6 brilliant things to do with the kids in the North York Moors

For families who want to embrace the great outdoors this summer, pack your car for a road trip and head straight for the North York Moors National Park…

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1. Sleep in a family-sized forest cabin

Think tree houses are just for kids?  Think again. Glamp it up with a Forest Holidays luxury treehouse cabin in Keldy Forest, or self-catering log cabin, at nearby leafy Cropton. Think outdoor hot tubs, BBQ stations and plenty of space for the kids to play safely outdoors. You can even pre-order food to be delivered to your cabin for when you arrive, hire bikes to explore the woodlands and arrange outdoor activities with Forest Rangers, such as treasure hunts and night-time trails that’ll make the whole family feel #alivewithadventure.

2. Go Ape at Dalby Forest

If you’re looking for something fun to do as a family, Go Ape’s treetop adventures for ages 10+ could be the answer. From tree-to-tree crossings to super springy bounce nets and zippy Segways, there’s no wonder its been voted the UK’s number one award-winning forest adventure company. You’ll need to book in advance, particularly for weekends and school holidays, as the courses can get booked up but it’s guaranteed to be a day out like no other. Plus, there are plenty of places to stop and picnic, or even barbecue, and lots of fun playgrounds if you’ve got toddlers in tow or, ahem… haven’t got a head for heights and want to sit out.

3. Spend the day at the seaside

If you want to show your kids some traditional seaside fun, the North York Moors has it in buckets and spades. Robin Hood’s Bay, Boggle Hole, Staithes, Sandsend and Runswick Bay are all brilliant places to stop along the North York Moors coastline. Little ones will love the fossil-foraging and building sandcastles, while those a little older can test their nerve by taking to the water to try sea kayaking, surfing or paddle-boarding.

4. Set little ones on nature-inspired games

Foraging with a fishing net at the many rockpools up and down the coast is fun for all and especially great if you’re on a budget. Head to Whitby or Robin Hood’s Bay to search for crabs, squat lobsters and sea hares (a type of sea snail) and colourful sea anemone, which look like blobs of jelly stuck to the rocks. Tell the kids to look in the crevices between rocks where stacks of periwinkle shells could be sheltering and have a bucket of sea water ready to inspect any finds before returning them to sea.

5. Ride the North Yorkshire Moors Railway

Thanks to Thomas and Friends, steam trains never fail to impress, so take the kids to check out the real thing – the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. Whether you choose to watch the steam trains roll through the stations or take a ride along the 24 miles stretching from the market town of Pickering through the heart of the National Park and out to the spectacular coastline, there are plenty of train-tastic stations, such as Goathland, Pickering and Whitby to explore. All this excitement should work up everyone’s appetite for some tasty fish and chips before heading home.


6. Explore ancient history

Want to get your kids hooked on history? There are more than 20 historic abbeys, castles and gardens to discover but the ruins of Rievaulx Abbey, set in a remote valley in the North York Moors National Park near Helmsley, is our top pick for families. Pick up the family trail and hunt for clues of medieval life, then tuck into delicious local food in the tearoom before letting the kids roam around the beautiful grounds.

Tell me more…

The North York Moors is a place alive with adventure and the adventure is yours to make. Start your own at northyorkmoors.org.uk/visiting