Fans of “Downton Abbey” can now walk the beautiful countryside of the Yorkshire Dales—where the film is set and partially filmed—on a self-guided, inn-to-inn walking tour offered by On Foot Holidays.
The period drama is set in the fictional Yorkshire country house of Downton Abbey, among the beautifully green hills and dales, which the county is famous for. While the castle used as Downton Abbey is actually in the south of England, some of the film was shot in Yorkshire in northern England including at Harewood House, an elaborate estate which guests could visit before commencing the self-guided walk, just 40 minutes away.
Unique to On Foot Holidays, the 7-day Yorkshire Dales walk takes in villages, market towns, country meadows with drystone walls, babbling brooks and moorlands. The route starts in Yorkshire’s eastern lowlands in the little cathedral city of Ripon—a place frequently mentioned and sometimes appearing in the Downton Abbey television show. From there, guests will visit the ruins of the 12th century Fountains Abbey, one of the most important centres of Medieval England and the largest monastic ruins in the UK. The route will also take walkers over brooks and meadows to Brimham Rocks, a collection of balancing natural rock formations.
The route then starts to gradually climb through the sheep country of the Dales, passing through villages such as Pateley Bridge, Grassington and Kettlewell. Travelers will then enter limestone country via Malham Cove, a huge natural limestone formation. After visiting the market town of Settle, guests will continue to Austwick, a town nestled in the dale below Ingleborough, one of Yorkshire’s three peaks, and the final walking challenge.
Along the way, guests will stay in country pubs and comfortable B&Bs and dine, with two French-chef-run establishments on the route to supplement the hearty Yorkshire fare.
Graded medium-hard in difficulty, with four to seven hours of walking per day, the walking tour package includes seven nights’ accommodation, all breakfasts and all luggage transfers—meaning travelers only carry a day pack. The walk starts at $916 pp dbl.