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What To Do On Rainy Days in Yorkshire

· Joseph Sheerin · Culture

From underground caves to brewery tours, make the most of those rainy days in Yorkshire.

Southern stingray at The Deep

No one likes moping about on rainy days, so get out of the house and make the most of everything you can do in Yorkshire.

You may well think of Yorkshire as an adventure playground, perfect for sunny summer days, but believe it on not, God’s Own County is great for rainy days out too. From adventure sports to interesting museums and foodie days out, there’s plenty to do that’ll make the torrential misery disappear.

Eureka!

Playing dentist at Eureka! The National Children's Museum

Halifax may not be the first place you think of on those rainy days, but Eureka! should change all that. If you’ve got little ones getting restless, it’s the perfect way to keep them occupied, with a range of interactive exhibits and activities that will make learning about science a bit more fun than the textbooks in school – even the grown ups might learn a new thing or two.

Eureka!, Discovery Road, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 2NE.

Xscape

Skiing at Snozone, Xscape

With so much to get on with at Xscape, you might need a couple of rainy days to make the most of it all. There’s the Gravity trampoline park, Snozone ski slopes, laser zone, a bowling alley, cinema and climbing walls plus much more. You can then follow it all up with a spot of shopping at the likes of Ellis Brigham and Evans Cycles before grabbing a bite to eat at one of a bunch of restaurants, including Ask Italian, Primo’s Gourmet Hot Dogs, Giraffe, Pizza Express and Nando’s.

Xscape, Colorado Way, Castleford, West Yorkshire, WF10 4TA.

The Deep

The Deep, Amazing Half Term Activities in Yorkshire

Hull might seem long way away, but on rainy days, there are few better places to shelter away than in the futuristic surroundings of The Deep. You won’t have been to an aquarium quite like it, with over 3,500 animals, including animals such as sawfish, sharks, rays as well as loads of insects and even a colony of Gentoo penguins. Oh and, there’s a pretty special restaurant inside where you can enjoy a bite while fish swim all round you.

The Deep, Tower Street, Hull, East Yorkshire, HU1 4DP.

Artison

Artison

Rainy days can be the perfect opportunity to pick up some new skills and Artison, near Masham, offer up a range of 1 day courses, so you can get away from it all in their studios. From jewellery making to glassblowing, you’ll spend the whole day at Artison working with experts over two sessions. With homemade lunches and cakes provided too, your creativity will be well fuelled.

Artison, High Burton, Masham, North Yorkshire, HG4 4BS.

Calypso Cove

Calypso Cove at Metrodome Leisure Complex

A trip to Barnsley is in order for rainy days, and we promise it’ll be worth it. Calypso Cove is a huge indoor water playground that is fun for both adults and kids. There are countless slides, flumes and pools to take on, including special ones for toddlers and even a competition pool. The most daring among you can Walk the Plank, with their lofty diving board, before topping the day off with a meal at the pirate-themed restaurant, The Hideout.

Calypso Cove, Metrodome Leisure Complex, Queens Ground, Queens Road, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S71 1AN.

Magna Centre

Kids in Magna Science Adventure Centre, Amazing Half Term Activities in Yorkshire

Want to make the most of a miserable day to go on a science adventure in Yorkshire? The Magna Centre is the perfect spot to do just that, with four different sections split up into Fire, Water, Earth and Air. Their interactive exhibits and mind-boggling experiments will no doubt cause a bit of awe and wonder, particularly the Big Melt, a working steel furnace which you can hear all over the complex.

MAGNA Science Discovery Centre, Sheffield Road, Templeborough, Rotherham, South Yorkshire, S60 1DX.

York Motorsports Village

Yorkshire Motor Sport Village

A whole village dedicated to motorsports? Well, that’s what’s waiting for all those petrolheads in York. Alongside, F1, F2 and F3 karts for the youngsters there are petrol cars to go around the indoor circuit, as well as the North’s only driver training racing simulator, which is the same one as used by Formula 1 drivers.

York MotorSports Village, Kathryn Avenue, Monks Cross Leisure Park, York, North Yorkshire, YO32 9JS.

The Play Factory

Soft Play Leeds

The The Play Factory in Skelton and Thornaby is primarily for the kids – it’s an indoor playground with oodles of soft play fun for the little ones and is perfect for keeping them occupied on rainy days. But they’ve also introduced special adults soft play parties that are the perfect way to let off a bit of steam by finding your inner kid. You’re sure to impress your mates by doing something that little bit different.

The Play Factory, Dukesway, Stockton-on-Tees, Cleveland, North Yorkshire, TS17 9LT; Skelton Industrial Estate, 29 Millholme Avenue, Skelton-in-Cleveland, Saltburn-by-the-Sea, North Yorkshire, TS12 2LQ.

National Media Museum

Photography workshop at National Media Museum, Bradford

One of the crown jewels of Bradford, the National Media Museum is the perfect spot to get away from the rainy days in Yorkshire. Focusing on photography, film and television, there are seven floors of permanent and temporary exhibitions to trawl through, as well as three cinemas including an IMAX screen to see those blockbusters in the best way possible.

National Media Museum, Little Horton Lane, Bradford, West Yorkshire, BD1 1NQ.

York Chocolate Story

York Chocolate Story

It doesn’t matter if you’re young or old, a day out to the York Chocolate Story will be better than watching the rain hit your living room window. They offer a guided tour through York’s famous chocolate making families, as well as showing you where it came from, how to make it and even who to taste it, before trying some more out in their cafe and picking some up to take home with you.

York Chocolate Story, King’s Square, York, North Yorkshire, YO1 7LD.

Black Sheep Brewery Tour

The Black Sheep Brewery

Okay, so one of you will need to be a designated driver here, but a trip to Black Sheep Brewery in Masham is a fine way to spend those drizzly Yorkshire days. They’ll take you on an extensive tour of one of Yorkshire’s most famous breweries, offering a couple of tasters along the way, before going for a meal and a drink in their bistro and bar.

The Black Sheep Brewery, Wellgarth, Masham, North Yorkshire, HG4 4EN.

Wensleydale Creamery

Wensleydale Creamery

Nothing says Yorkshire quite like a slice of Wensleydale cheese, and they’re allowing you to delve inside their world with a Museum and newly opened Cheese Experience, which is possibly the finest way to spend those rainy days. You’ll find plenty to entertain the kids, as they learn about where cheese comes from and how it’s made, while grown ups will love getting stuck into all the different types of Wensleydale cheese.

Wensleydale Creamery, Gayle Lane, Hawes, Wensleydale, North Yorkshire, DL8 3RN.

White Scar Cave

White Scar Cave Family Days Out Yorkshire

As the longest show cave in England and Wales, White Scar Cave near Ingleton is one of Yorkshire’s finest natural wonders. Best of all, since it’s a cave, it’s the perfect spot for some exploration, even when it’s raining back on the surface. It’s 3.7 miles long, so there’s plenty to discover, from the Big Bertha boulder to the amazing selection of wildlife and natural formations inside the cave.

White Scar Cave, Ingleton, Carnforth, North Yorkshire, LA6 3AW.

The Hepworth

The Hepworth, Wakefield

A truly modern art gallery, chances are you won’t have visited an exhibition space quite like The Hepworth in Wakefield. It’s quickly become one of Yorkshire’s top attractions since opening in 2011, displaying key works by Barbara Hepworth, from whom it takes its name, as well as contemporary artists and items from Wakefield’s art collection, which spans over 500 years. Have a wander around, visit the shop, stop in the cafe for a brew and those rainy days will fly by.

The Hepworth, Gallery Walk, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF1 5AW.

Jorvik Viking Centre

Kids digging at Jorvik DIG

The Vikings and Yorkshire have had a long, sometimes illustrious and often bloody history – and you can get away from those horrible rainy days by exploring it all at Jorvik Viking Centre. There are the remains of 1,000 year old houses to discover, and a slew of objects that were excavated from the site of the museum itself. Keep your eye open for special events too where you might just meet some real life Vikings.

Jorvik Viking Centre, Coppergate, York, North Yorkshire, YO1 9WT.

Harrogate Turkish Baths and Spa

Harrogate Turkish Baths and Spa

Just because it’s one of those typical rainy Yorkshire days doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a good soak indoors. There are few more unique places to it than at Harrogate Turkish Baths and Spa. The historic venue is a stunning place to relax, as you go through three heated chambers, before taking a dip in the Plunge Pool, then finishing off in the Relaxation Room and showers. A bit of R&R never goes amiss on a miserable day.

Harrogate Turkish Baths and Spa, Parliament Street, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 2WH.

Salts Mill

Salt's Mill, Saltaire

Credit: Peppermint Creative

Once the largest industrial building in the world, Salts Mill is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It became the starting point for the picturesque village, which was built to home the mill workers. The mill closed in 1986, but has since been transformed into a hub of creativity that makes for great days out. The 1853 Gallery features works by legendary artist David Hockney, and there are also a number of restaurants and cafes, as well as shops that sell everything from books and posters to bicycles and jewellery, all of which you can enjoy without getting wet.

Salts Mill, Victoria Road, Shipley, Saltaire, West Yorkshire, BD18 3LA.

York Minster

West view of York Minster

As iconic a piece of architecture as Yorkshire has, York Minster really is a sight to behold, whether you’re religious or not. Built over a 300 year period, it was finished in 1472 and is the largest Gothic cathedral in Northern Europe. There’s loads to do here, and it’s not just about admiring the stunning architecture. The Revealing York Minster exhibition in the Undercroft follows the 2000 year journey of the site, while Explorer Backpacks gives the little ones a chance to uncover a few secrets.

York Minster, Deangate, York, North Yorkshire, YO1 7HH.

The Bronte Parsonage

Bronte Parsonage Museum

Credit: Man Alive licensed for commercial reuse under Creative Commons.

Yorkshire and the Bronte sisters will forever be entwined, largely thanks to their books which used the county as source of inspiration. You can find out all about them at The Bronte Parsonage which has been a museum since 1893, and since it’s tucked away deep in the Pennines, you can expect plenty of rainy days out here. Head indoors for a safe haven where you can pour over works, letters, documents, objects and relics from the Brontes – it will give you a unique insight into what life was like for them and other locals in Yorkshire during the 19th century.

The Bronte Parsonage, Church Street, Haworth, West Yorkshire, BD22 8DR.

The Dracula Experience

The Dracula Experience, Whitby

Credit: Glen Bowman licensed for commercial use under Creative Commons.

Days out by the Yorkshire seaside can be perilous affairs when it comes to the weather, but if it does rain, Whitby has a great attraction that’s perfect for rainy days. The town is the home of Dracula and inspired Bram Stoker’s famous horror novel, so they an entire museum dedicated to it. Go on a tour through the story, learning all about its connections to Whitby, as it’s brought to life using animated scenes, special effects and live actors.

The Dracula Experience, 9 Marine Parade, Whitby, North Yorkshire, YO21 3PR.

The National Railway Museum

National Railway Museum, Yorkshire

Credit: Peppermint Creative

Whether you’re a train enthusiast or not, a trip to the National Railway Museum is a great way to spend those rainy days. The range of artefacts on show here is amazing, whether its photos, uniforms or signs – all of which help to tell the story of how the railways changed the world. That’s just the beginning though, because there are also the trains themselves – from the Mallard, a former world speed record holder for steam trains, to the Shinkasen, the only Japanese bullet train outside of Japan, it’s really a sight to behold.

National Railway Museum, Leeman Rd, York, North Yorkshire, YO26 4XJ.

Feature image and The Deep image courtesy of The Deep. White Scar Cave image copyright Phillip Male under Creative Commons license for commercial use. The Hepworth image courtesy of Paul Arber. The Black Sheep Brewery image courtesy of JPBarrass licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.