10 market towns in North Yorkshire

Malton Saturday Market by Nick Fletcher

Malton Saturday Market by Nick Fletcher - Credit: Archant

Yorkshire is full of picturesque and vibrant market towns, so we’ve chosen ten of our favourites giving you our top tourist tips.

Easingwold by Mike Kipling/Alamy

Easingwold by Mike Kipling/Alamy - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Easingwold is a small market town located in Hambleton district, in the centre of North Yorkshire. It is approximately 12 miles from York and 8 miles from Boroughbridge.

WHY WE LOVE IT Easingwold is surrounded by picturesque countryside perfect for country walking as well as many charming villages which truly portray original and ‘unspoilt’ Yorkshire. Its central location in North Yorkshire means it has easy links to York and other major cities in the North. Easingwold is also putting itself on the map in the culinary world and has become a bit of a food lover’s paradise in recent times. The town is full of local farm shops and award winning delis in almost every part of the town. Teahee! tearoom is located in the heart of the town in the central Market Place and was even named one of the best in England by The Times.

MARKET DAYS Easingwold market is located in the Market Square and held every Friday, with a special Farmer Market being held on the third Wednesday of every month.

Helmsley Market Square by Joan Russell

Helmsley Market Square by Joan Russell - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Helmsley is situated in the Ryedale district of North Yorkshire, part of the North Riding of Yorkshire. It is situated on the River Rye on the A170 road and is close to the towns Thirsk and Pickering.

WHY WE LOVE IT Helmsley is full of Yorkshire history, character and stunning architecture. The towns rich history dates back to 3,000 BC and you can discover more about the history by visiting some of the Norman castle ruins and ancient oak trees which date back to this time. You can also unlock nine hundred years of life at the stunning Helmsley Castle which is a must see attractions. The bustling market square is packed full of specialist shops, quaint shops and of course some cosy tea rooms and cafes. It comes as no surprise that Helmsley won the market town category in the Great British High Street awards.

MARKET DAYS Helmsley market is held every Friday, located in the centre of the town in the Market Square.

Knaresborough by John Dobson

Knaresborough by John Dobson - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Knaresborough is an historic market town in the North Yorkshire borough of Harrogate. It is located on the River Nidd and is 4 miles away from the centre of Harrogate.

WHY WE LOVE IT Knaresborough’s untouched medieval streets and picturesque setting make it a truly special place to visit as the town is perched on cliffs above the River Nidd. The Knaresborough viaduct is set in a rocky gorge and you can take a scenic stroll along the riverside or even take to the water and row a boat under the viaduct’s soaring arches. Nidd gorge is nestled in between Harrogate and Knaresborough and is the perfect place to spend an afternoon exploring. Knaresborough also has its own castle and museum where you can learn about the town’s medieval history.

MARKET DAYS Every Wednesday in Knaresborough is market day and is held in the Market Square in the centre of town.

Market Place Leyburn Photo:Alamy

Market Place Leyburn Photo:Alamy - Credit: Archant

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WHERE IS IT? Leyburn is a small market town located in the Richmondshire district of North Yorkshire, located above the northern bank of the River Ure in Wensleydale. The nearest towns to Leyburn are Richmond, Hawes and Bedale.

WHY WE LOVE IT Leyburn is home to some of the best walking and cycling country routes and is a perfect all year round destination for exploring, hiking, cycling and site-seeing. A visit to Leyburn wouldn’t be complete without a walk along Leyburn Shawl which showcases stunning views of Wensleydale and the Coverdale Fells. The Wensleydale Railway ride starts in Leyburn town at the train station and explores the journey to Redmire. Leyburn also has a vibrant shopping scene with plenty of high quality independent retailers stocking everything from food to fashion.

MARKET DAYS Leyburn’s market days are every Friday in the market square, with a special Farmers market being held on the third Saturday of each month.

Malton Market Place by Nick Fletcher

Malton Market Place by Nick Fletcher - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Malton is located in Ryedale, north of the River Derwent, on the historic boundary between the North and East Ridings of Yorkshire. The closest towns to Malton include Thornton Dale and Pickering.

WHY WE LOVE IT In recent years Malton has become famous for being a top foodie destination as it hosts an annual food festival and a monthly food market. It has been called ‘Yorkshire’s Food Capital’, has its own cookery school, and even has an array of their very own ‘Made in Malton’ artisan food products. There is a huge selection of top quality eateries to sample some of Malton’s culinary delights like The Talbot, The Yard and Whole Hogg Farm Shop and Tearoom. For something non-food related, take the family for a thrill filled afternoon at Flamingo Land or relax at family run Wolds Way Lavender.

MARKET DAYS Malton’s market day is every Saturday and there is also a special Malton Food market held every second Saturday of the month, which is said to be one of the best in Yorkshire.

Masham by Joan Russell

Masham by Joan Russell - Credit: Joan Russell, Joan Russell


WHERE IS IT? Masham is a small market town in the Harrogate district of North Yorkshire. It is located on the western bank of the River Ure in Wensleydale and is close to Harrogate and Darlington.

WHY WE LOVE IT Masham is famous for its traditional family-run breweries, steam engines and its thriving community. You can immerse the family into some adventure at the Swinton Castle’s falconry centre and have a hands on falconry experience. Masham is also home to the family run Black Sheep Brewery which has been producing Yorkshire’s much loved cask, keg and bottled beers. You can take a visit to the brewery and even sample some of the delicious beer which is the result of six family generation’s beer expertise.

MARKET DAYS Masham’s Market Square is in the centre of town and the market days are every Wednesday and Saturday.

Northallerton High Street by Kirsty Thompson

Northallerton High Street by Kirsty Thompson - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Northallerton is in the Hambleton district of North Yorkshire and is situated in between the Yorkshire Dales National Park and the North York Moors. The closest cities to Northallerton are Middlesbrough and York.

WHY WE LOVE IT Northallerton is the perfect destination for a country escape as it is set in the rich Herriot Country. The town centre, however, is a vibrant and buzzing area with many independent shops, café’s and of course traditional pubs. The variety of eateries that Northallerton is broad as you can get some traditional pub grub or visit the famous Betty’s tearoom for some Yorkshire afternoon tea. If you fancy a more adventurous visit then you can head to Thimbleby Shooting Ground for a spot of clay pigeon shooting.

MARKET DAYS The Northallerton market days are every Wednesday and Saturday and stretches along the highstreet. On the fourth Wednesday of each month there is also a special farmers market that runs.

Holy Trinity Church and Obelisk in Market Place by John Cocks

Holy Trinity Church and Obelisk in Market Place by John Cocks - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Richmond is located in the centre of the Richmondshire district in North Yorkshire, situated on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The nearest towns to Richmond are Leyburn, Bedale and Darlington.

WHY WE LOVE IT Richmond is a popular tourist destination with plenty to offer as the market town hosts its own Norman castle, Georgian architecture, cobbled streets, museums and the breathtaking views of the flowing river Swale. Richmond has fascinating history and heritage as the town was founded by the Normans in 1071 and grew up around the castle built. Today, you can visit the castle and delve into the towns historic past. Richmond has many hotels, restaurants, pubs and of course stunning scenery to keep you occupied during your visit.

MARKET DAYS Richmond’s outdoor market runs every Saturday all year round, with a special farmers market joining on the third Saturday of each month.

Skipton by Robert J. Duck

Skipton by Robert J. Duck - Credit: Archant


WHERE IS IT? Skipton is located in the Craven District of North Yorkshire, at the southern edge of the Yorkshire Dales. Skipton is on the A59 making it easily accessible for those travelling from the North West and North and West Yorkshire..

WHY WE LOVE IT Skipton is known as the ‘Gateway to the Dales’ and is a popular stop off point for those travelling north towards the national park. The numerous shops make it a useful place for provisions if your trip to the Dales involves staying in the great outdoors. You can take a walk around Skipton Castle and surrounding woods as well as the Leeds-Liverpool canal that runs through the town.

MARKET DAYS Skipton market is located on the High Street in centre of the town, market days are Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday from 9.30am to 4.30pm, with the line-up of traders differing on each day.

Thirsk Market Place by Joan Russell

Thirsk Market Place by Joan Russell - Credit: Joan Russell, Joan Russell


WHERE IS IT? Thirsk is situated in the Hambleton district, in between the Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors.

WHY WE LOVE IT Thirsk has a charm of its own as the cobbled market squares and array of independent and unique shops make it a gem of a town to live and visit. . You can embark on some short walks through the towns traditional cobbled streets or set your sights further afield and explore pretty villages on the Hambleton Hills. Thirsk Racecourse also makes for a perfect day out by enjoying some exciting horseracing in a picturesque setting as they have a selection of fixtures throughout April to September each year.

MARKET DAYS The Thirsk market days are every Monday and Saturday each week, throughout the year.

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