Lovely Littondale

  • Quiet and peaceful riverside stroll
  • Links two quaint Dales villages
  • Traditional woodland on the fellsides

Litton and Arncliffe are two delightful villages tucked up one of the side valleys of Upper Wharfedale. The crowds tend to head further north to Kettlewell and over to Wensleydale bypassing one of the gems of the Dales. However it is their loss. The quiet riverside walk linking the villages of Litton and Arncliffe is therefore left to those who are seeking a quiet and peaceful stroll in lovely surroundings. It was not always so as Littondale was the inspiration behind Emmerdale Farm (using the name Amerdale) and Arncliffe used to be over run with tourists but thankfully the trippers have been replaced by the odd intrepid walker.

The walk I was on is simple, although the water was running off the flanks of Scoska Moor and the river was high making the various fords impassable. I had to stick to bridges which was fine. The outward leg of the walk passes Guildersbank, a preserved woodland and harbouring one of the largest Ash woodlands in the Dales as well as the river Skirfare. There is a bridge at Litton but this then presents a dilemma for the walker who does not want to return via the road, as empty as it usually is. A return by the same path is certainly possible but I chose the road and thoroughly enjoyed the views as I headed down this very special valley. I was not run over once.

Recommend: If you are in a car take the road from Arncliffe to Settle – along with the parallel road from Halton Gill there is no better driving in England.

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Littondale map


All maps are copyright of Where2Walk © 2020

OS Map: O/S 1.25,000. OL30 Yorkshire Dales North & Central
Start Point: SD 930719. There are some parking spaces right at the start of the riverside path. Better than cluttering up the village.
Height to Climb: 35ms (115 feet)
Terrain: Underfoot terrain can be a little wet in the fields and the path is quite tight (but very good) to the waters edge towards Litton.
Eating & Drinking: There are excellent pubs in both Arncliffe and Litton. Why not try them both and decide which you prefer!
Similar Walks Nearby: Hidden Valleys of Wharfedale
Explore Kilnsey Crag
Arncliffe Circular
Places to Stay:


Queen’s Arms, Litton