The 5 Best Things to in The Ribble Valley

The Ribble Valley is home to some great things to do and there’s plenty to keep you entertained with some cracking days out to be had. We’ve done the hard work for you and come up with a list of the best things to do in the Ribble Valley so read on and get inspired for your next big day out in the Ribble Valley!

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Pendle Hill

Pendle HillThe mighty Pendle Hill can be seen throughout the Ribble Valley with its distinctive shape dominating the local skyline. Pendle Hill is one of the best days out in the Ribble Valley with the 5-mile walk having the perfect mix of challenge, leisure, and scenery to make an ideal adventure for the whole family!

We recommend beginning your hike from the village of Barley where there is ample parking available. You can then make your way up the gradual slope past the Ogden Reservoirs where the stunning views begin with a great outlook over the water as you make the ascent. The scenery only gets better as you continue your adventure up onto the moors where you will soon reach the summit. Here you really gain an appreciation of the scale of the Pendle Hill as you tower above everything in sight with stunning views over both the Ribble and Pendle Valleys.

To begin your descent, take the steep steps down the face of the hill, and be sure to watch your footing! After this, you have the more leisurely task of following the riverside path back to Barley. When back in Barley, why not stop off for a well-deserved drink and a bite to eat at the popular pubs of Barley which include the Barley Mow and the Pendle Inn before heading back home.

Find the link to the route here

Gisburn Forest

Man riding mountain bike down hillGisburn Forest offers one of the best mountain biking trails in the North of England with runs and routes perfect for all skill levels. Gisburn forest gives riders the choice of colour-coded runs ranging from easy to severe with the forest even offering bike park runs for those wanting to push their skills to the limit. This makes Gisburn Forest the perfect spot to take the kids out for a ride or put your ability to the test with some more challenging runs. They even offer bike hire if you’re new to the sport and just want to try it out!

If biking’s not your thing, Gisburn Forest also offers bridleways and footpaths for you to walk as you take in the fresh air and walk through the forest as you enjoy the scenic reservoir and streams. Once you’ve taken in all the forest has to offer, why not take a break and enjoy a bite to eat at the onsite café or at one of the picnic spots available.

The only thing you have to pay for at Gisburn Forest is the parking so you and the family can enjoy a full day out in the outdoors for only £4!

Find the biking and walking trails here

Clitheroe Castle

Clitheroe CastleOverlooking the town of Clitheroe is Clitheroe Castle, which is a Grade I listed building, built in the 12th century by Robert de Lacy. The castle has witnessed some of Britain’s most important historical events having been used during the War of the Roses and the English Civil War. The castle was privately owned until 1920 when it was then sold to the local council to establish a memorial to the First World War which you can go and visit today.

More recently the castle has become a popular spot for families with the grand building and its grounds offering plenty to see and do! The land in the heart of the town is home to a museum, playground, maze, and a café, as well as plenty of green space and gardens to chill out or enjoy a picnic.

The museum offers families a trip back in time with their exhibits showcasing the castle's ancient history, giving you plenty to learn from the many different eras and events the castle has laid witness to. The museum is open daily from 11am to 4pm with the last entry at 3:20pm, admission costs £4.70 for adults with concessions for various groups and under 18s can visit for free.

Find out more information about the museum here

Whalley Abbey

Rosary with cross laying on a bible bookWhalley Abbey is a former Cistercian abbey that was closed in 1537 as part of Henry VII’s dissolution of the monasteries. The monastery grounds were then sold in 1553 and a large house was later built on the site after the monastery buildings were pulled down.

Today Whalley Abbey is home to the ruins of the once-great monastery as well as the large house that was built on the land. This large house now acts as bed and breakfast guest accommodation as well as a conference house, giving guests the rare opportunity to stay over or host an event within the grounds of a medieval monastery.

For a day out, why not simply have a walk around the ruins and take in the forgotten history of the Catholic Monks. As well as this there is also a café available on-site, open daily from 10am - 4:30pm, which makes the perfect spot to stop off for refreshments following a day of exploring.

Bowland Wild Boar Park

pigletsBowland Wild Boar Park within the Forest of Bowland offers the perfect day out with the kids! Get back to nature and take part in a wildlife walk as you explore the forest and the River Hodder, keeping an eye out for all the wildlife there is on offer. Also, be sure to check out the wide range of animal breeds they have in the park which include boar, deer, ostrich, meerkats, donkeys, sheep, cattle and many more.

There are many activities and events which take place at Bowland Wild Boar Park with chick holding, animal petting, lamb feeding, barrel rides, tank driving and tractor and trailer rides, all on offer at the park. With all of this going on it will be hard to not keep you and the family entertained for the day and to top it all off you’ll come home feeling closer to nature!

If you’re not local, you can even stay over at the park with camping, camping pods and holiday lodges available for those to stay at and further explore the Forest of Bowland. Prices for the park are £8 per person with options for family and season tickets available, so get booked in at the park for a truly wild day out!



Wherever you end up and whatever you end up doing we hope you have a great time out enjoying the Ribble Valley!