We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Lovely day out and perfect for prams”

Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Ranked #4 of 33 things to do in Wakefield
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) is the leading international centre for modern and contemporary sculpture which celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2017. It is an independent charitable trust and registered museum situated in the 500-acre, 18th-century Bretton Hall estate in West Yorkshire. Founded in 1977 by Executive Director Peter Murray, YSP was the first sculpture park in the UK, and is the largest of its kind in Europe, providing the only place in Europe to see Barbara Hepworth’s The Family of Man in its entirety alongside a significant collection of sculpture, including bronzes by Henry Moore, and site-specific works by Andy Goldsworthy, David Nash and James Turrell. YSP mounts a world-class, year-round temporary exhibitions programme including some of the world’s leading artists across six indoor galleries and the open air. Recent highlights include exhibitions by Sean Scully, Giuseppe Penone, Alfredo Jaar, Tony Cragg, Not Vital, KAWS, Bill Viola, Anthony Caro, Fiona Banner,
Reviewed 28 June 2018 via mobile

We visited with our 8 month old baby and had a lovely time. We found everywhere to be very accessible with a pram.

The walk down to the lake, around and back up the other side is a nice way to get some exercise and take in the views.

The cafe is wonderful with a great selection of cakes, we enjoyed afternoon tea (book in advance) as a special anniversary treat.

A highlight for us was the chapel, somewhere we nearly didn’t visit as we didn’t realise it was an exhibition space. I loved how there were so many different venues for exhibitions. Another favourite was the underground gallery which is a beautiful space!

We didn’t visit the Longside gallery as it was very far to walk, it was such a hot day that we couldn’t face it.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank Catkins89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (3 736)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
All reviews
"longside gallery"
in 67 reviews
"interesting sculptures"
in 88 reviews
"indoor galleries"
in 56 reviews
"bretton hall"
in 63 reviews
"open air"
in 43 reviews
"main building"
in 49 reviews
"henry moore"
in 144 reviews
"walking boots"
in 39 reviews
"two hours"
in 64 reviews
"sunny day"
in 83 reviews
"beautiful setting"
in 42 reviews
"free entry"
in 87 reviews
"fresh air"
in 64 reviews
"long walk"
in 58 reviews
"on display"
in 73 reviews
in 56 reviews
"plenty of space"
in 44 reviews

218 - 222 of 3 736 reviews

Reviewed 28 June 2018

We spent the afternoon here yesterday and it was incredible!

The park is well signposted and there was ample parking. Some people have complained about the cost to park - well all I can say is 'get a grip'! If 5 people were in a car, to park all day, that's £2.00 per person - there in no entry fee so I think that this is amazing value. There were 2 of us and at £5.00 each that's more than ok with me. The facility uses the car parking fees to reinvest to maintain this great place.

The cafe was ok - quite expensive but very good quality and there is free water freely available. Next time we go, we'll take a picnic as there are so many lovely places to sit and chill.

We visited some of the galleries and found them to be very interesting, especially the Giuseppe Penone one - amazing work - there are many of his pieces placed around the park too - all really well explained.

The signage could perhaps have been better and we quickly realised that the map wasn't to scale - but come on - we have eyes to see how far somewhere is, surely that's not a major downfall?!

Th sculptures are so varied and really interesting, i bet we only saw 50% of them so we really need to return!

The walk around the lake is also lovely, we went anti clockwise so weren't expecting the disembodied voice halfway round - quite spooky - really innovative!

All in all, a great day out, fabulous art, great vistas, just a lovely day to spend a day.

I think the whingers would be better off in Blackpool in a 'kiss me quick' hat, swigging lager and chomping chips!

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank Melanie E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 June 2018

This is a huge place that really needs some from of signposting to avoid aimless wandering. Maybe a system of coloured pole routes that you could follow to take in a series of pieces you want to see. The map is almost useless. It is not to scale and most of the exhibits are not marked so finding your way to anything is difficult. The items are very poorly labelled so you really have to look for them as they can be anywhere up to 20ft away or more form a piece. They really need more benches, preferably in the shade for people to rest on and take in either the views, which are impressive or a piece of art. The café was pathetic, especially the large jars of sauces and mayo left open for the flys. The gents toilet was the worst piece of designing I have ever come across. Only 3 urinals in a very narrow space , very close to the door and with the hand dryer right behind you so you are constantly getting barged by people trying to get in or out. The car park areas were crammed even on an average weekday and expensive. There are a few picnic areas so taking your own food is a really good idea. You would have to be a serious fan of sculpture to enjoy this place. All the parties of young kids we saw were bored and just played around. Personally I find most of the exhibits to be self-indulgent rubbish, especially Kenny something or others "bonfire" with an explanatory plaque that was a masterpiece of pretentious waffle. I rate this average rather than the poor it deserves because it had about 4 redeeming exhibits.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank Greysword
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
YSPsculpture, Public Relations Manager at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, responded to this reviewResponded 28 June 2018

Thank you for your comments.

We are currently in the process of redesigning our map leaflet, which will be available later in the year and will list all of the works in the open air. We are constantly looking to improve our signage and the information that we provide to visitors so we are very grateful for your feedback.

I am sorry to hear about your experience in the café and will pass on your comments to the catering team.

YSP Learning, which I think is the building that you're referring to, was built in the 1840s so space, including in the toilets, in limited. The building is primarily used by school parties and family groups attending events. There are additional toilet facilities around the Park, which offer more space, however, I am very sorry for your experience.

The beauty of art is its ability to invoke different reactions, emotions and opinions from different people. At YSP, we do try to create an exciting and varied exhibition programme, to complement the 80+ sculptures carefully sited throughout our 500 acres of parkland, so that there’s something for most visitors to enjoy – whether it’s the art, nature or historic landscape. As our exhibitions change regularly and we welcome new sculptures to the Park, I hope you will visit again and give us another chance to inspire you.

Best wishes,
Kerry Chase
Senior Marketing & PR Officer, YSP

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2018

Some interesting sculptures abound throughout the large country park. Also within the visitor centre there are galleries for visiting indoor works. I chiefly come here for the beauty of the area - the great walks that can be short or long, well signposted and with great variety.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank pumpkinbunny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
See more reviews
Reviewed 25 June 2018

Visited Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) with a couple of good friends (and their dogs). One of my friends wanted to go as there was a book signing event she wanted to attend (Mister Finch). It was about 1 hour 30 mins drive for us coming from east Lancashire but now the motorway is finally clear of the decades long roadworks (well, that's what it feels like), it was a breeze!! We went on a Sunday and had gorgeous weather. There's plenty of parking, but as always with these kinds of places, it's not cheap. We ended up paying £10 for the day - and that's for a car. If you're driving anything else, best to check out the website and see how much you'll need to pay and for what lengths of time. They have ANPR (automatic number plate recognition) in place so be aware - you do have to pay. The parking machines are at the main center where there is a cafe/restaurant, bathrooms, shops and some other bits of attractions. I'm not sure as to the payment methods as I wasn't the driver, but it looked like credit/debit and possibly cash. Best visit the website to check. Again, as you're a long way from anywhere and pretty much a captive crowd, the food and drink are a bit pricey - £1.50 for a smallish bottle of still water, £2.90 for a slice of ginger and rhubarb cake (loaf-style slice so not particularly big), £2.10 for a regular ice-cream etc etc. The gift shop has some nice things but is similarly priced. The outdoor area where the sculptures are sited is big - something like 500 hectares in all (best check the website as I'm not totally sure on exact size - but it is a big area). If you take your doggies they'll have to stay on their leads. The sculptures are sited around the various walks you can take in the grounds and there are several leaflets and a map of the site at the gift shop (these are free). A lovely river meanders through the middle of the site with a some pretty little bridges to wander over, and some little weir waterfalls to lose your ears in. I love listening to these kinds of things, plus there were Canada geese and their goslings at the head of one of the weir waterfalls - very cute! The place is family friendly and the paths seem to be fine for prams as we saw a number of families out with theirs, even on some of the more 'woodland type' paths (not gravelled, a bit rough, tree roots etc). There lots of space for kids to run themselves tired and many large trees to sit under and have a shaded picnic. There's also a few wood benches dotted around. For the doggies, there was only one water bowl that we saw near the entrance to the main center and it didn't really hold much water. To refill it, you have to visit the bathrooms as there weren't any taps outside (that we could find). All in all, a very nice place to visit for the day and definitely worth the journey.

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank Michelle F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Yorkshire Sculpture Park also viewed

Wakefield, West Yorkshire
Wakefield, West Yorkshire

Been to Yorkshire Sculpture Park? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing