Yorkshire Sculpture Park has long been one of our favourite places for a day trip from York. With 500 acres of parkland and world-class sculptures – not to mention a fantastic cafe, plenty of wildlife and amazing indoor exhibitions – it’s a recipe for an inspiring day out. And because it’s so much of an outdoor experience, with so much to explore, kids love it. It’s a great place to visit as a family, and we often use it as a meeting point to see friends and family too. Here are our five top reasons for visiting Yorkshire Sculpture Park with kids.
1. There’s oodles of space to run around
Even the most active of toddlers or ten-year-olds can’t fail to be tired out with 500 acres of stunning Yorkshire countryside at their disposal! There are sheep to meet, trees to climb and even a nature trail that you can download from the YSP website beforehand if you’d like a more structured way to explore. There are stepping stones, boats, follies and grottos – the only limit is your energy.
2. The sculptures are inspiring (and fun!)
If the thought of taking your kids to a traditional art gallery fills you with visions of your kids running head-long into a priceless canvas, Yorkshire Sculpture Park is a great alternative. There’s an ever-changing selection of world class sculpture that you can enjoy in your wellies. You’ll see the works of Henry Moore, Damien Hirst and – in the current exhibition – Joana Vasconcelos. It’s a relaxed introduction to sculpture that kids will love.
3. There are good places to eat (and loads of space for a picnic)
There are plenty of ways to fuel your day at Yorkshire Sculpture Park. The Kitchen at YSP is the main restaurant, and one we’ve used when we haven’t had the time or energy to pack a picnic. It’s a relaxed, self-service set-up serving a good range of home cooked food with plenty of veggie options. There are a couple of cafes serving drinks, sandwiches and ice cream, too, and huge amounts of space for picnics if you want to take your own sandwiches.
4. The family facilities are excellent
Yorkshire Sculpture Park want families to have a good day out, and have excellent facilities, including: baby changing, buggy-friendly paths, family-friendly food and drink and tap water and free family resources on the YSP website. They are also proudly breastfeeding friendly.
5. It’s incredible value
Yorkshire Sculpture Park has always been at the top of our list when it comes to a great value day out. In the past, visitors just paid to park, but they have introduced a pre-booked ticketing system since the coronavirus. It’s still excellent value, though, at just £6 per adult and under 16s going free. Do remember to pre-book your tickets in advance as you won’t be able to enter without them.
Yorkshire Sculpture Park, West Bretton, Wakefield WF4 4LG
Distance from York – 40 minutes approx.
Opening times – Open daily, 10am to 6pm
Tickets – Pre-book in advance through the Yorkshire Sculpture Park website
Price – £6 per person; under 16s go free