Visit this geologically fascinating area of West Yorkshire on this challenging and atmospheric circular walk on Ilkley Moor. The moor is in an elevated position above the town with attractive moorland and wonderful views over the surrounding countryside. It's a beautiful place with pretty heather in the summer and a myriad of different footpaths to follow.
Ilkley Moor is located just to the south of the town of Ilkley so you could easily reach it from the bus or train station in the centre of the town. Then follow the Dales Way Link south to take you onto the moor. This route, however, starts from the Cow and Calf car park on Hangingstone Road. Near here you will find the well known Cow and Calf rocks. This striking rock formation consists of a large rock and a smaller one, sitting next to each other like a cow and its calf.
From the rocks follow the paths west across the moor to Cranshaw Thorn Hill and Keighley Road, where you turn south to Whetstone Gate. The route then turns east to take you to another of the major landmarks on the moor. The Twelve Apostles is a fascinating Bronze Age stone circle with 12 stones made from the local millstone grit.
After leaving the Twelve Apostles you head north back towards the car park passing the Backstones stone circle on the way. After your exercise you can enjoy refreshments at the excellent Cow and Calf pub.
The moor is crossed by two excellent long distance walking trails. You could pick up the Dales Way Link and follow it north through Ilkley where it meets the Dales Way. This will take you along the River Wharfe towards Bolton Abbey. Follow it south and it will take you across Bingley Moor to Saltaire and Shipley.
The Ebor Way also crosses the moor. You could follow it to the site from nearby Menston.
For cyclists the West Yorkshire Cycle route runs along the eastern fringe of the moor.
Ilkley Moor PostcodeLS29 8BT - Please note: Postcode may be approximate for some rural locations
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