If the warm weather has got you looking for somewhere to go for a paddle or a splash with the kids, there are some great Mumbler recommendations in and around Wharfedale & Craven! The larger council operated outdoor pools also now open so I have included all the details below.
(**Please note some of the below recommendations involve open water and whilst other Mumblers have recommended these for places to paddle we would suggest checking these out yourself and ensuring a responsible adult is present at all times)
1. Council Paddling Pools
There are 3 council provided paddling pools close by:
Valley Gardens, Harrogate (off Valley Drive, Harrogate, HG2 0JS.)
Ilkley’s lido is a great day out in the summer months (it does get very popular though!) The outdoor pool is large and there is a shallow area for younger children.
There is loads of space all around the pool to sit and walk around, lovely views and a cafe on site which is handy for ice creams! Onsite there is also a heated indoor pool (check opening times), tennis courts and ramped access.
The lido opens from 25th May 2019 and is open daily 10am – 5.30pm.
Sutton Park is located on Sutton Lane just off the B6265 between Cross Hills and Airedale Hospital.
In the summer months, they fill the paddling pool with water so make sure you pack a towel and spare clothes and Gran your motorised boats for a sail!!
There are two playgrounds – one is aimed at under 3’s – with a wide range of equipment, from swings and slides for the more cautious, to monkey bars and climbing walls for your little adventurers!
There is also a large grassed area ideal for rounders or football.
With a few picnic tables dotted around and space for a blanket, it is ideal for a picnic but there is also a cafe onsite, selling ice cream and sandwiches and snacks. It boasts a small selection of toys and books. Opens mainly in the afternoon, so check on the opening hours before go.
4. River Wharfe at Wetherby & ‘The Beach’ at Linton Bridge in Collingham
At the bandstand side of the River Wharfe in Wetherby, you can paddle in the shallow side near the bridge. This is also a great place to feed the ducks and go for a walk alongside the river. There is also a pebbled area to sit/sunbathe, picnic tables and at certain times of the year, the brass band is playing.
Plenty of free car parking in the Wilderness (bandstand) car park.
Further down the River Wharfe in Linton, there is what a fellow Mumbler calls ‘The Beach’, a pebbled area with paddling.
5. Bolton Abbey
Bolton Abbey is perfect for families! With it’s various trails and Family Cycle Zone there is something to keep everyone entertained. The Stepping Stones are great fun but some of the spaces may be too wide for very little ones. Bolton Abbey is also the perfect place for a paddle. The larger stretch of river by the field carpark makes the perfect paddling spot. Be warned the current can be fast so always accompany the kids. Grab your fishing nets and buckets and see if you can catch anything. Our record is 2 tiny fish… Just remembered to release them before you head home.
Other places further afield include Meanwood Park, Newby Hall (the fountains are great fun!), Clifton Park Rotherham, AQUA-TEK at Magna, Sheffield.