Lightwater Valley – the ultimate day out!

A theme park perfect for younger families

Lightwater Valley theme park near ripon (HG4 3HT) is a small (ish) theme park but it’s still big enough not to be able to do everything in the day! This is the first day out ever where we have stayed from opening time to closing time. The boys didn’t even want to leave at that point they were having so much fun.

We pre-booked our tickets in advance; £16 per adult but free for ‘3 and under’.

swans on the lake
Pedalo swans on the lake

Height restrictions apply

The rides all have height restrictions on but there are enough of each height bracket for you to get the most of the day whatever their height. The only complication comes when children the same age are different heights…

I remember this theme park being mega when I was younger! We used to go regularly when we were teens and literally just ride The Ultimate and The Rat. We would run from one to the other all day. These rides, and some other larger ones, have been decommissioned. It is sad to see the park not as I remember but it does mean that they can cater for younger families and fit in way more rides.

The park has a couple of main areas; at the far end is the pirate section/thrill section. In the middle is the lake with the Rapids and the Train running around the outside. To the left of the entrance is the Treetop Nets and to the right is the really younger rides as well as the the shops and eateries.

We spent the majority of the day in the youngest section. For our 3 year olds they were over the moon with this area declaring it “the best day ever!” There was a huge playground, lots of fairground type rides and a bouncy pillow which for my Little Man was the biggest hit of the day! Inside there is also a couple of soft play areas which we did visit towards the end of the day to escape the heat!

carousel at Lightwater calley
Carousel at Lightwater Valley
rides at lightwater valley
Fortunately parents can go on!
Huge playgrounds
bouncy pillow
Bouncy pillow
boys enjoying the rides at lightwater valley
Boys day out!
Sand pit and more

The Treetop Nets are brilliant. Although after spending so much time on the bouncy pillow Little Man couldn’t grasp the concept of the nets not being as bouncy. He kept getting freaked out by the slower movement. He did have a good explore though of both sections (even managing to get on the older section) before deciding to head back to the pillow!

treetop nets slide
Treetop nets slide
tree top nets at lightwater valley
Treetop Nets

Opening times

Lightwater Valley is open weekends and holidays and we cannot wait to return again in the summer to try out all the rides that we didn’t get chance to do this time. Top marks from us!

Once the park was due for closing the pizza takeaway opened. This was a great distraction for the boys watching the hoards of people leaving. It also meant we didn’t get stuck in the traffic queue trying to get out.

Even though there were lots of people in the park it didn’t feel overcrowded. The longest we had to wait for a ride was 10 minutes. There wasn’t much in the way of covid measure’s, more just people taking responsibility for themselves so we sanitised regularly and social distanced.

If you are staying in the area then make sure you read my blog post on what else to do in Ripon on a staycation.

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