Fun for families at Fountains Abbey

Family throwing leaves in front of Fountains Abbey

There's acres of space where little legs can explore and imaginations can run riot here. You’ll be full of beans but out of puff once you’ve found a cave by the abbey, a dark winding tunnel, spotted a special winter bird.

Run wild in the play area

Less than two minutes from the visitor centre there's a huge play area where inquisitive little minds can be let loose to play. Climb high on the wooden abbey, speed along on the zip-wire and spin round and round on the roundabout. Parents can keep an eye out from picnic tables dotted around, or come and join in with building a den.

Boy on slide in play area at Fountains Abbey

Discover the play area 

Wondering what to do with the kids while in Yorkshire? Keep them entertained for hours at the large play area at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal. There’s a huge area bursting with fun and challenges for all abilities and room for plenty of imagination too. Find out what you can do at the play area and more about the facilities available here.

A festive family day out this Christmas

In Yorkshire for Christmas? Spend a day at this World Heritage Site to see the ancient abbey ruins lit with colour, hear a choir or band play under the vaulted cellarium ceiling and visit Father Christmas himself (booking essential). Find out everything you can do on the link below.

Sing along to your favourite carols at Carols by Candlelight in Fountains Abbey

Things to do with your family this Christmas 

Join us for a very Yorkshire family day out this Christmas holidays. Book to see Father Christmas, wrap up warm for a wander through wintery abbey ruins and get stuck into Christmas crafts on a full day out at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal.

Be a water garden explorer

The water garden is full of straight lines and symmetrical curves but there are many corners to discover, too! Climb up to the Banqueting House and dress up like a Georgian, see which wildflowers you can see growing on the lawn and can you spot Octagon Tower in the distance?

Explore woodland on the High Ride path - but you'll need to walk through the dark Serpentine Tunnel to get there! Once you're up, you're up and there are three follies to find. One has an underground kitchen, one is made out wood and one has a wide view down to the abbey. See if you can find them all.

Walk through the dark Serpentine Tunnel to get to the High Ride path
Family going into Serpentine Tunnel in Studley Royal water garden
Walk through the dark Serpentine Tunnel to get to the High Ride path

Be an abbey adventurer

Don your adventure cap and set out to discover all the hidden corners of the abbey. See if you can find the last of the white marble and all the ruined alters in the nave. Can you hear an echo in the cellarium and how many staircases can you find throughout the ruins?

Let the kids run wild around Fountains Abbey
Let the kids run wild around Fountains Abbey
Let the kids run wild around Fountains Abbey

 

It's a monk's life at Swanley Grange

Could you make your own clothes? That's what the monks had to do to make their robes, as they couldn't just pop to the shops. It took a long time to make something to wear as they had to spin the wool from the sheep's fleece and then weave it on a loom! Come to Swanley Grange and have a go at these heritage crafts. Don't worry though, we're not expecting you to make yourself a new jumper to wear - it's just for fun.

While you're there don't forget to say 'hi' to the chickens and see what's growing in the medieval garden.

Nature is all around

It buzzes and bustles, rustles and creeps; come and find nature all around you on your visit. See if you can see a new animal, bug and bird. Summer is a great time to spot a newly born fawn or calf* in the deer park, a dipper on the river or if you're really lucky a stoat or an otter.

*did you know that the name of deer young varies according to which variety it is? We have three types of deer in the park and the young of a fallow deer is called a fawn but the young of the red or sika deer is called a calf.

Wildflowers are blooming in the undergrowth. Which ones can you can find and how do they smell? Remember, they like being left where they are to keep growing big and beautiful.

Snack stops

There are also two tea-rooms at each end of the site, Studley Royal tea-room and Mill Café, for you to take a snack stop. Tuck into some home-made scrumptious cake, local ice-cream or some juice to refresh and revive for the journey back.

Minibus

If little legs get a bit tired from all the exploring, there's a free minibus service that runs between the visitor centre, Studley Royal admission point and West Gate admission point. It will also stop at St Mary's church if you want to have a look in this extravagant Victorian church.

Catch the minibus from one end of Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal to the other
Catch the minibus from one end of Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal to the other
Catch the minibus from one end of Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal to the other

Follow us on Twitter

Keep up with the latest news and events from Fountains Abbey on Twitter.

Like us on Facebook

Find out all the latest news, behind the scenes photos and what events are on by giving us a Like on Facebook.

Tag us on Instagram

We love photos - and especially photos of Fountains Abbey. If you snap some great pictures tag us or use #fountainsabbey. Follow us to keep up to date on what's going on around the estate.