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Review – Five reasons we love Askham Bog Nature Reserve, York

Whether you’ve got a baby in a buggy or a big kid who’s surgically attached to a screen, it’s good to have a few ideas for getting them outside and active (whether they want to or not!). If they’re anything like ours, they’ll probably complain at the suggestion of going for a walk, but one place that our kids always enjoy exploring when we get there is Askham Bog. Of all the places to go around York for a family walk, it’s one that we fall back on regularly for a number of reasons. Here are our top five reasons to visit Askham Bog with kids.

1. It’s a short walk

Askham Bog

While more adventurous families might attempt the Yorkshire three peaks of a weekend, many of us just need a short walk up our sleeves to get the kids out for some fresh air and exercise. Askham Bog is a short, circular walk that we can do in 20 minutes if we don’t have a lot of time. Feeling more adventurous? More time on your hands? We can, and often do, climb over the stiles and off the beaten track where we’ve found huge meadows, secret gardens, ponds and den-building areas. Ignore the distant hum of the A64 and feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere. Take a picnic, a camera and your imagination.

2. There’s a variety of nature to look for


A walk with kids is much easier if they’ve got something to focus on, and a nature I-spy is the ideal activity at Askham Bog. There are butterflies and birds galore, interesting trees and flowers and much more, all of which make it a beautiful place to escape the real world for a little bit.

3. The path is boarded

Askham Bog York

It might not be as flat as a walk around the Designer Outlet but it’s boarded, making it accessible for the majority of buggies and wheelchairs. It’s also a lot more fun! The path down from the car park isn’t boarded but is flat and easy in all but the worst of weather. Askham Bog is a Yorkshire Wildlife Trust place, which is why it’s maintained so well.

4. It’s just a short drive from York


One of the reasons that we visit so often is that Askham Bog is just a five-minute drive from home. There’s no need for planning or packing up the car, and it gives us a little bit of fresh air and exercise in a hurry. Much like Moorlands Nature Reserve, Askham Bog is a place you wouldn’t expect to find so close to a very built-up area (and a major dual carriageway!).

5. It’s free

Askham Bog York

There’s no admission charge for Askham Bog, so everybody can enjoy its beauty free of charge (although Yorkshire Wildlife Trust would no doubt appreciate a donation via their website if you’re feeling generous). There’s a small car park and that’s free, too.

Good to know

– No loos or cafe, so plan ahead!

– Free parking

Askham Bog, Just off the A1036, York YO23 2UB

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