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Science & Nature Events

With nearly half the Harrogate District designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) it won’t surprise you that wildlife is everywhere when you visit Harrogate, Ripon and Nidderdale.

A Natural Haven

What better to way to learn about and experience the natural world than to be guided by experts who can take you right to the best places to see remarkable species?  Wetland bird reserves and peat moorlands guarantee a range of waders and while curlew and oyster catchers are reliable regulars, the passing migrations means a number of other rarities are frequently spotted.

Natural Science

The events organised across our beautiful and rural area do not just cover nature, but also the scientific topics of the natural world, including talks on the science and evolution of the landscape and its moorlands.

Dark Sky Events

Through the winter months there are frequent events offering visitors a greater understanding of the sky at night, and what to look out for. 

The Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty has fantastically dark skies that truly showcase the majesty of the night sky. 

A number of events take place through the year that includes talks and photography and knowledgeable experts who can introduce you to the sky.

Natural Wonder

With a number of ancient woods, many of which are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), the flora and habitats to be seen are wonderful.  In May, carpets of bluebells turn the woodland floor into a carpet of vivid blue, and a number of walks and events are held to allow people to enjoy this spectacular sight without worrying about finding the right wood at the right time.

Guided through Nature

Guided nature walks reveal the range of birds around the woods or moors with local experts sparing you the pressure of hastily flicking through the bird book to identify that bunting or plover. 

Instead you can enjoy the spectacle as sky larks and northern lapwings dive and swoop above you.  Alternatively the crueller side of nature can be glimpsed as peregrine falcons, buzzards and kites search for carrion and prey.

While you may find deer tracks in many of the local woods only those up early, or particularly lucky will see them out in the woods.  Deer walk events allow you to glimpse these graceful creatures up close, learn about how the herds are cared for and in autumn, witness the savage clash as the antlered male’s battle for supremacy.

Events are added to the pages all the time so if you’re visiting in the future be sure to check back soon.

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Number of items: 8

Ongoing Events

  1. Music and Lights

    Add Music and Lights to your Itinerary

    Type

    Traditional

    Ripon

    Here at Fountains we're getting into the Christmas spirit and have just the thing to enjoy on a chilly winter weekend: glowing lights, festive music and delicious food and drink. Come and join us!

    Dates

    From:
    15 Dec 2018 To 16 Dec 2018
    From:
    22 Dec 2018 To 23 Dec 2018
  2. On the hoof

    Add On the hoof to your Itinerary

    Type

    Traditional

    Ripon

    Trot along to St Mary's Church to watch the wild deer munching through their winter feed. Can you spot the difference between the Red, Sika and Fallow deer? Our deer ranger will give you some pointers and you'll learn about their job managing the wild herd. Meet outside St Mary’s Church in the deer...

    Dates

    From:
    15 Dec 2018 To 16 Dec 2018
  3. Boxing Day Pilgrimage

    Add Boxing Day Pilgrimage to your Itinerary

    Type

    Traditional

    Ripon

    The service begins in Ripon Cathedral at 9.30am and the pilgrimage makes its way to the abbey where the service continues from approx. 12 noon.

    On a cold day in 1132, thirteen monks walked from Ripon to a completely deserted valley by the River Skell. There they started their own community...

    Dates

    From:
    26 Dec 2018 To 26 Dec 2018
  4. Cryptic creatures - a talk by the Wild Watch

    Add Cryptic creatures - a talk by the Wild Watch to your Itinerary

    Type

    Wildlife/Nature

    Pateley Bridge

    From bizarre battleships and beautiful blooms to bad-tempered buzzing, Dr Chris Hassall from the University of Leeds will speak about how animals and plants have evolved remarkable means to deceive one another and us!

    Attending this free event is sure to whet your wildlife appetite during the...

    Dates

    From:
    15 Jan 2019 To 15 Jan 2019
  5. The Yorkshire Dales as a wildlife refuge? - a talk by the Wild Watch

    Add The Yorkshire Dales as a wildlife refuge? - a talk by the Wild Watch to your Itinerary

    Type

    Wildlife/Nature

    Ripon

    Learn how some animals are withstanding the effects of climate change by using valley's in our local countryside. Dr Andrew Suggitt from the University of York will share his striking research with us as well as well as explain how we can help wildlife in our own gardens.

    Attending this free event...

    Dates

    From:
    12 Feb 2019 To 12 Feb 2019
  6. Fountains Hall 1930s christmas

    Add Fountains Hall 1930s christmas to your Itinerary

    Type

    Traditional

    Ripon

    Make your own paper chain or snowflake decoration, challenge your family to a game of snakes and ladders, dress up as they would have done, delve your hand into a stocking to see what you would have received on Christmas morning.

    Dates

    From:
    24 Nov 2018 To 23 Dec 2018
  7. The Nativity trail

    Add The Nativity trail to your Itinerary

    Type

    Traditional

    Ripon

    Follow the stars to discover scenes of the nativity by the abbey and in the garden. Discover wooden sculptures of the nativity scenes created by local artist, Shane Green.

    Dates

    From:
    24 Nov 2018 To 7 Jan 2019
  8. Festive Christmas Lunches

    Add Festive Christmas Lunches to your Itinerary

    Type

    Traditional

    Ripon

    Tuck into a delicious festive lunch with family, friends or colleagues this December.

    Choose from a two or three course traditional lunch menu and add tea or coffee with a mince pie for an extra treat. Make a day of it by taking a leisurely walk around the beautiful grounds and visit the shop...

    Dates

    From:
    3 Dec 2018 To 20 Jan 2019

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