History and Culture

There are unlimited locations, events and attractions that are filled with culture or history, indeed many have both. Not least the County has a host of galleries, exhibitions and unique venues for live music and theatrical performances.  There are more than eight castles that are open for visitors and many more Stately Homes, Abbeys, Priories and famous Landscape Gardens.   If it's a rainy day there are lots of Museums too, so plenty to entertain the whole family.

Live Music and Entertainment

For a large rural County we are fortunate to have a range of venues offering a variety of live music. The stunning setting of Castle Howard annually hosts Last Night of the Proms in August with thousands of visitors enjoying the evening with picnics, many of which are quite elaboarate. There's also entertainment for the the kids with activities like Myths & Monsters, an interactive family adveture, exploring the days of Greek Mythology. Photography workshops, motor shows and polo are just some of the other events to be enjoyed around the grounds. During September there are plenty of tours to get inolved in including tours of the woods, the gardens and 18th Century landscape. There is also a photography workshop being held on 30th September. This is ideal for beginners, spending time exploring the gardens and learning more about photography. Further information can be found at Castle Howard Events.

Dalby Forest, based in the centre of the North York Moors, set the stage for the Kaiser Chiefs in 2016 and Forest Live during the summer 2017. This event featured performances from Tom Jones, Clean Bandit, Olly Murs, Craig David, Rick Astley and Elbow. With other activities like a Gruffalo hunt, stargazing and Go Ape tree top adventures there's plenty of fun for everyone. Check out Dalby Forest Events for further details. 

In recent years the Scarborough Open Air Theatre hosted some top bands and musicians with artists including Bryan Adams, Simply Red, Status Quo and Will Young. This continues into 2017 with performances from the likes of The Beach Boys, The Charlatans, The Jacksons, Michael Ball and Alfie Boe, UB40, George Benson and Jess Glynne. Further information can be found at Open Air Theatre Events.


The Georgian Theatre Royal in Richmond is Britain's oldest working theatre in its original form. Visiting the Theatre for a performance is a must to experience this quaint and intimate venue that has been carefully restored in recent years. Visit Georgian Theatre Events for further details. Harrogate Theatres include the Harrogate Theatre itself, Royal Hall and Harrogate International Centre, providing a variety of theatre and entertainment to suit all tastes. There is also the infamous Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough with past performances including Shakespeare's Hamlet, Henceforward (Alan Ayckbourn), Consuming Passions (Alan Ayckbourn), The World Goes Round (Lotte Wakeham), The National Joke (Henry Bell) and the stunning guitar playing of Eduardo Niebla.October brings musical performances including Marvellous Mozart and Stacey Kent and theatre performances including A Brief History of Women, You Have Been Watching and George's Marvellous Medicine. In the City of York there are several theatres including the York Theatre Royal, the Grand Opera House and York Barbican. During September and October York Barbican will host Texas,  Rob Brydon, Russell Brand, La La Land in concert and the Laugh out Loud Comedy Club.

Nights out

If you prefer to opt for lively nights out with a wide selection of bars, pubs and restaurants you'll be best heading for Harrogate, York or Scarborough where there's lots of choice and a busy atmosphere.  It you like your evenings a little quieter then the Market Towns all have a number of pubs, many of which now specialise in locally brewed ales.  Inns with dining are scattered across the County, from traditonal and remote serving tasty and simple pub grub specials, to those refurbished to have a more contemporary feel with modern dining facilities yet with traditional menus.  For special occasions and those with fine tastes there are a selection of lovely boutique hotels and award winning restaurants at different points across the County.

Art, Galleries and Museums

Nearly each and every town in the County has its own independant art and craft galleries, inspired by the stunning scenery and nature of North Yorkshire.  Larger galleries hosting National Collections of art and craft include the Mercer Art Gallery in Harrogate;   and the newly refurbished York City Art Gallery. Local National Trust Properties also host National art exhibitions including Beningbrough Hall.

Please view our video for further information about the Cultural activities in North Yorkshire;