By Kingfisher Visitor Guides
There are plenty of family friendly attractions here. The sky truly is the limit for outdoor adventures in West Yorkshire.
Delve into the wonderful world of Brontë Country along the Brontë Trail. You’ll walk in the footsteps of the novels by Charlotte, Anne and Emily from the town of Haworth. Discover moors that stretch for the far as the eye can see, sprinkled with sheep and hilltop villages. The walk to the Brontë Waterfall is a circular route that takes in streams, bridges and visions of the famous Wuthering Heights character, Heathcliff.
To see places visited by Charlotte Brontë, embark on the Jane Eyre Hathersage Trail. You’ll see Brookfield Manor, which features as the fictional Vale Hall. If you’re reasonably fit, follow the Haworth to Hebden Bridge Trail through remote moorland heading upland for a fantastic workout. If you need to rest your legs, make your trip back using the Worth Valley Railway, a five-mile-long branch line of preserved railway that runs between Keighley and Oxenhope using vintage steam locomotives.
From Marsden, it’s easy to discover the Marsden Moor Estate, which is 5,000 acres of National Trust moorland that separates Yorkshire from Lancashire. Steeped in history, its array of birds and plants make this great expanse of beautiful heathered hills and sparkling reservoirs internationally important. Back in the village, you’ll find real ale pubs for a break. If you love an outdoor dip after ambling, there’s the officially recognised wild swimming spot Sparth Reservoir, believed to have been used by swimmers for more than 150 years.
Discover moors that stretch for the far as the eye can see, sprinkled with sheep and hilltop villages. Follow the Haworth to Hebden Bridge Trail for a fantastic workout
Bird lovers enjoy the beauty of Fairburn Ings, an RSPB reserve. It’s a significant site for breeding and wintering wildfowl, especially gadwalls, with activities for all ages. Ideal for kids, the 500-metre Discovery Trail allows for relaxed walking with fun attractions along the way. You’ll spot creatures in Bug Village and find plenty of climbing walls for little monkeys.
Parks play a huge part in the county’s recreation so there’s always somewhere to burn off energy before bedtime! Manor Heath Park in Halifax features a Jungle Experience and a water play area for the little ones. In Wakefield, the 148-acre Thornes Park has beautiful walled gardens and a conservatory for you, and a skate park for them. Awarded the prestigious Green Flag Award, Sandringham Park is the place for picnics with children’s playgrounds.
Catch a canal boat taxi from the station at Marsden to Tunnel End. It’s the home of Standedge Tunnel, Britain’s longest, deepest and highest canal tunnel. Built in 1811, it cuts a path for boats and trains to pass under the Pennines between Yorkshire and Lancashire. During the season, it’s possible to take a trip into the tunnel from the visitor centre. You’ll experience exactly what the leggers once faced as they propelled the boats through the pitch-black tunnel.
If you’re at Castleford on a rainy day, check out Xscape in Castleford. You’ll launch into adventure golf, bowling, climbing walls and Yorkshire’s only 70ft high skycoaster
Check out Xscape in Castleford on a rainy day. You’ll launch into adventure golf, bowling, climbing walls and Yorkshire’s only 70ft high skycoaster. If you’d rather sit it out while the kids play, you’ll find plenty of shops and restaurants. Also at Castleford, Diggerland is a tractor fan’s dream come true with 20 themed rides and drives.
Wherever your days out take you, shopping and dining is always a joy for all ages in West Yorkshire. A short hop on the train out of Huddersfield lands you in the centre of Slaithwaite for antique shops and local artists’ work in The Gallery. Village pubs like the Commercial and Shoulder of Mutton offer real ale refreshments and family-friendly pub grub.
Set on the canal, there’s an easy walk between the villages of Slaithwaite and Marsden. Cafés abound along the way, but as you set off along the picturesque canal bank you’ll come across The Handmade Bakery. Go for gold eating scrumptious hand-crafted pastries and bread. The historic market town of Castleford offers shopping for everyone, with a town centre full of independent boutiques among high street favourites.
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