Tan Hill Inn – The highest pub in Britain

The Tan Hill Inn, Yorkshire Dales

The Tan Hill Inn, Yorkshire Dales

At 1732 feet above sea level, The Tan Hill Inn is Britain’s highest pub.

That makes it an unusual place. The friendly staff however, make Tan Hill Inn a very special place.

Nestled on the edge of the moors in North Yorshire, 8 miles southwest of Brough on the A66 and 18 miles west-northwest of Richmond (both distances as the crows fly) Tan Hill is not what you would call a community pub, yet somehow, there is a pioneer spirit of community as soon as you set foot inside.

A Visit

Whether arriving from the west or east, the approach road twists and turns, following the contours of the landscape so if you want to take in the views, the best advice would be to pull over and stop for a while.

For more hardy folk, the southern approach to the in, following the route of the Pennine Way is probably the most rewarding. As you crest the rise and get that first view of the inn, it appears as an oasis amongst the wilderness.

Once inside the inn you will be greeted by the friendly staff who manage to keep smiling and joking even during the busiest of periods. Walkers can get dried off in front of the open fire whilst coiffing Tan Hill Ewe Juice, a 5% brew, Black Sheep Ale at 3.8% or the mighty Theakston’s Old Peculiar at 5.6% a.b.v. or sample one of the guest ales or a drink of your choice. For the tired walker it is a place to relax, sit and talk awhile whilst planning the next leg of your route.


When I visited several years ago, I was in the lounge area. I had ordered a mile and was waiting for it to arrive. Looking around I saw a lamb and thought ‘Wow! That looks so realistic.’ Imagine my surprise when half way through my food it got up and walked across the room. It seems the little chap had managed to sneak in

Looking West from the inn

Looking West from the inn

A stay

Of course for some, nipping in for a couple of hours will not be long enough. So there are some options to stay so you don’t have to worry about the drive home.

Accommodation in the rooms, bunkhouse or camping may be book via the inn’s website and it is a nice touch that anyone who camps there can leave knowing proceeds from their fee go towards the inn’s nominated charity. All highly recommended, particularly if you are there for one of the many live music events.

Snowbound road - impassible

The one time I didn’t make it to Tan Hill.

All in all, if you find yourself in North Yorkshire at the top end of the dales, make a bee-line for Tan Hill. It is an inn like no other where you arrive as a friend, but leave as one of the family.

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