Charlotte Woods, Music and Education Manager for Harrogate International Festivals tells us about her favourite things around the district.
With so much incredible scenery on our doorstep, my favourite way to explore is on my bike. A keen cyclist, I regularly cycle from Leeds to Harrogate, passing through Pool, Otley, Leathley, Beckwithshaw, to name a few.
Another firm favourite is the riverside ride from Harrogate to Ripley, with a compulsory ice cream stop off of course. When the weather isn’t our friend I can be found sweating away with Go Revolution who keep me pumped with their ace tunes.
For a more sedate weekend activity I love to walk around Swinsty and Fewston reservoir. It’s a must see for visitors, not only because of the cracking afternoon tea served at the Timble Inn. During the week, to take a break from the HIF HQ madness, a daily stroll in the Valley Gardens is a must.
We all remember the magical fire gardens brought to the town by Cie Carabosse.
Food has already snuck in which is no surprise for a huge foodie.
My team know me well enough that on a busy and stressful day the way to my heart is a huge slice of peanut butter chocolate cake from Baltzersens. Those guys really know how to bake.
The shares HIF must have in brownies, cinnamon swirls, avocado and coffee is not worth thinking about.
My brother follows them from afar and when he comes up for our Spiegeltent Festival this weekend it will be his first go to, along with catching our DJ set with Graeme Park, Silent Disco and the fabulous singer, songwriter and cellist Ayanna Witter-Johnson in the tent.
Growing up on a horticultural nursery hasn’t given me the green fingers I’d hoped for, I struggle to keep even a basil plant going.
That said, I will always appreciate lush green gardens and the opportunity to pretend I can tell the difference between one variety of clematis against another.
For this, RHS Garden Harlow Carr is just the place.
To top it off I get to work there each summer as we bring Oddsocks Productions to town, this year with a sci-fi adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The perfect setting for an outdoor show with a jug of Pimms and a scotch egg or two.
With fast paced modern life, we all need to make a conscious effort to take some time out.
The most mindful spot of all in Harrogate has got to be St Wilfrid’s Church and it looks even more spectacular by candelight. A summer festival highlight for me will be watching violinist Rachel Podger and vocal ensemble VOCES8 perform our Concert by Candlelight in this magical setting.