Usha Gap

UK England North East England North Yorkshire Hawes

  • Laundry
  • Campfires allowed
  • Dogs welcome
  • Groups welcome
  • Short walk to pub
  • Good walks nearby
Back-to-basics camping on a Yorkshire Dales farm, with hospitable owners, stunning views and a magical riverside setting

Ahhh, the Yorkshire Dales – "God's Own Country", as any stout-headed, dyed in the wool Yorkshireman will tell you. For those of us not privileged enough to have visited this fabled corner of the country, such ardent civic pride can seem a little hifalutin. That is until you've laid eyes upon the acres of lush, undulating fields, patchworked by miles of drystone walls, and gently flowing brooks – then you'll see they really do have a point.

Deep in the heart of this pastoral paradise lies the chocolate-box Swaledale village of Muker, home of Usha Gap. The Metcalfe family have been farming these lands for centuries, with today's farm having been acquired by present owner Philip's father in the 1930s. More than 70 years later, the 260 hectares now host a prize herd of Swaledale sheep, Limousin Cross sucklers cattle, and some of the UK's luckiest campers.

For those seeking a traditional Dales camping experience, Usha Gap is pitch-up perfection. Philip, along with wife Louise and their two sons Ben and James, are hospitality personified. Facilities are basic, but then you haven't come here for a ayvuredic therapy tent and wood-fired saunas. In fact, you won't even get a phone signal. And as for Wi-Fi... ha! But who needs the fripperies of modern media when you've got the tranquil River Swale flowing gently beside your tent?

It has to be said, Usha Gap really is one of the most picturesque campsites in the country. This being the northernmost of Dales, the views are stunning; with the vista from Upper Swaledale, over bucolic hay meadows, 18th century barns, and animals grazing lazily in the pastures below, utterly idyllic. The site is also fantastically located to some of northern England's greatest walks – the Pennine Way and the Coast to Coast being the most well-known (not to mention, epic). For something a little more achievable (if vertical), the heather-scattered summit of Kisdon Hill offers wonderfully expansive views over Swinner Gill and the Buttertubs Pass. Enjoy the silence.



Basic toilets and showers (20p for 3-4 minutes), drinking water tap plus a washing up area and a dryer. No open campfires or barbecues permitted (this is a National Park remember). Fire pits for rent and logs for sale (£5.00 a bag) and a bucket of kindling and newspaper for £1.00.

Suitable For

Tents, campervans, caravans, dogs – yes. Large groups by prior arrangement.


In case you haven't guessed from all the sheep, the region is renowned for it's wool prooduction. Swaledale Woolens (01748 886 251) in Muker is your one-stop-shop for fleeces and sweaters. Over the hill in Hawes, the Wensleydale Creamery (01969 667 664) has a visitors centre and restaurant for all you cheese connoisseurs. For the litt'luns, The Forbidden Corner (01969 640 638) in Middleham is an eccentric labyrinth of tunnels, follies, sculptures and secret gardens. Further afield near Leyburn, Bolton Castle (01969 623 981) is one of England's best preserved fortresses, with regular entertainment and re-enactment battles hosted. North Yorks biggest town, Richmond, also boasts it's own magnificent medieval ruin (01748 822 493). In a region with no shortage of natural wonders, Aysgarth Falls and White Scar Caves take some beating. 

Food & Drink

The Farmers Arms (01748 886 297) in Muker is a cracking little traditional dales pub, complete with stone-flagged floor and roaring fireplace. With a selection of local cask ales and mammoth, filled Yorkshire puddings, it's perfect for drying out after a rainy day's rambling on the fells. The Muker Village Teashop and Stores (01748 886 409) is the spot to go to for afternoon tea (with the obligatory scone, naturally). On Friday evenings, the famous Ramsey's Mobile Fish and Chip Van arrives in Muker just after 7.30pm. Be there prompt to beat the queues. Further afield, the Kearton Country Hotel (01748 886277) in Thwaite serves up imaginative cuisine and boasts a lovely beer garden. No visit to the northern Dales would be complete without a visit to the Tan Hill Inn (01833 628 246) – Britain's highest inn. At 1,732ft above sea level, the photo opportunity alone is worth the visit. Be sure to sample some of Swaledale's eponymous cheese before you leave. See the Swaledale Cheese Company (01748 824 932) in Richmond for all your dairy-based souvenirs.

Opening Times

All year.

The Owner Says

A warm welcome is assured to you on this tranquil, clean, family run campsite...

The campsite is situated half a mile between the village's of Muker and Thwaite in the beautiful valley of Swaledale.

The campsite is run by Philip and Louise Metcalfe and their two sons; Ben and James. The campsite is set on Usha Gap Farm, which is a working farm, specialising in Sheep and Beef.

The campsite is divided into two, our small field is next to a running beck, and the larger field is situated next to the farm with a view of Kisdon hill.

The campsite is surrounded by magnificent views of the valleys and hills. The Pennine Way and the Coast to Coast walk pass near by, and there are plenty more walks for you to enjoy.

In April 2015 we finished our new Toilet and Shower block. Including 8 Showers, 7 Toilets, 3 Urinals, 12 wash basins, Hair dryer, shaving point. Washing up area with 4 sinks and drainers and a Fridge Freezer. Small  Drying room and washing machine is available.  Information area with seating, board games, books and magazines that you can borrow.
All under floor heating, heated with our new Bio Mass wood chip boiler.


Contact Usha Gap, Usha Gap Campsite, Muker, Richmond, North Yorkshire DL11 6DW

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