Malham is around an hour and forty-five minutes away from Manchester, is stunning and apparently where they filmed some scenes from a Harry Potter film I've never seen.
We arrived in to Malham on a Sunday, and it was bustling with walkers, dogs and lovers of the great outdoors. It’s not a large place and more of a hamlet than a village so it’s not hard to navigate your way to Beck Hall. Probably figuring out that the car park is up the road behind the hotel is as hard as it gets. Wandering back down the road and making your way across the brook you really do appreciate how nice the English countryside can be.
At the entrance you also get a great sense of how dog friendly this hotel is going to be, there’s a 10ft High statue of a dog sat outside and we could tell already that it was going to be our cup of tea.
Check in was simple enough and we were greeted with a warm smile, a cuddle and a jar of dog treats for Boris to inhale. We were shown to our room which I always think is a more personal way to do it. The room was perfectly sized and tastefully decorated and again speaks volumes about the love of dogs, with a cardboard cut-out dogs head adorning the wall (it looked nicer than it sounds).
Beck Hall have recently refurbished a number of rooms and ours was one of those – the bathrooms have been really nicely decorated too which is always important. The beds are not too high which means it was perfect for little legs to get up and off the bed easily enough. A decent size TV and coffee making facilities are in there as well, they also provided milk in a small flask (dairy free on request) too to finish off your brew perfectly.
A quick unpack session and a sniff round the surroundings from the dog and we were off out to have a quick explore what Malham had to offer. We made it as far as the first pub… The Lister Arms, a dog friendly boozer and restaurant about 2mins away from Beck Hall.
It’s Thwaites owned so has a decent selection of ales, both local and commercial. As I was waiting at the bar I got a quick view of the food as it whizzed past on its way to a one of the packed tables. There’s a sign on the way in which states it’s the number one food choice in Malham and the food certainly looked as though it was worthy of that honour.
We had a pint of Wainwrights Golden Ale, a bottle of Peroni and a small bowl of water for the dog and we were ready for an afternoon nap!! (I have to admit that a 12hr flight that morning had contributed to my tiredness).
Once we got back to the room the comfort of the hotel came in to its own. You could just about hear other dogs enjoying their day and it certainly wasn’t enough to disturb us. The bed was extremely comfortable and we were pretty much out of it within 15 minutes…
I’d booked us in on a Dinner, Bed and Breakfast stay and arranged for a table at 8pm, which you can do quite easily online and they will send you an automated email a couple of days before with all instructions on what to do. I’d also pre-ordered a bottle of Prosecco which was brought to our room chilled and ready to be drunk whilst we got ready.
Food is served in the Secret Bistro and all dogs are allowed in the dining room too. It was nice to see a few other dogs in there when we sat down to eat and appreciate how much other dogs really are loved by their owners as much as ours! They also provide a nice little dog mat to keep them comfy from the nice stone floor.
For food I went for Chicken Wings to start and had Steak and Ale pie for main (pies are changed regularly), Carly went for the Wild Mushroom Wellington and we complimented the food with another pint of Wainwrights and a reasonably priced bottle of Rioja which did not disappoint.
I was pretty full when our friendly waiter stated that desert was included and I thought it would be rude not to try the warm chocolate brownie. It neither disappointed nor lasted long. Boris was pretty happy too as he managed to bag a few of his favourite gravy soaked chips from the table. We continued our night in the snug by the roaring fire, finishing off the smooth bottle of Spain’s finest.
The next morning we woke to the sound of the brook and the birds and a few dog barks, before heading down for breakfast. Here we were served a nice hearty breakfast (they even kindly brought Boris a sausage) before heading out on our walk. Linda who was a comforting constant at the hotel during our stay offered us some advice on where to head out to… we picked a walk up the hill and climbed the steps to the top of Malham Cove.
As we wandered out through the gates and on to the dog friendly paths we were treated to some of Yorkshire’s most spectacular scenery. We headed to the Cove and marvelled in its pleasantry before taking on the few hundred steps up the side. Boris was loving this bit and for a dog of his size he doesn’t seem to ever give up. I think I was ashamedly more out of breath than he was as we reached the top. I’m not sure if it was the view or the steps that was taking my breath away!
For lunch we wandered back down in to a peaceful Malham and went back to the Lister Arms. We shared a cheese sandwich which I paired with some warm chipolatas in mustard and a small bowl of chips. As anticipated yesterday the food was delicious and would really recommend it for it lunch or if not taking up the offer at Beck Hall.
After our lunch settled we had a wander up the hill and a walk down to the brilliantly named ‘Janet’s Foss’ which is a really picturesque waterfall and somewhat disappointingly not childish innuendo for Janet’s lady-garden. After a quick Instagram worthy selfie in front of the falls we carried on along the path and headed back full circle in to Malham.
Food that evening was a nice change from previously consumed country style food. I had Kerali Chicken Curry and Carly had the largest portion of fish and chips I’d seen for a while. The food was even better than the night before and though I was worried about eating it all we managed to get through starter, main and the desert pretty easily as it was so good.
We had ordered another bottle of the Red from the night before and again retired to the comfort of the snug to finish off our evening. There is also a well-stocked honesty bar in there too so you don’t go without.
At breakfast we spoke to a lady who was lucky enough to be staying there for a full week with her dog and we could easily of done the same but after a nice two days out in the countryside and feeling quite well rested we reluctantly packed up and got ready to go home.
To say that it’s only an hour and forty-five away from Manchester it really does beg the question why we don’t do this more often but I’m sure it will be the first of many visits.
Rates at Beck Hall start at £80 per night.
Beck Hall, Cove Road, Malham, Near Skipton, BD23 4DJ