How to Spend a Day in Knaresborough

This year I made myself a promise that I would visit more places in the UK because there are so many wonderful sights right on my very doorstep. One place I had always wanted to visit was Yorkshire so for my 27th birthday we packed up the car and drove two and a half hours to North Yorkshire. We booked a cute, little air bnb called The Dorm at The Old School (£72 a night) in a village called Whixley which was conveniently located between Harrogate and York. 

On the first day we visited the historic town of Knaresborough on the river Nidd known for its cobbled alleys, a majestic castle, annual bed race and the curios Mother Shipton’s Cave and its petrifying well. Knaresborough ended up being my favourite place on our York adventure so I wanted to share with you how to spend a day in Knaresborough.

Have lunch at SO! bar and eats Knaresborough 

Before travelling to North Yorkshire we weren't sure how many gluten free restaurants we would find but there happened to be a lot which was great for my boyfriend Blake. Their are three of SO! bar and eats  across York and we ended up eating in the one in Harrogate too because the food was so extensive and delicious. We both shared chips, gravy and pulled beef then we ordered burgers which of course came on a gluten free bun.

Knaresborough Viaduct

The town centre is perched on the cliffs above the River Nidd and the the Grade II Listed structure crosses the River Nidd on the edge of the community, standing at around 100m long and 30m high. If crossing the viaduct by train or just perched on the cliffs you can  get an amazing view of the town or the viaduct.

The first viaduct was built between April 1847 and March 1848 for the East and West Yorkshire Railway Co. On 11th March 1848, the bridge collapsed but work began on a newly designed bridge, which opened 1st October 1851. 

Mother Shipstons Cave & The Petrifying Well 

Widely believed to be England’s oldest visitor attraction dating back to 1630 and was once the home of Knaresborough’s mysterious prophetess who died in 1561. It is £10 to enter and we practically had the place to ourselves it being a Friday daytime. To get to Mother Shipstons Cave & The Petrifying Well is is a long walk along the River Nidd so be prepared and wear comfortable shoes.  I was actually surprised at how small Mother Shipstons Cave was but the petrifying well, where numerous artefacts have been turned to stone over the years is fascinating.

Take in the stunning architecture & views

When walking from the town, turn left on Hilton lane where you will see the Grade II listed train station which is stunning enough and then you walk towards the waterside where you will see Georgian houses and pretty cottages with beautiful stonework and trees. Some of Knaresborough’s house have “Town Windows” - a collection of public art works illustrating characters and events from the town’s long and rich history.

Knaresborough Castle

Knaresborough Castle sits above the river and gorge, in a commanding position with spectacular views. The first reference to the castle occurred in 1129, although now just a ruin, there are still plenty to see including a dungeon, tunnels and cellar area. Unfortunately closed inside from October to Easter but you can walk around the grounds and I was able to sit down and take an amazing picture of the beautiful Viaduct from here too.

Have you ever visited Knaresborough or North Yorkshire?

Liz x

1 comment

  1. Interesting place and the food looks delicious!