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Visit the Dales


Travel information

Train crossing Ribblehead Viaduct
Train crossing Ribblehead Viaduct
National Park of the Year award at Ribblehead

Car parks

Where to park in the Yorkshire Dales

Towns & villages

Find out about our beautiful towns and villages

The Yorkshire Dales National Park is in the north of England. It is nestled between four other National Parks – Northumberland National Park (north), North York Moors National Park (east), Peak District National Park (south) and Lake District National Park (west). It is an excellent central point from which to explore England's most spectacular landscapes.

Cities close to the National Park include York, Harrogate, Bradford and Leeds in the south, Lancaster, Preston and Carlisle to the west and Darlington and Middlesbrough to the north-east. All these cities are well-linked for national and international travel including bus, rail and air.


The two National Rail services covering the Yorkshire Dales area are the Leeds-Morecambe line and the famous Leeds-Settle-Carlisle line. This gives fantastic access to the Dales on one of the most spectacular train journeys in England. After Settle the train stops in the National Park at Horton-in-Ribblesdale (perfect access for the Yorkshire Three Peaks), Ribblehead (to explore the iconic viaduct), Dent (the highest main-line station), Garsdale (to connect to Hawes) and Kirkby Stephen.

There is also the heritage Wensleydale Railway which runs from Northallerton to the edge of the National Park at Redmire.

Other local stations providing access in to the Dales are Darlington, Northallerton, Ilkley, Skipton, Penrith and Oxenholme. See National Rail Enquiries to plan your journey.

Coach and bus

Bus and coach links to the Dales are excellent. Nearby towns such as Lancaster, Penrith, Skipton, Leeds, Harrogate, York, Ripon, Northallerton and Darlington are well served by National Express or Megabus coaches, and a range of local bus services.

Bus services within the National Park run throughout the year linking the main towns, villages, and popular attractions, with additional services running during the summer months mainly on Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Using the bus is an excellent way of enjoying the spectacular scenery without having to worry about keeping your eyes on the road. It also helps reduce congestion and parking problems, and opens up the possibility of some fantastic linear walks, allowing you to walk back to your car.

The Winter Dales Bus Network Map provides you with a summary of the main services operating across the Dales. Full details of services, timetables, and ticket offers operating in the Dales can be found on the Dales Bus website. Please note that some services are infrequent so you may find it helpful to use a journey planner such as those on either Traveline website or West Yorkshire Metro website to plan your day. National Park Centre or Tourist Information Centre staff may also be able to offer assistance and advice.

The following is a summary of the Winter bus services serving some of the more popular towns and villages.

The lovely village of Grassington in Wharfedale can be easily reached from Skipton and Ilkley:

  • X43 Witch Way service runs between Manchester and Skipton, Monday to Saturday, and additionally on Sundays runs between Skipton and Grassington;
  • 72 service runs Monday to Saturday between Skipton and Grassington;
  • 72B service runs Monday to Saturday between Grassington and Buckden;
  • 74 service runs on Saturdays until 28th October 2017 between Ilkley and Grassington;
  • 74A service runs on Mondays and Wednesdays and, from 3rd November 2017, additionally on Fridays between Ilkley and Grassington;
  • 874 DalesBus service runs on Sundays between Wakefield, Leeds, Ilkley, Bolton Abbey, Grassington, and Buckden.

Malham - with its stunning Cove, Gordale Scar and Tarn - can be reached most easily from Skipton:

  • 210 and 211 services run Monday to Friday and the 75 service runs on Saturdays between Skipton and Malham.

Hawes with a host of attractions including the home of Wensleydale Cheese and the Dales Countryside Museum is connected most frequently to Leyburn by bus.

  • 156 service runs Monday to Saturday between Catterick, Leyburn, Hawes, and Gayle. Some calling points need to be booked in advance or are demand responsive;
  • Little White Bus service runs Monday to Saturday between Garsdale Station, Hawes, and Gayle;
  • 569 service runs on Tuesdays between Ravenstonedale, Kirkby Stephen and Hawes until 31st October 2017;
  • S3 service runs on Tuesdays between Dent, Sedbergh, Garsdale and Hawes;
  • 855 Garsdale Station Shuttle service runs on Sundays (not Bank Holidays) between Garsdale Station, Hawes, and Gayle;
  • 856 Acorn Wensleydale Flyer runs on Sundays between Northallerton, Bedale, Leyburn, Hawes, and Gayle;

Reeth nestles in the stunning valley of Swaledale which is famous for its barns and walls landscape and wild flower filled meadows.

  • 30 Swaledale Shuttle service runs Monday to Saturday between Keld, Reeth and Catterick. Some calling points must be booked in advance or are demand responsive.

There are extra services during the summer period, which mainly operate on Sundays and Bank Holidays. Full details are available on the Dalesbus website.

By bike

The trains to Skipton and Ilkley and on the Settle to Carlisle line all carry bikes. No booking is required and space can be limited, so rush hour services are best avoided.

Many people ride into the National Park from surrounding towns or by following recognised cycle routes such as the Way of the Roses. There is a wealth of information available on our dedicated cycling website.

Ferry ports



The Yorkshire Dales National Park is very accessible by road. We are bordered by major trunk roads. The M6 skirts the west, the A66 to the north, the A1 to the east and the A65 and A59 to the south.

Car parks

Where to park in the Yorkshire Dales

Towns & villages

Find out about our beautiful towns and villages

Where to stay

Hotels, B&Bs, self-catering cottages, campsites ...