Dales Countryside Museum tells the fascinating story of the Yorkshire Dales and the people who have lived and worked here and shaped the landscape for thousands of years.

With loads of fun and interesting things for visitors of all ages to see and do, the Museum offers the chance to discover what is so unique about the Yorkshire Dales and make your visit to the area really special.


Upcoming events

Dark Skies - Open room for Dark Skies Crafts

Our craft room will be open for the children to come along and create beautiful Dark Skies crafts, art work and master pieces. Included in museum admission.

Dark Skies - telescope making, arts and crafts

Drop in to the Dales Countryside Museum and our Visitor Centres over the Dark Skies festival and join in our arts and craft activities.  Activities will be taking place through out the day, so just pop in at a time to suit you, stay for half an hour or all day.
  • Make your own working telescope
  • Create Pom Pom Planets
  • Draw swirling galaxies and sparkling stars
  • Craft shadow planets and animals
Monday 25th February - Malham Visitor Centre Tuesday 26th February – Dales Countryside Museum, Hawes Thursday 28th February -  Malham Visitor Centre These events are part of the Dark Skies Festival which runs from 15th February and 3rd March 2019

Dark Skies 2019 - glow in the Dark Crafts

This event is to give the children an opportunity to make different weaved crafts using reflective and glow in the dark materials. The children will weave a space mat and create a galaxy to take home. Included in museum admission.  
More events


Colour and Comfort – a collaborative exhibition with the Quilters Guild exploring rural quilts and quilting

01 February to 08 May

An exhibition 19th and 20th century rural quilts and quilted clothing from the Yorkshire Dales, including examples of frame, mosaic, applique, wholecloth, patchwork, recycled and repaired quilts. See those made for richer households alongside those created and used in traditional Dales cottages. (more…)

Shepherdess – One Woman Farm

22 May to 08 September

A tough and tender portrait of a ‘true-to-life’, born and bred shepherdess, Alison O’Neill . In a special corner of the Yorkshire Dales, there is deep gratitude and spiritual fulfilment to be found in the essential work of a Shepherdess. Documented in heartfelt photographs and personal words, this exhibition portrays the growing intimacy between a woman, her flock and her love affair with life on a small hill farm, and the intractable realities of this traditional existence.

Photographer Ian Lawson produced a book Shepherdess – One Woman Farm here



Dairy Days

12 September to 31 December

Dairying has been at the heart of the Wensleydale economy since records began and still thrives today.This exhibition is the culmination of a two year project to research and share the story of this unbroken thread. The local community has shared personal stories and collections helping to bring the wonderful historic dairying artefacts and archive photographs in the Museum collection to life. Supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

More exhibitions