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Days Out from Leeds by Train

York, The Yorkshire Dales and the East Coast are in easy reach of Leeds. Excellent rail connections enable visitors to make day trips from Leeds by train. Here are just a few ideas for a day out without a car:

Take an Open Top Bus along Scarborough Promenade


Scarborough Photo Andrew Curtis under a Creative Commons License

Scarborough is the largest seaside resort on the Yorkshire Coast. Enjoy the sandy beaches of the North and South Bays. Take an open top bus from the Spa along the Marine Drive to Peasholme Park. The park has rowing boats, re-enacts naval battles on the lake and in the terminus for the North Bay miniature railway. The promenade has attractions traditionally associated with the seaside including, a funfair, amusements, ice cream parlours and fish and chip restaurants.

Getting There

Trains to Scarborough run every hour from Leeds; the journey takes 1 hour 18 minutes.


Hull has Eight Free Museums in the City Centre

Hull is a thriving city with three city centre shopping malls and an historic old town. Shoppers will head for St Stephen’s, next to the station, or Princes Quay. At the bottom of Whitefriargate, just past Princes Quay, is the Old Town packed with places to eat and drink and the redeveloped Marina. There are eight museums in Hull city centre offering free admission and The Deep (which has an admission charge) is one of Europe’s top aquariums with over 3500 exhibits, including sharks and rays. The train journey into Hull offers spectacular views of the Humber Bridge.

Getting There

Trains to Hull run every hour from Leeds; the journey takes 56 minutes.

Visit York Minster and The National Railway Museum

Visitors to York are greeted with a sense of the city’s history on leaving the station. The Roman walls, which encircle the city, pass the station entrance. York Minister and the National Railway Museum are both about 10 minute’s walk from the station and a Road Train runs every 30 minutes between the two. Most of York’s many other attractions are in walking distance of the Minster including The Shambles, Jorvik Viking Museum, Castle Museum and Clifford’s Tower.

Getting There

There are 5 trains an hour to York from Leeds; the journey takes between 23 and 40 minutes.

Skipton is the Gateway to the Yorkshire Dales

Skipton Castle

Skipton Castle under a Creative Commons License

Skipton is a thriving market town at the gateway to the Yorkshire Dales. Skipton Castle, has a history covering 900 years, and was besieged in the Civil War. Along the main street, Skipton Market is open four days a week selling fresh food, clothes and other household items. The market is so highly regarded that it was voted “Best in Yorkshire. The Leeds – Liverpool Canal passes through Skipton and is popular with boating enthusiasts and walkers.

Getting There

Trains to Skipton leave every 30 minutes from Leeds. The journey time is 45 minutes.

Other Ideas for a Day Out from Leeds

There are plenty more attractions in easy reach of Leeds by train including:

  • National Media Museum Bradford
  • Eureka! Children’s Museum Halifax (next to station)
  • The Victorian village of Saltaire
  • Meadowhall Shopping Centre Sheffield
  • Mother Shipton’s Cave at Knaresborough

For more ideas 100 Days Out in Yorkshire

National Rail provides up to date details of train times and fares.


Picture Profile The Historic City of York

The Romans, Vikings and Normans all settled in York and shaped its character. Today, visitors find a vibrant city, with a living history.
The historic City of York dates back to Roman times and attracts visitors all year round. It is also an ideal base for touring Yorkshire, with The Yorkshire Dales, The North York Moors and The Yorkshire Coast all less than an hour away.

Step out of York railway station and you immediately start to experience the city’s history. Opposite the entrance runs part of the longest surviving city walls in Britain. The walls are open to the public daily and still virtually circle the city, walking round provides a free and interesting way of discovering what York has to offer.

For more information Visit York or 100 Days Out in Yorkshire


Castle Museum York Photo


River Ouse York Photo


The Shambles York Photo


City Walls York Photo


Shopping in York Photo

Ian Britton

York Minster Photo

Harrogate – An Ideal Base for Touring

The spa town of Harrogate is an ideal base for touring West and North Yorkshire. There are direct train services link the town with York and Leeds; and the Yorkshire Dales and the motorway network are only a short drive away.

Harrogate town centre is a sophisticated, relaxing environment where visitors can wander round exclusive stores in the Montpelier Quarter, enjoy the open spaces of The Stray or Valley Gardens or relax and chat over afternoon tea in the famous Betty’s Tea Rooms. Outside the town, there are nearby attractions in all directions.

Harlow Carr Gardens has Seasonal Colours

Harlow Carr Gardens, Harrogate

Harlow Carr Garden Photo Allan Carr under a Creative Commons License

Less than two miles to the west of Harrogate, Harlow Carr Gardens provide an ideal escape from the pressures of life. The gardens, run by the Royal Horticultural Society, offer an oasis of tranquillity, with displays changing according to season. Tulips in spring, summer borders, autumnal colours and winter berries can all be enjoyed. Step back in time in the Gardens through time or take inspiration from the Kitchen Garden.

Mother Shipton’s Cave England’s Oldest Visitor Attraction

Four miles to the east is the market town of Knaresborough; home to Britain’s first visitor attraction Mother Shipton’s Cave. The cave was home to the Yorkshire prophetess and soothsayer, who, it is claimed predicted the invasion of the Spanish Armada and the Great Fire of London. Since 1630, tourists have visited and the mysterious Petrifying Well, where cascading water turns everyday objects in to stone. The cave stands in the shadow of the arches of Knaresborough’s famous viaduct and on the banks of the River Nidd.

Take a Guided Tour of Ripley Castle

Ripley Castle

Ripley Castle Photo Dr Gilly Bean under a Creative Commons License

Three miles to the north of the town, Ripley Castle the home to the Ingilby family since 1309, has been voted “Yorkshire’s Small Visitor Attraction of the Year”. Guided tours of the house reveal 700 years of family scandal, politics and intrigue. Discover tales of kings and queens, religious persecution, civil war and plagues, eccentric ancestors and ghost stories. Special tours, designed for children aged 5 to 13, give an amusing and informative insight into the castle’s colourful past.

The castle stands in 1000 acres of grounds, with fountains and lawns and an impressive 15th century arched gatehouse. Special displays include the kitchen garden, the walled garden and tropical plant collection; and red deer graze under oak trees by the lake.

Harewood House and Bird Garden

Eight miles south of Harrogate is Harewood House, home of the Earl and Countess of Harewood. The interior of the 18th century house was designed by Robert Adam, furnished by Thomas Chippendale and houses paintings by leading artists of the time, including JMW Turner.

Harewood House

Harewood House Photo Barney Z under a Creative Commons License

The grounds and lake offer relaxing views of the Yorkshire countryside and Harewood Bird Garden houses almost 100 species of different birds; including some that are threatened with extinction. Java sparrows, ostriches, penguins, flamingos, macaws and red kites are just a few of the inhabitants.

Further afield, there are many more attractions in easy reach. The historic city of Ripon, the market town of Skipton, the Roman city of York and the shops of Leeds are all less than 45 minute’s drive from Harrogate.

10 Things to do in York: York Minster, the National Railway Museum, the Shambles & more!

The historic City of York dates back to Roman times and attracts visitors all year round. It is also an ideal base for touring Yorkshire, with The Yorkshire Dales, The North York Moors and The Yorkshire Coast all less than an hour away.

Step out of York railway station and you immediately start to experience the city’s history. Opposite the entrance runs part of the longest surviving city walls in Britain. The walls are open to the public daily and still virtually circle the city, walking round provides a free and interesting way of discovering what York has to offer:

Castle Museum

Victorian cobbled streets, old shops and prison cells are part of a six hundred year tour British life. York Castle Museum is a museum of everyday life, displaying thousands of household objects including historic toys, fashion, armour, weapons, tools, printing presses, cooking utensils, farming equipment. Rooms, shops, streets – and even prison cells are recreated and modern sound and lighting effects are used to create a realistic atmosphere.

Clifford’s Tower

Enjoy panoramic views of the city and the surrounding countryside from the top of the tower, built by William the Conqueror to subdue the rebellious north and rebuilt by Henry III in the 13th century

Jorvik Viking Centre

Set on the site where the remains of the City of Jorvik were discovered, the museum recreates life at the end of the first millennium. Viking towns are recreated and over 800 original Viking items, discovered on the site are displayed.

National Railway Museum

Discover the history of the train at the world’s largest Railway Museum. Royal trains, the record breaking Mallard, a replica of Stephenson’s Rocket, and the Japanese Bullet Train are just a few of the exhibits. Admission is free of charge.


Mallard National Railway Museum Photo John Oyston

Richard III Experience and Henry VII Experience

Despite his remains being found and buried in Leicester, York still has a strong association with Richard III and the Richard III Experience at Monk Bar relives the controversial and turbulent reign of England’s last Plantagenet monarch.

The exhibition presents the story of Richard III, in the form of a ‘trial’. Visitors give their verdict when Richard is charged with the murders of the Princes in the Tower. Monk Bar boasts a Medieval Gatehouse which has a rare example of a working portcullis, last lowered in 1953.

At nearby, Micklegate Bar the Henry VII Experience tells the story of Henry who defeated Richard at Bosworth Fields to become the first Tudor King of England. Joint tickets can be bought for both attractions, offering savings on the price of two separate tickets.

River Cruises

Take a trip by boat down the River Ouse, regular trips sail three miles downstream, as far as the Archbishop of York’s residence at Bishopthorpe.

The Shambles

First mentioned in the Domesday Book, The Shambles is a narrow street crammed with gift shops and cafes. The current street, referred to as “Europe’s best preserved medieval street, dates from the Elizabethan period.”, and is so narrow, in places, that it is possible to touch buildings on both sides with outstretched arms.

Treasurer’s House

A medieval town house in the shadow of York Minister, where the ghosts of a Roman legion are said to haunt the cellars. Four centuries of history, including a model ship made from bones, are displayed.

York Dungeon

An underground tour that recalls some of York’s most notorious characters; including Guy Fawkes and highwayman Dick Turpin. See witches burned at the stake and discover why York is regarded as the most haunted city in Britain. Not for the faint hearted..

York Minister

York is second only to Canterbury in the Church of England hierarchy and the splendour of the Minster reflects this. Stained glass windows up to 800 years old are found in the largest Medieval Gothic cathedral north of the Alps. Open daily subject to services.

York Minster Photo John Oyston

York Minster Photo John Oyston

The Railway Museum and The Shambles are free of charge, a York Pass offers free or discounted admission to many attractions in York and the surrounding area. Prices range from £36 for a one day pass to £44 for a three day pass.

York is easily reached by road and rail. Regular direct train services arrive in York from all part58s of the country. Parking in York centre is difficult, but well signposted Park and Ride services are available from the outskirts of the city on all major approaches.

Visit York tourist information

100 Days Out in Yorkshire for other Yorkshire ideas

#YorkshireFamily with Yorkshire Tots

Great Free Days Out Across the UK

Across Britain there are a host of attractions offering free admission. From London to Wales and Coventry to Scotland family days out don’t need to be expensive.
There are some great free family days out across the UK, ranging from top museums to small country parks. In every corner of the United Kingdom there are attractions that offer free admission; some may charge for premium attractions or car parking but all of the places listed below offer a great free day out.

British Museum
The British Museum is one of the UK’s largest museums. The collection consists of over 7 million items covering the history of the human race from pre historic days to the 21st century. The Museum is in Central London, a short walk from Russell Square and Tottenham Court Road tube stations.

Tate Galleries
The Tate Galleries celebrate the history of British Art. See the works of Turner and Constable at Tate Britain or more contemporary work along the South Bank at Tate Modern. The regional museums at St Ives and Liverpool also offer free admission.

Imperial War Museum
The Imperial War Museum covers the history of wars and conflicts, especially the two World Wars. The main building is at Lambeth in London, with smaller exhibitions at the Cabinet War Rooms in Whitehall, the historic ship HMS Belfast on the River Thames, The Imperial War Museum at Duxford near Cambridge, and The Imperial War Museum North in Manchester.

Margam Park, Port Talbot

Margam Country Park is set in over 1000 acres of parkland,just east of Port Talbot. Visitors can enjoy everything in the grounds free of charge, except the train ride. Attractions include a Farm, Visitors Centre, Mansion House, Monastic Ruins, Narrow Gauge Railway, Fairytale Land, Children’s Adventure Playground, Deer Herd and Crazy Golf.


Margam Park Photo John Oyston

Royal Botanical Gardens Edinburgh
The Royal Botanical Gardens are less than 2 miles north of Edinburgh City Centre. See thousands of trees and shrubs including the largest collection of wild-origin Chinese plants outside China, a Rock Garden with over 5000 alpine plants and the Queen Mother’ Memorial Garden. The site, which covers over 70 acres is fully accessible for wheelchair users. Admission to the gardens is free, but there is a small charge to visit the Glass House.

BALTIC Gateshead
The Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art stands on the south bank of the River Tyne at Gateshead. BALTIC, the biggest gallery of its kind in the world, hosts regularly changing exhibitions and activities – so no two visits are the same.

Coventry Transport Museum
The City of Coventry has a long association with the motor industry. The Coventry Transport Museum is a collection of cycles, motorcars, commercial vehicles and motorbikes made in the city over the years.



National Railway Museum Photo John Oyston

National Railway Museum
The National Railway Museums at York and Shildon, near Darlington provide an insight into the the history of the railways. Exhibits range from small railway artefacts to steam engines like the record breaking “Mallard”, and overseas exhibits such as the Japanese Bullet Train.

National Football Museum, Manchester
The National Football Museum at Manchester tells the history of football (soccer) from the origins to the Premier League and Champion’s League. Exhibits include the ball from the 1966 World Cup Final, Maradona’s shirt from the “hand of God” game, the oldest FA Cup trophy and the shirt from the world’s first international.

Royal Armouries
The Royal Armouries is the United Kingdom’s oldest museum,. Discover the history of the Tower of London and see one of the largest collections of arms and armour in the world, including the UK’s National Collection of Arms and Armour, National Artillery Collection, and National Firearms Collection. The museum is housed across three sites: The Tower of London, Leeds and Portsmouth. Admission to the sites at Portsmouth and Leeds are free of charge, but there is an admission charge to The Tower of London.

Bridlington – The Seaside Resort for all the Family

In 2014, cycling put Yorkshire on the map. The Grand Depart for the Tour de France was such an overwhelming success that an annual Tour de Yorkshire now appears on the cycling calendar. The 2015 race starts in the seaside resort of Bridlington (or “Brid” as is affectionately known in Yorkshire). On 1 May, the eyes of the sporting world will be on Brid – but what is there once the media scrum has disappeared and normality returns?

Bridlington is an ideal destination for a family day out, or a short break by the sea. The town has two award winning blue flag beaches, separated by the harbour. Children will love bathing in the sea, building sandcastles and taking a donkey ride; while parents and grandparents reminisce.

Action Packed Rides and Old Penny Arcades

The promenade has attractions for all ages. Kiddies’ corner has rides and activities suitable for young children, while the Bayside Pleasure Park caters for teenagers with exciting rides like the Jungle River log flume and Sky Flyer. Old Penny Memories is an amusement arcade filled with machines which need old pennies to use them. Round the corner, the Beside the Seaside Museum has photographs and other exhibits of the heyday of the British seaside.

If the weather is bad, Leisure World has three indoor swimming pools with twisting slides and a wave machine. The redeveloped Spa is the place for evening entertainment, with a varied programme of events including drama, comedy and dancing.

Bridlington Promenade Photo Alan Holmes @Aliholmes3

Bridlington Promenade Photo Alan Holmes @Aliholmes3

Bridlington Harbour Photo Alan Holmes @AliHolmes3

Bridlington Harbour Photo Alan Holmes @AliHolmes3

Bridlington’s Old Town is the place for Antiques and Afternoon Tea

Away from the sea front, Bridlington’s medieval Old Town is a maze of narrow streets and alleyways. Explore galleries and antique shops selling art works ceramics and jewellery or take afternoon tea in the Georgian Tea Rooms.

Bridlington lies in a sweeping bay, with spectacular views of the cliffs at Flamborough across the North Bay. It is a pleasant two mile walk along the cliff tops to Sewerby. Sewerby Hall and Gardens is an ideal picnic spot and attractions include a children’s zoo and a pitch and putt course. A land train runs regularly along the cliff top between Bridlington Promenade and Sewerby Park.

Sail the Yorkshire Belle to Flamborough Head

The harbour offers the chance to take a trip out to sea on a pleasure cruise. The Yorkshire Belle sails daily on hour long cruises to Flamborough Head and occasionally does longer trips the the Bird Sanctuary at Bempton. For the more adventurous, Bridlington speedboats are the fastest on the East Coast , crossing the bay at speeds of up to 56mph.

Fish are still landed at the harbour and freshly caught fish can be bought at stalls around the harbour or one of the fish and chip restaurants in the town.

Bridlington Tourist Information and Accommodation

There is a wide selection of hotels, guest houses and self catering accommodation available in the town. The Bridlington Tourist Information Office, on Prince Street, can provide up to date details.

Getting to Bridlington

Bridlington is an ideal base for touring the Yorkshire Coast and North Yorks Moors National Park and is in easy reach of Hull, Scarborough, York and Leeds.

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