WHEN the weather is being kind, and the crisp autumnal sun lights up the Yorkshire countryside with spectacular hues of red, orange and yellow, there’s nothing better than pulling on your wellies, grabbing the dog, and heading out to take it all in.
And with breath-taking panoramas across the Vale of York and the Vale of Mowbray, you’d be hard pushed to find a better view than that from the top of Sutton Bank.
The nation’s favourite vet, James Herriot, once proclaimed it to be “the finest view in England,” while readers of the Dalesman magazine also voted it the county’s best view earlier this year.
And they weren’t wrong. The dramatic views appear as soon as you set off on the short cliff-top walk from Sutton Bank National Park Centre, with the pretty Yorkshire countryside stretching out for miles before you.
Heading south from the centre, you’ll stumble across the magnificent sight of the White Horse of Kilburn – the largest of Britain’s white horses, covering just over an acre of land – while northwards lies Lake Gormire and the Cleveland Way.
To find out more about how the impressive landscape was formed, head to the centre’s interactive Lime and Ice exhibition, where children can be a virtual archaeologist, make a fossil, or fly a glider, before enjoying a taste of the Moors with a bite to eat in the tearoom.
For those who prefer to live life in the fast lane, the nearby Sutton Bank Bikes offers bike hire, a cycle shop, and mountain bike trails for all abilities - from a family friendly three-mile circular route, to a 17-mile technical trail for experienced bikers, taking in steep climbs and the spectacular scenery of the North York Moors National Park.
Address: Sutton Bank, Thirsk, North Yorkshire
Opening times: Daily from 10.30am-4pm, closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Open daily 10.30am-4pm from Dec 26 to Jan 3.
Entry fee: Free
Car parking: Pay and display
Attraction website: northyorkmoors.org.uk
Telephone: 01845 597426
Sat Nav: YO7 2EH