Written by Catherine Riding.
Activities for family days out in Yorkshire
Zorbing around the Yorkshire countryside.
Yorkshire is a great county to visit, with beautiful scenery, award winning tourist attractions and the friendliest people on the planet, however, it is natural to want to make your visit here as memorable as possible and, for that reason, you may wish to opt for activities, which deviates a little from the norm.
Why not choose from one of the following.
Sphereing, or zorbing, is not an activity for the faint hearted! The premise is simple – you get strapped into a giant, inflatable “orb” and roll down a giant hill at high speeds. It has become very popular in recent times as a high-adrenaline, fun packed activity.
Visitors to Yorkshire can easily incorporate this unusual activity into their trip. There are various companies that offer this within scenic Yorkshire countryside, participants are able to admire the rolling (no pun intended) hills and get a lungful of fresh air following their adrenaline rush.
Diggerland is a fun day out for young and old alike. This park, only one of four in the country, is themed around, yes, you guessed it, huge hulks of digging equipment. Visitors have the opportunity to drive real pieces of construction machinery such as JCBs, tractors and giant diggers.
There are also a number of rides/activities on the same theme like the Skyshuttle, Diggerland Dodgems and Buried Treasure. Most attractions have a minimum height of 90cm so little ones can interact with almost everything, and a driving licence is not required (all machinery is operated under the watchful eyes of park supervisors).
With frequent bus links from Leeds to Diggerland in Castleford, you will be making like Bob the Builder before you know it.
Rhubarb is contained in many delicious meals and desserts, but if you’ve ever wondered exactly how it is grown, look no further than the forcing sheds located in the “rhubarb triangle” in Wakefield, just outside of Leeds.
Visitors learn about the history of rhubarb, how “forcing” was discovered, the medicinal purposes of rhubarb and how to eat it properly. There is then an opportunity to visit the forcing sheds out on the working farm, where the entire forcing process is fully explained to provide a well rounded view of how rhubarb is successfully cultivated. Rhubarb tours are provided between January to March, and visits are arranged by pre-booking.
Geocaching in Yorkshire
Geocaching is a relatively recent phenomenon, where the idea is to use a hand held GPS device to locate caches (small containers) hidden outdoors in accessible, public locations. The wonderful thing about geocaching is that it enables you to discover areas you never knew existed, and encourages you to get out and about walking.
To get started all you need is to download the geocaching app and ensure you have GPS enabled on your phone (n.b. A smartphone is needed for this). Once you have registered with the geocaching website a whole world of caches hidden around Yorkshire is open to you.
You can seek urban caches if you’d like to stick to more pedestrianised areas. If you prefer to escape the city, venture out to one of the many towns or cities on the outskirts of Leeds and combine a walking tour with the discovery of caches that only a few cachers have found before you. Beware of the muggles, though!
Leeds Town Hall tour
Whether you are a frequent or infrequent visitor to Leeds, you may well be aware of Leeds Town Hall. An iconic building and one of the best known and loved architecturally, it has become ingrained into the city’s skyline as much as the Houses of Parliament in London, or the Empire State Building in New York.
In centuries gone by, the town hall used to be an integral part of the justice system in Leeds, with a well used courtroom and a maze of cells where prisoners were held. Now the local council are giving people the opportunity to venture down to this seldom visited part of the building on a guided tour.
As well as this visitors are also able to climb the 203 steps to the tower where they can see the clock and take in a very unique view of Leeds. Tours are only available on selected dates and times, please check the link for more details.
So it just goes to show that whether you are seeking high-adrenaline fun, want to be a big kid for the day with your kids, take in a bit of history or combine a relaxing walk with a bit of geocaching, you can do it in Yorkshire.