Things to Do, Attractions, Family Friendly

Mother Shipton’s Cave

Location: Prophecy House, High Bridge, KNARESBOROUGH, North Yorkshire, HG5 8DD
01423 864600 Call Us


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About Us

Mother Shipton’s is a beloved Knaresborough landmark and England’s oldest visitor attraction, open since 1630. This popular visitor attraction tells the story of Mother Shipton and the Petrifying Well.

Historic Woodland Walk

A picturesque mile-long walk along the River Nidd features the cave where famous Yorkshire prophetess Mother Shipton was born. It is situated next to the Petrifying Well, a unique geological phenomenon. Over hundreds of years curiosity has drawn millions of visitors to the well to see cascading water turn everyday objects to stone - as if by magic. People around the world visit the park, a remnant of the Royal Forest of Knaresborough with some of the oldest, tallest beech trees in the country.

Who was Mother Shipton?

Mother Shipton was born in a cave in 1488 and grew up around Knaresborough. As she grew older, her prophecies became known throughout England. She foretold the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 and the Great Fire of London in 1666. She made her living telling the future and warning those who asked of what was to come.

Fun for all the Family

Great for all ages, there’s fun for families in the adventure playground, scenic picnic areas, interactive trails during events, and petrified objects displayed in the museum and gift shop. Dogs are welcome in all areas, apart from the playground. Areas of the park have restricted access.

2021 Events

Families can be immersed in magic during Mother Shipton’s themed events. Details will be released on the website in due course.


Mother Shipton’s cave has a great deal of scope with regards to the subjects contained in the National Curriculum. A comprehensive range of activities that link to all subjects and to specific objectives of the Curriculum are available here. Special discount rates apply for school visits. A visit links well with Key Stages 1 to 3 in history, science, geography and English. Please contact us for more information or to arrange a visit.

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