Written by: Little

8 Historical Things to do in Yorkshire

Yorkshire has a rich and colourful history and we like to show it off. From medieval castles to ancient churches, WWII experiences and writers of the past, there’s plenty of things to do in Yorkshire with a historical twist. If you’re wondering where to go with the kids this half term, or just fancy enjoying the start of spring, take a look through some of our favorite historical days out - we’ve added a couple of rainy day options in as well just in case.

Visit Skipton Castle http://www.goyorkshire.com/what-to-do/history-heritage/skipton-castle

Skipton Castle is over 900 years old yet is one of the most complete and well-preserved medieval castles in England. Visitors can explore every corner of the castle both inside and out - take a peek at the kitchen, bedrooms and even privy as you’re guided around this incredible building. After your tour why not relax in the beautiful picnic area, grab a bite to eat at the tea rooms or visit the shop. Skipton Castle is steeped in history and a great day out for everyone!

See the Bronte Pastoral Museum http://www.goyorkshire.com/what-to-do/history-heritage/bronte-parsonage-museum

Step inside the home of sisters Charlotte, Emily and Anne Bronte, renowned classic literary figures. Set between the village of Haworth and the moorland beyond, this Georgian home has been preserved exactly as the sister would have known it. The rooms are still filled with their clothes, furniture and possessions and with displays changing annually you’ll want to keep coming back.

Tour Ampleforth Abbey http://www.goyorkshire.com/what-to-do/history-heritage/ampleforth-abbey

Ampleforth abbey provides a wonderful day out for history buffs and their less historically minded companions. The Abbey has been home to benedictine monks since 1802, with the church at the centre of their monastic life. The Abbey is open all year round with guided tours available every Thursday. Surrounding the Abbey are beautiful lakes, trails and woodland just waiting to be explored, or take advantage of the extensive sports facilities including swimming and golf. Feeling hungry? Sample the homemade sandwiches in the tea room or the delicious apple cake made with apples grown in Ampleforth’s own orchard.

Take the Embsay Steam Railway http://www.goyorkshire.com/what-to-do/history-heritage/embsay-steam-railway

What better way to take in the beautiful views across the North York Moors than by steam train. The Embsay Steam Railway provides journeys between Embsay and Bolton Abbey stations, with a gift shop at each end, picnic areas and tea rooms, meaning you can really make a day of it. There is also a buffet cart on most journeys providing tea, coffee, handmade cakes and sandwiches and a small range of local beers and ciders. The journey on the train lasts just under two hours both ways, with plenty of history to be explored at either end.

See the Thackray Medical Museum


Thackray offers a fantastic day out for the whole family in Leeds. With nine interactive displays to explore, this really is hands on learning and one of the best things to do in Yorkshire with the kids. Explore Victorian era Leeds, discover how medical advancements have changed the course of history and learn how the human body works all under one roof. A perfect option for the school holidays, the museum always has lots of exciting additional attractions, lectures and demonstrations going on - a must for anyone visiting Yorkshire.

Theakston Visitors Center http://www.goyorkshire.com/what-to-do/history-heritage/theakston-visitor-centre

Ever wondered how beer is brewed? The Theakston Visitors Centre in Masham gives visitors the opportunity to discover the history and brewing techniques of this legendary ale. Starting at the top of the building, you’ll learn how gravity has been turning hops into ale for centuries; you’ll also get to discover how coopers have been crafting the cask barrels for decades and so much more!  All this learning is thirsty work so why not enjoy a pint in the tap room at the end of your tour.

Visit Eden Camp http://www.goyorkshire.com/what-to-do/history-heritage/eden-camp

If military history is your area of interest you’ll be hard pushed to find a more interactive or in depth attraction than Eden Camp. A nostalgic school trip for generations of children, Eden camp provides an immersive experience. Discover life in the trenches of World War One, how people lived through World War Two and learn more about all the conflicts since. This unique collection is housed in 30 separate buildings across six acres so make sure you leave enough time to experience everything. Eden Camp also host a range of special events throughout the year including reenactments, veterans parades and historical military vehicle rallies.

Be it the discovery of penicillin, the literary works of Emily Bronte or the blitz, Yorkshire has something for every history lover to enjoy - there are just so many historical things to do in Yorkshire. With fantastic onsite facilities at each attraction, all of these spots make for a brilliant day out in Yorkshire.

These are just a few of our highlights, for our full list of History and Heritage attractions in Yorkshire, please click here, or if you just can’t decide which one to visit why not browse our list of fantastic accommodation in Yorkshire and take a historical break in this fantastic county.

Keep up to date with everything happening across Yorkshire by following us on Facebook and Twitter.