Hawes is the beating heart of Wensleydale, a thriving and picturesque market town (market day is Tuesday) that has the added attraction of its own waterfall in the village centre. On busy summer weekends, however, Hawes’ narrow arteries can get seriously clogged with traffic. Leave the car in the parking area beside the national park centre at the eastern entrance to the village.
Top Things to See in Hawes
Dales Countryside Museum
Sharing a building with the national park centre is the Dales Countryside Museum, a beautifully presented social history of the area that explains the forces shaping the landscape, from geology to lead mining to land enclosure.
This museum is devoted to the production of the animated TV characters Wallace and Gromit’s favourite crumbly white cheese. You can visit the cheese museum, see cheesemakers in action in the viewing gallery, and then trybefore- you-buy in the shop, which is free to enter.
About 1.5 miles north of Hawes is 30m-high Hardraw Force, the highest unbroken waterfall in England, but by international standards not that impressive (except after heavy rain). Access is through the Green Dragon Inn, which levies a £2 admission fee.
On Thursdays from May to September, a local farmer gives demonstrations of working sheepdogs, held in a field 800m north of Hawes on the minor road towards Hardraw.