We were kindly gifted tickets to visit and review Stump Cross Caverns and so paid them a visit whilst we were up that way camping in Nidderdale. I wasn’t really sure what to expect to be honest, we’d heard of them (although to be truthful I think I thought it was up towards Ingleton!) and had followed their recent challenges over lockdown on social. But we were absolutely BLOWN AWAY with the visit. What a fabulous family day out- something completely different for my little ones to enjoy- and fun for all the family! Usually my toddler just has to sit in the carrier for our family adventures- this was something he could get involved in and he LOVED IT.
On arrival we were welcomed by the super friendly staff. Ohhhh they were just so lovely- them really made you feel welcomed and relaxed. We had a debrief which was brilliant, and got the kids interested too (they got a free little finger torch and got told about the fairy trail) and then it was time to get the hard hats on and descend into the cave!
I naively thought that the hard hats were a bit OTT for a family attraction (like I said- I dont think I knew what to expect!) but down the steps into the cave were a bit of a labyrinth of tunnels- some of which you had to duck to walk through. Once part of the cave system was about three feet tall. The kids were fine- but I was VERY glad of my hard hat after a few bangs!!
As you walked round there was a trail, where you needed to answer questions based on the formation and history of Stump Cross Caverns. The answers were all hidden in fairy doors, so the children were tasked in finding them! Of course there were other wonders of the caves that the adults perhaps appreciated a little more- namely the stalactites and stalagmites- stunning formations that are mind-blowing in their existance after so many years!
There are passing places marked out if you come across another group- but in reality I think everyone just used their common sense and let people pass safely if you faced someone on a narrow stretch. They’re limiting numbers down there to ensure you’re covid safe too- so only around six families/ groups are down there at once. We also had to wear our masks.
After you’ve had your fill of exploring (it usually takes around 40 minutes down there) you can climb back up the stairs (passing the private cinema room that you can rent out for £6 a person) to the gift shop and cafe. I can confirm the ice creams are EXCELLENT. We handed the fairy trails back in and the children could choose their prize which was a great touch! My two both received a small box of Fool’s Gold.
Finally, we headed outside. The views from the outdoor seating area are just beautiful, and there is a mini maze for the children to explore. But the BEST thing about the outside (I’d say for the children but it kept them so occupied we were HUGE fans too!) was the sandpit. Buckets and spades were provided, and if you dig to the bottom you’ll find dinosaur fossils which was so exciting for them.
Basically we just had a fantastic day at Stump Cross, and I know that we were gifted tickets, but we would have been more than happy to pay- and no doubt will return and pay next time. It was so great to do something together, and something a bit different to ‘another family walk’! Please do send across any questions- but you should find everything you need on their website. And if not they’re great at responding on their social media.
Thank you so much for the tickets- we will be back!!!!