If you're looking for a unique and hospitable place to spend the night in North Yorkshire, one of these brilliant pubs with rooms may well fit the bill. From down-to-earth places with muddy boots at the door to high-end destination restaurants, there's something for everyone. You'll find six of our favourites below which are all featured in our brand new guidebook to the Best Pubs with Rooms in Britain.
With a Dales village as iconic as Malham – in the heart of rugged Yorkshire walking country – you hope the pubs are going to be up to scratch, and the Lister Arms does not disappoint. It’s exactly the right kind of old-stone, ivy-clad, walkers-welcome sort of place, just across the beck in the centre of Malham. It’s an updated country inn, so you get the characteristic stone-flagged floors and big old fireplaces, with dogs welcome in the bar while you revive yourself with a pint of Thwaites, the house beer. But you also get a bit more country-chic style in the restaurant and very nicely presented food – all the pub classics, lots of it locally sourced, and including homemade pies that should put some zip back into tired walkers’ legs (you can tell you’re in good hands when pies come with “jug of gravy”). There are some pretty, warmly decorated rooms upstairs – no two the same, given it’s a seventeenth-century building – and more in a light-filled, converted barn that also has a lounge and private garden.
As one of the Dales’ most celebrated dining destinations, and perhaps the North’s original gastropub, The Angel at Hetton has long been a destination for both good food and comfortable accommodation. But this legendary Yorkshire Dales establishment has been breaking new ground of late, with the 2 Michelin-starred chef Michael Wignall taking over as chef-patron a couple of years ago. He and his wife Johanna have lifted this lovely old inn to a new level, with 15 individually designed and refurbished guest rooms that are split between the main building and Fell View Barn’s 5 individual luxury suites across the road, which boast magnificent views over Rylstone Fell. Next door, another building, Sycamore Bank, also has 2 studios and 2 suites. Attention to detail is spot-on, and as a guest you have a guaranteed reservation for dinner. As a romantic retreat, or for a big gesture or celebration, The Angel is hard to beat – as Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon famously found out all those years ago in the the first of the popular TV series ‘The Trip’.
Pretty much everyone will point you towards the Star at Harome if you tell them you’re looking for a proper country pub with great food. The old thatched inn dates back to the 14th century and certainly looks the part, with a vintage interior of low beams, wood panelling and rough plastered walls. Chef and owner Andrew Pern roots his seasonally changing menus firmly in North Yorkshire, where he grew up, from Scarborough-caught fish with samphire and brown shrimps to estate game and local lamb, pork and beef, all enhanced by their own herbs and veg. It’s modern cooking at its best, but relaxed and fancy-free – so the same menu is available in bar or restaurant. To turn a meal into a memorable night, stay over in their accommodation across the road, where 8 highly individual beamed rooms offer a select experience, from a roll-top bath at the foot of a handmade bed to a piano or even a snooker table in your room. There’s a private lounge and terrace, while breakfast is served under a magnificent wooden wheelhouse ceiling.
With the gorgeousYorkshire Dales surrounding it, The Blue Lion is one of the area’s finest stays – a Grade-II-listed building with a history as long as your arm, including being the last public house in England to have a 6-day licence, thanks to a previous landlady. Current owners Paul and Helen Klein have built a stunning reputation for the pub, not just for its 15 boutique rooms, some of which are dog-friendly, but for the food too, which has won them a ‘Dining Pub of the Year’ award on more than one occasion. The rooms are split between the main house and the converted stable building, and vary from ‘Petite Doubles’ to ‘Classics’ or ‘Large Classics’. Our choice would be the Large Classic, which not only offers views over the Dales but also a bath as well as a shower, while all rooms have flatscreen TVs, wifi and tea- and coffee-making facilities as standard. Meanwhile the countryside of the Yorkshire Dales beckons outside – and, as it happens, the team have a series of 6 walking maps available at the reception to help you plan your day.
A new lease of life for a back-country inn has put the heart back into the tiny hamlet of Littondale. The route here's a beauty, down a single-track road through countryside that gets prettier and prettier until Litton itself trumps the lot, with its ancient roadside inn and grassy side-garden with rolling Dales' hills behind. While the food's worth the journey itself, it's the guest rooms upstairs that convince you to stay – welcome cosy countryness shoehorned into four oddly named, oddly shaped rooms that reflect the age and character of the inn. Earthy greens, browns and oatmeal predominate, the furniture's antique pine, and the bathrooms – squeezed in where they can – nice and modern. A cushioned window seat here, a padded bed-head there, and everything is nice and dandy, especially for the prices, which are remarkably good value. Skirfare has the biggest bathroom, while Potts has some humorously low bang-your-head oak beams and a side-passage into a tucked-away second room that's perfect for the kids. Two other rooms share a shower room and make up a self-contained suite. There are very few distractions, save a great pub and some fine food downstairs, and arguably the Dales' finest scenery on the doorstep.
First things first. Is it a pub? Well, yes and no. Oldstead’s 16th-century country inn has the ambience, ales and rolling rural views that are de rigueur in these parts. You want a rustic pint in the North York Moors, fill your boots. But truth to tell, you are probably only here to worship at the table of Tommy Banks, the local-boy chef who has turned his family’s Black Swan pub into a Michelin-starred destination of some renown. It regularly features in the ‘world’s best’ lists, with its field-to-fork ethos that starts in the vast kitchen gardens, dives into the local hedgerows and plunders neighbouring artisan outlets and farms for the very best produce. Dinner is a celebrated tasting menu and a tasting menu alone, and while its very nature means that dishes can’t be predicted, you should expect the sort of foraging, fermenting, preserving and experimenting that comes with Michelin recognition. And settle in, because this is an all-night, multi-course affair. The guest bedrooms, just a few yards from the main building, are all gorgeous and each comes with a table reservation, making the point that the meal is very much the experience you are signed up for. Reservations otherwise have to be made up to a year in advance.