Family walks for younger children

These Yorkshire walks all tend to be fairly short (under 5km) and many have plenty of things to do and see for children, particularly for under 5s.

Keep checking back as this list grows and follow my Facebook page for new walks that I find!

Family Walks in Leeds

Roundhay Park, North Leeds has play areas, ducks, playing fields and even in peak times a train! This 4km buggy-friendly route might be a little long for very little legs but there are loads to do as shorter alternatives. The secret gorge walk (on this map) is not suitable for buggies, but is only 2.7km and is definitely one of the most interesting (and quietest) parts of the park.

Oakwell Hall‘s nature trail in Birstall is 2miles and heads towards the main facilities half way round to stop for refreshments! Steps and slopes may mean little ones need some help at times- and this route is not suitable for buggies.

Woodlesford Lock, LS26 There are loads of walks starting from Woodlesford Lock, and this route is just under 2 miles, suitable for buggies, with lots to see along this great stretch of the canal.

Otley Chevin has lots of room to explore for little legs, with long and short routes. If you’re taking a buggy be prepared for mud and try to stick to bridleways.

Rodley Nature Reserve has a visitor’s centre where you can pick up a Quiz Trail Guide for children. You can also try pond dipping (between April and October), do a mini beast hunt as well as spot wildlife. Until I get a blog up, visit the website for more details.

Yeadon Tarn. A walk around the tarn is just one mile, but there is a play area to extend the visit! Surfaced paths. Probably one to save when you’re already in the area (or if your children are fans of planes- it’s under the flight path of Leeds Bradford Airport).

Temple Newsam has lots of lovely walks for children. This 3.5km route is suitable for buggies (although can get muddy) and shows some of the best bits of this great estate. Add on a farm and cafe visit for a full day out.

Bramley Fall. At just 1 mile this route is a good one to start little legs off with! It includes pretty woodland and the canal, but isn’t buggy friendly.

Bishop Wood, near Sherburn-in-Elmet, is a lovely area of woodland to explore. Many paths are buggy friendly, but it’s probably somewhere to save for if you’re already in the area or passing through.

Rothwell Country Parkhas lots of little paths to follow, and with great views of the city as well as access to the canal, it’s a good place to spend time exploring.

👉 Head over to this page for longer walks around Golden Acre Park, St Aiden’s and more.

Family Walks in Wakefield;

Thornes Park, just outside the city centre is great for a potter. The perimeter walk is two miles and family friendly. Look out for the aviary, secret garden, duck lake and miniature railway in the summer.

The Room on the Broom Trail at Angler’s Country Park is a great place to visit and with the £2 activity pack, little ones keep entertained the whole way round the 2 mile walk. Buggy-friendly. Adjacent to the park is the truly beautiful Haw Park Wood, the perfect place to explore and enjoy picnics!

Pugneys Country Park (junction 39 off M1) has a buggy-friendly 2.5k circular walk around the Lake. It has a great play area and LOADS of things to see. It’s not the prettiest of Wakefield’s parks but probably has the most to do.

The Gnome Roam at Newmillerdam is one of my favourite family walks! It’s 1.8miles and takes in some gorgeous woodland as well as the lakeside. The activities are fab, thoroughly engaging for little ones!

Also at Newmillerdam the pretty walk around the lake is 2 miles, and is suitable for buggies. Until we get back there to write a blog, read this page for more details.

Ardsley Reservoir, Tingley is a short, buggy friendly 2.5km route. Great for if you want a quick walk and you’re in the area, or if you want a breath of fresh air after tackling the White Rose.

Fairburn Ings, Castleford (RSPB) has a number of longer walks (so use this trail map from the RSPB website if you want to try it!), but for little legs this is a great place to explore with lots of activities.

Heath, Wakefield There are a few walks starting from this gorgeous village, this 2.5 mile route (not suitable for buggies) takes you around the pretty surrounding area. Finish at the fantastic King’s Arms.

Nostell, near Wakefield (NT) has a few walks that you can do in the Parkland between 1.5 and 2.5 miles, or you can enter the gardens for an easy 1.2 miles (it’s buggy-friendly and you can also enjoy the adventure playground).

Stanley Ferry and Southern Washlands Nature Reserve combines a walk along the canal with woodland, a river and a lake. The walk is just under 3 miles and can be started at the family-friendly Stanley Ferry pub.

Family Walks in Harrogate, Ripon and Nidderdale;

Druid’s Temple (near Masham) is a fab short walk if you’re in the area.. and has the bonus of starting at Swinton Bivouac, perfect for a cuppa or some ice cream!

Hackfall Wood, near Ripon has gorgeous trails and masses of character. It’s not buggy friendly, with uneven and steep paths, but totally worth the effort.

Plumpton Rocks, between Wetherby and Harrogate is less of a walk, more of an adventure. It’s the perfect place if you’re looking to spend a few hours with a picnic and do some serious exploration. Intrigued? Read more here.

Starting at Pateley Bridge, there’s a lovely short walk to Fishpond Wood… although there’s some walking on a road, it’s fairly quiet and the rest of the walk makes up for it! Not suitable for buggies.

👉 Head over to Days Out in Yorkshire for a walk around Fountain’s Abbey

Family Walks in York

Barlow Common’s Nature Trail in Selby was a truly unexpected find! With Drax power station as a backdrop you may not expect much, but beauty is found in the most surprising of places and this 4km trail takes you around a route with beauty on every corner. Suitable for buggies.

Brayton Barff is a lovely short 2km circular walk through woodland, with lots of woodland to explore if you have more time to spend there.

The Northwood Trail outside York is a 1.5km woodland walk, with a touch of magic! Gorgeous intricate Fairy homes are dotted about along the trail. It’s a bit pricey, so make the most of it if you go!

Skipwith Common is a nature reserve-come WW2 bomber training camp. This gorgeous site is really peaceful with loads of interesting finds! The pushchair friendly 2 mile walk is well marked.

Moorlands Nature Reserve, Skelton provides a short buggy-friendly nature trail but hours of exploration! With wooden sculptures, a pond and a tree house to find, there’s lots to keep little ones entertained.

Family Walks in Pickering, Whitby & North York Moors

Dalby Forest, near Pickering has a number of set walking trails for families (buy the guide from the visitor centre) but a highlight for young children is their 1Mile Zog trail. A newer addition the Shaun Glow Trail, which is more suited to slightly older children who will enjoy using the accompanying app.

Falling Foss is a stunning waterfall, but what makes this beauty spot even more special is the fantastic Falling Foss tea rooms. This lovely walk from May Beck, provided by North York Moors website, is a two mile circular route, but an equally enjoyable route is from Little Beck.

The Grosmont to Goathland Rail Trail is 3.6 miles, follows the old tramway line, built by George Stephenson. It’s a lovely walk, with the added benefit of having an excuse to go on the train!


Pontefract Racecourse has a 2mile circuit in pleasant surroundings, with a children’s playground and duck lake next to the car park.

Hardcastle Crags near Hebden Bridge has a lovely riverside walk with lots to interest little minds! Their Tree Trail is a little over 2 miles, but not suitable for buggies.

Ilkley has some gorgeous walks in the surrounding areas. This circular walk is 4km and takes in the Riverside as well as Middleton Woods (not buggy friendly).

Rabbit Ings in Barnsley is a lovely little park if you’re local and want somewhere with good views and masses of wildflowers!

Not strictly Yorkshire, but not far away (!) in the Peaks is the beautiful Longshaw estate (NT)where you can hunt for Boggarts!