Aysgarth is in Wensleydale, in the district of North Yorkshire. The village is set within the Yorkshire Dales National Park and has good access to all other villages in the area. Aysgarth is perfect for people who want a short break away from the busy city lifestyle; it can be a delightfully quiet place.
Aysgarth has loads of different walking routes; some are suitable for beginners and some for more experienced walkers. The area is also good for ramblers. If you are a fan of nature walking around Aysgarth is an easy way to experience it. For people who enjoy horticulture, there are loads of wildflowers and plants to discover. Riding on the Wensleydale Railway is a great way to take in the stunning landscape of the National Park. The track is sixteen miles long and is an authentic heritage railway, so you can be transported back to how transport was in the 1960s to the 1980s.
Bolton Castle is just four miles away from Aysgarth and is a fantastic day out for families, couples or on your own. It is an incredibly preserved medieval fortress and is over six-hundred years old. Inside you can step back in time and experience the lives of the medieval people who would have lived within the castle's walls. The gardens surrounding the castle consist of a herb garden, a rose garden, a vineyard, a maze and a bowling green. After your exciting day at the castle, you should visit the tea rooms to delight in the delicious scones, teas, cakes and other items there.
Even if you are not a fan of the outdoors you have to pay Aysgarth Falls a visit. The sight of thousands of gallons of water from the River Ure rushing down onto three 'steps' is incredible, especially during the rainy season as the river is filled with even more water. The steps are made of limestone and, although the waterfalls are not particularly high, they are incredibly beautiful.
If you have children, Tupgill Park is a great place to take them for a day out. The park is populated with red deer, which you can observe. They also have an expertly designed herb garden. You can wander around the garden and discover the different herbs planted there, and there are many kinds of insects that are drawn towards the herbs. You can go and feed the mirror carp and chub in the ponds at the Fish Temple as well.
The Forbidden Corner is in the heart of Tupgill Park and spans for four acres. It is advertised as 'the strangest place in the world' and is a bizarre maze of tunnels and chambers that will amuse both children and adults.
If you're looking for somewhere to grab a bite to eat, the Mill-Race Teashop at Aysgarth Falls is perfect. You will find yourself wanting to stay there all day, with their wide range of freshly prepared teas, deliciously creamy hot chocolate and locally farm-made ice cream. They also have a small shop selling jam, chutney, biscuits, sweets and cheeses.
Everyone with a sweet tooth has to buy some of the handmade chocolates from The Little Chocolate Shop in Leyburn, just eight miles from Aysgarth. You can buy chocolate in all different shapes and sizes, and you can even check out how the chocolate is made in their factory shop!
One thing that the area of Wensleydale is famous for is its cheese, specifically Wensleydale cheese! The Wensleydale Creamery is just a ten minute drive away from Aysgarth and you can buy expertly crafted cheese created by a company that has been doing so for over one hundred years. They have a huge variety of cheeses to choose form, as well as a restaurant and a museum.
For a hearty Yorkshire meal there are many pubs that serve home cooked food, with ingredients sourced from the many farms around the surrounding countryside. You can also find some good beers, ales, wines, spirits and non-alcoholic drinks in some of Aysgarth's beautiful country pubs.
Upper falls image contributed by 'Uncredited' (no real name given). Kitty's tea room image contributed by Karl and Ali. Aysgarth Force image contributed by Sarah Charlesworth. All images are copyrighted but licensed for further reuse under the Creative Commons License.