The Trail is largely purpose-built using disused railway lines, canals, riversides, minor roads and urban cycle paths - over 70% of the Trail is traffic-free. The paths are wide, relatively flat and well-surfaced, great for prams and pushchairs, and allowing children to run free or practice cycling. For older children, it's a great place to start cycling on two wheels (see traffic free cycling), walk a little further or even have a try at horse riding.
The Trail has railway heritage, canal and riverside paths and bridges to explore. There's even a tunnel, 340 yards (310 metres) long at Thurgoland between Sheffield and Penistone. You can also plan a day out at an attraction using the Trail - look out for castles, abbeys, museums, villages, historic houses, minsters and country parks along the way. For more details of what you can find along the Trail, take a look at the Places on the Trail section.
Andy why not visit our kids pages? Here you'll find fun things to off the Trail, thinkgs to look out for on the Trail, and some treasure hunts to do as you go along different sections of the route.
Here are a few points to help you enjoy a family day out on the Trail
- Remember to take waterproofs and warm clothing. The Trail climbs right over the Pennines and is consequently liable to rapid changes in weather even on warm, sunny days.
- Take some spare food and drink. Although the Trail passes through many towns and cities, there are sections with many miles between shops and pubs. Always have a little spare, just in case!
- Take a map. The Trail is comprehensively signed, but mistakes do happen; there are maps of the whole Trail available from the TPT office.
- Keep a lookout. The Trail is a multi-user facility for walkers, cyclists, horse riders, families and mobility-impaired users. All these users often have to use the same section of path, so always keep a watch on your children - especially the younger ones. Make sure you have read the Trail Users Code.
- Park with care and consideration. The Trail links many towns and cities in northern England and with a little route planning you may find you can leave the car at home. If you have to drive to the Trail, please park your car where it is safe and not causing an obstruction - preferably in one of the Trail's dedicated car parks shown on the TPT maps.