From West Yorkshire to South Yorkshire and North Yorkshire to East Yorkshire, here are some of our top free days out for families in Yorkshire.
Let’s begin our journey in…
Kirkstall Abbey in Leeds: A real gem just off Kirkstall Rd in Leeds. Explore the Abbey ruins and the stunning lush grounds. There’s also a free car park and playground next to it. Abbey House Museum and Cafe is just across the road from the car park.
2. Leeds Galleries and Museum are free to enter, for a full list, go to: https://yorkshirefamilies.co.uk/2019/03/16/easter-holidays-what-to-do-and-where-to-go-in-leeds-west-yorkshire/
3. Leeds Dock has free water taxis: Their water taxis run everyday Mon-Fri, 7am-7pm and Sat–Sun, 10am-7pm. Twee & Drie (the boats) ferry passengers between Granary Wharf & Leeds Dock. The trip takes 12 minutes which is on a scenic canal route and all journeys are free of charge. To catch a ride on a yellow boat… Exit Leeds Train station via the New South Entrance or walk under the arches to Granary Wharf and the Doubletree by Hilton hotel. The taxis are on the lower water level, hidden out of view – just across the lock bridge in front of Bar Brasil. Hop on!
- The Water Taxis run every 15 minutes from either stop. Look out for a yellow flag with water taxi written on in black.
- 4. West Yorkshire History Centre has a free exhibition and free family activities, check out their facebook page for the latest.
- 5.The Hepworth Wakefield is free to enter (although parking is £5 for the day but it is a short walk from Wakefield Kirkgate station).
- The Barbara Hepworth inspired gallery has a range of free crafts on during the school holidays and on weekends.There is also an outdoor playground and UK’s largest public garden is currently being built outside the gallery next to The Calder building. There’s also stunning views from the The Hepworth Cafe over the River Calder and The Chantry Chapel (which has free heritage open days on select dates).6. National Science and Media Museum in Bradford is open daily 10am-6pm. Free Entry. For more details, click here.
- 7. Angler’s Country Park, near Wakefield. It’s free and there is a fabulous Room on the Broom trail.Anglers Country Park is dominated by a lake, surrounded by grassland, woodland and a wetland area known as the ‘Pol’. At one time this was the deepest open cast coal mine in the country, reaching a depth of 250 feet.Anglers has been awarded Green Flag status – recognising it as one of the best parks in the country.
8. Pontefract Castle is a hidden gem in West Yorkshire with outdoor ruins and an indoor visitor centre. Make sure you take time to visit the dungeons on a tour (these cost however, £3 per person at the time of writing).
9. Yorkshire Sculpture Park is a fabulous day out to explore “art without walls” (with some indoor galleries and creative spaces and cafes).
Parking is £10 for the day. There’s also a new Damien Hirst Sculpture which is part of Yorkshire Sculpture International festival (which is a free festival over 100 days at YSP, Leeds Art Gallery and The Hepworth Wakefield) and a new restaurant and gallery building.
10 . Experience Barnsley inside Barnsley Town Hall is a lovely little visitor experience-cum-museum which is free to enter and there are fountains outside.
It’s also a short walk away from Barnsley indoor market if you want to buy some cheap scran from the food court.
11. Clifton Park in Rotherham has parks, gardens and sport, rides and games and even a museum.
12. Sheffield Museums and Galleries have a whole host of free-to-enter exhibitions on from Sheffield Millenium Galleries which is connected to the tropical indoor Winter Gardens and the nearby outdoor Peace Gardens which is particularly wonderful in the warmer weather for picnics and running through the water fountains if you wish.
13. Ecclesall Woods in Sheffield is great for stunning walks and has a lovely visitor centre too.
14. Millhouses Park and Graves Park in Sheffield are located close to each other and well worth a visit. Millhouses has a great big play area and outdoor gym and Graves Park has a mini farm and plays host to a range of family-friendly events.
15. Harrogate’s Valley park with an outdoor paddling pool and stunning pavilion.
16. Fewston and Swinsty reservoirs near Harrogate: “Walking, cycle pump track, barbeque picnic spots. A very beautiful place in all seasons,” recommends Janet of a Falcondale Life.
17. Sutton Bank National Park in North Yorkshire: “We would highly recommend North Yorkshire to anybody who is into cycling. The ability to find trails suitable for the children or take on a challenging ride ourselves in the same area made it the ideal place to spend a few days. We’ll definitely be back again in the future to take on some tougher trails as the children’s cycling skills improve,” said Natalie Ray who blogs at Plutonium Sox.
18. York Railway Museum: “I have fond memories of going on a trip to York Railway Museum when I was a little girl. It was free when I was a child, and so it was always a favourite place for Mum and Dad to take my brother and I when we were younger. My brother was a bit of a train spotter in his youth. But I was more into the romance than the engineering. I loved the history of some of the older trains,” says Jo Boyne of A Rose Tinted World.
York Railway Museum is open from 10am to 5pm daily in winter, and 10am to 6pm in summer.
The museum has plenty of toilets and baby changing facilities. There are picnic tables and also several places to eat, including a tea room in a restored railway carriage and an Edwardian-style restaurant. There are two shops full of railway souvenirs and gifts for enthusiasts of all ages.
19. York City Walls http://www.yorkwalls.org.uk/?page_id=3690
20. Scarborough: “I love just wondering round from North Bay to South, Peasholme Park, paddling in the sea and playing on the beach and the view from Oliver’s Mount,” said Amy Downes from A Mum Full of Dreams.
Kirsty Holden aka The Money Saving Mum recommends:
21. Humber Bridge foreshore
22. Museum Quarter in Hull inc Maritime Museum and Hull Minster too.