An Award Winning Blog featuring Travel, Adventure & Family Life in North East England

Monday, 8 August 2016

25 Days Out in Northumberland National Park

Did you know that Northumberland National Park won 'National Park of the Year' in the BBC Countryfile magazine 2015/16 awards? We are SO lucky to have this gem on our doorstep and I honestly urge you to take a day or two our of your schedule this year and take your kids to explore some of the award winning park for yourself. We helped the park celebrate National Parks Week with their family fun day at Walltown Quarry and had such a fun day, we can certainly vouch for their special events and would 100% recommend a trip to the area.

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Walltown Quarry

There is just SO much to do in and around Northumberland National Park. Make sure you give their Facebook page a like to keep up to date with new events and lots more days out ideas. To give you a starting point though, here are 25 ideas for days out in/around Northumberland National Park:-

25 Days Out in Northumberland National Park

1 - Take a family guided walk

Northumberland National Park volunteers run a series of fantastic guided walks around the park and there is something for all abilities. Under 16's go free too! Full listings here. 

2 - Visit Thirlwall Castle

Thirlwall Castle is believed to be haunted by Baron John. Enter if you dare!

3 - Geocaching

Geocaching is something that you can do almost anywhere and everywhere and it's a fab idea to get the kids outside and exploring. You could even take things one step further and hunt for Pokemon around the park. I bet there are a fair few enjoying the beautiful countryside. Find out more about Geocaching in Northumberland National Park here.

4 - Walk from Steel Rigg to Sycamore Gap

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Sycamore Gap

It's on my bucket list this year to walk to Sycamore Gap and I still haven't done it! I'd better get a move on. According to Honestly Helen it's around a 30 minute walk from Steel Rigg to Sycamore Gap. There's no better place to inspire kids to act like Robin Hood.

5 - Roman Army Museum

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Roman Army Museum

The Roman Army museum in Walltown is the perfect place to begin your Northumberland Park adventure. Take a Roman lesson, marvel at the life size replicas of soldiers and don't forget to catch the fabulous 3D movie which will whisk you back in time and bring life on the wall during Hadrian's rule to life.

6 - Hunt for wildlife

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Snail

You will find a wonderful array of rare wildlife in Northumberland National Park. Did you know, two of England's cleanest rivers are sourced in Northumberland's Cheviot Hills? You can spot red squirrels, leaping salmon, otters and more in the park.

7 - Wooler Cycle Hub

If cycling's your thing, you won't want to miss a trip Wooler. There are 7 different routes to choose from in/around the town with maps and more information available here. 

8 - Roman tea room tour

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Mansio

Have you heard about The Mansio? It's a contemporary structure touring Hadrian's Wall this summer and celebrates new work from writers and poets. Pop in for a cuppa and the chance to listen to some stories. Find out when it will be visiting Northumberland National Park here.

9 - Hareshaw Linn Waterfall

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Hareshaw Linn Waterfall

The Hareshaw Linn waterfall walk is 3 miles in length so perfect for children. The waterfall is spectacular with over 300 species of moss. Start in Bellingham car park.

10 - Redesdale Equestrian Centre

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Redesdale Equestrian Centre

Situated in the Redesdale Valley, this equestrian centre provides riding for all ages and abilities. Don't miss their popular Saturday pony mornings. 

11 - Paddle in Breamish Valley

Park up in Bulbys Wood Car Park (NE66 4LT) and paddle in the crystal clear waters of Ingram Valley whilst taking in the beautiful countryside surroundings.

12 -Walltown Quarry Country Park

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Walltown Quarry

Walltown Country Park is located just next to the Roman Army Museum so it's easy to combine the two. It is such a beautiful spot for a picnic and a wildlife haven. If you're feeling energetic you can even climb Walltown Crags.

13 - Kirknewton Sheepdog Trials  (21st Aug)

The Kirknewton Sheepdog trials take place in a field near Kirknewton village hall (refreshments available from the hall all day). You'll be amazed at the dogs herding sheep and navigating around fences and gates as the best handlers in the UK come together and compete for the title.

14 - Star gazing at Battlesteads

Battlestead hotel near Hexham has it's very own observatory with a series of special events including aurora hunting and astronomy for absolute beginners.

15 - Experience the Northern lights

Speaking of astronomy, the Northumberland International Dark Sky park is actually the best place in England to spot the aurora. Keep an eye on this Facebook page for updates of when best to head out.

16 - Hadrian's Cycle Way

Hadrian's Wall is a fantastic route to cycle along and perfect for older teens. You could cycle the whole C2C route or just enjoy a short part. This dedicated website tells you more but the route from Corbridge to Haltwhistle is a popular choice.

17 - Hadrian's Wall Farmers Market at Greenhead

Looking for somewhere to enjoy a lazy Sunday morning? How about visiting the Farmer's Market at Greenhead. This market takes place from 10am-2pm on the second Sunday of every month.  Expect great local food at affordable prices. Follow the market's Facebook page here for updates.

18 - Vindolanda

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Vindolanda

Vindolanda is a 'must visit' site in the heart of Northumberland National Park. You can explore Roman ruins, watch an archaeological dig in action, watch Roman buildings come to life by the stream, marvel at the many artefacts in the site's museum and enjoy lunch in the beautiful gardens.

19 - Temple of Mithras

The Temple of Mithras is a FREE English Heritage site to visit along the wall. The temple was probably built by soldiers in AD 200 and you will still find three alters here.

20 - Outdoor swimming pool at Haltwhistle

Haltwhistle leisure centre is home to 3 outdoor pools which are open mid-April to early September. The pools are heated and there's a giant flume making this a super fun day out for the whole family. 

21 - Heatherslaw Light Railway

The Heatherslaw Light Railway runs from Heatherslaw to Etal. Take 50 minutes to enjoy the views of the beautiful surrounding countryside. You'll find a timetable and prices here. 

22 - Elsdon Fete (29th August)

The Elsdon Village Fete takes place on August Bank Holiday Monday from 12 noon - 4pm. Expect lots of traditional fun including live music, dog shows, market stalls, a beer tent, coconut shy, ferret bingo & more. 

23 - Bird Hide at Greenlee Lough Nature Reserve

Greenlee Lough Nature Reserve is jointly managed by Northumberland National Park and the Northumberland Wildlife Trust. It's one of the best spots in Northumberland to spot wildfowl and waders. 

24 - The Mythical Drake Stone walk at Harbottle

This circular 2.5 mile walk will take you around the Drake stone and provide you with fabulous views of the surrounding countryside. 

25 - Play board games & enjoy lunch at Twice Brewed Inn

25 days out, events and things to do with kids in Northumberland National Park - Twice Brewed Inn

The Twice Brewed Inn is a family & dog friendly pub that feels as if it's in the middle of nowhere, You'll find a selection of board games in the corner where children can help themselves entertained whilst you enjoy a pint of local ale at the bar.

Phew! I hope you can see there is a lot to see and do in Northumberland National Park. This is just a tiny selection of everything that's going on. You can subscribe to Northumberland National Park events here.

Let me know which activity, event or place in Northumberland National Park you'd like to visit first.

Read Next:  How to boost your daughter's confidence & self esteem (a trip to Northumberland National Park)

Disclosure: We attended Walltown Quarry as guests of Northumberland National Park and our expenses were reimbursed. 



  1. What a fab round up! I'm going to save this to go back to for days out. I really want to see northern lights too so I'm adding that one to my bucket list! I'll schedule this now to go out on my page Friday. Great post!

    1. Thanks lovely - there's just so much to do isn't there x

  2. I've been to Redesdale equestrian centre and the views from the back of a horse round there are spectacular. I definitely recommend it!

    1. Thanks Helena - I'll definitely visit soon x

  3. Great list, I know I'll keep referring back to it too. I've always fancied stargazing and battlesteads seems to make things a bit easier. I never knew there was an outdoor pool at haltwhistle, it sounds fun! x

    1. I've never been myself but would love to take the kids when they're older x

  4. These are some great places! I occasionally visit Northumberland so this has given me more options! :)

  5. Such a lovely round-up, I would love to visit northumberland national park one day. There seems to be a lot that one can do and enjoy with the family

  6. Oh my gosh, there is a ton of things to do there. This sounds like such a lovely place to visit.

  7. The photo with the waterfall look stunning and so enchanting. I would love to visit and be one with nature. xx

  8. I can see why it has won awards its breathtaking. How lucky that you have such stunning views on your doorstep!

    1. I agree - we can't take them for granted xx

  9. You are lucky, this place looks stunning! We keep saying we will go geocaching, will have to do that when toddlers new carrier arrives x

  10. You are so lucky to have that on your doorstep, the waterfall looks beautiful. Looks like a great place for a hike x

  11. So many great things to do, we've never been geocaching before, but would love to!

  12. I REALLY want to go Geocaching. I've been saying it for the last year so its really about time that I went... and obviously it would be great to catch some pokemon on the way! xxx

  13. ooh it looks like a great area to hang out. I'd love to write a similar post about our area. Good inspiration!

  14. Now you've made me want to visit and do everything in this post x

  15. What an amazing list of things to do in one area!! I have never been to this part of the country but your photos look stunning! X

  16. I know what you mean about more pubs should offer homemade food - I often think that. I'm sure they'd attract more customers as well! Thanks for a great insight - it has given me a few ideas!


I always love reading your thoughts and comments - Sam x

© North East Family Fun | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig