Swinton Park Wellbeing Escapes

How to Destress…Escape to Wellbeing in Beautiful Yorkshire

Embark on world-class wellness in the heart of the beautiful Yorkshire

Escape to Swinton Park for wellbeing
Swinton Park for wellbeing escapes

countryside. Swinton Park is a sprawling 200-acre park that focuses on nature to enhance your wellbeing. Here you’ll find space to breathe, relax and revitalize. Have an adventure, hike the high rolling hills or wander next to a gently flowing stream.

Stay in a yurt, log cabin or self-catering cottage. Or live like royalty at the gothic styled, ancestral seat of the Earl of Swinton. Get pampered in the ambiance of a genteel country home.

Wellbeing activities abound…

Fish in pristine streams… rent a bicycle… ride the ponies… or watch falconry, the sport of kings.  Visit their walled gardens, one of the largest in Europe. Try your hand at shooting, or wander in the nearby market town of Masham.

Walk, hike, or cycle. There are over 63 miles of footpaths and bridle paths in the park and beyond.  With 20,000 acres of the private estate, you’ll never be bored.  Explore the farmlands, moors, rivers, forests, and reservoirs. Or the concierge can arrange a car or motorcycle tour if that’s more to your liking.

It’s a great home base to explore the Yorkshire Dales National Park and

River Ure for peacefull wellbeing
River Ure Tranquility

the numerous quaint villages and nearby castles. Here, far from the crowds, it’s easy to imagine yourself in an earlier century.  Here the pace of life is slower, more leisurely.  Even the roads are narrower, encouraging you to slow down.

Stop for the view, meander down a path to view enchanting waterfalls. Tea shops, pubs, and farmer’s markets invite you to pause and browse.  From high escarpments to country lanes where the main traffic is free roaming sheep, you’ll find something unique at every turn.

Experiences abound indoors and out to restore your mind, body, and spirit.

Nourish wellbeing with farm-to-table food.

Choices abound. Savor fine dining at Samuel’s Restaurant. Relax with something more casual at the Terrace Restaurant and Bar. Collect a custom picnic for your day out. Maybe you have a private event in mind. Regardless, you’ll find the food is always amazing.

You’ll enjoy the freshest produce from their garden and the peak of the season’s offerings. Meat, fish, and poultry direct from the estate.  All raised with natural sustainable techniques. Swinton Park specializes in earth-friendly practices for the healthiest farming possible. They care for nature so nature can care for you.

Their cooking school events run continuously and offer something for every age and taste.  Both guests and visitors are welcome to sign up for a half-day, full day, or weekend cooking experience. You’ll go home with ideas and tips that will make cooking fun and a delight for the palette.

Make time for the spa!

The new state-of-the-art spa, built to bring nature indoors, opened in

restorative well being pools
Swinton park restorative wellness pools

July 2017. From the latest in therapy treatments to unique experience rooms, nothing has been spared for your ultimate restoration. Light, air, and water surround you. Though soaring windows, nature’s healing powers comfort you.

Whether your goal is rejuvenation, restoration or fitness, the Spa will exceed your expectations. It blends seamlessly into the historic architecture. At the same time, it reaches out in a modern way to embrace nature and draw it in. Both indoor and outdoor pools invite you to relax. Lounges poolside and on the covered and heated terrace beckon you, year around. Thick snuggly blankets are handy if there is a chill.

The aroma steam room, salt steam room, and Finish sauna will help detoxify and boost your immune system. Or visit with friends around the fire pit of the alfresco sauna.

The eight quiet treatment rooms and skilled therapists will have you feeling renewed… but don’t rush away.  Post-treatment downtime is available in the relaxation room, restful niches, or sleep room with heated waterbeds. Complete peace is yours for the having.

Wellbeing retreats

Escape for a day and enjoy the wellbeing programs or private bodywork sessions. Or slip away and join one of their ongoing wellness retreats.  Swinton Park offers both guests and the locals numerous packages choices.

Come alone, or come with friends. Immerse yourself in world-class wellness in the heart of Yorkshire.

Explore wellbeing now…

To explore all of your options for a fabulous wellbeing adventure visit http://hotel.swintonestate.com/.  Booking direct will always give you the best value. Direct booking is also the way to access all their unique experience offerings.

West Witton’s Old Vicarage Explore the Dales

West Witton’s Old Vicarage – Explore the Dales…

A charming village in the Yorkshire Dales, West Witton is a perfect

West Witton's Old Vicarage sits along the main road
West Witton’s Old Vicarage on Main Street

location to use as your base to explore. Picturesque. Quiet. Relaxing. Stay at the caravan park, a farm or a lovely Bed & Breakfast. Our personal favorite is the Old Vicarage.

West Witton’s Old Vicarage…

This Grade II historical property offers just five rooms. Built of stone, with

West Witton's Old Vicarage has ample parking in the rear
Old Vicarage ample parking behind rear garden

an intriguing history. Ask about the Vicar who made his home here. Some parts of the building date back over 300 years, but guest rooms have all the modern amenities and are en suite. From your windows, enjoy views of the garden or panoramic vistas of the Dales.

When you arrive at the Vicarage, relax with a spot of tea or coffee and maybe a homemade treat by your hostess Kirsteen. Besides treats, she also makes amazing preserves. You can even take one home with you to extend your memories.

West Witton's Old Vicarage
Old Vicarage guest lounge snug on a rainy day

The guest’s lounge has that very friendly English country feel. Relax with a book, peruse a map, take advantage of the free Wi-Fi. Enjoy the log fireplace when the weather is cool. It’s the sort of room you want to snug up in on a rainy day.

From the front windows, Bolton Castle invites you across the valley. It welcomes you to come visit the medieval castle, maze, gardens and birds of prey.  Explore, have an adventure or even get married there.

West Witton is only three miles from Leyburn and four miles to Aysgarth

West Witton's Old Vicarage guest room
West Witton’s Old Vicarage room with four-poster bed

Falls. In exchange for the short drive, the Old Vicarage gives you the peace and tranquility of the Dales. Though the house is right on Main Street, in the evenings it becomes very quiet.

Fox & Hounds is a favorite

Just a short way down Main Street is the Fox and Hounds, a local’s

Yorkshire steak and kidney pie at Fox & Hounds

favorite. Leave the car tucked in its space behind the Vicarage and walk. It’s only a block or two.

The pub specializes in quality home cooking, locally sourced and… some

amazing ales. Never tried a Yorkshire steak and kidney pie? This is a good spot to give it a try. Not quite that brave? They have great fish and chips and other classical pub favorites. Every Sunday you can have the traditional Roast Beef lunch.

Locals and visitors gather and chat, play games or cards or… darts. A 15th-

Fox & Hounds near Old Vicarage
Enjoy a game of darts at the Fox & Hounds

century pub, the Fox and Hounds oozes character. It’s homey, friendly and the classical juke box keeps the music going. They say you know it’s a good night when the manager, Blackie, is feeding the jukebox too.

 

After a quiet rest, the aromas of bacon and sausage grilling will tease you awake. Yes, fresh hot coffee, or tea if you prefer. While you enjoy their amazing homemade breakfasts, you can plan your tour for the day.

Explore…

Outdoor adventures await you. Hiking, bicycling, motorcycling or a drive

River Ure near West Witton

in your car. Visit waterfalls, castles or the Wensleydale Cheese Factory. Want to picnic? Plan ahead with Kirsteen, they will arrange a packed lunch on request. They also offer a flask filling facility.

Want to shop? Visit Hawes and Leyburn. They are both market towns full of quaint shops and history along with beautiful views. You’re in the country where stories of the famous veterinarian, James Herriot took place.

In an easy day trip, you can venture to Thirsk to the Herriot museum, or to Ripon and visit beautiful Fountains Abbey. There is so much to see and do in this area you can’t do it all in a weekend visit. You’ll need to come back again. Kirsteen and Roddy will welcome you, pamper you and make you feel at home.

Plan your next stay at the Old Vicarage…

For the very best rates and friendly service, contact them directly. Ask them about events and specials during the time you want to visit. Complete details are here: http://www.oldvicaragewestwitton.co.uk/.

The Old Vicarage has hospitality, great food and a fascinating story

The Old Vicarage

The lovely Old Vicarage house has a unique story of a vicar with an untimely end.  But it’s also a wonderful Bed and

The Old Vicarage, West Witton, Leyburn, UK
Front of Old Vicarage, West Witton

Breakfast.  It’s small – only 5 guest rooms, located in the quaint town of West Witton, Leyburn, UK. We met family there and stayed three delightful nights in August 2016.

They made us feel welcomed and comfortable. We had tea in the afternoon while we gathered up and visited in the guest parlor.

The main floor houses their kitchen, parlor and the breakfast room along with a private area. Upstairs you can gaze across the countryside. Some rooms view the gardens others the beauty of the Yorkshire Dales.

From the front porch, you can see Castle Bolton across the valley.  In the back, the gardens welcome you to sit with a cup of tea or coffee.  Cozy, homey, friendly – just like your hosts.

Morning brings a custom cooked English breakfast

Old Vicarage parking and gardens are at the rear of the house
Old Vicarage parking in rear, the garden near the house is great for a morning cup of coffee

In the morning Kirsteen will be your chef. Husband Roddy your server. Breakfast is a full, or part, custom cooked English breakfast. Relax, visit while they tease you with fabulous aromas floating in from the kitchen.

While you wait, enjoy the cold cereal, fruit, and yogurt… or save room for what is a generous spread.   Want something different? They have other English favorites like smoked salmon or kippers and eggs to go with lots of great coffee or tea.

They don’t serve evening meals. But you’ll find an excellent pub and restaurant less than two blocks down the street.

Need wi-fi? Head to the parlor, I found the signal to be strongest there.  While visiting, ask them to tell you the story of the Vicar who used to own the house and his untimely end.

Whether you want to hike, shop, or just wander the villages, the Old Vicarage is a great place to stay. We look forward to our next visit there.

For the best pricing, be sure to contact the owners directly. www.oldvicaragewestwitton.co.uk/

George and Dragon Inn 17th century coaching inn and great place to stay in the Yorkshire Dales

George and Dragon Inn

George and Dragon is a 17th Century coaching inn
George and Dragon Inn & Black Sheep Pub

The George and Dragon Inn is a 17th-century coaching inn located in the picturesque Yorkshire Dales National Park, UK.

After nearly a 24 hour  5000+ mile journey, it welcomed me for a much-needed rest. You never know what to expect when stepping inside a historic pub, but the George and Dragon is a fabulous find.

Visiting here is a visit of history. Narrow country roads make you slow down and enjoy the views. And the views are spectacular.

George and Dragon Inn, Aysgarth

Situated on the edge of quaint Aysgarth village, the George and Dragon

Rich dark woods dominate the pub at the George and Dragon Inn
Pub at George and Dragon Inn

has been greeting travelers for over 300 years.  Called a coaching inn, it was a place the carriages stopped to give weary travelers a break. Friendly, casual, welcoming.  When you step inside you step back in history. Rich dark woods, brass, vintage decor in a classic Dales pub style. Eclectic collections adorn the walls. Fun.  Step back in time and slow down.

Friendly, comfy, delightful

The manager and staff were excellent hosts. Upstairs, the generous queen

Your room at the George and Dragon Inn offers lovely views of the Yorkshire Dales.
View of the Dales from a room at George and Dragon Inn

bed was super comfy. The building may be old, but the amenities are modern. Complete with wi-fi. All rooms are en-suite!

The food in the Black Sheep Pub was delightful. From classics like fish and chips or meat pies to gourmet pub food, choices are diverse.  Don’t forget to try a local brew.

Guests are also treated to great breakfast options. Start with the cereal bar then pick your customized hot breakfast from a part or full English and more.

There is a car park on the hotel property.  If you are campers, there is a camping area nearby.  Hikers were stopping past the pub for a brew on their way back home.

It’s a central location for exploring the area.

Wensleydale cheese factory, Cover River

Bolton Castle is an easy drive from the George and Dragon Inn
Bolton Castle viewed from across the Dales

Bolton Castle, Aysgarth Falls.  Lots of spectacular scenery. Great hiking.  Shopping.  If the landscape looks familiar it’s been in the movies. Both Robin Hood Prince of Thieves and All Creatures Great and Small were set here.  Nearby, you can find the building that still bears the Harriott name.

Not sure what to see?  Just ask, they will be happy to make recommendations based on your interests.

Thanks much for a great visit!! We look forward to returning.  For the very best prices, contact the inn directly and ask about specials.  http://www.georgeanddragonaysgarth.co.uk/home

Explore the Yorkshire Dales enchanting in any season

 Yorkshire Dales

Rolling Yorkshire Dales offer a magical wellness escape
View across Yorkshire Dales

The locals call it “God’s country”. The Yorkshire Dales is unique and enchanting. Remove the cars, you’d swear you are transported back 150 years or more.

Life in stone cottages, Manor houses or castles. It’s a countryside as remote and secluded as it comes in England. The landscape is crisscrossed with stone fences that have stood for hundreds of years.

From the Vale of York to the top of the Pennines

The Yorkshire Dales National Park is in the ancient county of Yorkshire. The Dales stretch across the steep glacially rounded Pennines, that form the backbone of England. Sprawling across 680 square miles, the park was created in 1954 to conserve its beauty for the future.

Giant domes loom above green valleys and sparkling rivers. Soft peaks and sharp slopes. Dry stone walls, limestone scars, and lofty craigs. Lush pastures, heather moorlands. Among the mountains are dozens of interconnected valleys (dales). Their individual personalities blossom amidst the harmony of this National Park.

Lodging

Stone-built villages dot the landscape.  No hotel chains here. Building

Yorkshire dales fields are crisscrossed with stone fences and farms
Yorkshire Dales is dotted with stone farms

codes are enforced to maintain the history.Inns, small hotels and bed and breakfasts are the norm. There are also places to camp or park caravans (recreational vehicles).

Inns, small hotels and Bed and Breakfast homes are the norm. There are also places to camp or park caravans (recreational vehicles).

Your inn may be from the 17th, 18th or 19th century,  but you will find all the modern facilities within.  While there are some exceptions, most rooms are en-suite. Do expect steep stairs and sometimes a low ceiling.

Friendliness abounds. A warm greeting and a fabulous stay. Most properties include full breakfast. Inns and hotels also serve meals throughout the day.

Explore the Yorkshire Dales

Roads are narrow, the pace is slower. Whether you chose to drive, walk or

Bolton Castle is an easy drive from the George and Dragon Inn
Bolton Castle viewed from across the Dales

cycle there are paths for you.  Be aware this is farming country. Watch for agricultural vehicles – and animals. This is where they live and work.

For hikers and cyclists, you have lots of choices.  Choose a day trip from your inn. Or elect to follow one of the circular tours.  These tours will take you from one inn to the next. There you will find a comfortable bed and good hot foot to welcome you at the end of the day.

Whether you choose a leisurely meander or something more challenging options abound. Books and maps will help you pick your route. Check the tourist information sites if you want to plan in advance. The Three Peaks tour is popular with the more adventurous.

Stone bridges cross every stream or river.  They were designed for horse-drawn carriages. Approach these with courtesy as they handle one car or truck at a time. In other parts of the world, they might have replaced and modernized to meet the demands of the auto.  The Dales is about protecting and history.  Enjoy, photograph, savor.

So what’s to see beyond the spectacular landscape? Rushing rivers, waterfalls, stone walls crisscross every field, sheep, hay, cattle. Visit castles, gardens, museums and stately homes. Wensleydale Cheese Factory, artisan candle makers, brewery tours, shops of all manner.

Small friendly places where the locals go.  Lots of great tea rooms, pubs, and foods of all sorts.  Don’t miss a farmer’s market where the locals go to visit, buy and sell. How about a ride on one of the railway routes that connect the many towns?  Choices are many, scenic and nostalgic including steam powered trains.

Enjoy Yorkshire Dales History

This is James Herriot Country. Herriot is the world’s most famous vet.  He brought the beauty of the Yorkshire Dales and the lives of the locals to life for readers all over the world. Although he created a fictitious setting, the places where he lived and worked are strongly featured. For a feel of his home visit Hawes, Richmond, Leyburn, Middleham, Swaledale, and Wensleydale. This is the area the BBC used for the filming of the popular TV series “All Creatures Great and Small.”

If you are a classical novels buff the place may feel familiar. Charlotte Bronte lived and worked here. Charlotte’s childhood and experiences as a governess were her inspiration. Moors, manors, highlands. Jane Eyre and many other works live in the Yorkshire Dales.

Regardless of the season, the place is pure magic.  Choose to see it during peak summer season or visit in the winter when you feel you have it to yourself.  Want a cozy getaway spot? Try Middleham.  A castle in your backyard, pubs across the square. Choose an inn or a private “to let.” Every morning the race horses clop their way up the cobblestone market square and up onto the hills for their workout.

Plan ahead for the summer as the locals flock to the area for holiday. Some of the attractions don’t run year around so it’s good to investigate. Regardless of when you go, you will be greeted warmly and served great hot food often near a cozy fireplace.  Locals think it is the best place for great beer.