christmas. With its traditional market, Christmas lights and the villagers and visitors dressed in Dickensian costume, the streets are alive with street music and craft demonstrations. The summer Grassington Festival is a popular two week extravaganza; Starting with a carnival parade, the market town comes alive with a colourful fortnight of music, theatre, comedy, film and visual arts.
There is plenty to do, making Grassington the perfect family day out:
Walking and hiking
From gentle river and woodland strolls to challenging treks over the open fells.
A perfect location for eating, pottering, people watching or strolling through the narrow cobbled streets.
Grassington is a haven for outdoor pursuits from fly fishing, pony trekking, climbing or caving.
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