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Whether you’re simply looking for a weekend adventure with the family or a UK staycation, there are plenty of fun family days out in the North of England. The hard part is choosing where to go! To make things easy, we’ve created a list of the best family days out with free and low-cost options included, all just a train ride away.

Check out our 10 best family days out in the North of England below!

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1. Family days out at Lyme Park, Disley

Nearest station: Disley

A herd of deer on a hill at Lyme Park in Disley in the sunshineLyme Park in Disley is great for a family day out in the fresh air! A whopping 1,400 acres, within its perimeter you’ll find a deer park, play park, ancient woodland, gardens and moors. One of the park’s main features is Lyme House, a 600-year-old mansion with an array of rooms you can explore, full of the history of the family that lived there centuries ago. Visitors can dress up in costumes from the period in the Regency Dressing Room and take a free guided tour which provides an easy way to learn about the house's main features. For rainy days, Lyme House also has an indoor animal spotter trail to keep children entertained.

Fun fact: Did you know that Lyme Park played Pemberley in the BBC’s adaptation of Pride and Prejudice? Visit with one of our family train tickets today!

Visit Lyme Park

2. Family activities at Knowsley Safari Park, Prescot

A close-up of tiger lying in the grassNearest station: Prescot

If you love animals then why not take the family to Knowsley Safari Park in Prescot? A wild ride, children will love the park’s Baboon Bus which allows you to get up close with big cats, buffalo, white rhinos and more. 

The park also offers lots of other activities, such as the Sea Lion Experience, where you can feed Arthur, Roger and Louis the sea lions. Kids are also sure to burn energy in the park’s ‘Dinner Dash’ game - where they can attempt to outrun an Amur Tiger! Get there for less with Northern.

Visit Knowsley Safari Park

3. Kid-friendly days out at The York Dungeon, York

Nearest station: York

The City of York sign on a railing in the cityThe York Dungeon makes for a fun and educational family day out. The dark and gory-themed sets are brought to life by the Dungeon’s talented actors, special effects and immersive comedic storytelling, taking you through 2,000 years of York's history.

Vikings, plagues, witches and more – it’s the perfect family day out in the heart of York. Due to its slightly spooky nature, the attraction is not recommended for children under 8 years old, however, it is up to the parent or guardian to decide if they would enjoy the experience. Save on your day out with our  family ticket when you go by Northern trains.

Visit the York Dungeon

4. Family days out at Blackpool Zoo, Blackpool

A group of pink flamingos at Blackpool ZooNearest station: Blackpool North

Another one for animal enthusiasts, Blackpool Zoo is home to over 1500 animals, including penguins, pandas, tarantulas and tigers! Kids who love their dinos will also enjoy the Zoo’s Dinosaur Safari where they can come face-to-face with their favourites like the pterodactyl and tyrannosaurus rex. 

The Zoo also has one of the UK’s first walk-through enclosures named Lemur Wood, where you can meet three species of cheeky lemurs. Get there quicker and for less when you book with Northern.

Visit Blackpool Zoo

5. Enjoy TeamSport Indoor Karting as a family in Newcastle

Nearest station: Newcastle

A close-up of someone in a go kart at the staring lineFor kids who love cars and racing, TeamSport Indoor Karting in Newcastle is perfect. There are two exciting race tracks to choose from, one which is multi-level and a gamified version where you can collect power-ups. 

You can also experience a virtual reality free roaming simulator here, mini bowling, AR darts and sim racing. Power up your travel experience when you go by train and save with our family ticket.

Visit TeamSport Newcastle

6. Educational family days out at Lancaster Castle

The front of Lancaster Castle on a sunny dayNearest station: Lancaster

Children’s stories are full of tales of Kings, Queens, Knights and Princesses, which is why family days out at the UK’s historic castles are so much fun! Let their imaginations run wild at Lancaster Castle, with incredible views of the city.

There they can learn about the castle’s history and the royals who once visited. The location also has some dark history due to the castle’s role in the 1600s Lancaster witch trials, guided tours are available to help you uncover the history in-depth.

Visit Lancaster Castle

7. Family fun activities on The North Yorkshire Moors Railway, Grosmont

Nearest station: Grosmont

Close-up of a black steam train sitting at a platformDiscover the history of the steam train and take a ride on a heritage steam locomotive at Grosmont! Great for train enthusiasts, you’ll enjoy a picturesque railway ride and a range of activities such as joining the footplate crew. On the Pullman Dining Train, you can also indulge in a delicious three-course meal during your 18-mile ride across the North York Moors National Park. Visitors can also explore the Engine Sheds for a behind-the-scenes look! 

Zoom there with our family train ticket, helping you to save more for the next day out. 

Visit the North Yorkshire Moors Railway

8. Enjoy a family treasure trail in Southport

The pier in Southport at sunsetNearest station: Southport

If you’re a family that loves adventure then a self-led treasure trail makes for a great trip! Fun for everyone, the website states the trail is suitable for those from age 6 up to 106 and you’ll learn about the history of Southport as you hunt for the treasure. 

What makes it even better? Dogs are also welcome! A beach is also located nearby which is great for getting some rest and relaxation after your trail. With Northern, you’re just a train journey away from finding your Southport treasure.

Visit Southport Treasure Trails

9. Kids’ rides and attractions at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Nearest station: Blackpool Pleasure Beach

An aerial shot of Blackpool Tower with blue sea in the background on a sunny dayWith rides for all ages, Blackpool’s Pleasure Beach is popular for good reason! The amusement park’s Nickelodeon Land is full of fun cartoon-themed rides and rollercoasters. On special-themed days children can even meet their favourite Nickelodeon characters, such as SpongeBob and the Paw Patrol gang. 

If you visit, don’t forget to check which shows are on! There’s a variety of entertainment on throughout the year, such as illusions and fireworks shows. Make getting there a breeze on Northern with our family ticket.

Visit Blackpool Pleasure Beach

10. Explore exhibits at The Great Northern Museum, Newcastle

A father and son looking at a dinosaur skeleton at a museumNearest station: Newcastle

The Great Northern Museum is one of the UK’s best and houses multiple collections spread across several floors that will keep the family entertained for hours! Its exhibits include dinosaurs, ancient Egyptian artefacts and more.

Kids can also burn energy at the Mouse House play den which has engaging and educational installments just for them. Visit anytime with Northern and learn all about world history.

Visit The Great Northern Museum

Have you found the perfect family day out in the North of England for you? Download the Northern app to buy and access your family train ticket and live travel updates. 

Remember to look out for special discounts during half term and school holidays too, so you can plan the perfect family day out in the North.

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Streamline your journey and get tickets straight to your phone. Making your journey contact-free.

Northern App

Streamline your journey and get tickets straight to your phone. Making your journey contact-free.