Howardian Hills Walks
Please use the links below to view full route information including descriptions, elevation profiles, interactive maps and GPS downloads.
You can also view an overview map of all the routes in the using the Howardian Hills Walk Map
|Castle Howard||2 miles (3.5 km)||The 1000 acres of parkland and gardens surrounding this stately home is a walker's paradise. There are peaceful woodland trails, two large lakes, a series of ponds, formal gardens and fountains. There's a lovely walled garden with romantic Italianate trellises and peaceful woodland trails in the Yorkshire Arboretum. The Arboretum covers 120 acres and includes a wonderful collection of trees from all over the world. There's also beautiful rhododendrons and a wildflower meadow to enjoy. All the while there is the beautiful surrounding countryside of the Howardian Hills making a splendid backdrop.|
The house itself has been categorised as 'One of the World's Top Ten Greatest Mansions and Grand Houses' in Lonely Planet's 1,000 Ultimate Sights. It was used as the fictional 'Brideshead', in the 1981 TV adaptation of Evelyn Waugh's Brideshead Revisited and the two-hour 2008 remake for cinema.
The Centenary Way runs past the estate so you could easily pick this up and extend your walk into this AONB. The lovely village of Terrington is nearby so you could head there and enjoy a circular walk exploring the woodland, farmland and hills surrounding the village.
|Centenary Way Yorkshire||83 miles (134 km)||Explore the Howardian Hills and the Yorkshire Wolds on this splendid walk devised to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Yorkshire County Council. The walk starts at the fabulous York Minster and runs to Filey Brigg on the Yorkshire coast.
The walk includes:
Towns/cities on the route include:
The walk is waymarked with the letters CW on standard waymarks.
|Ebor Way||76 miles (122 km)||Follow the Ebor Way from Helmsley to Ilkley on this walk through Yorkshire. The first section runs from Helmsley to York, passing Hovingham and the ruined Sheriff Hutton Castle, before a short section along the River Foss leads you into York. After leaving York following the River Ouse, you head towards Tadcaster where you join the River Wharfe taking you to Wetherby. Here you continue to Otley, passing the impressive Harewood House which is a major route highlight. The house was built in the 18th century and has wonderful art collections while there is also a Bird Garden and over 100 acres of beautiful gardens to enjoy. |
The final section of the walk runs from Otley to Ilkley through Ilkley Moor, passing the Cow and Calf Rocks on the way.
The walk is waymarked with a green and white disc.
|Foss Walk||28 miles (45 km)||Follow the River Foss, from the historic city of York to Easingwold, on this lovely riverside walk through Yorkshire. You will pass several pretty villages including Strensall, Sheriff Hutton, Haxby Crayke and Oulston. |
The route links with the Ebor Way and the Centenary Way near Strensall.
|Nunnington and the River Rye||4 miles (6.5 km)||This pretty village on the fringe of the Howardian Hills includes the National Trust owned Nunnington Hall and nice footpaths along the River Rye which runs through the village. This easy circular walk starts at the old hall and takes you along the Rye to the village of Ness, passing a pretty weir and Ness Bridge on the way. You then head into the countryside, climbing Caulkleys Lane and Caulkleys Bank which reaches a height of over 300ft. From here you can enjoy splendid views over the area.|
The route then passes Caulkleys Wood before turning north and returning to the village.
You can also explore Nunnington Hall although this does require an entrance fee. The splendid 17th century manor house includes period rooms with exquisite funiture and artwork. The grounds are also delightful with an organic walled garden and spring-flowering meadows with resident peacocks.
To extend your walking in the area you could head west and pick up the Ebor Way long distance trail. This will take you towards Helmsley where you can try the Helmsley to Rievaulx Abbey Walk and explore the fascinating ruins of the former Cistercian abbey and the wonderful gardens at Rievaulx Terrace. The area also includes the splendid Duncombe Park with its landscape garden and National Centre for Birds of Prey.
|Terrington||7 miles (11.5 km)||Terrington is a delightful village in the Howardian Hills near to Castle Howard. It's a great base for exploring the area which is a designated as an AONB (area of outstanding natural beauty). This circular walk makes use of the Centenary Way and a series of other footpaths to explore the woodland, countryside and hills surrounding the village. There's some fairly gentle ascents with fine views from the high points. It's a peaceful area so look out for a variety of wildlife including Roe Deer in the woodland sections.|
The walk starts in the centre of the village and heads north to North Carr Hill and Hollin Hill. Here you have the option of exploring the woodland around Hollin Hill which includes Frytons Wood. This route turns south towards Ganthorpe and Mowthorple Dale before returning to the village along Mowthorpe Lane.
With various long distance trails passing through the village there's lots of options for extending your walking in the area. You could head south along the Ebor Way and visit Sheriff Hutton for example.
If you were to follow the Centenary Way east and then south you could visit Coneysthorpe and the wonderful Castle Howard. The magnificent house is one of the chief highlights of Howardian Hills. It's great for walkers with 1000 acres of parkland and gardens with woodland trails, two large lakes, a series of ponds, formal gardens and fountains.
|Yearsley Woods||2 miles (4 km)||These expansive woods in the Howardian Hills have mountain bike trails and footpaths to try. The woods are quite hilly on the north western side so there's good opportunities for some fast descents for cyclists. There's also good wide footpaths leading to a large picturesque pond and a couple of smaller ponds. Look out for a variety of woodland birds as you make your way along the paths.|
The woods are located just a mile to the east of the Foss Walk long distance trail. You could pick this up near Oulston to extend your walking in the area.
A couple of miles east of the forest you can pick up the Ebor Way at Cawton.
The Nunnington and the River Rye walk is also nearby and a great way to explore the Ryedale area of the Howardian Hills.