18 fun places near York to swim or paddle outside – updated for 2022
When the weather gets warmer it’s the perfect excuse to go paddling, splashing or swimming outside.
There are more places near York for paddling and swimming than you might think! From streams to stepping stones and splash areas to outside swimming pools, we’ve rounded up 18 places near York that you can cool down this summer.
So why not pack a picnic, grab some towels and head off for a day of fun!
1. Web Adventure Park – Creepy Crawlies, Wigginton Road, York – 2 miles from York
There is a brilliant water play area at Creepy Crawlies with pumps, dams, streams and a paddling area. Plus plenty more activities to enjoy whilst you are there. Find out more on Mumbler.
What do Mumblers think? “When the weather is lovely, there’s a nice water play bit outside to dip the little ones feet in so take a towel!”
2. Mini ‘beach’ and Riverside near Beningbrough – 8 miles from York
There is a very small little bit of sand by the side of the river in Newton-on-Ouse, near Beningbrough Hall which is lovely for a nice walk and a stop for a paddle.
Please be aware that this is a river with a strong current. Do not let your children in out of their depth and always supervise very closely.
What do Mumblers think? “We’ve been and it was lovely with about 2 other families there.”
📍 One of our Mumblers helpfully gave these directions: If you park on the street (in Newton) and head through the Beningbrough gates there is another gate to the right. Go through it and turn left, follow the trees alongside the river for about 15/20 mins and you will stumble upon it. You can’t miss it once you’re there.
3. Allerthorpe Lake, Pocklington, York – 15 miles from York
This is a lovely place to visit for a relaxed summer’s day out. For the more adventurous there is open-air swimming and an inflatable obstacle course. Equally as enjoyable is a paddle in the lake and play in the sandpit. Find out more on Mumbler.
What do Mumblers think? “Allerthorpe Lake is a great day out. They have a bit of the lake for paddling.”
💷 £6 per swim (additional charge for Aqua Park, pedalos etc). Everything except open swimming must be pre-booked online. 📍 Melbourne Road, Allerthorpe, Pocklington, York YO42 4RL
4. Bebra Gardens, off Brewerton Street, Knaresborough – 20 miles from York
This small park in Knaresborough is open all year and has a paddling pool open from May to early September. It is attached to the Castle Gardens and the pool looks over the valley towards the River Nidd. Find out more on Mumbler.
The paddling pool is open from Saturday 28 May 2022 until the first week in September
What do Mumblers think? “Go on a train trip to Knaresborough, then there is the Bebra Gardens with a lovely paddling pool, you can then walk by the river or get a rowing boat.”
📍 Off Brewerton Street, Knaresborough, HG5 8BB. All-day parking is available at Waterside car park, HG5 8DF. The gardens are signposted from there up steep steps
5. Rudding Holiday Park Outdoor Pool, Follifoot, Harrogate – 22 miles from York
💷 90 minute sessions can be booked in advance, £5.50 per person. Pre-book online. 📍 Follifoot, Harrogate, HG3 1JH
What do Mumblers think? “The pool at Rudding is fab…but you have to book a slot.”
6. Valley Gardens, Harrogate – 23 miles from York
This beautiful park in Harrogate is perfect for a day out with a picnic. There is so much to do including pitch and putt golf course, crazy golf, boating pool, children’s play area and if the weather is good a large paddling pool. Find out more on Visit Harrogate.
Open from Saturday 28 May 2022 until the first week in September.
What do Mumblers think? “I highly recommend Valley Gardens in Harrogate, brilliant gardens huge play park and skate park plus the amazingly beautiful outdoor paddling pool truly beautiful clean water, we have spent the day there and couldn’t speak highly enough of it.”
📍 Located off Valley Drive, Harrogate, HG2 0JS.
7. Helmsley Open Air Pool – 24 miles from York
Another heated pool. This one is a 25-metre open-air pool and aims to provide affordable outdoor swimming and a holiday atmosphere. There are 90-minute fun sessions that children can attend. Check the website for opening times & sessions.
The pool opens on 28 May 2022.
What do Mumblers think? “We went this afternoon and it was lovely. There’s a little park next door too.”
💷 £3.75 per adult, £5 .50per adult, £2.50 per spectator. Tickets are available 14 days before on a rolling release schedule. 📍 Baxton’s Sprunt, Helmsley, YO62 5HT
8. Newby Hall, Ripon – 24 miles from York
Head to Newby Hall if you want a fab family day out with plenty to do, including getting wet in Tarantells dancing water play area by Willian Pye. You can explore the beautiful gardens and take a ride on the miniature railway. Find out more on Mumbler.
What do Mumblers think? “Newby Hall is perfect for splashing! There’s a play area, peddle boats, a ride on train and water fountain things with sprouting fountains. Great for kids.”
💷 (Gardens only) Child 4-15 £14, Child under 4 £5, Adult £16. Tickets also available including entrance to the house. 📍 Newby Hall, Ripon, HG4 5AE
9. Thornton le Dale – 28 miles from York
This picturesque village has a beck running through it, perfect for a quick paddle if the weather is warm. There is a woodland footpath that runs from the car park to the village and lots of lovely walks in the surrounding valleys and woods.
What do Mumblers think? “If you want somewhere simple and free then we like Thornton le Dale. Grab and ice cream and go sit by the stream. Kids and dogs can have a paddle while you sit and enjoy the sun.”
📍 Thornton le Dale, Pickering, YO18
10. Dalby Forest, near Pickering – 30 miles from York
Located in the North York Moors National Park there is so much to do. Take a picnic and enjoy a walk or a bike ride and a paddle in the streams. Find out more on Mumbler.
What do Mumblers think? “At Dalby Forest there so much to do. Lovely streams to go in, two lovely parks, some nice walk and good picnic areas.”
💷 Parking £10 until 4pm, £5 after 4pm (March – October) 📍 Dalby Visitor Centre, Low Dalby, Thornton-Le-Dale, Pickering
11. Hutton le Hole – 30 miles from York
This picturesque village in the North York Moors is lovely for a wander, picnic and paddle. Set off on a nice sunny day and don’t forget your towels. Find out more on Mumbler.
What do Mumblers think? “Hutton le hole is gorgeous, fantastic for a paddle and a picnic. Fab ice-cream there too.”
📍 Hutton le Hole, York, YO62
12. Ilkley Lido, Ilkley – 38 miles from York
The indoor pool is open all year and the outdoor Lido is open between May and September. The outdoor pool isn’t heated so best to be prepared for that before you rush in! Find out more on Mumbler.
Opens on 23 April 2022.
What do Mumblers think? “There is loads of space all around the pool to sit and walk around, lovely views, and a cafe on site which is handy for ice creams.”
What do Mumblers think? “It’s a gorgeous place. There’s a fountain they can work themselves but it’s hard work! All covered by trees with rocky streams to play in until they join the main river and then they can paddle in there.”
📍 From Masham, turn left out of the marketplace near the community centre onto Church Street. Follow the road around a left-hand bend onto Park Street. Head out of Masham on Thorpe Road and over the River Burn bridge towards Grewelthorpe for approximately one mile.
16. Falling Foss – 46 miles from York
Enjoy a walk through the woodlands to see the 30 foot Falling Foss waterfall and then return alongside the babbling May Beck. A great shady walk on a warm summer’s day with lots of shallow water to paddle in. Find out more on North York Moors website.
What do Mumblers think? “Falling Foss waterfalls is fantastic for paddling and lovely tea room.”
📍 May Beck Car Park, Sneaton, Whitby YO22 5JE
17. Alpamare, Scarborough – 41 miles from York
Have four hours of water fun at Alpamare in Scarborough. With water slides, a wave pool and 35 degrees outdoor garden pool with whirlpools and bubble recliners you are spoilt for choice. Find out more on Mumbler.
💷 Child 1-5 £8, Child 6-15 £14, Adult £18, under 1s free. 📍North Bay, 28 Burniston Road, Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO12 6PH
18. Clifton Park Rotherham – 50 miles from York
There is a huge Water Splash at Clifton Park with fountains, a paddling pool, a whirlpool and over 70 water jets that fire at random. There is also a huge play area, lovely gardens and a café. Find out more on the Clifton Park website.
What do Mumblers think? “Clifton Park in Rotherham is perfect on a hot day. There’s a huge green area and big climbing park and then there’s a paddling area and little fountains that are all free, you just pay for parking.”
📍Clifton Park, Doncaster Road, Rotherham, South Yorks – use S65 2BQ or S65 2AA for satnav (there are two car parks)
💦💦💦There are even more swimming and paddling ideas on the Mumbler website too 💦💦💦