Haworth is a small village in Yorkshire, a great place to visit on a Sunday day out. It’s easy to get to by car but also public transport. From Leeds you get the train to Keighley where you change to the local Bronte bus service which runs regularly. If you visit during peak time (May-August and weekends) there’s the option of getting on the steam train running from Keighley. It’s one reason alone to visit (it goes past the smallest train station in the UK) but once you reach Haworth, here are three things you definitely should do.
Quaint Independent Shops and Cafes
Haworth only has one street worth visiting really – Main Street – leading up to the Brontë Museum from the Central Park. It’s a cute little cobbled Street with small brick buildings housing B&Bs, cafes, pubs and independent shops. If you’re looking for local souvenirs, personalised gifts, homemade soaps this is the place to go. I absolutely adore The Cabinet of Curiosities. Like the shop window, the store is full of craniums, skeletons and other oddities.
The cafes have everything from healthy options to indulgent cakes. We stopped at The Hawthorn which used to be a watch shop during the Brontë era. They serve food in the restaurant and drinks and cakes in the front room. At busy times you’re lucky to get a seat at one of the few tables so avoid peak time.
The main reason why people visit Haworth is to explore the Brontë family home which has been turned into a museum. Opposite the home is the village church where the father of the family worked as a priest. It’s interesting walking around in the museum, watching reconstructions of the rooms where the sisters wrote their novels in. It’s fascinating to think that such famous novels were written in a small place like Haworth and at the time it was. If you’re a Brontë fan, definitely visit their museum. I learnt a lot about the novels and family during my visit.
The Brontë Waterfalls and Top Withens
Behind the church, there’s a small patch leading outside of Haworth and on to the moors. We weren’t dressed for a longer walk so we’re satisfied just stepping up on the moors but another half an hour or so walk will lead you to the Brontë Waterfalls. From there, walking another half an hour and you’ll reach Top Withens. This is a ruined farmhouse which is said to be the inspiration to the Earnshaw family house in Wuthering Heights. There are clear signs marked out for easy access. They even have Japanese text on them so I assume the Japanese love the Bronte novels.
I want to go back and experience the Brontë Trail when the heather is in bloom. At this time of year on the moors I can imagine the despair that the novels portrait but I think it would be a lot prettier with purple booms.
Have you been to Haworth? Are there any similar villages you recommend I visit, or similar walks to the Brontë Trail?