Dales Way
78 mile walk through the Dales and into the Lake District

The Dales Way is a long distance footpath of roughly 78 miles, usually starting in Ilkley, passing through many lovely and interesting dales and villages, to its end on the shores of Lake Windermere at Bowness, in the Lake District.

Download file for GPS

Holiday Packages

All our Standard Itineraries include:

  • Hand-picked accommodation in B&Bs / guest houses / inns / small hotels
  • En-suite facilities where available
  • Breakfast
  • Daily baggage transfers from our own team of local drivers
  • All booking fees

We will also endeavour to include all these in any custom itinerary you wish to build for this walk.

Day 1: Ilkley to Burnsall (12.6m)
Day 2: Burnsall to Hubberholme (14.9m)
Day 3: Hubberholme to Ribblehead (12m)
Day 4: Ribblehead to Sedbergh (16.1m)
Day 5: Sedbergh to A6 (Kendal to Shap road) (14.5m)
Day 6: A6 to Bowness (11m)


£745 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£645 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

Day 1: Ilkley to Kettlewell (22.3m)
Day 2: Kettlewell to Ribblehead (17.7m)
Day 3: Ribblehead to Howgill (20.3m)
Day 4: Howgill to Bowness (20.7m)


£535 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£465 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

Day 1: Ilkley to Grassington (16m)
Day 2: Grassington to Oughtershaw (16.5m)
Day 3: Oughtershaw to Dent (15.5m)
Day 4: Dent to Grayrigg Foot (15.9m)
Day 5: Grayrigg Foot to Bowness (14m)


£660 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£565 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

Day 1: Ilkley to Appletreewick (11.3m)
Day 2: Appletreewick to Kettlewell (10.9m)
Day 3: Kettlewell to Oughtershaw (10.3m)
Day 4: Oughtershaw to Cowgill (10.5m)
Day 5: Cowgill to Sedbergh (10.1m)
Day 6: Sedbergh to Patton Bridge (12.5m)
Day 7: Patton Bridge to Bowness (13m)


£810 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£715 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

Day 1: Ilkley to Appletreewick (11.3m)
Day 2: Appletreewick to Kettlewell (10.9m)
Day 3: Kettlewell to Oughtershaw (10.3m)
Day 4: Oughtershaw to Cowgill (10.5m)
Day 5: Cowgill to Sedbergh (10.1m)
Day 6: Sedbergh to Lambrigg Head (8.8m)
Day 7: Lambrigg Head to Staveley (10.5m)
Day 8: Staveley to Bowness (6.6m)


£935 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£815 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

Day 1: Ilkley to Barden Bridge (9m)
Day 2: Barden Bridge to Grassington (7m)
Day 3: Grassington to Starbotton (8.4m)
Day 4: Starbotton to Oughtershaw (8.1m)
Day 5: Oughtershaw to Cowgill (10.5m)
Day 6: Cowgill to Sedbergh (10.1m)
Day 7: Sedbergh to Lambrigg Head (8.8m)
Day 8: Lambrigg Head to Staveley (10.5m)
Day 9: Staveley to Bowness (6.6m)


£1,035 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£915 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

Day 1: Ilkley to Barden Bridge (9m)
Day 2: Barden Bridge to Grassington (7m)
Day 3: Grassington to Starbotton (8.4m)
Day 4: Starbotton to Oughtershaw (8.1m)
Day 5: Oughtershaw to Ribblehead (7.4m)
Day 6: Ribblehead to Cowgill (6m)
Day 7: Cowgill to Sedbergh (10.1m)
Day 8: Sedbergh to Lambrigg Head (8.8m)
Day 9: Lambrigg Head to Staveley (10.5m)
Day 10: Staveley to Bowness (6.6m)


£1,155 solo walkers (plus single supplements)
£1,000 per person
(based on two or more)


Get a Personal Quote

* All headline holiday prices are shown per person, based on two people sharing.

Baggage Transfer

Baggage Transfer is automatically included in the price of all our Walking Holiday packages.

These prices are for anyone planning their own holiday and just need bags moving from one stop to the next.

£9.45 per person per day (minimum of two persons)


Max 17kg per bag

£17 per person per day (minimum of two persons)


Max 17kg per bag

Note: If you are booking accommodation in an Airbnb, you must ensure that there will either be someone available to take collection/delivery of your bags or that they have appropriate, secure storage in the event that the proprietor is absent.

Walk Information

  • Holiday Options
  • Transport
  • Walk Info
  • Maps & Guide Books

Rest Days
Rest days can be incorporated into any walking holiday package at an additional £55.00 per person per night

Solo Travellers
Solo travellers please contact us or use the booking form to send your proposed itinerary including dates, and we will price accordingly. Where possible, we take advantage of existing bookings from other clients to ensure you receive a cost effective service.

Alternative Itineraries
For alternative itineraries to those provided for this route, please contact us, or use the Booking Form to submit your proposed itinerary and number of participants and we will quote accordingly.

Walking Season Dates
Prices are based on the walk starting after 1st April and ending before 30th September. For walks outside those dates, please contact us. We provide a reduced out of season service, but still manage to meet the needs of most customers who contact us during this period.

Personal Transport
From our parking facility in Kirkby Malham to Ilkley, and return from Bowness.

£210 (1 passenger)
£105 per person
(2 passengers)
£70 per person (3 passengers)
£55 per person (4 passengers)
£45 per person (5 - 7 passengers)

Walk Information
The Dales Way is a long distance footpath of roughly 80 miles, usually starting in Ilkley, passing through many lovely and interesting dales and villages, to its end on the shores of Lake Windermere at Bowness, in the Lake District. Along the way, it follows Wharfedale, passing the ancient priory at Bolton Abbey, and continues at a predominantly low level as it follows the valleys of the Rivers Wharfe, Dee, Lune, and Kent. However, the weather and terrain should not be underestimated, as it does cross the Pennine moors at a high level, near Ribblehead, in the central section, which can often be shrouded in low cloud.

The route was originally planned as an official National Trail though unfortunately it has not yet achieved this status. As far as possible the Dales Way follows riverside tracks and offers a scenically attractive route from urban West Yorkshire to the Lake District. Any reasonably fit person can undertake the walk in a week’s holiday, but as with every long distance walk, it is important not to overestimate one’s fitness and stamina, or the country and weather conditions, and also not to overestimate the amount of clothing and equipment required to complete the walk, within the constraints of personal comfort!

Brigantes Walking Holidays has helped hundreds of walkers to achieve the completion of the walk, whilst attaining maximum enjoyment of the scenery without having to carry a heavy backpack, knowing that warm and dry clothing awaits them at the end of each day.

OS Explorer Maps
OL2 - Yorkshire Dales - Southern & Western areas
OL7 - English Lakes - South-eastern area
OL19 - Howgill Fells & Upper Eden Valley
OL30 - Yorkshire Dales - Northern & Central areas
297 - Lower Wharfedale & Washburn Valley

Guide Books
"The Dales Way" by Paddy Dillon - Published by Cicerone- ISBN: 978-1852844646

ViewRanger Digital Maps
Digital Maps can be viewed on a modern smartphone using an appropriate ‘app’, which is usually provided as part of any map purchase. Brigantes are happy to recommend ViewRanger for all your digital mapping and mobile navigation needs.

The ViewRanger Shop provides Ordnance Survey maps for all parts of the UK, as well as the National Trail and selected Long Distance Paths. Map segments can also be purchased ad-hoc, allowing you to cover any walk you plan to take.

Walks you may also like...

Nidderdale Way

Nidderdale Way

The Nidderdale Way is a well-established circular walk of 53 miles exploring the beautiful valley formed by the River Nidd
Click Here

Dales High Way

Dales High Way

The Dales High Way is an exhilarating 90 mile walk, from Saltaire across the glorious high country of the Yorkshire Dales
Click Here

Cumberland Way

Cumberland Way

The Cumberland Way runs for 73 miles, through the beautiful valleys and over the high passes of this old Lakeland county
Click Here

Walkers' Testimonials

Have you walked this route? Please leave a review and let others know what you think.

Use the comments form below to submit your testimonial for this walk. Rest assured, we won’t display or disclose your email address! It is only required to prevent spam – and to enable you to receive notifications of any responses to your review should you select the option to do so.

32 Replies to “Dales Way”

  1. We are just back from our Dales Way walk over 8 great days and just wanted to say a big thank you to Annette and her team for the fantastic organisation and efficiency. It all went like clockwork; from the pick up and return to our car by Karen, the bang on time arrival of the taxi transfers at Lambrigg Head and the invisible magic that was the transfer of our baggage to the great accommodation each evening, (no complaints about any of them)….it was all wonderful. We also heard nothing but praise from the accommodation owners along the way about Brigantes. We are aware of how difficult your task is at the moment in the current Covid climate and really appreciate it.
    Thank you so much and we are already thinking about our next adventure which will definitely be booked through Brigantes.

  2. Just to say a big thank you to Brigantes for making our Dales Way walking holiday a great success. All the transfer arrangements worked perfectly every day and all the accommodations were excellent. Biggest challenge was the weather as we chose the heatwave in July 2021 and it was very hot most days. On the other hand this made the views and scenery even more spectacular. Annette was particularly helpful in providing transport herself when alternative accommodation was required due to our hotel in Kettlewell having to close unexpectedly.. The itinerary that was planned around our ability fitted our needs perfectly. We also recommended Brigantes to quite a few walkers we met along the way.

  3. Back home and back to reality today. A friend and I finished our Dales Way walk on Sunday afternoon (4/7/2021), we had been looking forward to this walk for over a year. Our first attempt didn’t happen last September when we had to postpone due to our circumstances and covid, we was not in a bubble and had booked twin rooms – no problem for Annette who moved our booking to May this year and us changing to single rooms, it didn’t happen due to lockdown being extended!! No problem again to Annette who moved us on again, quite a lady with the customer always in mind, a real gem. Well it finally happened, and we thoroughly enjoyed it, weather brilliant for the first five days, too hot at times for us walking, then a four hour plus drenching on the sixth day and a little damp on the last day. The walk itself is beautiful, with a wide range of different views, from riverside walking to wide open views to fell views . A brilliant walk. The accommodation along the route was superb, we have a few favourites but all were excellent, and as everyone here says the luggage appeared before we did anywhere as if by magic. Thank you Brigantes this walk was well wort the wait, and your service out of this world.

  4. Have just completed the Dales Way over 7Days /8Nights as a Solo Walker. Thank you Brigantes for organising such an excellent itinerary, all my accommodation was lovely I was well looked after and my suitcase was always in my room before I arrived. I thoroughly enjoyed this my first long distance walk, the route was a delight from start to finish, I am planning to do another walk in 2022 and will be using Brigantes again.

  5. We enjoyed three days on the Dalesway going north from Ilkley. Four of us with two dogs. Brigantes organised very good accommodation and baggage transfer and all went very well. We were doing only 8 miles a day which was just right for us. We would particularly like to recognise how helpful Gordon, the Taxi Driver from Dales Cab Company, was when we needed to change our arrangements at the last minute. Will definitely book again with Brigantes when we tackle the next stages.

  6. We are a group of 4 runners who decided to run the Dales Way over 3 days to raise money for NSPCC and for the pure enjoyment. Brigantes met us at the train station on our first morning to collect our bags and made sure they were waiting for us on time each night at our accommodation and at the end of our run.Thanks so much for a very smooth and friendly service.

  7. We are used to the seamless efficiency of Brigantes, moving our bags as if by magic from one B&B to another….and on the Dales Way, as usual, we enjoyed a wonderful selection of B&Bs with individuality and character – eg the spacious suite at Daleslea in Sedbergh, the breakfast served in our room at Wainwright House in Kendal, the House Martins nesting above the window of the barn conversion at Swarthghyll Farm. Brigantes failed only to conjure up the usual sunny weather, with a downpour of rain on the first 2 days leading to a River Wharfe in spate and the path beside it inundated in places! This led to some exciting diversions: at Burnsall we were forced away from the riverside through the village, but were compensated by the discovery of a delightful 17th century school building. The Bolton Abbey ruins were deserted and romantic in the misty rain.

    The Dales Way proved to be a fine, varied route with riverside, moorland and agricultural field walking. It crossed previous walks we have done in the Pennines, giving fine views and revealing new aspects of familiar places. The walking was not too challenging, allowing us time to enjoy the birds and the birdsong – a Mistle Thrush’s mournful notes, the Blackcap’s beautiful warbling; fine old buildings – churches, mills, a Quaker meeting House, barns; the magnificent viaducts of the former Ingleton to Lowgill railway, which was built to main-line standards for express trains from Leeds to Scotland yet was relegated to minor branch-line status after the Midland Railway constructed the alternative Setttle to Carlisle route – (‘The Ingleton Branch, a lost route to Scotland’ by Robert Weston gives a good account of this). We learnt about sheep farming too: one farmer explained that he was vaccinating his ewes against Toxoplasma Abortion, another farmer told us about the unusual breed of spotted sheep in his field, another said that he needed to carry a stick to keep his tups in order.

    Brigantes is able to adapt to unexpected crises: when a holiday we had booked last year on Lady Anne’s Way was cancelled as a result of Covid lockdown, Annette was able to re-book within a few days as soon as lockdown was eased. On this holiday our Kettlewell booking at the Racehorses fell through (because the discovery of asbestos led to sudden closure of the hotel), but Annette stepped in to convey us to a splendid alternative at Amelia’s Kitchen in Halton Gill.

  8. We originally planned to walk the Dales Way in May 2020 but had to postpone till 2021. Brigantes were helpful, and flexible throughout – and they moved our bags seamlessly. We also heard quite a bit of positive feedback from the various b&b’s we stayed in.

  9. Thanks Brigantes! We walked the Dales way in the “wrong” direction, with a tent needing transport as well as bags. We camped some nights and finished at my daughter’s in Burley-in Wharfedale which is past Ilkley. Nothing was too much trouble and the bags were magically collected and delivered each day. What a brilliant service, reasonably priced too. Annette was more than helpful, even when we had to change our itinerary quite late on because of accommodation changes and the driver ‘phoned my daughter to give an estimated drop off time which was really helpful to her.
    Thanks again, we will definitely use again on other walks.

  10. We were a group of 4, planned our own itinerary and accommodation for the Dales Way walk, and used Brigantes’ service to transfer our luggage each day. It was so easy to book, and Annette was very helpful in answering any questions. We quickly got used to our luggage magically being in our rooms each evening when we arrived! It was a great service, and I will use Brigantes again if I am doing another long distance walk.

  11. Just a short note to tell you how much we enjoyed our walking holiday. Our luggage was delivered each day without any glitches and the accommodations were very nice. We especially enjoyed our stays at Daleslea in Sedbergh, Belk’s in Kettlewell and Bridge House in Kendal. Thanks for taking care of all the details – even the weather was good.

    1. Thankyou very much for arranging our walk “The Dales Way” . We were very pleased with your company from start to finish. Transfering the bags, choice of accomodation and taxi links in-between.  All went so smoothly. The walk was brilliant. We are now looking at our next long distance walk and will certainly be in touch with you to help us again. Anne Hargreaves

      Where do you live?

  12. Thank you once again for moving our baggage so efficiently every day. It was lovely to be confident that it would be there when we arrived. We had a wonderful walk with perfect weather, so we were very lucky.

  13. We’ve just finished the Dales Way and it was really great to be able to forget about our luggage but be confident it would arrive at our next accommodation before us

  14. Now back home after my walking holidays on the Dales Way, I would like to thank you for the excellent way in which you got them organised. All the accommodation that you booked for me was very nice, with all the amenities that I required. Every place was in a pleasant and convenient location, and always easy to find thanks to the precise information that you provided me with. My suitcase got picked up and delivered every day from one place to the next without a glitch. Just a pity that the weather was not always too good, but there is nothing you could have done about that! Altogether I had a great time and I hope to have the opportunity of using Brigantes’ services again in the future.

  15. Thank you Brigantes for transferring our bags so efficiently along The Dales Way. We had a great walk and loved every minute of it, our bags magically appeared at each new destination.
    We had warm welcomes at The Red Lion in Burnsall ( great family run hotel ), The George at Hubberholme ( perfectly located and great pies ), The Sportsman Inn at Cowgill ( loved the bathroom for room 4 ) and The Jolly Angler at Burneside ( accommodation was a little tired, but the warm welcome and wholesome pub food made it a good place to stop ) – but special mention must be made of the extra special welcome and fabulous comfort at Sumerhill B&B in Sedburgh.
    The route was easy to follow except the section just after crossing the mainline west coast railway – a field of cows and an electric fence sent us off course for a moment or two.
    Looking forward to another long distance footpath in the future, but only if we can have Brigantes carry our luggage once again.

  16. Let Annette Take The Strain ! All the booking done for me and my luggage carried meant I could relax and just enjoy this glorious walk. The accommodation was excellent : great hospitality at the Fox and Hounds in Starbotton, luxury at the remote Swarthghyll Farm and smart B and B’s in Ilkley (Dales View) and Sedbergh (Daleslea).
    The Trailblazer guide by Henry Stedman is excellent.

  17. Thank you for moving our luggage so efficiently along the Dales Way. It was lovely to see our luggage waiting for us at each stop and not to have to think about it at all. A wonderfully efficient service, thank you. A lovely walk and always a warm welcome wherever we stayed.

  18. Thank you to the Brigantes team. I have now used this excellent service of baggage transfer six times over the last 10 years.
    The outstanding places we stayed in were the Red Lion at Burnsall – very friendly staff, comfortable room and lovely food.
    The Kings Head Kettlewell – Good food
    The Dalesman Sedbergh – Lovely rooms and good food (this was, however, the priciest)
    Sonata Guest House Kendal – probably the best Guest House I have ever stayed in. The owners were very friendly and clearly took great pride in everything. It was an immaculate place in every way and the breakfast a delight. (I booked a taxi for our group from Grayrigg Foot into Kendal and back)
    Virginia Cottage Guest House in Bowness was also very nice with a good breakfast.

    Other places we stayed that were perfectly O.K. were – The Riverside Hotel, Ilkley (the night before setting off on The Dales Way)
    The George Inn, Hubberholme where the host, Ed, remembers everyone’s name.
    The Eagle & Child Staveley

  19. Having walked the Dales Way with my wife and friends in late June, we were really impressed by the service provided by Annette and her team. Not all walkers we met were so happy with their’s! I can only agree with other comments that it is simply not worth spoiling a lovely walk like the Dales Way by carrying a heavy pack. I have no hesitation in recommending Brigantes!

  20. We walked the Dales Way in May 2017, finishing only five days ago. We walked over six days. Brigantes were fantastic…every day our bags were at the Inn/BnB where we had booked in. Thoroughly recommend this courier service and many many thanks to Annette and her team.
    This was our first long distance walk BTW and it was great…exhausting but really good and we had some HOT weather to contend with!

  21. Just finished the walk and it was fabulous. Thank you Brigantes for making it all possible by arranging the accommodations and baggage transfer, both of which were excellent, efficient, and trouble-free.

  22. We used Brigantes on the Dales Way Walk in May this year, they were fantastic and our two cases arrived safely each day. At the price they charge it really is not worth back-packing, it makes the holiday and walk so much more enjoyable. We stayed in some fabulous places including Cambridge House in Windermere, Lakeland Hills in Burneside and Mrs Kitching in Hebden. It’s a glorious walk and not strenuous compared to some others. We even booked the sun most of the week and counted 34 different species of bird.

  23. Two of us set off to do the Dalesway with full packs intending to do a mixture of camping and B&Bing. Ilkley to Grassington was 23 degrees and completely drained us. The Foresters Arms and Brigantes to the rescue! Replaced the full packs with daypacks at The Mountaineer in Grassington and set off again. Arriived in Beckermonds relatively fresh for a pair of unfit hikers and our packs were there waiting for us. The same in Dent and again in Staveley, and as we now had our “walking legs” and energy left, carried ful load into Bowness and up to Windermere station.
    Having now experienced the Dalesway, I would definitely recommend using Brigantes as the trek is too nice to be spoiled by carrying too much and worrying about your agenda.

    1. Thank you for your lovely recommendation, we do our best to make your walking holidays an enjoyable and relaxing experience! Thanks also to The Foresters Arms in Grassington for sending you to Brigantes!

  24. Loved the dales way and Brigantes made it so easy;all we had to do was walk! the dales high way beckons next. pete and Jan fowler

    1. Thank you for your feedback, we look forward to helping you again with the Dales Highway, and hopefully many more of our walks!

  25. Hello Annette, With the aid of an ibuprofen or two, tiger balm on the old knees and a couple of walking poles each, these two old wrinklies managed to complete and enjoy the walk despite the weather throwing everything it could at us. Snow, rain, mist and soggy boggy tracks.
    Thank you to you and your team for organising the walk. It was terrific. The accommodation even better than the walk twelve or so years ago.
    When we arrived at our destination wet through, we had no problem drying out.
    Our two nights at Garsdale Head with a pick up from Sedbergh plus return gave us a day off and ride on the Settle – Carlisle railway(an added bonus)
    We had hotel upgrades and even a four poster bed with a decanter of sherry in our room on our final night at Bowness. We were very bad and didn’t heed the flood diversion notices and actually had no problems.
    Thank you again for a very pleasant and satisfying walk.
    Gordon & Cathie Wood

    1. Thank you for your lovely feedback, we are delighted you enjoyed your walk on the Dales Way, and look forward to being of assistance again in the future.

  26. Many thanks for your patience in sorting out our requirements and for the excellent and efficient baggage transfer as we did the Dales Way. It was a highly enjoyable walk and we had a really great time. We’ll be back!

    1. Thank you, John, for your comments, we are so pleased you enjoyed your walk, and look forward to booking another holiday for you in the future.

Please leave your comments