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Find your perfect hot chocolate on a winter walk

Now is the perfect time of year to wrap up warm and head out into the countryside for some fresh air and exercise on an invigorating winter walk. As you head across frozen fields and pass frosty hedgerows, we know you will be dreaming of warming up in a cosy café with a welcomed mug of something hot.

As nothing beats a mug of hot chocolate on a cold, winter’s day, here are some suggestions for where to find scrumptious hot chocolate in the Harrogate district.

Ben Hall hot choc

Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens

Located on the outskirts of Harrogate, Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens has eight acres of beautiful gardens to walk around. Stroll through the walled garden, formal gardens and sweeping lawns and see carpets of snowdrops and yellow winter aconites which bloom in late winter.

Three hundred and seventy acres of parkland offer a longer walk along the River Ouse. After spending a couple of hours exploring, it’s time to warm up so head up to the Walled Garden restaurant for a warming cup of hot chocolate and a slice of cake. Or if you prefer, take away and drink while you continue to wander.

Beningbrough - National Trust
Bettys Medium

Bettys Harlow Carr

Enjoy a luxurious cup of hot chocolate at Bettys Harlow Carr, made with delicious Swiss chocolate sauce, hot milk and topped with fresh whipped cream and chocolate flakes, or add rum for an even more warming drink.

Follow this with a walk around the 58 acres of neighbouring RHS Garden Harlow Carr taking in the Winter Walk, Streamside and Woodland areas.

Bettys, at Harlow Carr

Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden

Start your day with a take-out hot chocolate from the Visitor Centre restaurant before starting your walk down to the Abbey ruins. Explore the beautiful Georgian water gardens with their follies, temples, ponds and canals plus lawns dotted with statues.

Fountains Charlotte Gale

Extend your walk around the estate on the Seven Bridges walk or continue to explore the deer park where you can spot herds of red, fallow and sika deer. From here, head back to St Mary’s Church and the car park where you can stop at the Studley Royal tea-room for another warming drink before making your way back to the Abbey ruins.

Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal Water Garden
Bivouac Hot Choc

Swinton Bivouac

Part of the Swinton Estate, the Swinton Bivouac is close to the mysterious Druid’s Temple. A short walk from the Café Bistro, you are met with a Neolithic-style structure of standing stones.

Sit and enjoy the view of Leighton Reservoir before making your way back to the Café Bistro for an Ultimate Hot Chocolate piled high with a swirl of whipped cream and marshmallows. Settle down by the log burner for that extra cosy feeling.

Swinton Bivouac Café Bistro
Fodder Hot Chocolate Medium

Fodder Farm Shop and Café

Situated on the southern outskirts of Harrogate, Fodder Farm Shop and Café is surrounded by the wide expanse of the Great Yorkshire Showground. The area is full of permissive footpaths to walk, jog and exercise – why not bring along the dog too?

You can walk underneath the imposing stone arches of the disused viaduct and pick up the Harrogate Ringway. Looping back around on the footpath takes you to Fodder Farm Shop and Café where you can treat yourself to an orange or mint hot chocolate from the café or a take-out luxury hot chocolate from Fodder on the Hoof situated by the farm shop entrance.

Fodder - Farm Shop and Café

Starling Independent Bar Café Kitchen

Even in the heart of Harrogate, there are plenty of open spaces to stroll around before heading to Starling Independent Bar Café Kitchen for a warming hot chocolate where a smaller version is available for the little ones.

Starling Medium

A short walk away is the 200 acres of open parkland called The Stray. In February, the Stray is carpeted with stunning displays of thousands of crocuses in shades of purple and white. These are followed by the daffodils in March and the cherry blossoms at the end of April and into May. Further away you can also explore the 17 acres of formal gardens and pinewoods that make up the Grade II listed Valley Gardens.

Starling Independent Bar Café Kitchen

To find out where else you can treat yourself to a hot chocolate, see our food and drink pages and don’t forget to tag us in to your hot chocolate photos using #MyHarrogate

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