The circus returns to town as it pitches back up on Briggate for a second run as part of the forthcoming May Bank Holidays.
Young would-be clowns, acrobats and jugglers can once again try their hands at a range of circus disciplines on offer daily throughout the half-term school break from Saturday 28th May-Saturday June 4th 2022.
Brought back by LeedsBID, in association with The Yorkshire Circus and Super Friendz, the Pop-Up Circus will transform a section of the city’s main pedestrianised area into a performance space, with children able to watch an assortment of circus skills before trying them for themselves – all for free.
Each day starts with an introduction and short performance, before the chance for the young members of the audience to take part in one of three workshops a day, teaching multiple circus skills from spinning and juggling to stilt walking, unicycle and trapeze.
Offering activities for all ages and abilities, there is also the opportunity to get involved with daily story time sessions, arts and crafts and face painting, with free candy floss for those taking part.
Explore one of the most complete examples of a medieval Cistercian abbey in Britain. Set in wonderful parkland along the banks of the River Aire, Kirkstall Abbey boast historic architecture amid a haven of wildlife and greenery.
Kirkstall Abbey Visitor Centre tells you more about the lives of the 12th century monks and contains the touch table, a unique catalogue of images of the abbey from the 18th century to the present day.
Family activities and trails are run throughout the year from the Visitor Centre check out the website for more details. Visit the shop and have the opportunity to buy unique and bespoke products.
Kirkstall Abbey is directly across the road from Abbey House Museum, this is a great opportunity to make a day out for all the family.
Markets are held at the end of each month March – October, showcasing local producers, makers and creatives in the beautiful setting of the abbey cloister.
Join the city’s biggest-ever bug hunt – and win prizes for walking in the park
We know it’s good to be active – but what if you could win an iPad just for strolling in the park?
When you download the free Love Exploring app, you’ll see amazing creatures appear magically in your local park, from roaring dinosaurs to giant ladybirds.
You can also link your account to your child’s school to join the Love Exploring Leeds Inter-School Challenge and win prizes for the school – and yourself.
Score points for every 100m you walk, and every question you answer on the interactive quiz. Every participating school will win a prize, and the family with the most points will win an iPad.
The Dinosaur Safari and Mega Mini-beast Hunt games are available in 14+ parks across Leeds.
The Inter-School Challenge runs until June 6 – but if you miss it, don’t worry. Love Exploring is available all year, with an augmented reality Space Walk coming for summer.
Almost 7,000 people in Leeds have downloaded the app, which was brought to the city by Active Leeds and Public Health to inspire people to get out and explore their local green spaces.
Find out more in this blog.
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.
House Open Tuesday-Sunday, 11am -4pm, Home Farm, Daily, 10am-5pm (closed on Mondays during term time and bank holidays)
Admission charge for house & farm. Pre-booking now required.
Temple Newsam Estate, Leeds, LS15 0AE. Tel: 0113 336 7461.
Have fun (re-)discovering Leeds, spotting things you’ve never noticed before, with two quirky treasure hunt style heritage walks.
The two walks can be enjoyed separately or joined together to form a longer walk and are a safe fun and affordable way to get outside for some fresh air for a couple of hours in the holidays. They are a low cost, inclusive, participatory activity where everyone can have a role, following directions, finding the answers to our addictive clues, matching pictures and reading snippets about the history of Leeds and the people that have shaped it.
Visit ourwebsite to buy in printed booklet or instant download format, using code Mumbler20 for 20% off all purchases.
Other Yorkshire Curious About walks are: Harrogate, Hull, Ripon, Scarborough, Sheffield, Whitby and York.
Starts: Art Gallery Shop, The Headrow, LS1 3AA
18 February- 5 June 2022
A State of Matter: Modern and Contemporary Glass Sculpture is a free exhibition exploring glass art through solid, liquid and gas.
Children can borrow an Explorer Bag with tools to spark their curiosity, or get creative with objects that reflect the qualities of glass at our alcove light collage
Headrow, Leeds, LS1 3AH
Bebra Gardens is open all year round, 24 hours a day. The paddling pool is open from Spring Bank Holiday (at the end of May) to the first week in September.
All-day parking at Waterside Car Park, HG5 8DF, the gardens are sign posted from there.
Child Friendly Leeds have been consulting with children and young people in Leeds to find out what they would like to see on a city centre map. They have helped to co-produce an amazing map with lots of useful features and activities to do in our amazing city!
Clifton Park in the heart of Rotherham is a wonderful place for the whole family. 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!
Clifton Park has 2 car parks:
Dalby Forest, managed by the Forestry Commission, offers over 8,000 acres of woodland to explore, enjoy and discover, including the Grand Father Oak play area for children, family BBQ and picnic areas, adrenalin activities for the thrill seekers and walking and cycling trails for all.
Admission free, just pay to park (£9 per car)
Dalby Forest Visitor Centre, Dalby Forest, North Yorkshire, YO18 7LT. Tel: 01751 460295.
Elsecar Heritage Railway is South Yorkshire’s only Heritage Railway. Currently operating on a one mile section of track, passengers are pulled by a selection of steam and diesel engines, with a variety of coaching stock.
Run entirely by a team volunteers, the main operating day is a Sunday. Day ticket prices are £5 adult, £4 concessions and £2.50 children (3-16)
(Different prices may occur for special events)
The Railway Office, Wath Road, Elscar, Barnsley S74 8HJ. Tel: 01226 746746
Friends of Roundhay Park (FORP) FREE adventure trails in Roundhay Park have been designed by local children!
The trials are free to use by all park visitors, with clue sheets being accessible in the Lakeside Cafe, Tropical World and the Mansion art gallery. You can also download the trail sheets here forp.org/little-friends-trails/
There are two trails, the first is an imagination trail called The Magical Fountains of Roundhay and is aimed at under 6s.
Designed for pre-schoolers this trail route is fully accessible to wheelchairs and pushchairs. The route is split into 3 sections (ranging from 1km -1.5km in length) which can all be done together or split over several visits – children will need your help to read and understand what to do. Imaginations at the ready
The second is an adventure trial where older children (6+) have to solve The Secret of Roundhay Castle by undertaking various tasks.
Designed for children of ages 6 and older, this trail is longer and more challenging. The route is split into 3 sections (ranging from 1.5km – 2.5km in length) which can be done together or split over several visits.
FORP are encouraging children to undertake the trail and upload a photo to social media with the hashtag #littlefriendstrails. The answer sheets, certificates of completion and further information can be found on the FORP website – forp.org/little-friends-trails
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
Hemsworth Water Park has two lakes; the largest lake is available for pedalo rides and has sandy beaches; the smallest lake is in a more secluded area to attract wildlife. There are also plenty of grassed areas for picnics and games.
Playworld is an outdoor adventure playground within the Water Park and is suitable for children of all ages with a tower slide, climbing frames, toddler’s sandpit area.
Hoyle Mill Road, Kinsley, Pontefract, West Yorkshire, WF9 5JB
Explore the remains of the King’s Tower with its eerie dungeon and climb the winding staircase to the upper chamber. Stroll around the castle grounds, following the information signboards, and enjoy the stunning view down to the river Nidd. You are welcome to picnic in the castle grounds.
The Castle grounds are open all year round, 24 hours a day. The Castle and Museum are open to visitors from Easter to September.
Castle Yard, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire HG5 8AS. Tel: 01423 556188
Leeds Art Gallery reopened its doors (Autumn 2017) following the extensive refurbishment of the original Victorian roof and renovation of the Central Court. For the first time in a generation, visitors can see the stunning glass ceiling that has been transformed into a new gallery.
FREE ENTRY AND NO BOOKING NEEDED.
Find out more information about your visits here.
Family friendly workshops run throughout the year.
Discover 300 years of history and over 1 million objects that changed the world in the UK’s largest railway museum. Explore opulent carriages of the royal family including Queen Victoria and her ‘Palace on Wheels’ in Station Hall. Watch engineering work in progress in the Workshop, discover previously unseen artwork, papers, reports, photographs, and small artefacts at the Search Engine research centre and blow off some steam in both the indoor and outdoor play area.
Opening times: 10am – 5pm daily. Closed 24, 25, 26th December.
NRM York, Leeman Road, York, YO26 4XJ
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
Little Horton Lane, Bradford, BD1 1NQ. Tel: 0844 856 3797
A family run farm, providing an excellent farm shop. You can take a walk around the outside animal area and feed the animals (£1 per person), they even have Alpacas!. There is also an indoor sandpit and small play area (£2 per child) with ride-ons and Little Tikes slide etc for children. There is lots of free parking and a special picnic area.
Animal opening times Tuesday-Saturday 10am-4pm, Sundays and Mondays 10am-3pm.
None Go Bye Farm Shop, Otley Old Rd, Horsforth, Leeds, LS18 5HZ. Tel:0113 284 2206
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.
Mon – Fri: 7am-7pm
Saturday & Sunday: 10am-6pm
£1 per person, per journey.
Children 5 and under travel free.
Cash and card (including contactless) payments accepted.
At the bandstand side of the river, you can paddle in the shallow side water near the bridge. There is also a pebbled area to sit/sunbathe. Also great for feeding the ducks.
Loads of picnic tables and seating. At certain times of the year, the brass band is playing.
You can also enjoy a walk alongside the river.
Plenty of free car parking in the Wilderness (bandstand) car park.
Covid Update: Currently open Wednesday and Saturdays 1-5pm
Rodley Nature Reserve is designed to bring wetland wildlife back into the Leeds area.
Lots of activities for families: quiz trail guide, pond dipping (April – Oct), mini beast hunt, bird watching, moth trapping….and if the weather should spoil itself colouring sheets and quizzes are available in the Education Room at the Visitor Centre.
The Visitor Centre is open every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday and most Bank Holidays from 10am until 4pm.
Rodley Nature Reserve, Moss Bridge Road, Rodley, Leeds LS13 1HP. Tel: 0113 2040441
The Room on the Broom trail takes visitors across Anglers Country Park on a special themed walk.
Starting from the Discovery Centre, the trail follows a route around the lake giving youngsters the chance to see sculptures of Witch, Cat, Dog, Bird, Frog and the terrifying Dragon! For extra fun and games along the trail, purchase an Explorer Pack for £2 from the Discovery Centre before you set off. As you journey along the route look out for the wildlife that call Anglers Country Park their home.
Some parts of the path may be muddy so sensible footwear is advised. Suitable for bikes and pushchairs.
The Adventure Trail and Country Park are both open all day, every day with free entry. There is also a great outdoor play area at the end of the trail.
Haw Park Lane,Wintersett,Wakefield,WF4 2EB. Tel: 01924 303980
Join Rory the Tiger on a Saturday morning for different free craft activities.
Every week from 11am – 12.15pm.
Recommended age 5 to 11 years and families.
Leeds City Museum, Cookridge Street, Millennium Square, LS2 8BH. Tel: 0113 3785001
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.
With pond dipping, regular fun events and walks to help you get away from it all, RSPB Fairburn Ings is the ideal place for adults and children to find out more about wildlife. Visitor centre open daily except Christmas day. Small parking charge. Accessible paths. Shop, snacks & toilet facilities.
Fairburn Ings, Castleford, WF10 2BH. Tel: 01977 628191
Tel: 0113 378 9985 Facebook
The site is close to the A64 end of Thorner Lane. If you turn off the A64 onto Thorner Lane, it’s the second turning on your right (after the cemetery).
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.
Our exhibition ‘Through Our Eyes’ is an interactive, multi-media exhibition following the lives of sixteen Holocaust survivors and child refugees who made new lives in Yorkshire. Visitors will see poignant personal photos of the survivors and their families and their original artefacts and documents, together with an original prisoner uniform and other artefacts from the concentration camps at Buchenwald and Mittelbau-Dora.
The exhibition is suitable for those over 10 years of age. For those studying the Holocaust or interested in local and global history the exhibition is a must-see.
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
A new artist-designed play space for children under 5 on the Second Floor of the Tetley.
The Tiny Tetley Studio uses play and contemporary art to create an alternative to commercial spaces for children and their families.
Tiny Tetley Studio features a bespoke sound installation, play structures, and crocheted breastfeeding aids.
Open Wednesdays- Sundays 10am-5pm. FREE.
The Tetley, Hunslet Road, Leeds, LS10 1JQ
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
On a nice day, there isn’t a much better way to see the beautiful city of York than walking around the walls.
Children can enjoy following the route via the golden disks on the floor and remember to take some paper and crayons so they can complete the map rubbings at each of the bars.
The walls go most of the way around the city, just having to get down to street level a couple of times. Not strictly buggy friendly but I know many who have managed it fine. Always a friendly visitor or local on hand to help!