Reeth sits at the junction of Arkengarthdale and Swaledale, and despite its size has the feel of a small town. Reeth is dominated by it's sloping village green, which retains its picturesque nature despite having the main road through Wensleydale cutting diagonally across it.
The village sits on the lower slopes of Calver Hill, which reaches a peak of 487/ 1,590ft and separates the two valleys. Reeth actually comes closest to Arkle Beck, which runs along its eastern edge, and is separated from the Swale by a band of fields. The view is dominated by Fremington Edge, on the far side of the Beck, which gains 800ft of altitude in half a mile.
At its peak Reeth had a population of 1,300, nearly four times its current level. The village owed its prosperity to a market granted in 1695, and to the hand-weaving and lead mining industries. The village still holds an annual agricultural show, in late August or September.