Skipton is classed as a market town within the district of North Yorkshire. It boasts a busy and popular market, wonderful drinking holes and eateries, as well as popular deli-type shops. Not forgetting the historic Medieval castle known as Skipton Castle. According to The Daily Mail Skipton was voted as the happiest town to live.
The main reason for a trip to Skipton was to visit the Medieval castle. The castle is over 900 years old and is supposedly one of the most preserved and complete Medieval castle in England. The majority of the castle is under roof, with a square outdoor courtyard in the middle, giving access to the various rooms of the castle.
You can have a guided tour, but we explored the castle without this. When buying the tickets we were provided with a detailed guide, which provided information on each room. This correlates to plaques on the wall providing a description and history on whichever room you were in.
The walk up to the castle is wonderful, as you get to see the outside of the castle in all of its glory. The grounds are lovely too, and there is a private house on the grounds with beautiful green grass outside. However, this part is off limits to visitors to the castle.
The views from the castle look over onto the moors, and if you turn around from the castle before entering, you can see through the trees this view. This view can also be seen from certain rooms in the castle.
Entering the castle you are transported into what it would have been like living/working in the castle. The kitchen area shows the stove and various areas where food and drink would have been stored. I especially liked having a nosey of where the beer and wine cellar was located (this should be a mandatory room in every house don’t you think?). The banqueting hall is something to behold, and even though there is a lack of tables, you can get a real feel to where the main party hosting would have been. There is also a statement piece on one wall which really stands out.
There are some great details not to be missed in the castle either, such as the stonework and metal work. I noticed various engravings that really add a bit extra to the castle, and remind you that contemporary buildings often don’t have these finer details.
As well as these details there are items included in the castle that gives you an idea of what it was like to be alive during that time. There are several cannons located around the castle as well as slim ‘windows’ where I assume arrows would have been fired at invading troops.
Skipton Castle really is a beautiful building and well worth a visit if you are visiting Skipton. You can spend however long you would like (within the opening hours) exploring the various entrances to each room, and discovering the past.
Once you have explored the castle, there is a souvenir shop and a small cafe/tearoom where you can grab something to eat. We decided not to eat there so I cannot comment on what the food is like. We did, however, explore the small gift shop. I was particularly interested in plants and herbs for sale, which are grown there on the grounds of the castle.
From the castle, we decided to explore a bit of Skipton and find somewhere to eat. Turning right outside of the castle brings you to Holy Trinity Church. Here you can sit on various benches in the grounds, and we were lucky enough to experience the ringing of the bells when the clock struck 12p.m.
So after walking through the church grounds, we came across a lovely pub called ‘The Castle Inn’. The food here was lovely, really homely pub grub. I chose to have the sausages and mash and it was so tasty. The mash was also proper mash and none of that smash stuff! It wasn’t just the food that made the place, the staff working here are lovely are really welcoming. The waitress we had was really bubbly and engaged in conversation with us, she was especially good and interacting with my little niece.
If you are visiting Skipton I would highly recommend visiting this place for something to eat or drink.
We finished our little trip having a look around the famous market, and having a look in the local shops. I didn’t take any pictures at this point, as the market was quite busy. I have heard that the market and town really come to life during the Christmas season, so think I may have to visit again.
We walked past the Stanforth Butchers, however, did not go in for one of their world famous pork pies. Apparently, this is the place to be for the best pork pies in the world.
Have you been to Skipton? Which town do you like for a day trip?
As always, thanks for reading, and I hoped you enjoyed a little insight into the Castle of Skipton and the Town of Skipton.