Best Things to Do in Skipton

You’re about to discover Skipton, a gem in Yorkshire’s crown.

Picture yourself strolling through the historic Skipton Castle or sampling craft beers from local breweries.

Imagine bargaining at the bustling Skipton Market or exploring quaint independent shops.

Envision cruising down the Leeds-Liverpool canal or savoring serenity in local woods.

Whether you’re a history buff, beer lover, shopping enthusiast, or nature admirer, there’s something for you here.

Dive into this guide and let’s plan your unforgettable Skipton adventure.

Key Takeaways

  • Skipton Castle: A focal point of the town, offering a self-guided tour and known for being one of the best-preserved medieval castles in the country.
  • Local craft beer: Skipton offers a variety of options for craft beer enthusiasts, including The Growling Shrew Bottle Shop, The Beer Engine, The Mess Room, and Early Doors.
  • Skipton Market: A popular outdoor market selling local food, arts and crafts, clothes, and plants. Open on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday between 10am and 4pm. Also see the Skipton Christmas Market.
  • Independent local shops: Skipton has a range of unique and independent shops, including Lighthouse Lane, Daisy Chains Emporium, Kibble Bakery, Sarsaparilla Sweet Shop, and Steep & Filter.

Events In Skipton

Below can see some of the current events in Skipton.

Image name American Aquarium at Brudenell Social Club Leeds the 1 image from the post Best Things to Do in Skipton in

A Celebration of Simon & Garfunkel at Burnsall Village Hall, Skipton

Main Street, Skipton, BD23 6BP

Date & Time:

June 7th, 2024 7:30pm

Feminine power – Devine to the demonic

Craven arts house, 55 Otley Street, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD231ET, United Kingdom

Date & Time:

June 1st, 2023 11:00am

Nature Matters Archive Film Screening: Skipton

Skipton Library, High Street, Skipton, BD23 1JX, United Kingdom

Date & Time:

April 18th, 2023 2:00pm

When you’re in Bn sightseeing; it’s an immersion into heritage and culture. It’ll leave you enriched and inspired. So go ahead, delve deep into history during your visit.

Exploring Skipton Castle

If you’re into history, you can’t miss exploring Skipton Castle, one of the most well-preserved medieval castles in England. As soon as you cross the drawbridge, it’s like stepping back in time.

You’ll marvel at the massive twin-towered gatehouse and sturdy walls, which have stood strong for over 900 years.

Inside, a labyrinth of rooms awaits. Discover the grandeur of the banqueting hall where lavish feasts were held by noble families. Feel chills down your spine as you venture into the dungeon. And imagine Lady Anne Clifford‘s determination as she restored this mighty fortress after the Civil War.

Exploring Skipton Castle is more than just a visit; it’s an immersive journey into England’s rich past that will leave lasting memories.

Sampling Local Craft Beer

You’ll find a great selection of local craft beers at the Growling Shrew Bottle Shop, as well as micropubs like The Beer Engine and The Mess Room. Nestled in Skipton’s charming town centre, these spots are perfect for enthusiasts and novices alike.

As you sip on unique brews sourced from Yorkshire’s independent breweries, you’ll savour flavors that are as rich and diverse as Skipton itself.

Don’t forget to visit Early Doors too; it’s warm, inviting atmosphere perfectly complements its wide array of local beers. These aren’t just pubs – they’re Skipton attractions in their own right.

Shopping at Skipton Market

There’s no shortage of treasures to be found at the bustling Skipton Market. Stalls line both sides of the High Street, selling everything from local food and crafts to clothing and plants. You’ll love meandering through the vibrant colors, enticing aromas, and lively chatter that fill this historic marketplace.

As you explore further along Skipton’s High Street, don’t miss out on Craven Court. Housed in a Victorian-themed arcade with a stunning glass roof, it hosts an array of independent shops offering unique finds you won’t see anywhere else.

Lastly, make your way towards the Town Hall. This historic building not only offers cultural events but also houses an intriguing museum. Here in the Skipton Market area, every turn is a discovery waiting to happen.

Discovering Independent Local Shops

Venturing into the charming independent shops is like stepping into a treasure trove of unique finds. Skipton High Street, with its quaint buildings and welcoming storefronts, offers an array of local merchants.

At the farm shop, you’ll find:

  • Locally sourced produce
  • Homemade goodies that you can’t resist

The gift shop will charm you with:

  • Handmade crafts from local artisans
  • Unique souvenirs to remember your visit by

Each store in this lively area showcases the heart of Skipton’s community while offering an engaging shopping experience unlike any other.

From fresh cheese at the farm shop to bespoke gifts, Skipton activities are not just about sightseeing but also immersing yourself in local culture.

Visiting the Craven Museum

It’s worth noting that the Craven Museum offers a unique look at local social history, archaeology, and art. Located in the heart of Skipton on high street, this museum presents an engaging narrative of North Yorkshire’s past. The artifacts displayed are not only interesting but also tell a compelling story about Anne Clifford and her influence on Skipton Castle Woods’ preservation.

ExhibitDescriptionRelevanceArchaeological FindsUnearthed treasures from different erasShowcasing Skipton’s rich historic pastArt CollectionLocal artists’ works reflecting regional cultureArtistic perspective into North Yorkshire’s heritageAnne Clifford ArchivesPersonal items & related documentsInsight into life of this influential figure

Strolling the Leeds-Liverpool Canal

You’ll love taking a leisurely stroll along the Leeds-Liverpool canal, where picturesque views and tranquil waters offer a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle.

As the Leeds and Liverpool canal runs right through the heart of Skipton, you’ll get to experience:

  • The Canal Basin:
  • A hub of activity with colourful narrowboats
  • Quaint shops and cafés lining its edges
  • The Canal Towpath:
  • Perfect for a relaxing walk or cycle ride
  • Offers stunning views of Yorkshire’s countryside

For an unforgettable adventure, take a boat trip on this historic waterway. You’ll glide past charming market towns and beautiful landscapes.

Whether you’re exploring by foot or floating along in a boat, there’s no better way to appreciate the scenic beauty Skipton has to offer.

Trekking in Skipton Woods

Wrapping up your canal stroll, the next stop on your itinerary should be a trek through the tranquil Skipton Woods. Managed by the Woodland Trust, this natural haven offers enchanting paths winding through mature trees and vibrant flora. There’s nothing quite like the crunch of leaves underfoot and the sweet scent of nature filling your lungs as you amble amidst this beautiful countryside.

Keep an eye out for playful squirrels darting between branches overhead and listen for the melodious songbirds that call these woods home.

After working up an appetite from trekking, indulge in a quintessentially British afternoon tea at one of the charming local cafes close to Skipton Woods – it’s the perfect end to your woodland adventure!

Playing at Skipton Golf Club

After trekking through the woods, there’s no better way to unwind than by playing a round at the local golf club. The Skipton Golf Club, nestled in the Yorkshire Dales National Park, offers an exceptional golfing experience with stunning views of the River Wharfe.

Here’s what you can look forward to:

  • A challenging 18-hole course
  • Beautifully manicured greens
  • Strategically placed bunkers
  • A contemporary clubhouse
  • Comfortable lounge with a bar
  • Delicious food offerings

The picturesque landscapes of Yorkshire Dales serve as a serene backdrop as you master your swing. And after a satisfying day on the green, retreat to your contemporary hotel nearby for some well-deserved rest and relaxation.

It’s not just golf; it’s an entire experience that beckons to be savored.

Celebrating at the Skipton Waterway Festival

There’s no shortage of fun at the annual Skipton Waterway Festival. Nestled on the banks of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, this lively event brings together boat enthusiasts, families, and tourists for a spectacular celebration. From vibrant boat parades to gripping competitions, there’s always something to captivate your attention.

Boat TripsSkipton Sheep DayBolton Abbey
Scenic views along the canalShowcase of different sheep breedsHistoric estate with beautiful riverside setting
Informative guided toursFun-filled petting zoosWoodland walks and gardens
Relaxing family activityExciting sheep shearing demonstrationsPicnic spots and cafes
Connection to other towns via canalDance performances by adorable sheepFamily-friendly attractions

Exploring Skipton Castle Woods

You’ll find peace and tranquility as you wander through the Castle Woods, a woodland area near the castle that’s perfect for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.

As part of the Bolton Abbey Estate, Skipton Castle Woods offer an enchanting escape into nature where Springs Canal runs peacefully amidst spectacular surroundings.

Exploring Skipton Castle Woods, you’ll discover:

  • Flora and Fauna:
  • Ancient trees providing habitat for diverse wildlife.
  • Bluebell carpet in spring revealing nature’s spectacle.
  • Trails:
  • The Woodland Walk: A trail along Eller Beck River.
  • The Springs Canal Path: Leeds Liverpool canal runs here offering serene waterside views.

The woods provide a soothing experience with their lush green foliage, chirping birds, and fresh air. It’s truly an outdoor lover’s paradise!

Touring Skipton Town Hall

Leaving the tranquil Skipton Castle Woods behind, you’re drawn towards the heart of town by the imposing presence of Skipton Town Hall. Designed during the industrial revolution, it’s a testament to this era’s architectural prowess.

As you wander through its grand corridors under a royal charter, imagine the countless gatherings and social events that have taken place here over centuries.

Don’t miss the Holy Trinity Church nearby with its ancient yew tree standing as a silent sentinel.

Later in your journey, make sure to hop on board at Bolton Abbey steam railway for an immersive ride into history. The rhythmic chug-chug of the train and picturesque views will transport you back in time – truly an unforgettable experience amidst your exploration of Skipton.

Cruising on Skipton Canal Boat Trips

Stepping aboard one of the canal boat trips offers a unique perspective of the stunning Yorkshire countryside. You’ll glide along the Liverpool Canal, soaking in the tranquillity of Skipton’s waterways.

As you start cruising on Skipton canal boat trips, feel the gentle sway as your vessel navigates through serene waters. Witness charming stone cottages and lush green fields unfolding like a picturesque canvas.

Some popular attractions include the historic Eller Beck Bridge, an epitome of Victorian engineering. The vibrant towpath bustling with cyclists and joggers adds to your voyage’s scenic charm.

These fun things make your trip unforgettable, creating memories that last beyond mere photographs. So next time you’re pondering what to do in Skipton, remember: nothing beats a peaceful cruise down its iconic canals!

Experiencing Skipton Castle Woods Nature Reserve

Experiencing Skipton Castle Woods Nature Reserve is an absolute must for nature lovers and photographers alike. It offers peaceful trails, diverse wildlife, and birdwatching opportunities. As you wander through the lush greenery, listening to birdsong and crunching leaves underfoot, keep your eyes peeled for playful squirrels darting up ancient oaks. You’ll find yourself immersed in a natural haven with every step.

Don’t stop at Skipton! Just a short drive away lies Parcevall Hall Gardens – a hidden gem brimming with exotic plant species nestled amongst Yorkshire’s rolling hills. Further still, you’ll discover Kilnsey Park Estate, where adventure meets tranquility in perfect harmony. Enjoy fly fishing or simply savor the stunning views.

Lastly, don’t miss Bolton Priory. Its serene spiritual beauty completes your idyllic journey through England’s verdant heartland.

Participating in Skipton Auction Mart

You’ll find there’s a lively and bustling atmosphere at the Auction Mart, one of the largest livestock markets in the country. Known as a sheep town, Skipton comes alive with sights and sounds of farm life. Participating in Skipton Auction Mart is an experience like no other.

  • At The Auction:
  • View the auctioning action up close, where seasoned farmers negotiate deals.
  • Witness sheep shearing demonstrations that depict the skill and precision involved.
  • Extracurricular Activities:
  • Enjoy adorable moments at the petting zoo with lambs and calves.
  • Watch awe-inspiring sheep dancing performances – a unique spectacle indeed!

The combination of rural charm and vibrant energy makes this an unforgettable part of your visit to Skipton. You’re not just observing; you’re immersing in tradition.

Remembering at Skipton War Memorial

It’s worth paying a visit to the War Memorial in Aireville Park, a significant local landmark dedicated to the fallen soldiers of World Wars I and II.

As you stand before this solemn monument, let your mind travel back to the turbulent times of civil war and global conflict. Imagine how it must have felt for the whole town, sending their loved ones off into unknown dangers.

Each name carved into stone represents tales of bravery and sacrifice; these are not just names but real people who lived, laughed, and loved here. This place is more than a monument; it’s a poignant reminder of our history.

It becomes an unmissable event on days like Remembrance Sunday when wreaths adorn its base. Amidst all the lovely things Skipton offers, this memorial stands as a testament to those prey encounters life throws at us and how we rise above them.

Walking in Skipton Castle Woods

Stepping away from the solemn reflection at Skipton War Memorial, you venture onward to the enchanting paths of Skipton Castle Woods.

Here’s what awaits you:

  • A centuries-old woodland right on the castle’s doorsteps
  • Standing tall with ancient trees whispering tales of times gone by.
  • The Eller Beck stream gurgles along, serenading your journey.
  • Diverse flora and fauna
  • Witness a dazzling array of wildflowers in spring.
  • Spot elusive creatures like roe deer and tawny owls taking shelter within this leafy sanctuary.

As you wander deeper into this verdant haven, feel the humdrum of life melt away – replaced by a profound sense of peace only nature can offer. With each step, breathe in the rich earthy scent. Listen to leaves rustling underfoot, telling their own quiet stories.

Allow yourself some moments here; moments to simply be amidst nature’s symphony before moving onto your next adventure in Skipton.

Attending Holy Trinity Church

Next, you’re off to the impressive Holy Trinity Church, with its stunning architecture dating back to the early 14th Century. As you step through its ancient wooden doors, you’ll be transported into a world where history lingers in every corner.

The medieval fresco depicting the hand of death is a haunting yet fascinating sight that shouldn’t be missed.

The church’s garden, well-tended and peaceful, invites you for a quiet moment of reflection amidst the hustle and bustle of Skipton. And don’t forget to pay your respects at the ornate tombs of Lady Anne Clifford and her parents; their story is woven into the very fabric of this town.

Whether it’s for spiritual reasons or historical curiosity, visiting Holy Trinity is an enriching experience that’ll stay with you long after you’ve left Skipton.

Shopping at the Market and Boutique Shops

Leaving the serenity of Holy Trinity Church behind, you may be ready for a bit more hustle and bustle. A short stroll takes you to Skipton’s award-winning High Street market, a lively hub of activity that’s been the town’s heart for centuries.

Here, you can find everything from fresh local produce to quirky crafts and vintage treasures.

The market isn’t just about its stalls though. As you wander down the High Street, make sure to:

  • Explore Craven Court shopping arcade:
  • Marvel at its beautifully painted ironwork
  • Gaze up at the stunning glass roof
  • Venture into narrow side streets:
  • Unearth unique shops full of character
  • Discover hidden gems waiting to be found

This is not just shopping; it’s an adventure steeped in history and charm.

Cruising the Leeds and Liverpool Canal

After you’ve had your fill of shopping, why don’t you take a leisurely boat trip on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal? It’s a great way to rest your feet while still enjoying the scenic Yorkshire countryside. The canal, stretching over 127 miles, offers stunning views of Skipton and its surrounding areas. There are several tour operators offering boat trips along this beautiful route.

As you float along, keep an eye out for wildlife such as otters and kingfishers. If you’re lucky, you might even spot a cheeky heron fishing for its dinner! Don’t forget to bring your camera – there are plenty of picture-perfect moments waiting to be captured.

Here’s what your day could look like:

10:00Departure from Skipton Wharf
12:00Lunch onboard
14:00Disembark at East Marton
16:00Return to Skipton

Relaxing in Aireville Park

It’s also worth taking a breather in Aireville Park, which was created back in the 1830s as part of the Aireville Estate. This is no ordinary park: it’s a vibrant oasis where you’ll find lush greenery and ample space to kick back and relax or enjoy an exciting game on the sports courts.

The park features:

  • An impressive treetop high ropes course for those seeking adventure
  • Sports courts including tennis, football, golf – perfect if you’re up for some friendly competition
  • A delightful café serving scrumptious refreshments

For families with kids:

  • It offers spacious areas for children to run around freely
  • A fun-filled playground that your little ones will surely love

Walking the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Towpath

After you’ve relished the green expanses of Aireville Park, it’s time to set your sights on another enchanting journey – walking the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Towpath.

Imagine strolling along a serene, man-made waterway, stretching as far as your eyes can see. You’re surrounded by idyllic landscapes, with verdant trees lining your path and quaint narrowboats bobbing gently in the waters nearby.

As you tread this historic towpath that once carried countless industrial goods during England’s industrious past, take a moment to appreciate its tranquil beauty amidst modern life. Be sure to stop for delightful photos of colorful houseboats adorned with vibrant flowers.

Paying Homage at Freddie Trueman Statue

You’ll find an impressive bronze statue of cricketing legend Freddie Trueman next to the canal, a fitting tribute to one of Yorkshire’s proudest sons. The life-size sculpture captures him in mid-bowl, poised to deliver another strike for England.

The statue is located close to Skipton Canal Basin. You can enjoy the sight while taking a leisurely stroll along the canal path. It’s especially picturesque against the backdrop of serene water and lush greenery.

Unveiled by his widow in 2010, each detail is meticulously crafted, from his focused expression to the folds of his cricket whites. It serves as a poignant reminder of Trueman’s contribution to English cricket.

A visit here isn’t just about homage; it’s also steeped in nostalgia, sportsmanship, and local pride.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below you can see some of the common questions we’re asked about things to do in Skipton.

Are There Any Annual Public Events or Festivals Held in Skipton Other Than the Skipton Waterway Festival?

Are There Any Annual Public Events or Festivals Held in Skipton Other Than the Skipton Waterway Festival?

Yes, there are. You’ll love Sheep Day in early July, showcasing different sheep breeds and shearing demonstrations. There’s also the Embsay and Bolton Railway’s special events or festivities at the historical Bolton Abbey.

What Are Some Recommended Dining Options or Local Restaurants in Skipton?

You’ll find plenty of delightful dining options in Skipton. For tasty pub grub, try the Woolly Sheep Inn or The Narrow Boat. Bizzie Lizzie’s offers excellent fish and chips, while Le Caveau serves exquisite French cuisine.

Where Can Visitors Find Accommodation Options in Skipton?

You’ll find numerous accommodation options in Skipton. It boasts charming B&Bs, cozy cottages, inviting guest houses, and luxury hotels. Each offers a unique stay ensuring comfort and a great base for exploring the town.

Are There Any Guided Tours Available to Explore Skipton and Its Surrounding Areas?

Yes, there are guided tours available in Skipton. You can explore the historic Skipton Castle with a self-guided tour or enjoy a narrated boat trip along the Leeds-Liverpool canal for scenic views.

What Are the Transportation Options Within Skipton for Tourists?

You’ll find various transportation options in Skipton. You can explore by foot, rent a bicycle, or use public buses for local trips. For longer journeys, trains are convenient. Taxis are also available 24/7.


So, there you have it! Skipton is brimming with charm. From the historic Skipton Castle to the bustling local market, there’s plenty to explore. You can sample craft beers, meander through independent shops, or take a tranquil stroll along the Leeds and Liverpool Canal towpath. Don’t forget to pay your respects at the Freddie Trueman Statue before your adventure ends.

With so much on offer, a trip to Skipton promises an unforgettable experience steeped in history and local culture.