Right on the border between Cumbria and its Lake District and Yorkshire and its Dales, the Black Swan, just outside the pleasant market town of Kirkby Stephen, delivers everything we expect of a country pub with rooms. It's in a fabulous rural location, close enough to both national parks to explore them comfortably. The  rooms are cosy and comfortable without being ostentatious and have all the amenities you need (they also have a couple of rooms on the ground floor for disabled or elderly visitors) and they welcome dogs, so you can make the most of the vast array of walks in the immediate area, most notably the beautiful Howgill Fells. There's a homely downstairs bar, and food in the dining room is appealingly hearty and homemade, perfect after a long day's walking, locally sourced and from a changing seasonal menu that features plenty for vegetarians.

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