7 of The Best Indoor Attractions & Rainy Day Activities in The Yorkshire Dales

With bustling market towns, pretty villages and miles and miles of glorious countryside to explore, Yorkshire is of course best visited during fine weather. However, this is Britain and unfortunately, the heavens open on a regular basis, ruining our plans and keeping us indoors.

If you’ve found yourself in the magnificent Yorkshire Dales during a particularly soggy spell, you’ll undoubtedly be delighted to learn that there is still much to see and do without getting your wellies wet.

In addition to enjoying scenic walks and marvelling at natural wonders on warm, dry days, you can visit a plethora of indoor attractions and enjoy various rainy day activities in the Yorkshire Dales.

To help you decide what to do during the next downpour in The Dales, we’ve put together a list of the best rainy day activities in Yorkshire

Indoor Attractions & Rainy Day Activities in The Yorkshire Dales…

Wensleydale Creamery

Gayle Lane, Wensleydale, Hawes DL8 3RN

In the heart of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, you’ll find Wensleydale Creamery’s flagship cheese experience and visitor centre. Learn about the 1000-year history of cheese making in the Yorkshire Dales and watch Yorkshire Wensleydale cheese being made from the centre’s Cheesemaking Viewing Gallery.

Once you’ve learned all there is to learn, pop into the Cheese & Gift Shop where you will find over 20 varieties of award-winning cheese and a delicious assortment of accompaniments like chutneys, oils, crackers and fruit cakes.

Possibly the best of all the rainy day activities in the Yorkshire Dales for foodies!

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Skipton Castle

The Bailey, Skipton BD23 1AW

Skipton’s 900-year-old castle sits at the top of its award-winning high street and it is by far one of the best castles in Yorkshire to visit! Phenomenally well preserved with the vast majority of it being indoors and sheltered, this is one of the must-visit rainy day attractions in the Yorkshire Dales for people of all ages.

Explore the Banqueting Hall, the Kitchen, the Bedchamber, the Privy and even the spooky dungeon to learn more about Skipton’s fascinating past and this incredible castle which withstood a three-year siege during the Civil War. You’ll get a little tour sheet during your visit which is full of interesting facts. Kids also receive a Skipton Castle badge as a memento. There’s a gift shop and cafe on site too for souvenirs and refreshments.

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Newby Hall

Newby Hall, Ripon HG4 5AE

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With its beautiful gardens, Newby Hall is indeed best visited on a dry day but it’s still worth a visit when the Yorkshire wind and rain make being outside an experience you’d rather avoid. The house itself is one of England’s renowned Adam houses and an exquisite example of 18th-century interior decor.

By pre-booking an hour-long guided tour, you’ll be able to explore the ground-floor and first-floor rooms whilst learning about the house and its previous occupants from a knowledgeable guide.

Newby Hall also has a wonderful attraction that both kids and adults will adore. The Bear House, situated in the gardens showcases a permanent but ever-evolving collection of bears dressed and staged in a variety of cute ways.

When you’ve finished exploring, pop into The Garden Restaurant for a drink, light snack or hot lunch.

Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway

Bolton Abbey, Skipton BD23 6AF

Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway is one of the best things to do in Skipton and the surrounding area. From the comfort of beautifully restored Victorian and Edwardian carriages, visitors can enjoy breathtaking views of some of Yorkshire’s finest countryside.

It runs regular services throughout the year and for an extra special experience, there are opportunities to combine your experience on a vintage steam locomotive with a cream tea, afternoon tea, cooked breakfast, Fish and chips or even a curry! In December, Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway also offers one of the best Santa experiences in Yorkshire, during which the man in the red suit and his trusty elves delight little ones with song, laughter and festive surprises.

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Dales Countryside Museum

Station Yard, Burtersett Road, Hawes DL8 3NT

When it’s too wet to get to know The Dales by exploring them on foot, why not visit the Yorkshire Dales National Park’s very own museum? Dales Countryside Museum is full of interesting displays and artefacts that tell the story of the Yorkshire Dales and the people who have lived in the area for thousands of years.

There are some brilliant permanent collections at the museum and the temporary exhibitions change regularly. Both kids and adults will love learning about how The Dales were shaped over the centuries and there’s a lovely onsite cafe where you can grab a yummy lunch afterwards. This is one of the most affordable rainy day activities in the Yorkshire Dales as admission for adults is just £4.90 and under 16s can enter for free.

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Stump Cross Caverns

Greenhow Hill, Pateley Bridge, Harrogate HG3 5JL

Now this one is an absolute gem! Those who love exploring nature and the world around us but aren’t so keen on rain should definitely pay a visit to Stump Cross Caverns. The natural limestone cave system takes around 50 minutes to explore fully and if you visit after 3 p.m. they switch off the lights so you can enjoy a magical UV experience. A wonderful mini adventure for the whole family and one of the most unique rainy day activities in the Yorkshire Dales.

The team at Stump Cross Cavern has added a few magical elements to enhance the already fantastic experience for children. They can take part in a fossil quiz, search for fairy doors, take part in a fun fossil dig and say Hello to the Stump Cross Cavewoman

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Billy Bob’s Parlour

Calm Slate Farm, Bolton Abbey, Skipton BD23 6EU

There are countless wonderful places to eat in the Yorkshire Dales so you really will be spoiled for choice when looking for somewhere to ear. From award-winning gastropubs serving up the finest local produce to quirky tea rooms and country hotels offering luxurious afternoon teas, there’s something for everyone! However, when the rain is pouring down and you’re stuck for something to do, a trip to Billy Bob’s at Bolton Abbey might be just the kind of eatery you’re looking for.

This American diner and ice cream parlour serves mouthwatering menus of American-style food from breakfast through dinner. Styled like an authentic 50s-era diner but with quirky nods to its Yorkshire location and ownership, it’s an experience rather than just a meal. Eat at one of their colourful booths or grab a table on the converted yellow school bus for the ultimate Billy Bob’s dining experience.

The fun doesn’t stop there! Whilst there is an excellent outdoor play area at this restaurant near Skipton, there’s also a brilliant play barn so kids can swing, slide and climb, safely away from the elements.

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If your favourite rainy day activities in the Yorkshire Dales are not featured in this article, you can make a recommendation by emailing us at business@theyorkshirepress.co.uk

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