Things to do in Yorkshire

With such a varied history and diverse landscape, it’s no surprise that Yorkshire is full of fun things to do, for people of all ages and interests. It would be a hard task to rank Yorkshire’s attractions, so instead we’ve picked five of the county’s most popular things to do in a way that hopefully represents the variety of activities on offer. 

Boy running along a path in the woods on a sunny day

The Forbidden Corner

The Forbidden Corner near Leyburn is the definition of weird and wonderful. A maze of wooden creatures, tunnels, hidden grottos and magical statues comes alive in this gorgeous park. A great place for the kids to make some unforgettable memories, the Forbidden Corner should be added to the list of things to do on any Yorkshire family holiday. There is also a cafe and a restaurant on the site, as well as a gift shop and all other needed amenities. 

Museum objects on a shelf, including a small wooden doll

Swaledale Folk Museum

A true hidden gem of the Yorkshire Dales, the Swaledale Folk Museum celebrates local life and history with a collection of locals’ artefacts. The museum’s main focus is on the lead mining industry in Swaledale and Arkengarthdale and the industry and community it created. The museum also has a range of geological and prehistoric finds that commemorate the area’s natural history also. Children under 12 also go free, which is always a bonus!

Hard-hatted adventurer exploring the caves

White Scar Caves

These underground caves in Ingleton in the Dales are truly a sight to behold. Featuring a waterfall and various stalactite and stalagmite structures quirkily named things like ‘The Witches Fingers’ and ‘The Judge’s Head’, the cave tour is a truly unique and fascinating experience. Suitable for all ages and abilities, the tour is proud to be the longest cave tour in Britain and departs, on average, four times a day. If you’re visiting Kirby Lonsdale, Ingleton or Clapham, the caves are within a short driving distance, but they are also well worth making a longer trip too.

A flag flies at Skipton Castle

Skipton Castle

As one of the best kept medieval castles in the country, Skipton Castle is still open to explore in virtually the same way it was built over 900 years ago. A trip to Skipton Castle is also a great way to learn about Yorkshire’s role in the English Civil War, as it was the last Royalist fort in the North and was under siege for three years between 1642-1645. After the castle was returned to its original owners, the Clifford family, once Cromwell had fallen, it was Lady Anne Clifford who faithfully restored the castle. Lady Anne is a remarkable figure, who fought for years to be the legal owner of the castle, which she had been previously denied as a female heir. The castle also has lovely grounds to explore, and an on-site cafe and gift shop, or you can pop into Skipton itself for a bite to eat and a wander around its various shops and market square. 

Brimham Rocks

Brimham Rocks

These crazy rock formations in North Yorkshire are great fun to explore and also provide some fantastic photo opportunities. Feel free to simply wander around and take in these amazing geological formations for yourself, or check out the National Trust’s guided walks of Brimham Rocks, which vary in theme from geological to social history. Brimham Rocks is also the ideal place to let the kids’ imaginations run wild, as the whole scene looks like something from another world!