The summer season is fast approaching — something made all the more apparent by the sudden passing of the Easter holidays. Time seems to pass all the faster, especially when you are having fun! With the summer holidays already close at hand, it is time to begin planning for some summer days out with the whole family.

The Yorkshire Dales is a fantastic choice of location for new family experiences, even if just to get a taste of fresh air from God’s Own County. Indeed, a recent survey found that nearly half of all UK adults are nature lovers, and prefer to take the path less travelled than to give time to major urban attractions. Yorkshire fits the bill perfectly; it is easy as anything to get a train to York, from where travel out to the Dales can be achieved by a variety of means.

But what exactly is there to see in the Dales? Here are three of the best destinations in the North, for all the family:

Malham Cove

Malham Cove is an imposing rock formation near the village of Malham and a simply astounding way to spend an afternoon. The rock formation is a more-than-200ft cliff rising out of the plains, comprising white limestone. It is a popular destination for natural historians and rock-climbers alike. The former can find clear evidence of the cliff face’s multi-million-year history of displacement and erosion by waterfall, while climbers seeking thrills can explore its face. The walk to the cove alone is well worth your time, and the views of the Dales are irreplaceable.

The Forbidden Corner

The Forbidden Corner is a unique family attraction in Middleham, comprising a walled garden and labyrinth with unique sculptures and installations. The Forbidden Corner is a relatively new installation, having formed out of a private folly that was planted in the late 1970s. In the 1990s, the decision was made to make the attraction a public one, and families have been enthralled by the maze of hedges, walls and carvings that truly make up one of the oddest attractions in the North.

Harlow Carr Botanical Gardens

Harlow Carr Botanical Gardens take pride of place in the suburbs of Harrogate — one of the most famous spa towns in the country. Harrogate alone is well worth the visit, being home to luxurious tea rooms, Turkish Baths and a growing contingent of independent venues.

But the shortest of hops from the town centre takes you to Harlow Carr, and 58 acres of superbly curated garden land. The land was once a Royal hunting ground and part of the Forest of Knaresborough, but generations of care and upkeep have seen the land transformed into a beautiful landscape with a wide variety of different areas to explore.