The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids

Disclosure - I have worked with some of the attractions in this post in the past. I have not been paid to write this post and retain editorial control.

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids

We've spent a fair bit of time visiting attractions across County Durham this year and it's fair to say that I've more than fallen in love with the region. In fact, I've been blown away by how much there is to do here.

It's impossible to include every attraction in this list and I'll update this post through time as I visit more attractions - please let me know if you have any favourites and we'll try to visit asap.

Raby Castle

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Raby Castle

I can't believe Summer 2019 was our first ever visit to Raby Castle. It's absolutely beautiful! There are stunning gardens to walk through, a deer park, a hidden adventure playground in the woods and of course the stunning furnished castle.

The staff are super friendly and kids can complete a trail which is interesting. There's a fantastic programme of events at the castle and I'd highly recommend their family theatre offerings in the castle garden over summer. Visit the Raby Castle website here. 

Blast Beach

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Blast Beach

I'd never even heard of this place until a couple of years ago but we've been twice this summer and it's somewhere I think everyone should visit. It's free to park (head to Nose's Point) and there are gorgeous walks along the clifftop.

 It's a little bit of a climb down to the beach but oh so worth it. If I can manage it in sandals, anyone can. The beach is always practically deserted and it's a brilliant place to hunt for treasure or sea glass. It's dog-friendly too. Read more about our trip to Blast Beach here. 


Lumiere is the only place on my list that I have yet to personally visit but fingers crossed for this year. Lumiere is the UK's largest light festival and tours the country with its fabulous installations and effects.

You won't find Lumiere in Durham every year so when it does visit, it's always something special. 2019's show will be the festival's 10th anniversary. Find out more here. 

Hamsterley Forest

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Hamsterley Forest

Hamsterley Forest is somewhere that holds so many fond memories for us. We used to love the Gruffalo trails when the kids were little (it's also the first place where somebody came up to us and said they were a reader and thanked us for our posts which was lush).

The forest is a brilliant day out for kids with lots of walks, cycle routes and play areas. There are sculptures to find and this year you can enjoy a Shaun the Sheep Trail through the forest.


The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Beamish

Beamish is an award-winning attraction and something we are very lucky to have here in the North East. I love that you can visit once and your ticket is valid for the full year as there are lots of different events to enjoy across the year.

Beamish is a living museum and features many walk-through experiences and something for all the senses. Visit the Beamish website here.


The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Kynren

Kynren takes place in Bishop Auckland every summer. This epic evening show shares the history of England through dramatic re-enactments, battles, music and effects.

We've watched the show 4/5 times now and it's always a highlight of our year. I'd recommend to anyone and everyone and have noticed very young children there before.

Personally, because it's such a late night, I'd recommend for ages 6+. Tickets make a wonderful family Christmas gift. Visit the Kynren website here. 

Durham Cathedral

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Durham Cathedral

Durham Cathedral is an absolutely stunning building and free to visit. We've taken the children a couple of times now and always found it to be very child-friendly.

The staff/volunteers are all super friendly and will answer any burning questions you may have. I am sure the spectacular architecture and stained glass windows/artwork must inspire young minds.

Some scenes from Harry Potter were filmed at Durham Cathedral and there's an award-winning museum and a LEGO model of the Cathedral too. Durham Cathedral is free to visit with donations gladly received. Visit the Durham Cathedral website here. 

Hall Hill Farm

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Hall Hill Farm

We visited Hall Hill Farm in the Summer Holidays and it's such a lovely place. Although it's smaller than the likes of Adventure Valley or Whitehouse Farm, there's still loads to see and do and it's mostly all included with admission so a day out which offers fantastic value.

We enjoyed feeding the animals, donkey rides, bottle feeding lambs, the indoor soft play, bouncing pillows and toboggan. There are animal handling sessions and puppet shows throughout the day and there's a fantastic play park with trampolines too. Visit the Hall Hill Farm website here. 

Palace Green Library 

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Palace Green

Palace Green Library is next door to Durham Cathedral and I'd recommend visiting both together if you can.

It's free to visit Palace Green and they have a variety of exhibitions on display. I was really impressed with how interactive the exhibitions were for children with dressing up areas, craft activities and hand-on fun.

The library also hosts a variety of child-friendly events throughout the year which are worth checking out. Visit the Palace Green website here. 

Fire & Ice Trail

The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids  - Fire and Ice

The Durham Fire & Ice Trail usually takes place across two days in February Half Term. A series of themed ice sculptures are on display around the city centre as well as additional shows, performances and activities.

This is a free event for families to take part in and always lots of fun. My top tip is to get there early before the ice starts to melt. Check out our top tips for visiting Fire & Ice here.

Let me know your favourite place to visit in County Durham

If you have enjoyed this post and found it useful, here are some ways you can say thanks and support North East Family Fun: 

1 - Click here to sign up to our FREE monthly guide to what's on. This monthly email will feature lots of ideas for things to do for the month ahead plus exclusive deals. 

2 - Join our  Days Out Facebook Group here which includes lots of ideas for things to do - you can post your own recommendations too. 

4 - Share this post with your friends 

5 - Follow North East Family Fun on the following platforms :
Thank you for your support as always. 

Please follow social distancing rules & Government guidelines , respect the local area. leave no trace, take litter home, park responsibly and if somewhere is busy on arrival, please consider leaving and returning at a later date. 

Always check updated opening hours / protocols / parking advice and charges with venues direct before setting off as things may have changed since this post was published. 

Pin Me 
The Best Days Out in County Durham for Kids


1 comment

  1. There are so many places on this list we're yet to visit. I think we can be a bit guilty of just heading north and if we're out and about we tend to automatically head up to Northumberland. You've inspired me to explore more of Co Durham, may make it my 2020 resolution!


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