The charming village of Grantley nestles in the Skell Valley, approximately 4.5 miles from the vibrant cathedral city of Ripon.
The city itself boasts a Thursday market, numerous coffee shops, pubs, restaurants and a nice collection of independent shops to explore. The cathedral is smaller than its close neighbour, York Minster, but is still an awe-inspiring sight. In addition, every night for at least 450 years, the Ripon Hornblower has sounded the curfew at 9pm from all four sides of the obelisk in the marketplace, come rain or shine, followed by a 15-minute history of the ceremony and the city – an experience not to be missed! If you are partial to a flutter, Ripon Race Ground has around 15 meets from April to early September. Known as Yorkshire’s Garden Racecourse, it has a distinct atmosphere harking back to a bygone era – traditional tea rooms and bandstands sit alongside the champagne bar.
This area of Yorkshire has enough historical sites to keep you busy for several days: these include Ripley Castle (8 miles), Newby Hall (10 miles) and Norton Conyers (10 miles). Visit lovely Fountains Abbey and the gorgeous Studley Royal Water Garden, 4 miles away – this World Heritage site is deservedly one of the National Trust’s most visited locations. As well as the spectacular ruins of a 12th-century Cistercian abbey, the grounds are home to an Elizabethan Mansion, a medieval deer park and some of the most romantic vistas in the country.
Harrogate, 11.5 miles away, is also an absolute must. Encircled by its famous Stray, or 200 acres, of horseshoe-shaped grassland, the Victorian spa town has a bright and breezy open-air feel and is characterised by its impressive floral displays. As you would expect of such a bustling upbeat town, Harrogate boasts over 300 bars and restaurants together with all the shops, cinemas, parks and gardens you could ever wish for.