Dales Countryside Museum

Dales Countryside Museum The Museum tells the fascinating story of the Yorkshire Dales and the people who have lived and worked here for thousands of years. With loads of fun and interesting things for visitors of all ages.

Need to know

Address: Hawes, DL8 3NT

Grid reference:

Opening: Open daily from 10am to 5pm, February to October, and 10am to 4.30pm, November and December. Last entry is one hour before closing. Closed Christmas Eve to Boxing Day. Weekends only 10am to 4pm in January.

01969 666210

Dales Countryside Museum

This fascinating museum, managed by the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority, tells the story of the people and landscape of the Yorkshire Dales past and present, and stimulates visitors to think about its future. Displays interpret the development of the Dales from prehistoric times to the present day. Themes include school days, home life, leisure time, religion, transport, communication and tourism, farming, local crafts and industries.

You can also explore the Dales Countryside Museum on its own dedicated website.

The Museum itself is housed in an exciting and imaginative conversion of the Hawes railway station in Wensleydale in the north of the National Park. It is designed to be fully accessible for wheelchair users and a wheelchair can be borrowed on site. The Museum has many interactive and hands-on exhibits and object handling sessions can be arranged for pre-booked groups.

See the loco, climb aboard the carriages and get crafty in our Creation Station – there are loads of things to do all round the Museum and step back in time and wonder at beautifully crafted objects like our Bronze Age spearhead and gold Viking ring or have fun on the outdoor trail – take a woodland wander, see how many animals you can find and invent your own stories in our special storytelling chair!

The Museum is FREE for children and also offers a range of educational activities.

As well as the museum there is a networked tourist information centre, a shop and Research Area in the centre and inspiring galleries showcasing objects from the weird to the wonderful. There is also a programme of special exhibitions that offer something new to see, and a selection of exciting events, activities, workshops and demonstrations that run throughout the year; giving you the chance to roll up your sleeves and try something different! There is a range of facilities for hire including a meeting and training room.

Firebox Cafe, situated within the National Park Centre, is a contemporary coffee shop with high quality light refreshments made, where possible, from ingredients sourced from local suppliers based in the Yorkshire Dales. It is a perfect place to refuel, recharge and relax. Dogs are very welcome in the outside area. In addition the cafe is an integrated part of Stage 1 Cycles, a cycling hub, offering affordable hire, repairs and supported tours. 

How to find the Museum

The Dales Countryside Museum is housed in the old railway station at Hawes, just off the main A684 in Wensleydale. Its grid reference for sat nav is SD 875 899.

To help protect the special qualities of the National Park, we would ask visitors to consider using public transport to visit the Museum.