Days out in Yorkshire: Duncombe Park

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Helmsley really is a lovely town right on the southern edge of the North York Moors, with loads of history and heritage to explore, and great shopping too.

You might be surprised to know, then, that Helmsley’s Duncombe Park is home to a branch of the International Centre for Birds of Prey, which opened in 2013.

But forget everything you think you know watching birds.

The guys at ICBP Duncombe fly their huge array of birds three times a day, with demonstrations led by hugely charismatic and entertaining handlers who manage to maintain your fascination, even if birds aren’t really your thing.

And while the humans are funny, the birds are simply incredible.

From the adorably tiny Burrowing Owl, who hops out of his little box and pops into the artificial rabbit holes, to the frankly overawing Steller’s Sea Eagle, who you would definitely not want to cross on a dark night. He’s pretty big.

On top of regular flying demonstrations, there’s a hawk walk around some of the trained birds, while the other aviaries elsewhere on the site are home to a broad range of birds.

Bring your camera, too, as there are some great opportunities to get that perfect action shot.

Beyond Duncombe Park and the International Centre for Birds of Prey, the market town of Helmsley is the perfect place to do a spot of shopping or enjoy some fantastic fish and chips.

There’s Helmsley Castle or the beautiful Helmsley Walled Garden, too, if you’re looking to add a bit of history to your day out.

FACTFILE

Prices: Adults £8, Children £5.50, Family ticket £24

Opening Times: 10am – 5.30pm, seven days

Address: Duncombe Park, Helmsley

Car Parking: Free, on-site

Attraction Website: www.icbp-duncombe.org

Telephone: 08447 422 035

Sat Nav: YO62 5EB

For more days out see www.yorkshire.com

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