For Families

There's something for all ages to enjoy at the Yorkshire Arboretum and a range of activities that are especially suitable for those visiting with children:

Summer Holiday Activities

This summer we have a packed programme of fun activities suitable for primary school aged children. From Traditional Tale Telling to Pond Dipping and from hour-long drop in sessions to full day experiences with no adults allowed, check out the programme:


We're proud to be listed on the Get Kids Out Learning website.This website pulls together all of the best educational venues across the UK and allows you to search for them by region to see all the information you need to plan a great day out!


All Season Children's Activities

There is plenty to keep the family entertained whenever you visit:

Woodland Playground

With lots of den building opportunities, balance beams, tree trunk bridges, log ladders and giant stepping stones, all created from the arboretum's own trees, there's plenty for children to discover and enjoy in our Woodland Playground. Open all season (weather permitting).

Minibeast Discovery Trail:

This trail is designed to help children explore nature & learn about the creatures they see, including ladybirds, bees and butterflies. Pick up a free trail guide from the Visitor Centre and start on the path behind Tercentenary Wood. Look out for the ladybird information board, then just follow the instructions. There's a prize for completing the whole trail!

Leaf Bingo:

A fun, informal treasure-hunt style activity that can be undertaken by children individually or together. Leaf Bingo encourages children to explore the arboretum and promotes observational skills. Leaf Bingo sheets and pencils, and guidance notes for accompanying adults, are available from the Visitor Centre, free of charge.

Seasonal Story Trail:

This is a fun word-hunt and writing activity that encourages exploration of the arboretum and promotes children's literacy skills & use of their imaginations. Exact content varies according to the season but involves hunting for words displayed around the arboretum and then using these words to write a story or create a poem. Story Trail sheets and pencils, and guidance notes for accompanying adults, are available free of charge from the Visitor Centre.

The Children's University:

Children's UniversityThe Yorkshire Arboretum is a Learning Destination for the Children's University, a national scheme to inspire children aged 5–14 to learn outside the curriculum through out-of-school activities.

Participating children collect stamps/stickers in a ‘Passport' as recognition for their learning, and work towards certification. Children who participate in the following arboretum activities can present their passport to receive a sticker/stamp:

  • Minibeast Discovery Trail
  • Leaf Bingo
  • Seasonal Story Trail
  • Adventure Backpacks
  • Easter Bunny Trail
  • Junior Rangers' Clubs
  • Discovery Days
  • Arboretum Explorers' Club

Local participating schools are Burton Green, Carr Junior, Clifton Green, Dringhouses, Headlands, Hob Moor, Lakeside, New Earswick, Osbaldwick, Park Grove, Scarcroft Primary, St. Barnabus, St. Paul's, Stockton on the Forest, Westfield, Woodthorpe and Yearsley Grove. Passports can also be purchased from York Theatre Royal.

Also look at the Things to Do page for activities and events that are suitable for all visitors.