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).
Tower Street, Hull, HU1 4DP (Sat Nav HU9 1TU). 01482 381000.
Open daily 10am – 6pm (last entry 5pm), closed 24th/25th December.
Located in Hull, The Deep is an award-winning aquarium that is home to almost 3,500 fish including green sawfish, sharks and tropical fish. Not forgetting an array of invertebrates, amphibians, turtles and a colony of Gentoo penguins!
Journey through the story of the world’s oceans travelling through a unique blend of spectacular marine life from warm tropical waters to the cold Antarctic seas. . Enjoy the fun and educational interactive and audio-visual presentations on your voyage of discovery.
Highlights include the daily dive show, touchpool sessions, twice-daily penguin feeds, the underwater tunnel and bubble lift through the 10m Endless Oceans exhibit. Details of feeding times and all other info is on their website here.
The Deep has its own café serving a range of homemade hot/cold meals, snacks, drinks and excellent children’s boxes, plus a snack bar that is open in during peak times inside the attraction. There are also indoor and outdoor picnic areas for those who wish to bring their own food.
The Deep is fully accessible for people with disabilities or accessibility requirements and can provide and range of things to help visitors enjoy a more pleasant visit.
Save 10% by booking your tickets on their website before you visit. The Deep also accepts Tesco Days Out vouchers, which form part of the Tesco Clubcard scheme.
Don’t forget to sign up to the Day Plus Pass scheme which allows FREE return visits to The Deep for 12 months (this is included in the normal price of a ticket, T&C’s on their website).
During the school holidays there are also arts, crafts at Craft Corner, see their website for details of the next events.
Discover the power of stories at the Rainbow Factory, with theatre, crafts and games for children up to 10 yrs.
Activities can include model-making, crafts, treasure hunts, silly science, puppetry & the chance to perform on their outdoor stage.
Rainbow Factory, Springfield Commercial Centre, Bagley Lane, Farsley. LS28 5LY. Approximately a 25 minute drive from Harrogate
T.0113 257 5750.
William’s Den is a new and exciting adventure attraction, giving children the chance to connect with nature and get active as they explore a custom designed complex that brings the great outdoors inside. A unique environment, inside and out, where children can play, explore, run, climb, build dens and learn, all in an open, rural and natural setting with a range of facilities tailored to families.
Also run lots of special events and activities both term time and in the school holidays.
William’s Den, Castle Farm, Wold Hill, North Cave, East Riding Of Yorkshire, HU15 2LS. 01430 472230.
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
Abbey House Museum has a huge range of activities, from dressing up to special tours and much more! Take a break in the cafe and then step outside to use the children’s play area or wander over to Kirkstall Abbey and explore the abbey grounds!
Muddy Monkeys – under 5s craft activities
(Tuesdays, 10am-11am – please check our What’s on website for up-to-date listings)
Fun, free messy and imaginative craft play activites for under fives and their carers.
Large country park that is great for walking, children’s biking and picnics. It also has a children’s adventure playground and The Room on the Broom trail. The park also has a Visitor Centre, a cafe, free car parking. Open Tues – Sunday (except Bank Holidays)
Haw Park Lane, Wintersett, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF4 2EB. Tel: 01924 303980
Bagshaw museum is a free, educational day out for the family. Children can take part in a Punch and Judy show as well as dress up in costumes based on different periods of time. On a nice day, children may even want to play in the neighbouring Wilton Park.
Woodlands Road, Batley, WF17 0AS. Tel: 01924 324765
Enjoy a picnic, build sandcastles have a little paddle in the river or simply relax and take in the view of the Priory. The 60 stepping stones offer a fun and challenging experience, but there is a bridge offering a safe and dry passage. There is a large beach area popular with visiting families. Seasonal events take place throughout the year.
£8 per car to park
Bolton Abbey, Skipton, North Yorkshire, BD236EX. Tel: 01756 718000
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
With parks, gardens and sport, rides and games and even an amazing museum, Clifton Park has everything you could need for the perfect day out! Visit their website for more information on things to do
Clifton Park has two car parks:
Eureka! is a unique place for families to visit, where children aged 0 to 11 are inspired to learn all about themselves and the world around them by playing, imagining, experimenting and – above all – having fun. Accessible site. Cafe, toilet facilities & shop.
Closed Monday’s Term Time, check website opening times before visiting.
Eureka, Discovery Road, Halifax, HX1 2NE. Tel: 01422 330069
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
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
Hop along to Grass Hoppers Outdoor Adventure Playground at Tong Garden Centre for proper outdoor fun. Have a bounce on the jumping pillows, zoom down the zip wire, play and dig in the giant sandpit, glide down the slides, drive around the race tracks and much more!
Grass Hoppers is set in a secure environment with café, outdoor seating and award-winning Yorkshire dairy ice cream!
Tong Lane, Bradford, BD4 0RY. Tel: 0113 285 3506
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)
Open Saturday 10am untill 4pm and Sunday 2pm untill 5pm.Horsforth Museum is situated at the bottom of Horsforth Town St and run by volunteers. All the exibits have been donated. The Museum has a fantastic photograph collection, maps and general Horsforth Memorabilia. There is a Family history section and all are welcome. Located at: 5 The Green, Horsforth, Leeds LS18 5JB.
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.
Currently closed in order for essential repairs to be carried out on the Victorian roof; however will reopen galleries to the public from Friday 13 October 2017.
Tiled Hall Café, Visit Leeds and the Gallery Shop are still open throughout the building works, as are close neighbours Henry Moore Institute and Craft Centre and Design Gallery Leeds.
A great family day out with 4.5 billion years of discovery. If you love Leeds history, the ancient worlds, natural sciences, there’s plenty to enjoy. Cafe & toilet facilities. Accessible site. Free admission, closed Mondays.
Join Rory, the Leeds City Museum tiger for regular craft activities at the Museum every Saturday between 11am and 12.15pm. Also offers free craft activities for children under five during Tiny Tigers sessions at 10am – 11.45am on Fridays.
Leeds City Museum, Millennium Square, Leeds LS2 8BH. Tel: 0113 378 5001
Step back in time to discover the industrial history of Leeds that the city was famous for. From textiles to printing, clothing to manufacturing, engineering and locomotives. Great fun for all age groups. Open Tuesday-Sunday. Call 0113 378 3173.
A little known, and very scenic, route from Granary Wharf to Leeds Dock. Jump on board one of the yellow water taxis, for a 15 minute trip down the canal, from the train station to the Royal Armouries Museum. One of the best ways to travel through the city, and it’s free!
Enjoy a fantastic day out at Lotherton Hall, a charming Edwardian house and country estate with extensive grounds, bird garden zoo, Red Deer Park, nature trails, gardens, café, shop and two children’s play areas. Themed events run throughout the year. Accessible site. Admission fee applies.
Lotherton Hall, Collier Lane, Aberford, LS25 3EB. Tel: 0113 378 2959.
The National Railway museum is a free day out in York. The whole family can explore many trains from throughout history and learn all about 300 years of railway.
Explore the science and culture of light and sound technologies and their impact on our lives. The museum aims to inspire our scientists and engineers of the future to see more, hear more, think more and do more.
The galleries and exhibition spaces help illuminate world-famous collections in photography, film and television and the team of Explainers create learning activities that fuel the imagination.
Three cinema screens—including an IMAX theatre—showcase the magic of moving images
Bradford, BD1 1NQ. Tel: 0844 856 3797
Swing, play, ride, splash, and run in Newby’s legendary Adventure Gardens. A perfect place to meet up with friends; eat, discover, relax, shop and smile all in the stunning setting of Newby Hall.
Newby hall has lots of water jets/fountains in a great area within the grounds. Parents can sit and relax on the grass whilst children play. Remember costumes and towels!
Newby Hall, Skelton-on-Ure, Ripon HG4 5AE Tel: 01423 322583
Pudsey Park has something for everyone. Enjoy a relaxing stroll, visit the pets corner and tropical greenhouse, have a swing on the kids playground or enjoy a game of bowls. Toilets and Cafe Kiosk serving light refreshments on site. Located at: Church Lane, Pudsey, Leeds, LS28 7RR.
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
Through nine interactive galleries go on a journey of discovery to explore the incredible world of medicine. Travel from the Victorian age to the present day to explore the fascinating world of surgery and find out how breakthroughs in science have changed all our lives for the better.
Exciting family activities take place at weekends and during every school holiday. Car park and cafe.
Thackray Medical Museum, Beckett Street, Leeds, LS9 7LN. Tel: 0113 244 4343
The gallery brings together work from Wakefield’s art collection, exhibitions by contemporary artists and rarely seen works by Barbara Hepworth. Regular special events & kids art sessions. Cafe, shop, outdoor play area. Free. Closed Mondays.
The Royal Armouries is home to the United Kingdom’s national collection of arms, armour and artillery. Look out for special seasonal & school holiday events. Free entry. Family friendly. Accessible site. Cafe & toilet facilities.
Royal Armouries, Leeds, LS10 1LT. Tel: 0113 220 1999.
Contemporary art centre with galleries, learning studio, workspaces for creative industries, restaurant and bar, in the heart of Leeds’ South Bank. Special events and school holiday activities.
The Tetley, Hunslet Road, Leeds LS10 1JQ. Tel: 0113 320 2323
The Yorkshire Wildlife Park is a unique walk through wildlife park located just outside Doncaster. The wildlife attraction brings families face to face with some of the world’s most beautiful – and at risk – species. Indoor and outdoor play area offers a fun filled day whatever the weather. Open daily, special events throughout the year. Accessible site. Admission charges apply.
Tongue Ln, Branton, Old Cantley, Doncaster DN4 6TB. Tel 01302 535057
Set on a beautiful island in the canal just 2 miles from Leeds city centre, Thwaite Mills is one of the last examples in Britain of a water-powered mill. Open weekends & school holidays, look out for the special events. Accessible site. Toilets & shop.
Tropical World offers a unique opportunity to explore the jungle, desert, nocturnal and aquatic habitats with plants and animals such as crocodiles, butterflies, bats, snakes and a gorgeous family of meerkats! Shop, cafe & toilet facilities.
Princes Ave, Roundhay Park, Leeds LS8 2ER. Tel: 0113 237 0754
The premier play park in Harrogate! The equipment is fantastic here with loads to do for all ages including a zip wire, fortress, plane, paddling pool as well as the usual slides, swings etc. There is also the recently completed skate park for the older kids.
There is a kiosk selling ice creams and light refreshments in the play area and further down the gardens there is a café which sells Ripley ice-cream as well as a boating pond and bandstand.
The park also offers pitch and put, crazy golf, Frisbee gold and tennis courts.
At the top of the Gardens lie the Pine Woods.
Valley Gardens, Harrogate HG1 2SZ
York Chocolate Story is an interactive journey through the history of chocolate making in York. It is perfect for all chocolate lovers and makes an excellent day out for the whole family.
This place has a great (free) outdoor play area with wooden structures and indoor barn area for those having the full dining experience. Separated out into under and over 7 year olds, and just £1.00 per child entry, the bigger kids can enjoy high adventure, whilst the little ones can take it more gently in their own play space. Brilliant 1950’s style parlour serving sundaes, breakfasts, burgers and hotdogs, coffees, cakes & all sorts!
Calm Slate Farm, Halton East, Bolton Abbey, BD23 6EU. Tel: 01756 711826
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