Aysgarth Lodge Holidays – Our Weekend in the Countryside
Earlier this year Leisure Resorts unveiled their luxurious new holiday park in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. The perfect destination for anyone looking for some peace and quiet in the countryside.
I was delighted to be invited on a press trip to find out what these holiday lodges are like, and I’m pleased to say that it was even better than I expected. Being dog-friendly meant that Fifi was able to come along which was great, as it would have been such a shame to be surrounded by so many great walks and not have her there with us.
They provided food and water bowls, a dog bed, treats and a toy for her to play with. The restaurant has a section where you can dine with your dog, and the waiting staff brought Fifi biscuits and gave her plenty of attention. The decking area in the lodge has a gate, so the dog can be outside without having to be tied up. There are also outside taps which would be useful for washing the dog’s paws if they were muddy. It was these little extra touches which really made me feel that Fifi was welcome, rather than just allowed.
My first thought when stepping into our holiday lodge was how beautifully modern and clean everything was. They are decorated tastefully, and I would have loved to live there!
The kitchen has everything you could possibly need for preparing and cooking meals. There is also washing up liquid and dishwasher tablets. There is a washing machine so you can even do some laundry if you are staying there for a while. When we arrived I was craving a nice cup of tea, so I was delighted to spot the little jars of tea, coffee and sugar and a bottle of fresh milk in the fridge. And there were also some biscuits too – perfect!
The open plan living area opens out onto the decking, where you’ll find the jacuzzi and table and chairs to relax on. Fifi liked sitting out here watching the wildlife passing by – there were quite a few rabbits hopping about. Because it is so dark there in the evenings you can relax in the jacuzzi and look up at all the stars in the night sky. Plastic champagne glasses are provided so you can enjoy a celebratory drink in the jacuzzi.
The smart TV knew my name and had the option to view the menu for the restaurant or find out more about the area. It had plenty of channels, and also I was able to connect my phone to the TV via screen mirroring meaning that we could watch Netflix! The free wifi just connects automatically and is strong enough to allow for watching a movie with barely any buffering.
The bedroom had an ensuite with a good powerful shower, and the other bathroom had a bath. The heated towel rails were especially useful for drying off our wet clothes after we got rained on! I loved that robes and slippers were provided, and there was also a good quality hairdryer and dressing table for doing my hair. Another super feature was the walk-in wardrobe style room, where you could hang up clothes and put things away.
There is a lovely play park for children, a petting farm with alpacas, and the restaurant which provides delicious & locally sourced breakfast, lunch and dinner. Every lodge has its own parking space right outside, so if you need to get something out of the car you can just pop out and get it. There were plenty of bins around the resort with complimentary poop bags, which was very handy. There was a lovely walk by the river which started from our front door. Fifi and I did this walk a couple of times, and on the morning walk, there was even a rainbow! There were lots of sheep on the walk though, so make sure you keep your dog on a lead if needed.
Falls End Restaurant
I was very impressed with the Falls End Restaurant, the atmosphere was great and the staff were cheerful and attentive. We sat in the dog-friendly section of the restaurant and ended up chatting to the other dog owners. I had the Camembert followed by beetroot and sheep’s cheese risotto, both of which were absolutely delicious. I especially liked the topping of beetroot crisps!
Guy had the Dalesman’s platter followed by the Falls End burger. He enjoyed both and said the burger was cooked and seasoned very well, he loves pickles so was happy to see them. All of the food is locally sourced and very good quality. The puddings sounded amazing but we were both too full to sample them. But hopefully next time we will!
Mollys Petting Farm
The animals on Mollys Petting Farm all seemed very content and were well looked after. We were shown around by the friendly farmer who clearly really cares about the animals. There are chickens, donkeys, alpacas, Shetland ponies, pigs & sheep. The Shetland ponies were an old married couple called Bramble & Badger. They’ve been together for 12 years! The Kune Kune pigs on the farm were roaming the land before the holiday park was built, you can see them below.
There was also a small animals room with guinea pigs, rabbits, hamsters, mice, mini turtles and an awesome parrot called Zazu who liked to say ‘hello’ and had some very impressive dance moves! There is a little table for children to sit at and do some colouring, and visitors are allowed to stroke the animals, under the supervision of the farmer.
Exploring the Local Area
The Yorkshire Dales has many beautiful little towns and villages to explore, friendly pubs, and so many walks to go on. If you like waterfalls then you certainly won’t be disappointed, there are plenty!
Leyburn The nearby town of Leyburn has a large Co-op, so is the best place nearby for going to get supplies. It is a lovely town, so be sure to spend some time here looking in the little shops and have a drink in one of the many dog-friendly pubs. We went to Penleys cafe for lunch, and Fifi had a great little seat in the window. The sandwiches there were delicious!
Hawes Hawes is also a fun place to visit, especially if you like cheese! The Wensleydale Creamery is located here, and you can even watch the cheese being made. Sadly dogs aren’t allowed, but you can still quickly pop in to pick up some cheese – it would make a great gift for your friends and family back home! Even in the rain, Hawes looks pretty!
Hardraw Force If you want to see a very impressive waterfall then head to the Green Dragon Inn. The back garden of this pub is home to England’s largest single drop waterfall! You can even walk behind the waterfall, it is amazing, but make sure to wear sensible walking boots, especially if it is raining.
You can walk to Aysgarth Falls from your lodge! Just come out of the holiday park, turn right and walk up the hill to the main road. Then you’ll see Aysgarth Falls signposted. There is quite a big car park here, so you could drive, but you do have to pay for parking.
This is a peaceful area, and I imagine it is a popular picnic spot in the summer. There are lots of other walks you can go on from here, they all seem to be well signposted. It was raining heavily when we were there (as you can probably tell from the pictures!) so we didn’t get to explore as much as we would have liked. We hope to go back next summer to get to know the area better.
There are plenty of other places to visit, and many more walks to go on around Aysgarth. The team at the reception desk are very knowledgeable about the local area, so will be able to advise you on the best places to go.
We had a lovely weekend here, it was the perfect way to escape from the hassles of everyday life and just enjoy the peace and quiet. If you’re looking for a luxurious and very dog-friendly retreat in the Dales then this is it!
I’d like to thank Leisure Resorts for allowing us to spend the weekend at Aysgarth Lodge Holidays, and although this trip was complimentary, all thoughts and opinions are genuine.