Mother Shipton’s Cave is England’s oldest visitor attraction, open since 1630. Millions of visitors from all over the world have been enchanted by the park’s natural beauty, mesmerised by the Petrifying Well and enthralled by Mother Shipton’s amazing story. She lived some 500 years ago in the times of King Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I. She was born in a cave next to the river Nidd, delivered as lightning crackled in a violent storm. As she grew older, her prophetic visions became known and feared. She foretold the invasion and defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1488; and Samuel Pepys’ diary grimly records that Mother Shipton gave forewarning of the Great Fire of London in 1666.
Beside the Cave is the Petrifying Well, a unique geological phenomenon. Curiosity has drawn millions of visitors over hundreds of years, to see cascading water turn everyday objects to stone.
The park has several scenic picnic areas, adventure playground and museum and gift shop. Themed events run during school holidays, with a FREE children’s trail sheet.
Open weekends in March then every day from 1st April to 29th October, 10am – 4.30pm. There is parking on site (£2 all day in addition to admission).
Just a short distance from Harrogate town centre, this beautiful garden makes a great family day out. As well as beautiful planting displays, the garden also homes many fun natural play areas for adventurous children, including the Craggle Top Tree House, Log Maze, Logness Monster and the giant Woodland instruments.
• Seasonal events and activities for children • Picnic areas within the garden and baby changing facilities • Plenty of free parking • Paths suitable for pushchairs
Crag Ln, Harrogate HG3 1QB. Tel: 01423 565418
Armley Park is two miles west of Leeds city centre and is approximately 14 hectares in area. It’s the perfect location for people of all age ranges to enjoy a relaxing day out. The park gives local residents and visitors amazing views over Kirkstall Valley. It has a playground, skate park, football pitches, tennis courts, cricket wicket and woodland and canal side trails that include a section with 161 Victorian steps.
Stanningley Road, Leeds, LS12 3LW
Dramatic moorland rock formations. Explore Brimham Rocks and have a great day out at nature’s playground. This amazing collection of weird and wonderful rock formations makes a great day out for families, climbers and those wanting to enjoy the simple pleasures of fresh air and magnificent views over Nidderdale.
There’s no admission charge at Brimham Rocks. Parking is free for National Trust members.
Non National Trust members, car parking charges are as follows: £4 up to three hours, £5 thereafter
Chevin Forest Park is located in the Wharfe Valley and overlooks the market town of Otley. Collect your free map and wildlife spotting guide from Otley Library or The White House Café, then set off on one of two walking trails.
Curious About Leeds is a journey of discovery: an exciting glimpse into what makes this fabulous city what it is.
The two unique walks can be enjoyed separately, or joined together to form one longer walk, depending upon available time and energy! They will expand your knowledge, entertain and challenge you, and help you to stay mentally and physically fit! Walks typically take 1 to 2 hours each. Visit website for more information.
Starts at Leeds Art Gallery, The Headrow, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 3AA, England
This nature reserve provides home to many different species- both living in the pond and the surrounding woodland. Located at: Hall Lane, LS12 5EX. If visiting with a pushchair or wheelchair you can access the circular path surrounding the pond via the entrance on Butt Lane – otherwise there is a stepped entrance from Hall Lane.
Farnley Hall Park has approx 16 hectares of woodland walks, formal gardens and ponds. There is a new children’s play area and sports pitches. The park is accessible to all and most footpaths are suitable for the majority of manual and electric wheelchairs. Located at: Hall Lane, Farnley, Leeds, LS12 5HA.
Set within the beautiful North Yorkshire countryside, this World Heritage Site offers a great day out for all the family. Hidden within the Skell valley, you’ll find the magnificent ruins of the once great Fountains Abbey and a Georgian pleasure ground to delight your senses. This breathtaking landscape is also home to a Jacobean Manor House, Medieval Deer Park, Victorian church and Cistercian mill.
Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Estate, Ripon, North Yorkshire, HG4 3DY
Tel: 01765 608888
Opens 5th May
This brand new Park Adventure allows you to design your own fun in the trees at Temple Newsam. Choose from a variety of aerial routes, mix and match crossings and explore the forest canopy. Then fly to the ground by zip wire or take The Plummet straight down!
Level one is three different loops of obstacles and crossings. It includes an introductory level, one metre off the ground, which sets you up for two different routes in the tree-tops. Challenge yourself to take on tunnel crossings, flying carpets and tibetan bridges. Each loop ends with a fantastic zip wire. Minimum Height – 1 metre
Level two adventurers will get all the fun of level one plus can challenge themselves to loop four. Climb through a Fisherman’s Trap to take on a whole new series of high-wire crossings.
Minimum Height – 1 .2 metres
Level three hitting heights of up to 15 metres, level three adventurers will have full access to all nine loops that make up Park Adventure, including an 11 metre Plummet. Minimum Height – 1 .4 metres
Participation and supervision ratios apply – see goape.co.uk for more details.
This popular park is renowned for its wonderful gardens, popular tea rooms and circular lakeside walk. Ideal for a family walk, scooter/pushchair friendly (on paths) and a great place to feed the ducks, play ball games and have a picnic
Off Arthington Road, Bramhope, Leeds LS16 8BQ Tel: 0113 261 0374
Gotts Park is three miles west of Leeds city centre and is approximately 30 hectares in area. There is an 18 hole parkland golf course run by The Gotts Park Golf CIC club, who are located within the grade II listed Gotts Mansion. The park borders Armley Park and is the perfect location for people of all age ranges to enjoy a relaxing day out and gives local residents and visitors amazing views over the Kirkstall Valley.
Armley Ridge Rd, Leeds LS12 2QX.
Whether you want to visit the House and its wonderful collections, relax in the gardens with a picnic, play on the amazing adventure playground, meet the animals on the farm and in the bird garden or see the penguins being fed there is something for everyone at Harewood! Open March – October
Penguin Feeding Daily 11am -11.30am
Harewood House, Harewood, Leeds LS17 9LG. Tel: 0113 218 1010. (Accesible by the No 36 bus from Leeds)
The historic site of Kirkstall Abbey attracts many visitors daily and hosts a range of activities throughout the year. This site not only houses the historic Abbey but also a visitor’s educational centre, park, cafe, river walks and frequent markets and events. Loctated at: Kirkstall Road, Leeds, LS5 3EH.
From meadows of bluebells and woodlands of oak, birch and willow, there’s loads to see at this delightful 2.5 acre reserve. Bring a net or a jar to go dipping in the ponds, or watch the many butterflies and dragonflies
Kirkstall Valley Nature Reserve, 110 Commercial Road, LS5 3AB
There are a range of walks/ cycle routes along the towpath of the Leeds to Liverpool canal, cutting through much of West Leeds. Take in old industrial mills, woodland views, canal locks, public houses and refreshment stops along the way. Popular spots to join the canal are at Kirkstall Abbey, Horsforth Forge & Rodley Swing Bridge.
Rodley Nature Reserve was created on a floodplain in Kirkstall Valley and houses many different species of wildlife. The reserve runs various activities throughout the year such as pond dipping and mini ‘beast’ hunts. Located at: Moss Bridge Road, Rodley, Leeds LS13 1HP. Open to the public Wed, Sat and Sun and most Bank Holidays.
Explore Temple Newsam house, enjoy a picnic in the grounds, have fun in the adventure playground or meet the animals on the farm. Don’t miss the special school holiday and seasonal events throughout the year. Accessible site. Cafe & toilets facilities. Open Tuesday-Sunday. Admission charge for house & farm.
Temple Newsam Estate, Leeds, LS15 0AE. Tel: 0113 336 7461
A little rural oasis between Leeds and Bradford, and some of the finest Georgian architecture in Yorkshire. Park in the lay-by in Tong village, near the church, or on the edge of the village and complete the approx 4 mile route. For a map and details of the route click here
Lots of fishing, and sailing on this tarn, but essentially an easy walk for children, good for bikes etc.With ducks to feed. A very good children’s playground near the carpark. A Planespotters paradise.
Cemetery Road, Yeadon, Leeds LS19 7UR
The only one of its kind, Yorkshire Sculpture Park is an international centre for modern and contemporary art, experienced and enjoyed by thousands of visitors every year.
West Bretton, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF4 4LG. Tel: 01924 832631