Inspiration

Museums and Days Out

Yorkshire's museums are great fun! We're lucky to have many of the best examples in the country including six National museums, and a range of other unique and award-winning collections covering a whole host of eras and topics. You can take a trip through Viking village life to Victorian industry or even venture into a nuclear bunker!

So what are you waiting for? Visit Yorkshire's magnificent museums and learn something new today.

Yorkshire's National Museums

  • The National Science and Media Museum, Bradford - Get hands on with over 20 mind-bending exhibits in Wonderlab, visit IMAX, the world's most powerful giant screen experience, take a journey through popular photography, explore the world of animation and get gaming in the Games Lounge.
  • The National Railway Museum, York - Offering three giant halls packed full of incredible trains and interactive fun, this award-winning museum also has an exciting rolling programme of exhibitions running throughout the year.
  • The National Coal Mining Museum for England, Wakefield - Located at Caphouse Colliery near Wakefield. Don't miss the chance to don a hardhat and head underground to experience life as a miner.
  • Eureka! The National Children's Museum, Halifax - A perfect attraction for the kids as it opens up a world of hands on exploration and discovery. Over 400 exhibits provide plenty of opportunity to learn and play all day long! WATCH A VIDEO!
  • Royal Armouries, Leeds - An award-winning museum displaying thousands of artefacts of arms and armour, showcasing live tournaments and even horse shows!
  • National Emergency Services Museum, Sheffield uses lights, sound and smoke to bring history back to life! See what it's like to stand next to a Road Traffic Incident and see how the services work together to rescue people!

Museums and more

  • Yorkshire Air Museum, The Award Winning Yorkshire Air Museum is the largest independent air museum in Britain and the location of The Allied Air Forces Memorial.  Situated in 20 acres of parkland on the former World War II RAF Bomber Command Station at Elvington near York, it is the largest and most original WWII station open to the public with a stunning collection of aircraft, related vehicles and a series of exhibitions and events to suit all its visitors.
  • The Thackray Medical Museum is a completely unique visitor attraction. This beautiful 150 year old grade 2 listed building was formerly the Leeds Union Workhouse. With nine interactive galleries, the fascinating exhibitions and collections tell a story that affects us all. Hear and smell what it was like to walk the grimy streets of Victorian Leeds, find out what it was like to undergo an operation without anaesthetic and explore your body in our jaw-dropping Life Zone gallery
  • Worsbrough Mill, Barnsley - Worsbrough Mill is a 17th Century working water mill set in stunning parkland. It is an amazing place to visit, watch wildlife and see history come alive. Discover centuries of milling, learning more about the process, following it from beginning to end. It is a unique opportunity to see history come to life.
  • Kiplin Hall, Winner of Best Hidden Gem and Best New Discovery in Hudsons Heritage Awards 2012, stands close to the River Swale in the beautiful, rolling countryside of the Vale of Mowbray in North Yorkshire, between the historic market towns of Richmond and Northallerton.
  • Harewood House, Discover fine collections, works by Turner, El Grecio and Titian, original Adam interiors, family portraits by Reynolds, Lawrence and Hopner, exquisite Chippendale furniture, memorabilia from Harewood's days as a Royal Household, and the Old Kitchen with interactive screens to tell the stories of those who lived and worked ‘Below Stairs'.
  • The South Yorkshire Aircraft Museum - A treasure trove of Aviation history is available to all just off the M18 motorway. Most of the exhibits are under cover, ideal for sunny or rainy days. Features include Military Aircraft collection from propeller training aircraft to Mach 2 Jet fighters, Historic 60 year old RAF buildings including Bellman aircraft hangar and authentic wooden RAF huts and a helicopter collection!
  • Eden Camp - Housed in an original Prisoner of War Camp, a visit to our unique, award-winning museum will transport you back in time to wartime Britain. Experience the sights and sounds and even the smells of both the Home Front and Front Line in a series of expertly recreated scenes and tableaux. The Blitz, the Street at War (with rationing and fashions), the Home Guard, Evacuation, the Battle of Britain and VE & VJ Day are all covered in the first half of the museum, whilst world conflicts and battles are covered in the second.
  • The Scarborough Maritime Heritage Centre is a little gem waiting to be discovered. Situated a short distance from the historic harbour, the Centre is crammed with interesting exhibits and information about Scarborough's fascinating past.
  • The Bowes Museum - Located just outside Yorkshire in Co Durham, this French-style chateau is one of the most important museums outside London, its wonderful history and outstanding treasures having providing inspiration and entertainment since 1892. Today, the designated collection includes some of the best examples of European fine and decorative arts in the UK, including works by Goya, El Greco and Canaletto.
  • Elsecar Heritage Centre, Barnsley - Elsecar is a remarkable village, transformed by the Earls Fitzwilliam into a thriving centre of iron and coal. Few places in Britain have so many reminders of its great industrial age: collieries, ironworks, cottages, a canal, steam railway, schools, pubs and more, all dating back to Georgian and Victorian times.
  • York Castle Museum - Walk down cobbled Victorian Streets, see the styles of The Sixties, explore the cells where infamous highwayman Dick Turpin spent his last night and see what life was like on the front line during the First World War at one of York's best museums..
  • MAGNA Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham explores the elements of earth, air, fire and water. A unique, interactive day out at one of the most awe-inspiring indoor attractions.
  • World of James Herriot in Thirsk explores the home and surgery of James Herriot. The centre houses a unique tribute to the vet come author Alf Wight.
  • JORVIK Viking Centre, York offers the chance to actually come face to face with a Viking as you journey back in time.
  • Bronte Parsonage Museum, Haworth was the family home of Charlotte, Emily and Anne Bronte; authors of some of the best loved books in the English language.
  • Captain Cook Memorial Museum, Whitby traces the story of this famous seaman and houses many artefacts from his fascinating life.
  • DIG is situated in the heart of York and offers the chance for some real-life archaelogical exploration to discover York's medieval past.
  • Millennium Gallery - Opened in 2001, the Millennium Gallery is one of Sheffield’s key cultural landmarks. The Gallery is made up of four dynamic exhibition spaces which display a high profile changing temporary exhibition programme of visual art, decorative art and design, alongside displays from the city’s celebrated Metalwork Collection and the unique collection of art and artefacts massed by the Victorian critic and scholar, John Ruskin.
  • Weston Park Museum - Weston Park Museum is home to some of the stunning highlights from Sheffield’s collections of Archaeology, Decorative Art, Geology, Natural Science, Social History and Visual Art. The museum tells the story of Sheffield, from its geological roots to the people, politics and music that shaped the modern city, as well as showcasing a diverse programme of temporary exhibitions.
  • Graves Gallery - Having celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2009, the Graves Gallery continues to provide a wonderful Art Deco home to highlights from the Sheffield’s Visual Art collection and a vibrant programme of temporary exhibitions. The displays currently feature work by artists including JMW Turner, Paul Cezanne, Edward Coley Burne-Jones, Bridget Riley, Richard Long, Marc Quinn, Sam Taylor-Wood, Damien Hirst and Grayson Perry.
  • National Emergency Services Museum - The museum is located in one of Yorkshires first purpose built combined Police, Fire and Ambulance Stations dating back to 1898. This amazing building houses over 45 vehicles relating to the worlds Emergency Services from Horse Drawn Fire Engines to Ambulances and from Police Cars to Mines Rescue!.
  • Georgian Theatre Royal - After a 1.6 million restoration project the theatre is now open year round for tours and has a full theatre programme of shows and events.
  • Wensleydale Creamery, Hawes. In their newly refurbished museum you can find out how Yorkshire Wensleydale cheese has been made throughout the centuries. Discover the captivating and often emotional story behind Yorkshire Wensleydale cheese, and find out how the art of Wensleydale cheese-making has evolved.
  • Experience Barnsley Museum & Discovery Centre - Find out more about Barnsley's fascinating past, from Roman times to present day, through centuries old artefacts, documents, films and recordings that have been donated by people living and working in the area. An inspiring place for all the family to visit, there is lots of fun to be had in the interactive galleries and exciting exhibition spaces.