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Ripon, Lower Wensleydale

With its magnificent Cathedral, Ripon rightly claims to be the smallest city in England. Although outside the Nidderdale AONB and Yorkshire Dales National Park, its good facilities and local transport links make it a good centre from which to explore the eastern Dales.

Using a combination of roads, lanes and field paths, it’s about three miles from the city centre to the World Heritage Site of Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal (website opens in new window). An especially fine route is to follow the little River Skell from the city centre via Mackershaw Woods to enter Studley Royal via the Valley of the Seven Bridges.

The Ripon Roweller bus service provides links (Mondays to Saturdays - infrequent and Summer Sundays and Bank Holidays - hourly) between the city centre and Fountains Abbey - a National Trust property and World Heritage Site – enabling the visitor to catch the bus one way and return on foot or vice versa – or use the bus both ways.

Ripon is also at the terminus of the high quality, frequent service 36 bus from Harrogate and Leeds (which calls at Ripley Castle and Harewood House - websites open in new windows). This is regular enough to allow easy connections Pateley Bridge via Killinghall or Harrogate using service 24. There are good direct weekday bus services to York (142/146) and to Thirsk and Northallerton (70)

On weekdays Ripon has good links with Wensleydale and Swaledale on bus service 159, which serves Lightwater Valley, Masham, Jervaulx, Middleham, Leyburn, and Richmond.

On Summer Sundays and Bank Holidays DalesBus service 820 calls at the bus station on route to Lightwater Valley, Masham, Middleham, Leyburn and Richmond, whilst service 812 runs between York, Ripon, Pateley Bridge and Grassington.

Bus times can be checked at the Transport Direct and Dalesbus websites (links open in new windows).

Local services: Toilets, café, pubs, shops, accommodation, TIC

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