Family activity holidays in Yorkshire

Let little ones tire themselves out in the Dales

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Jules Pearson

Sian Reynolds
HomeAway travel expert

Yorkshire Dales Swaledale EnglandWith its picturesque and varied landscape, Yorkshire is the perfect backdrop for a family holiday crammed full of activity. The largest county in the UK offers everything from cycling and walking to rock climbing, caving and water sports, and no matter your level of experience, you can be sure to find something that will suit all of you. There are countless guides and maps to help you find your way, or you can opt for a more structured activity with guidance from a professional.

Sturdy shoes and reliable outdoor clothing is the name of the game here to let you take full advantage of the fresh air and open spaces no matter what happens with the weather. But once you are all exhausted and ready for a change of pace, then head to any of the stunning towns or cities for a bite to eat, a dose of culture and to pick up those all-important postcards. Voted the third best place to visit in the world by Lonely Planet, this is a county that is worth exploring and will see you returning to time and time again.


Sian Reynold's guide to activity holidays


Harrogate Climbing Centre Harrogate Climbing Centre

Whether you're already an experienced climber looking to brush up on your skills, or climbing is something that you want to try together as a family, heading to Harrogate Climbing Centre is a good bet. Catering for a wide range of abilities and with sessions ideally suited for families you can climb to your heart’s content, refuel at the café and then head out to explore the beautiful city. Partnered with the National Trust at Brimham Rocks, you can also experience climbing nature's very own adventure playground with help from fully qualified instructors.

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Pennine Way Geocache trails Pennine Way Geocache trails

Geocaching is rapidly gaining in popularity, appealing to all age ranges. Go on your own treasure hunt searching for hidden caches using GPS and Ordnance Survey maps; once you find the box, record your visit in the log, take a treasure and leave another one in its place for the next discoverers. It’s a lot of fun! Several trails have been set up within the Yorkshire Dales National Park but the Pennine Way Geocache Trail has been designed for novices as well as seasoned pros, and you can hire a GPS receiver if you’re just starting out.

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Day walking Day walking

Yorkshire and its moorlands are made for walking and there are an almost limitless number of routes. The Three Peaks Challenge is for those that have more ambitious plans for their holiday, though it can be spread out across three days, and there are many easier but just as beautiful routes. Head to the North York Moors National Park to access around 2,300 kilometres of paths and tracks. Pack a picnic, grab your camera to capture the breathtaking views and get away from it all whilst letting the kids run off some of that energy.

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Take a Llama for a walk Take a Llama for a walk

One to appeal to those with younger family members and with more than a little novelty factor, a Llama trek isn’t something that you get to experience every day! A 3.5-mile walk, it will take you over a gentle route of roads, fields and woods through the beautiful Nidderdale countryside within the Yorkshire Dales; and the Llama will carry your picnic! Back at the farm you can spend time getting to know the other (smaller!) animals in residence. Currently ranked as the most popular activity in the whole of Yorkshire on Trip Advisor, this is the kind of thing that memories are made of.

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Caving Caving

If you haven’t stepped into the adventurous world of caving then you’re in for a treat. Yorkshire offers the largest caving area in the UK with 2,000 caves and potholes. If you are not sure where to begin then how about a guided tour around a show cave? Head to White Scar Caves near Ingleton or Stump Cross Caverns high above Grassington. No experience is needed and all necessary equipment is provided. You can find out about the geology of the area and discover how the caves are formed. It’s a memorable experience and one that you will be talking about for years to come.

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Pennine Way by Peer Lawther 
Day walking by Matt and Rudge
Take a Llama for a Walk by Alois Staudacher


Yorkshire Cottages

Cottages near Pickering in North York Moors. Quiet rural location. Great views.

2 x 1 bedroom cottages (sleeps 2 each), 2 bedroom cottage (sleeps 5) and 3 bedroom cottage (sleeps 7). Rawcliffe House Farm offers self catering holiday cottages in Pickering & our self catering studio rooms in the North York Moors. Both the self ...

4 Star Cottage Staithes Sleeps up to 6 Sleeps

****Refurbished MARCH 2014***** Brunswick Cottage, ideal for Romantic Breaks, family breaks and friends. BRUNSWICK is an 18th century fisherman’s cottage that has been refurbished to a very high standard to provide all modern amenities. Brunswick...

2 or 3 bedroom cottage on a farmstead on the edge of the Yorkshire Wolds

Holme Wold Cottage has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. For larger parties there is a sofa bed in the dining room or for smaller parties you can book just 2 bedrooms at lower rates. This means the cottage is suitable for parties from 1 to 8 people. We ...

LINTON, pet friendly, luxury holiday cottage in Haworth, Ref 6413

Linton is a lovely apartment, just three miles from Haworth and can sleep six people. The cottage apartment is set over the first and second floors and has two first floor double bedrooms, a second floor double, a first floor bathroom, a second fl...

NETHERGILL HAY MEW, family friendly in Oughtershaw , Ref 22125

Nethergill Hay Mew is a delightful three-storey barn conversion in Oughtershaw. With two bedrooms, a second floor king-size double and a twin, all with en-suites it sleeps four comfortably. There is also a first floor sitting room with woodburner ...
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