New Year’s Yorkshire-lutions

As people across the world vow to make 2020 the year (and decade) they stick to their New Year’s Resolutions, we’ve come up with some innovative ways to keep yours… Yorkshire style!

Spend less money

We like getting value for money here in Yorkshire and luckily there’s an abundance of free attractions right across the region. Many of the county’s top museums and galleries don’t cost a penny to have a look around, such as Experience Barnsley where visitors can experience hands on, interactive exhibits all about the town and its people, or Sheffield’s Millennium Gallery, the city’s premier destination for art, craft and design.

Leeds City Museum and Art Gallery are conveniently placed just a few minutes’ walk from each other, and house an ancient mummy and one of the best collections of British art outside London respectively.

The Hepworth Wakefield is an award winning art gallery overlooking the River Calder, which offers free creative activities for all the family to get involved in, an exciting programme of fairs and markets throughout the year, as well as workshops, talks and tours.

Home to iconic locomotives and an unrivalled collection of engineering firsts, the National Railway Museum in York celebrates the past, present and future of innovation on the railways through demos, talks, explosive science shows and real train rides.

If the great outdoors is calling, the Yorkshire Sculpture Park is a unique place to see world-class open-air art, enjoyed by thousands of visitors every year. Explore the spectacular displays, experience the fascinating exhibitions throughout four stunning galleries, be inspired by the natural beauty of the historic estate, and get involved in a dynamic line up of events and activities.

For a slice of religious history, there are stunning abbey ruins in all four corners of the county, with top picks including Rievaulx, Kirkstall, Roche, and Bolton.

Do more exercise

As the birthplace of Rugby League, the unofficial home of cricket, and the backdrop of the annual Tour de Yorkshire bike race, Yorkshire has sport running through its blood. Have a go yourself by joining a club – or your mates – for a kickabout or ride.

Embrace the spectacular Yorkshire scenery with a bracing walk, or borrow a bike for free from one of Yorkshire’s more than 60 Bike Libraries

If you prefer to enjoy sports and exercise indoors and out of the winter chill, try one of the many leisure centers dotted around the county.

Work up a sweat in the community football stadium and cycling studio at Scarborough Sports village, or join one of the many fitness classes on offer – including yoga, pilates, body balance, and body pump.

If you’re feeling particularly brave, Ponds Forge in Sheffield is home to the deepest diving pool in the UK and one of only a handful of 10m diving boards. There’s also an Olympic sized swimming pool, award winning gym, spa, children’s activities, and the International Sports Hall.

For a playful aqua experience, enter the Splash Zone at East Riding Leisure, which features water jets, tipping buckets and two interactive slides – plus there’s a Clip N Climb on site.

At Dare 2 Air, a huge indoor inflatable theme park in Huddersfield, battle through inflatable pillars, wriggle under bridges and wobble or jump over the bouncy floors as you and your friends and family tackle challenges and games galore.

Spend more time with family

All over Yorkshire there are fantastic activities and attractions for you and your kids, making a day out as easy as can be.

The National Children’s Museum, Eureka!, is the only fully interactive museum totally dedicated to children aged 0-11 anywhere in the UK. Nothing is behind a glass cabinet, and there are over 400 interactive, hands-on exhibits designed to inspire enquiring minds to find out about themselves and the world around them.

Another national museum, the Coal Mining Museum, offers a unique opportunity to travel 140 metres into the earth to explore England's last deep coalmine for an unforgettable underground adventure – guided by a miner!

With wide open spaces, wonderful views and endless opportunities for good old-fashioned outdoor entertainment, William’s Den is the perfect place for kids to connect with nature and run wild. Come rain or shine there’s fun to be found, whether it’s in the 475 square metre play barn, or on the extensive outdoor play area.

The award-winning Yorkshire Wildlife Park is home to one of the largest Polar bear reserves in the world, the famous rescued Romanian Lions, and some of the most beautiful and endangered animals in the world, including Amur tigers at Land of the Tiger and Amur leopards at Leopard Heights.

Sitting in the rolling Pennine foothills, Cannon Hall Farm is waiting to welcome you to a world of animal magic with hundreds of fur and feather covered residents. The farm features one of the biggest and best equipped playgrounds in the north of England and the largest tube maze in Europe. There are hundreds of lambs, goat kids and piglets born each year so there’s always something new and exciting to see!  

With over 35 rides and attractions for thrill seekers of all ages, Lightwater Valley Theme Park is bursting with adventures for the whole family. The Ultimate is Lightwater Valley’s signature ride and provides a thrilling 1.5 mile cocktail of speed, cornering and airtime, and remains the longest roller coaster in Europe with a ride time approaching six minutes.

Even if you think you know water parks, you won’t have seen anything like Alpamare! Featuring a gigantic wave pool, four state-of-the-art long water rides, a 35 degree outdoor pool (complete with whirlpool and bubble recliners), and an onsite spa and wellness centre. Here you’ll find serious adrenaline-fuelled fun and a space to relax all under one roof.

Eat well

This doesn’t necessarily mean a diet of lettuce, apples, and not much else: tuck into some great Yorkshire grub at some of the nation’s best pubs and restaurants.

Dating back to the 15th century, The Pipe & Glass stands on the site of the original gatehouse to Dalton Park, in the pretty village of South Dalton.  Holding East Yorkshire’s first and only Michelin star, the Pipe and Glass is one of six Michelin-starred eateries in Yorkshire.

Andrew Pern’s The Star Inn is located in the picturesque village of Harome on the edge of the North York Moors. A historic C14th thatched inn with hospitality steeped in its very timbers, this ‘Modern Yorkshire’ cooking style and warm hospitality earned the eatery a Michelin star a number of years ago.

Ilkley’s Box Tree has been a renowned part of the town for nearly 60 years, and offers an emphasis on locally sourced, fresh ingredients from farmers and other suppliers, enticing food lovers with favourites such as Roast Sea Scallops, Celeriac Puree, White Truffle Oil and an impressive signature Soufflé.

The Harewood is a new bar restaurant in Doncaster’s civic & cultural quarter. Downstairs you will find a bar and relaxed dining area, and upstairs is the a la carte Sir Nigel Gresley Rooms. All year round, you can access the outdoor Glasgow Paddocks, an extensive terrace and al fresco dining area.

Do more reading

It’s not quite a novel or a newspaper, but read more about the wonderful, varied, and exciting things to do in God’s Own County here on!