Ah, time to breathe… The handsome market town of Helmsley, the start (or end) point of the Cleveland Way, is just the place to sink into and absorb the vast North York Moors National Park. Helmsley itself has enough to keep you occupied: a ruined castle and walled garden, an arts centre, galleries, small boutiques and delicious delis, good pubs, even its own brewery. But those hills that lie just beyond the old square in the centre will tempt you to explore further afield.
Just a short distance from Helmsley lie some of the country’s most magnificent abbey ruins, heart-pumping mountain-bike trails, reputedly the ‘finest view in England’ and atmospheric thatched pubs that boast Michelin stars. With a mixed bag of moorland, forest, dipping dales, plunging escarpments, open spaces and brilliantly dark skies (all the better for star-gazing), the North York Moors National Park does diversity in spades.
The icons below highlight the distance, difficulty and theme of this itinerary.
Walks around 5km
Easy / Moderate
High Hills & Moorland / Rolling Countryside / Connecting Villages & Towns
History / Food & Drink / Wildlife / Pilgrimage
Walking / Cycling / Heritage / Hands On
Here’s everything you need to help you plan your very own walking and exploring break in the North York Moors National Park. Click on the blue arrow tabs below for more information. To save this itinerary to view later, use the Save to My Rucksack button at the top of the page.
Head to Helmsley for three days, discovering the diverse North York Moors from all angles. Walk short but spectacular sections of the Cleveland Way, get up-close to birds of prey, cycle dramatic ridge-tops, eat like a king and inhale the fresh moorland air.
There’s a range of accommodation across the North York Moors National Park. Helmsley makes a good base.
From Michelin stars to cafes with to-die-for views, the North York Moors delivers all types of dishes.
The North York Moors National Park is laced with walking trails – and circular walks along the Cleveland Way make great half-day trips. The region is well set up for cycling too.
For further walking inspiration visit The Outdoor Guide.
Mix up your trip to the North York Moors National Park, combining walks with a wealth of heritage experiences.
Sutton Bank Bikes, Sutton Bank – Hire a mountain bike to hit the well-marked trails; there are routes suitable for all experience levels.
For further information on cycling visit Cycle England.
Good walking shoes recommended. Walks will take around two hours. There is the occasional steep climb, but walks are fairly easy.
We advise that you check opening times and booking restrictions before travelling.
Please check out these links for latest advice when in the countryside
Click here to access the interactive map
The official guidebook and map for the Trail are available from the National Trails Shop along with a wide range of gifts and other merchandise.