The Wensleydale Experience - Know Before You Go

Written by: Elmtree Press

The Wensleydale Experience - Know Before You Go

Go Yorkshire had the pleasure of visiting The Wensleydale Experience last week and it was certainly a unique and exciting place to visit.  Situated in the heart of the Dales National Park at Berry’s Farm in Swinithwaite (near Leyburn), the setting is stunning.  The Wensleydale Experience adventure at Berry’s Farm started many years ago and has now developed into a thriving business with an on-site farm shop, café, luxury yurts, temple folly and more recently, farm tours and experiences.  It was primarily the Farm tour that we experienced and we found this to be an informative, authentic, stimulating and extremely safe experience.

Parking – Parking is plentiful with the main car park outside Berry’s Farm Shop and café.

Food and Drink – Berry’s Farm Shop and café has the promotion of local produce at the forefront of its ethos. The award-winning café has a fine reputation and boasts an extensive and reasonably priced selection of tasty treats and meals.

Yurts – another mainstay of the Wensleydale Experience are the 5 on-site luxury yurts, each with their own facilities, wood-fired hot tubs and BBQ.  The views certainly take glamping to another level and it is no surprise that early bookings are recommended to avoid disappointment.   Spectacular views in this 18th Century Grade II listed folly in its own small copse on the north side of the Leyburn to Hawes road in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. 

Temple Folly - In addition to providing outstanding yurt accommodation, there is also a stunning 18th century Grade II listed Temple folly in its own small copse on the north side of the Leyburn to Hawes road.  With magnificent views of Bolton Castle, the accommodation comprises of two octagonal rooms connected by a stone staircase and outside balcony.  A wood-fired couples hot tub provides the perfect place to relax and unwind, with a fire pit for an evening's stargazing.

Our Farm Tour Visitor Experience - Safety is a primary concern for everyone at present and it was pleasing to receive a very comprehensive and clear brief at the beginning of our Farm tour on what was/wasn’t not allowed.  Social distancing rules and measures were clearly explained before the farm tour began and maintained throughout.  One word springs to mind when describing what to expect – authenticity. This isn’t like visiting a zoo but is real exposure to what it is actually like on a working farm looking after and rearing animals. Most importantly, the tours are amazing fun, engaging and to my children’s delight, hands on. From the outset, we were accompanied by 2 pygmy goats who amusingly remained with our small group until the end of the tour.  My two young Go Yorkshire associates were able to interact fully with a plethora of animals over the 1.5 hours that we toured the farm.  Feeding of the llamas, stroking of Rolo the Shetland pony and the cuddling of a particularly cute piglet were some of the highlights of their tour.  Other animals seen in their natural environment included sheep, cattle and rather larger pigs that could not be cuddled!.

Do you have to wear a Face Covering? – No. As the farm tours and experiences are primarily outdoor, facemasks are not required.

Our Verdict – Wensleydale Experience champions the importance of farming on the local economy and the need to support Dales farmers.  From the luxury of the yurts and Temple Folly to the sampling of local produce in the café, there is so much to see and do here. The relatively new Farm Tours and Farm Experiences are a must for any animal lover and a fantastic opportunity to experience sustainable farming up close. We will be back again and would strongly suggest you do the same if you want an amazing experience in the heart of Wensleydale.