Outdoor active weekends in Harrogate

Caroline Leek | Cycling Harrogate

Deep in the heart of Nidderdale, but only a short drive from Harrogate, Grassfield Hall is the perfect location for an active weekend.

Nidderdale is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and as such, offers plenty of outdoor attractions to satisfy even the most energetic travellers, whether you’re a walker, thrill seeker or looking for some family fun.

We’ve come up with our top 10 activities to keep you entertained on a weekend here at Grassfield Hall. And the majority of them are under 30 minutes drive away.

And after your fun-filled day of cycling, hiking or zorbing? What better way to relax than back at Grassfield Hall in our large, comfortable beds, double Jacuzzi baths or in our cosy lounge with a cup of Yorkshire tea.

1. Climbing at Brimham Rocks

Brimham Rocks circular walk | N Yorkshire | National Trust

A dramatic outcrop of weird and wonderful ancient formations, Brimham Rocks is the perfect place to release your inner child. Young and old alike will love squeezing through the tight passages and clambering on top of the rocks to be rewarded with fantastic panoramic views over Nidderdale.

If you want to up the thrill factor, you can try your hand at bouldering, climbing or abseiling on various days held throughout the year. Visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk for dates.

2. Canyoning at How Stean Gorge

How Stean Gorge - Where to go With Kids - North Yorkshire

Fancy abseiling, climbing, sliding and jumping your way down England’s highest cascading waterfall? Cautley Spout is 650ft high and taking it on is sure to be one of the most memorable (and wettest) adventures you’ll experience.

You’ll need a moderate level of fitness and experience of abseiling to take part. But on the day, you’ll learn skills such as rope work and get to take on a huge abseil directly down a waterfall. Don’t worry, you’ll be in the safe hands of a qualified instructor the whole time.

Visit https://www.howstean.co.uk

3. Hiking around Fewston Reservoir

Whether you fancy a gentle stroll or you want to take it up a notch, there’s some great walking to be had at Fewston, where you can enjoy   fantastic views of the water, rolling hills and an impressive dam. The reservoir is four miles round on relatively flat ground, or veer off halfway and head upwards through pastures and woodland plantations to Beecroft for panoramic views of Fewston and its neighbour reservoir, Swinsty.

Insider tip: It can get busy, especially at weekends, so head here early to beat the crowds.

Visit https://www.yorkshirewater.com

4. Road biking in Nidderdale Valley

Caroline Leek | Cycling Grassfield Hall

With its challenging climbs, sweeping bends and stunning vistas, Nidderdale offers many great cycling opportunities. So good in fact, it formed part of stage one of the Tour de France in 2014, as well as the Tour de Yorkshire in previous years.

From the killer climbs of Trapping House and Two Stoops or the family-friendly Nidderdale Greenway, whatever your riding predilection, there’s a route to cater to it. And plenty of picturesque villages to stop at and have a well-deserved slice of cake or refreshing pint.

Most routes will involve a climb (this is Yorkshire, after all!), so why not consider hiring an e-bike to take the strain for you. They’re great fun and will power you over those hills so you can enjoy the beautiful countryside without breaking as much of a sweat.

Visit https://nidderdaleaonb.org.uk

5. Strolling in Fountains Abbey

With a deer park, Cistercian monastery and Georgian water garden, you can spend an entire day exploring Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal and marvelling in their splendour.

The monastery’s ancient ruins form a dramatic silhouette against the skyline. Take your time to wander in and out of the ruins and marvel at their splendour. The cellarium is particularly breath-taking and plays host to various live music events during the year, so it’s worth checking out what’s on when you visit.

Next, it’s time to venture on into the beautiful grounds of Studley Royal with its UNESCO World Heritage Site designated landscaped water garden, not to mention a realm of curiosities to discover, such as statues, follies, tunnels and woodland paths.

Visit https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk

6. Golfing at Masham Golf Club

Hole 4 - Masham Golf Club

Founded in 1895, Masham is one of the oldest golf courses in the UK and even claims to have been a favourite of Bing Crosby!

Made up of sloping greens and undulating fairways, it’s dissected by the river Burn and surrounded by picturesque countryside, offering fabulous views from each tee. Although it’s a 9-hole course, most people play the round twice, with at least five of the holes offering a good challenge.

Visitors are warmly welcomed and the clubhouse terrace offers a view overlooking the river, making it the perfect place for après-golf refreshments.

Visit https://mashamgolfclub.co.uk/

7. Clay pigeon shooting at Hazel Bank

Whether you’re a seasoned shooter or you’ve always wanted to try, you’ll have a great experience at Hazel Bank.

With a 3.4 acre site, they offer an excellent facilities for experienced shooters, with 5 pegs designed to be both testing and fun. You’ll also find a DTL (Down the line) range where you can practice your consistency.

Never shot before? Hazel Bank offer lessons to beginners as well as those who’d like to hone their skills. Their experienced instructors will have you hitting clays right from the start.

Visit www.hazelbankshooting.co.uk

8. Body zorbing at Ripley Castle

Body Zorbing - Bubble Football Harrogate | Live For Today

If you haven’t rolled around in a giant inflatable ball with only your legs dangling, have you ever really had fun?

Set in the impressive grounds of Ripley Castle, body zorbing is a brilliant way to have fun, work up a sweat and bond (or maybe establish healthy competition!) with your nearest and dearest.

Once you’re secured in your zorb, you can run, roll, bump and bounce around the course and into each other. Instructors will be on hand to ensure you get the most out of your experience, whether that’s a football match or long-forgotten playground games like British Bulldog.

Visit www.live-for-today.com

9. Outdoor yoga 

Caroline Leek | Yoga Harrogate

Ready for some downtime? Take your yoga mat outside in our glorious gardens and do your own practice, or alternatively, we can arrange for a private yoga instructor to come to the hall for a special lesson.

Weather permitting, you’ll always be able to find a quiet space to lay out, listen to the birds and find your zen.

10. Laser tag at Stockeld Park

Like paintballing, but without the mess and the pain, laser tag at Stockeld Park allows you to indulge your competitive spirit, work as a team and get a workout without realising it.

Armed with state-of-the-art laser tag guns, you’ll get the run of a woodland course with a bomb shelter, dugout and abandoned vehicle to help you overpower and outmanoeuvre the other team. Want to make it interesting? The losing team has to buy the drinks afterwards.

Visit www.stockeldpark.co.uk


Get in touch with us to plan your active outdoor weekend at Grassfield Hall. Email  info@grassfield-hall.co.uk


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