In a Nutshell
Medieval streets, castle and riverside make for a varied visit in this little gem of market town. Our 'go to' town for a lazy Sunday afternoon in Yorkshire.
Parking & Pooping
For a relatively small market town, there is plenty of parking in Knaresborough. Be mindful though that the town centre is a steep walk up from the riverside, so your choice of parking may be decided by where you intend to spend your time. At the riverside you have two main options: The main car park off the A59 just over the bridge at Bond End has plenty of space plus picnic areas and is convenient for walking along the river or up the hill to the town centre. We usually parked at the Waterside car park accessed from the B6163 on the east side of the town. Again plenty of grass around and immediate access to the cafes and attractions along the riverside.
If the town centre and castle are your destination, the Castle Yard car park is the most convenient, being right alongside the castle grounds. A little known tip for tourists is that even when this car park looks busy, keep driving down passed the castle and there is a hidden section to the car park through a narrow gateway that is often missed by those not familiar with the area. The Castle Yard has toilets and just a short walk to the market square. Alternatively there are further car parks at Chapel St and Fisher St, but no grass for pup.
Down by the river you have wide pavements, dotted with cafes with a few benches to sit and enjoy the activities along the river. Up in the town, the market square is partially pedestrianised, but traffic levels tend to be low anyway. The castle grounds are very relaxing, with superb views over the river and plenty of benches. Whilst popular all year round the castle grounds rarely get very crowded so always make for a pleasant break on a summer's day.
The town centre and market square are just a couple of minutes walk and connected by cafes and shops. If you want to take the short route between the castle/town and the riverside, they are connected by two sets of steep steps (one to the east of the castle and another to the west side), or you can take the longer but gentler route along the High St. If you do take the steps to the east of the castle, don't miss the hidden park half way down - Bebra Gardens - it's easy to miss and a real gem.
Keeping the Human's Amused
There is plenty to see and do in Knaresborough, or you can just soak up the sun and views. Shopping-wise, there are a smattering of independent shops and antique centres alongside the usual high st names for a small town.
The ruins of the castle are attractive, with a museum block to explore and down by the riverside you have a number of waterside cafes, boat rentals and Mother Shipton's Cave, one of the best known tourist attractions in the area.
Many of the riverside cafe's allow dogs on the boardwalk areas. Our usual 'go to' for a coffee and cake is Cafe Nero in the main square who are very dog friendly. Cafe di Luca on the other side of the market place are also dog friendly and most of the pubs will allow dogs too. On a sunny day the cafes have outdoor seating around the market place and the memorial is a popular place to grab some fish and chips and sit on the benches there to soak up the sun.