things to do in skipton

Last Updated on: 10th February 2024, 09:43 am

If you’re planning a visit to Skipton, England, you’re in for a delightful experience. Situated in the heart of North Yorkshire, Skipton offers a range of exciting activities and attractions that are sure to make your trip memorable. Whether you’re exploring the charming town center, enjoying the stunning Yorkshire countryside, or immersing yourself in the rich history of the area, there are so many things to do in Skipton, and the town has something for everyone.

From the moment you arrive in Skipton, you’ll be captivated by its picturesque beauty. The town centre is a hub of activity, with its cobbled streets and historical buildings that transport you back in time. You can spend hours wandering around, discovering quaint shops, charming tea rooms, and vibrant markets. Skipton truly is a shopper’s paradise, with a wide range of independent shops and boutiques offering unique treasures.

For history enthusiasts, a visit to Skipton Castle is a must. This medieval fortress, dating back over 900 years, is one of the best-preserved castles in England. You can explore its fascinating architecture and learn about its role in the Civil War. The castle’s stunning grounds provide the perfect setting for a leisurely stroll or a picnic with a view.

Outdoor enthusiasts will be thrilled with the opportunities Skipton has to offer. The Yorkshire Dales National Park is just a stone’s throw away, with its breathtaking landscapes and scenic hiking trails. You can also enjoy canal boat trips along the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, taking in the picturesque countryside at a leisurely pace.

If you’re looking for free things to do in Skipton, don’t worry – there are plenty of options. The town boasts beautiful parks, such as Aireville Park and Skipton Woods, where you can take your furry friends for a walk or enjoy a peaceful picnic. And when the sun sets, Skipton comes to life with its vibrant nightlife, offering a range of pubs, bars, and restaurants to suit every taste.

Whether you’re visiting Skipton for a day trip, a weekend getaway, or a longer stay, you’ll find that the town has something to offer at any time of year. So pack your bags, grab your camera, and get ready to explore all the wonderful things Skipton has to offer. Your adventure awaits!

Visit Skipton Castle – A Medieval Jewel in the North

Skipton Castle is a must-visit attraction in Skipton. This 900-year-old fortress is one of the best-preserved and most complete medieval castles in England. It offers a glimpse into nearly a thousand years of British history. Visitors can explore the castle’s impressive architecture, including the gatehouse and banqueting hall. Skipton Castle played a significant role during the Civil War and was the last Royalist bastion in the North. It was restored by Lady Anne Clifford, a prominent figure in Skipton’s history. Today, Skipton Castle is open to the public for self-guided tours, offering a unique and immersive experience.

Skipton Castle

“Skipton Castle is a true gem nestled in the heart of Skipton. Walking through its historic walls, you can’t help but feel transported back in time.” – Visitor review

If you are fascinated by history and love exploring the stories behind ancient landmarks, a visit to Skipton Castle is a must. The castle’s impressive structure, along with its rich historical significance, offers a captivating experience for visitors. Whether you’re an architecture enthusiast, history buff, or simply curious about the past, Skipton Castle will leave you awe-inspired.

Discover Skipton’s Rich History

Skipton Castle holds a prominent place in Skipton’s history. Built in the late 11th century, the castle has witnessed countless events and played a significant role in various historical moments. From the Norman Conquest to the English Civil War, each era has left its mark on this medieval stronghold.

One of the castle’s notable figures is Lady Anne Clifford, a powerful noblewoman who restored Skipton Castle to its former glory in the 17th century. Her efforts ensured that the castle remained intact for future generations to appreciate. Lady Anne Clifford is widely regarded as one of Skipton’s most influential historical figures and an advocate for preserving the town’s heritage.

Immerse Yourself in Medieval Architecture

Exploring Skipton Castle allows you to marvel at its remarkable architecture. From the imposing gatehouse to the intricately decorated banqueting hall, every corner is a testament to the skilled craftsmanship of the past. As you wander through the castle’s rooms and passageways, you can gain a deeper understanding of medieval life and the challenges faced by those who called the castle their home.

Don’t miss the opportunity to climb to the top of the castle’s watchtower, where you’ll be rewarded with stunning panoramic views of Skipton and the surrounding Yorkshire countryside. It’s a truly awe-inspiring experience that offers a unique perspective on the history and beauty of the region.

Self-Guided Tours for an Immersive Experience

When you visit Skipton Castle, you have the freedom to explore at your own pace through self-guided tours. This allows you to delve into the castle’s history and stories that interest you the most. Information boards throughout the castle provide fascinating insights into the different areas and their significance.

As you navigate the castle’s rooms and courtyards, you’ll feel a sense of connection to the past and gain a deeper appreciation for Skipton’s rich heritage. It’s an experience that creates lasting memories and leaves you with a newfound admiration for the intricate details and grandeur of medieval architecture.

So, embark on a journey through time and discover the wonders of Skipton Castle. With its historical significance, breathtaking architecture, and immersive self-guided tours, it’s a destination that will captivate history enthusiasts and curious travelers alike.

Experience Skipton Market – A Unique Shopping Opportunity

Skipton Market is a vibrant and bustling outdoor market that has been a part of the town’s history for centuries. With its unique setup, where traders find their own spot along the High Street, the market offers a wide variety of goods. Visitors can browse through stalls selling local food, arts and crafts, clothing, and plants.

Skipton Market is a true treasure trove for enthusiasts of regional produce, offering a delightful array of locally sourced food. From freshly baked bread and artisan cheeses to seasonal fruits and vegetables, the market is a paradise for food lovers. Immerse yourself in the flavors of Skipton by indulging in delicious treats and taking home some exquisite local delicacies.

The market is also a haven for arts and crafts enthusiasts. Discover unique handmade items, including jewelry, pottery, paintings, and more. Whether you’re looking for a special gift or a beautiful piece to decorate your home, Skipton Market offers an abundance of one-of-a-kind creations crafted by talented local artisans.

Clothes shopping at Skipton Market is a delightful experience, with a wide range of options to suit every style and taste. Find trendy clothing, vintage gems, and quirky accessories, all while supporting local businesses. Skipton Market is a fashion lover’s dream, where you can uncover hidden fashion finds and create a unique wardrobe.

For those with a green thumb, the market boasts an impressive selection of plants and flowers. From vibrant blooms to exotic succulents, you’ll find everything you need to enhance your garden or bring a touch of nature into your home. Skipton Market is the perfect destination for plant enthusiasts and aspiring green thumbs alike.

Open on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays throughout the year, Skipton Market provides a fantastic opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and pick up some unique souvenirs. Don’t miss the chance to explore the vibrant stalls and experience the lively atmosphere of this historic market.

Market Offerings Days Open
Local food Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays
Arts and crafts Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays
Clothing Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays
Plants Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays

Skipton Market

Explore Independent Shops in Skipton

Skipton is a charming town in North Yorkshire that is renowned for its independent shops, offering visitors a unique and eclectic shopping experience. Whether you’re searching for local treasures or seeking out the perfect gift, Skipton has a fantastic selection of boutique stores and specialty shops to satisfy your shopping desires.

If you’re in search of unique gifts and homewares, look no further than Lighthouse Lane. This quirky gift shop on Skipton High Street offers a carefully curated selection of items, including jewellery, homewares, and Yorkshire-themed products. You’re sure to find something special and one-of-a-kind here.

For plant enthusiasts, Daisy Chains Emporium is a hidden gem. This small shop boasts a delightful collection of beautiful houseplants and outdoor plants. Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, Daisy Chains Emporium is a must-visit for nature lovers.

If you’re feeling nostalgic, a visit to Sarsaparilla Sweet Shop is a must. Step back in time as you peruse their traditional sweet selection, filled with old-time favourites and childhood delights. Their delightful collection of sugary treats is sure to bring back memories and put a smile on your face.

These independent shops are just a taste of what Skipton has to offer. Take a leisurely stroll along Skipton High Street, and you’ll discover a myriad of unique shops and hidden gems that are waiting to be explored. From charming bookstores to artisanal craft shops, there is something for everyone in Skipton.

Independent Shops in Skipton

Shop Name Description
Lighthouse Lane A quirky gift shop offering a curated selection of homewares, jewellery, and Yorkshire-themed items.
Daisy Chains Emporium A small shop with a beautiful collection of houseplants and outdoor plants.
Sarsaparilla Sweet Shop A nostalgic store filled with traditional sweets and childhood favourites.


Skipton, England, is a charming town with an abundance of attractions and activities to suit visitors of all ages. Whether you’re captivated by the rich history of Skipton Castle, intrigued by the local market’s unique shopping experience, or enticed by the delicious offerings of Skipton’s dining scene, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Make sure not to miss the opportunity to explore the breathtaking Yorkshire Dales that envelop Skipton. With its stunning scenery and exciting outdoor adventures, the Dales provide the perfect backdrop for unforgettable experiences.

Skipton is also a great destination for families, as it offers a wide range of family-friendly activities. From visiting the fascinating Skipton Museum to exploring the local breweries, there are plenty of opportunities for quality time together.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or a foodie, Skipton has it all. Add this enchanting town to your UK travel itinerary and immerse yourself in its captivating attractions, natural beauty, and warm hospitality.


What are the best things to do in Skipton town centre?

Some of the best things to do in Skipton town centre include visiting Skipton Castle, exploring Skipton Market, and shopping at the independent shops on Skipton High Street.

What are some free things to do in Skipton?

Some free things to do in Skipton include visiting Skipton Castle’s exterior, exploring the picturesque streets, and enjoying a picnic at Aireville Park.

Are there any dog-friendly activities in Skipton?

Yes, Skipton is a dog-friendly town. You can take your furry friend for a walk along the Leeds and Liverpool Canal or explore the Yorkshire Dales surrounding Skipton.

What can I do in Skipton on a rainy day?

On a rainy day, you can visit Skipton Museum, browse the independent shops on Skipton High Street, or enjoy a pint at one of the local breweries.

What are some things to do in Skipton at night?

At night, you can catch a show at The Mart Theatre, have a meal at one of the town’s many restaurants, or enjoy a drink at one of the cozy pubs in Skipton.

What are some must-visit attractions near Skipton?

Some must-visit attractions near Skipton include the scenic Yorkshire Dales, Bolton Abbey, and Embsay & Bolton Abbey Steam Railway.

What is the best way to explore Skipton Castle?

The best way to explore Skipton Castle is through a self-guided tour. You can visit the castle’s impressive gatehouse, banqueting hall, and learn about its rich history.

What can I find at Skipton Market?

Skipton Market offers a wide variety of goods, including local food, arts and crafts, clothing, and plants. It is a great place to immerse yourself in the local culture and find unique souvenirs.

Are there any unique and independent shops in Skipton?

Yes, Skipton is home to a variety of independent shops. You can find unique treasures at Lighthouse Lane, beautiful plants at Daisy Chains Emporium, and traditional sweets at Sarsaparilla Sweet Shop, among others.

What are some family-friendly activities in Skipton?

Some family-friendly activities in Skipton include visiting Skipton Castle, exploring the Yorkshire Dales, and enjoying the interactive exhibits at Skipton Museum.