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These Incredible Circular Walks in Yorkshire Will Leave You in a Spin

· Joseph Sheerin · Yorkshire

Park up, wander around the countryside and return to your car to head home.

Whernside & Ribblehead Valley

The wonders of the Yorkshire countryside await, so put your walking boots on and start exploring.

Yorkshire is full of natural wonders just waiting to be discovered and the best way to do it is on two feet, so why not head out into the countryside and follow one of these beautiful circular walks? You have 10 to choose from and they will really take your breath away, as you enjoy panoramic views across the Yorkshire Dales or take in the coastal beauty over the North Sea. It really does live up to the billing…

Flamborough Head Circular

Flamborough Head

Credit: Clare Black licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

You’ll need to block out a whole day to complete the 8-mile Flamborough Head circular walk because you won’t want to skip a single step of this wonderful Yorkshire coastal walk. First, you’ll walk to the stunning South Landing seafront where you’ll wander around the whole peninsula, with stops along the way to soak up the views over the North Sea. A lot of this walk is on the cliff-side, so it’s not for the fainthearted, but it’s easy underfoot. You can see thousands of birds flying above you and stop at a number of ancient settlements on the way. When you’re done, treat yourself to a pint and bite at The Seabirds Inn.

The Flamborough Head Circular walk starts at St Oswald’s Church, 1 Church Street, Flamborough, Bridlington, North Yorkshire, YO15 1PE.

Beamsley Beacon Circular

Beamsley Beacon

Beamsley is a picturesque village on the very edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park and this easy circular walk seamlessly blends nature and history. You’ll start in the village before climbing up to the Beacon where you can stop to appreciate the stunning views across Wharfedale before you cross the water at Kex Beck and ramble through Beamsley Moor. You’ll pass Beamsley Hospital along the way, a unique circular landmark from 1593 that is now a holiday home. When you’re done, you can head to The Devonshire Arms for a well-earned drink.

The Beamsley Beacon Circular starts at Langbar Road, Ilkley, West Yorkshire, LS29 0EX.

Fell Beck Circular

Brimham Rocks

Credit: Jcw1967 licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

Not only can you take in stunning views on the Fell Beck Circular, but you can also see a handful of Yorkshire’s most beautiful natural landmarks. Head up to Brimham Rocks to begin the 4.7 mile trek, where you can weave in and out of these incredible natural rock formations. From here, take in the views over Nidderdale, an Area of Outstanding Beauty, before you head across the fields to Fell Beck. Make your way downstream, through the pretty woodland and past Knox Hall, where you’ll find alpacas in the fields if you’re lucky, before you reach the start and visit The Half Moon Inn.

The Fell Beck Circular starts at Brimham Rocks, Summerbridge, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG3 4DW.

The Staithes and Port Mulgrave Circular


Credit: Pete Richman licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

If you want a picture-perfect day by the sea, head to the quaint village of Staithes. This 4-mile route is one of the best coastal walks in Yorkshire and it starts with an idyllic mix of narrow ginnels, multi-coloured houses and North Sea vistas before you head along the clifftops to your second destination, the fishing town of Port Mulgrave. You can enjoy stunning views of the cliffs of Boulby, before you make your way back to the start by going inland via Hinterland and Borrowby Dale. When you’re done, visit the Captain Cook Inn for a pint and a hearty dose of pub grub.

The Staithes to Port Mulgrave Circular walk starts at Bank Top Car Park, Staithes, Saltburn, North Yorkshire, TS13 5AD.

Haworth Circular

Top Withens

Credit: Tim Green licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

Brontë Country is one of Yorkshire’s most beautiful areas and this circular walk shows it at its very best. It’s an easygoing 7-mile trek and there’s so much to see. You’ll see the place that inspired the family’s literary settings as you pass the flowing streams, awesome moorland and breathtaking views over the Pennine Hills. Take a stroll across Haworth Moor, through Penistone Hill Country Park, to reach the Brontë Waterfall then stop and take it in, before you visit Top Withens, the basis for Wuthering Heights, and Lower Laithe Reservoir. When you reach the end, call into the Haworth Steam Brewery for a well-earned tipple.

The Haworth Circular walk starts at St Michael & All Angels Church, Haworth, West Yorkshire, BD22 0HB.

The Hubberholme Circular

Longstrothdale, Hubberholme

Credit: Christine Johnstone licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

The Hubberholme Circular is one of the hardest but most rewarding walks through the Yorkshire Dales. It’s a mammoth 9.6-mile route that starts by going up Birk’s Fell, where you can look out across the stunning open moorland with incredible 360° views before you pass landmarks like Moss Top, Sugar Loaf and the Horse Head. If it’s a clear day, you can see as far as Plover Hill and Pen y Ghent, before you carry on to gaze over the beautiful Longstrothdale valley. By the time you’ve returned to the start along the River Wharfe, you’ve earned a pint, so nip into The George Inn for refreshments.

The Hubberholme Circular starts at The George Inn, Dubb’s Lane, Hubberholme, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD23 5JE.

Whernside Circular

Ribblehead Viaduct

Want to complete one of the Yorkshire Three Peaks? The Whernside Circular ticks that box. It’s an 8-mile route that’s as popular as it is beautiful, so expect to meet many a passing walker here. Start at Ribblehead Station and cross over the Force Gill Aqueduct where you can see the waterfall before taking Craven Way up to the trig point of Whernside. From here, you’ll have breathtaking views in every direction, so look out across Ingleborough and towards the majestic Ribblehead Viaduct, before making your way back around and finishing up at The Station Inn.

The Whernside Circular starts at Ribblehead Station, North Yorkshire, LA6 3JF.

The May Beck and Falling Foss Circular

Falling Foss

Credit: James Ellesmere licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

For one of the most spectacular circular walks in Yorkshire, head to May Beck in the North York Moors National Park. This stunning stroll starts at the May Beck car park, before you set off on a beautiful woodland walk up to Midge Hall and on to the quaint Falling Foss Tea Garden for a quick brew. Head round the back of the cafe to work your way up the incredible 30-foot waterfall and soak in the view below. You’ll then make your way back through the woods along the waterway of May Beck before reaching the start again.

The May Beck and Falling Foss Circular starts at May Beck Car Park, Sneaton, Whitby, North Yorkshire, YO22 5JE.

Ilkley Moor Circular

Ilkley Moor

Ilkley Moor is one of the most popular walks in Yorkshire and this 6.3 mile circular route shows you the very best of it. You’ll kick things off in the town centre at West View Park before you take the Dales Way Link towards the top of the moor. As you walk up, you can enjoy the breathtaking views across God’s Own Country and back towards the town, before you make your way to a handful of amazing landmarks. From Ilkley Crags to the Twelve Apostles, the Cow and Calf and The Tarn, there’s so much to see. Detour to the Cow and Calf pub before you head back, or visit the Ticket Office Bar on your return.

The Ilkley Moor Circular starts at West View Park, 3 College Drive, Ilkley, West Yorkshire, LS29 9TY.

Great Ayton Circular

Roseberry Topping

Credit: Tony Coates licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

The Great Ayton Circular is one of the best walks you can do in the North York Moors. It’s a 7-mile route around the village of Great Ayton that ties history and nature together. First, you’ll make your way out of the village, along Newton Road and up to Roseberry Topping where you can see the beauty of the Yorkshire moors in all their glory. Next, head across Great Ayton Moor to the Captain Cook Monument, dedicated to the local explorer, before you return to the beginning and into The Royal Oak for a well deserved pint.

The Great Ayton Circular walk starts from The Royal Oak, 123 High Street, Great Ayton, Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire, TS9 6BW.