Flights to Ripon
Historically speaking, Ripon is the oldest city in England having been founded more than 1,300 years ago. Ironically, even with such an age to its name, Ripon remains one of the smallest cities in England, and it’s located in the county of North Yorkshire in north east England.
There is no airport in Ripon itself, but the Leeds Bradford International Airport (airport code: LBA) is easily accessed by bus. Flights to Ripon from South Africa with KLM have one connection in Amsterdam, but all other airlines have 2 stops in their flights. BMI goes through London and Belfast, and British Airways makes transfers in London and Aberdeen. You can also go a different way on a flight to Ripon with Lufthansa, with connections in Munich and Brussels.
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The Tourist Attractions of Ripon:
Just outside of Ripon is the Studley Royal Park, where you can see the ruins of the Fountains Abbey. The area is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Though the complex is in ruins, most of the walls are intact and the beauty can still be appreciated in the archways and stonework. It was built in 1132, and then abandoned in 1539 during the Dissolution of the Monasteries. The grounds are open 7 days a week between 10am and 4pm and there is an admission cost.
The original church to sit on this site was built in 672, but the current building has been under construction in some form since 1160. The last finishing parts were erected in 1604. The architecture and style of Ripon Cathedral is Anglo-Saxon and Gothic, but without the tall spires that some English cathedrals have. It’s open daily from before the first service until around 6:30pm. Be respectful of any services or worship going on while you tour the cathedral.
If the kids are looking for something a bit more exciting than old English ruins, plan to visit the Lightwater Valley theme park. It’s a full amusement park with roller coasters and several other thrill rides along with rides that are suitable for smaller children. There is a Bird of Prey centre where you can see live owls, falcons and eagles. Ticket prices are based on height not age, and the park is open mainly for the summer months, but also for weekends during the spring and autumn then closed between November and February.
Many cities showcase restored homes where you can see how the wealthy once lived, but the Workhouse Museum in Ripon shows how the poor lived in the 1800s. You can tour the old poorhouse, and see the common rooms as well as the individual rooms that the labourers lived in. There are two other similar museums in Ripon that showcase the history of law and order: the Prison and Police Museum, and the Courthouse Museum. You can save some of the admission fee if you get a pass to all three.
When Should You Visit?:
The summers in Ripon aren’t that hot but will be comfortably warm for most of the season. July and August are the hottest, with average highs around 20C (68F); perfect weather for sight-seeing without a jacket. Spring and autumn are also pleasant, but cooler. Between November and February, it’s colder, though usually above freezing.