Curlew in West Witton

Yorkshire Dales National Park

​The Yorkshire Dales National Park is a haven for wildlife with outstanding scenery and a rich cultural heritage

From rolling hills to striking waterfalls and unique limestone formations, the Yorkshire Dales are a special landscape shaped by human and natural activities. Dotted with distinctive drystone walls, field barns and charming towns and villages, the Dales comprise a variety of semi-natural habitats including patchwork farmland, moorland and meadows.

The Park is vital for many limestone-loving plants and the wildlife they support. Over a quarter of England’s upland hay meadows are found in the Dales, providing a home for nationally important populations of ground nesting birds like the black grouse, alongside rare orchids and other grassland species.

Did you know? There is a species of moss in the Yorkshire Dales that grows nowhere else in the world.

Designated: 11/1954

Habitats: Hay meadows, farmland, moorland

Common wildlife: Waders, including lapwing and curlew

Star spots: Black grouse, red squirrels

Notable towns and cultural sights: Richmond, Fountains Abbey, Wensleydale railway

Notable nature sights: Caves, The Pennine Way, Malham Cove

Popular activities for visitors: Hill climbing, hiking, cycling, rock climbing

Highest peak: Whernside at 736 meters above sea level

Annual visitor numbers: 4.7 million in 2019

Threats: Increasing pressures from farming, climate change