Spring has arrived, even in Leeds. We have been desperately awaiting the sunshine and long evenings outside. As you might know, we are not only Leeds bakers, but also mums-in-chief who always look for exciting places to take our families to. Whether you have kids or not this is the perfect time of year to go out and explore, to be outdoors, and to get some fresh air and sunshine. We have put together our Top 5 outdoor destinations that can be reached within 20 minutes from Leeds.
About halfway between Leeds and Harrogate you find this stunning spot with a 360˚ view of the rolling Yorkshire countryside. Take a picnic and/or your loved one for a romantic sunset, this is the perfect spot and you can get to it in no time!
Most of you will be familiar with Harewood House, but have you ever done the walk that surrounds the estate? Put your walking shoes on and take a picnic to prepare you for this scenic 5 mile walk. It will take you past meadows of grassing cows and sheep, a forest, an abandoned little village, deer, highland kettle and lots of kites! The Muddy Boots café is not only a great spot to stock up on some treats, they also feed the kites at 4pm most days. Coming from Leeds it is best to park at the turn to Wike before Harewood House.
A firm favourite. Leeds folk are truly blessed with one of Europe’s biggest parks. There is something for everyone: lakes with birds to feed, cafes with a view, playgrounds, parkrun, a cricket pitch, a kiddie train, an ice cream van, you name it! If you want to make it a day out with the kids, check out Tropical World. And if they like it there, consider joining Friends of Roundhay Park as a membership gives you unlimited access to Tropical World for the whole year.
Temple Newsam, meaning the grounds surrounding the grand Temple Newsam House, is also worth a trip on a sunny day. Couples can enjoy a nice walk through the rose garden and some brunch/coffee and cake at the café, whereas families can check out the farm, where the little ones can get really close to the farm animals.
Eccup Reservoir and Donkey Sanctuary
Eccup Reservoir in Alwoodley makes up the largest area of water in West Yorkshire. You can walk around it (5 miles); it is fairly pram friendly and flat terrain. While you are over that way, head to the Donkey Sanctuary, a brilliant charity that was set up in Devon. Not only do they rescue donkeys from suffering, they also offer donkey assisted therapy for children and adults with special needs. Keep an eye out for their charity events!