Disney On Ice presents Find Your Hero | Newcastle Pre-Sale & Ticket Information

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Disney On Ice presents Find Your Hero | Newcastle Pre-Sale & Ticket Information

I am delighted to announce that Disney On Ice presents Find Your Hero will be heading to Utilita Arena, Newcastle this Winter from Thursday 9 December to Sunday 12 December 2021. 
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Hirst Park, Ashington | A Playground, Splash Park & More

 This is an advertisement for July 2021. Any edits / shares after this date have not been asked or paid for. All words and thoughts are my own. 



Hirst Park in Ashington, Northumberland was first built in 1915 for local mining families to use as a recreation area. The park and area has a strong connection with miners, football and families and Jackie and Bobby Charlton played on the fields as young lads. Jackie Milburn is another famous face from the area. 

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50+ Things To Do In Falkirk

This is an advertisement for July 2021. Any reshares / edits beyond this date have not been asked or paid for. All thoughts and words are my own. 

50+ Things To Do In Falkirk



We visited Falkirk in July 2021. It has been somewhere on my radar for a long time and watching Susan Calman's Secret Scotland during lockdown really cemented my wish to visit. I really wanted to see the Kelpies and take a trip on the Falkirk Wheel and both were definitely worth the trip alone. But what really stood out from my trip was just how much there is to see and do in Falkirk beyond the big attractions. It really is a destination I would recommend to families looking for a short break in the UK. 

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10 Incredible Experiences in Durham (Available to Book Now)

 This is an advertisement for July 2021. Any shares / amendments after this date have not been asked or paid for. 

10 Incredible Experiences in Durham (Available to Book Now)


Today I am sharing 10 incredible experiences available to book now in Durham. After more than a year of staying at home, I am so pleased to be sharing some of these fantastic days out and adventures to try. They all offer something special and are perfect for meeting up with family and friends (within the guidelines of course) and provide a real chance to create special memories and #EscapeTheEveryday. 
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Broom House Farm Forest Adventure Review

This post is based on a visit to Broom House Farm in June 2021. Please check details with venue direct before setting off and things may have changed since this post was published.  

Broom House Farm Forest Adventure Review

Lots of readers have recommended Broom House Farm Forest Adventure to us and I am so pleased we finally made the trip. We visited on an overcast Sunday afternoon in June. This trip involved myself, Jack (10), my brother and nephew Evan (5). I wish I had brought Dee along too as this kind of thing is right up their street. There were lots of toddlers enjoying themselves and some older kids too - I would recommend for ages 2-12 and I imagine some teens will enjoy it too if they are accompanying younger siblings. 
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Rainton Meadows | Wild Play Area, Accessible Nature Walk & Cafe


Rainton Meadows | Wild Play Area, Accessible Nature Walk & Cafe

Rainton Meadows is a Durham Wildlife Trust Nature Reserve in Houghton-le-Spring. It is free to visit (check opening hours online) with donations for parking for non-wildlife trust members (recommended £2.50 per car - you can do this with pay-by-phone on arrival). 
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A Seaside Holiday in Whitley Bay | Stay Coastal Review

 This is an advertisement for June 2021. Any shares / edits beyond this date have not been asked or paid for. This post is based on a visit in June 2021, please check all details direct with businesses before making plans as information can change over time. Please take into account current Government legislation when planning a trip and do all you can to keep yourself and others safe. 

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Cresswell Towers Review & Things To Do Nearby

Steve's parents have been holiday home owners at Cresswell Towers Holiday Park on the Northumberland Coast for almost 10 years now. We are super lucky that we have been able to share owner benefits (with none of the associated hassle and cost) and as the kids have grown up we have enjoyed many lovely holidays at Cresswell and have created lots of memories. I would estimate the kids have visited and stayed there over 30 times. 

Cresswell Towers Review & Things To Do Nearby

I cannot believe that despite us visiting so often, I have never written a review of Cresswell Towers. I think this is because I kind of see visiting Cresswell as a true holiday for us which is reflected in the quality of the photos in this post - you can see I am definitely not in work mode! 

Obviously, not all facilities may be available on the day of your visit depending on restrictions etc.... so please use this post as a guide and then check with Parkdean direct when booking / making plans to see what will be open / expected activities available on the date of your trip. 

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Great North Museum : Hancock - Visitors Guide

 This is an advertisement for June 2021. Any edits / reshares after this date have not been asked or paid for.

Great North Museum : Hancock - Visitors Guide

This post is based on a visit to the Great North Museum, Newcastle in June 2021. Information may have changed since this post was published. Please always check for the most up-to-date information direct with the museum before making plans. 

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Dilston Physic Garden : A Hidden Gem in Northumberland

This post is based on a visit in June 2021. Please check the Dilston Physic Garden website and social media for up-to-date information when making plans as things may have changed since this post was published.  

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High Force | Waterfall Walk & Sunday Lunch

This is an advertisement for June 2021 (based on a visit in June 2021). Any shares/updates to this post beyond this date have not been asked or paid for. Information may have changed since this post was first published so please double check details with High Force Hotel before making plans for up to date info. 

There are a few ways you can visit High Force, this post focuses on the most convenient/easiest way (for us anyway) to visit via the access path from High Force Hotel which is managed by Raby Estates. 

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School Holiday Camps & Clubs Across North East England

Below is a list of school holiday camps across North East England. Not all of these venues will offer holiday clubs over every school holiday and some may not have released their information yet so please do keep an eye on their social media/website and sign up to their newsletters for updates. Also please be aware that this information may have changed since this post was published and always confirm details direct with the organiser. 

School Holiday Camps Across North East England


If you have any other recommendations for school holiday camps for me to add to my list (or you run one yourself), please let me know. Email is best: Sam@NorthEastFamilyFun.co.uk 
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Gino D'Acampo Newcastle Restaurant | Review & Menus

This is an advertisement for June 2021. Any shares / edits after this date have not been asked or paid for. 

Gino D'Acampo Newcastle Restaurant | Review & Menus

Celebrity chef Gino D'Acampo has opened a restaurant on Newcastle Quayside. We popped along on a warm June evening to try it out and had a brilliant evening. What really stood out for us was the excellent quality of the food and the fantastic knowledgeable staff who knew their Italian food and the menu inside out. The views overlooking the quayside are absolutely perfect for people watching too. 
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Discovery Museum Newcastle : Visitor Guide & Tips

This post is an advertisement published in June 2021. Any shares / updates after this date have not been asked or paid for. Information can/will change over time so please do always check the Discovery Museum website and Social Media for up-to-date information before making plans. 

Discovery Museum Newcastle : Visitor Guide & Tips


This post has been written as if everything is open as normal. Please check the 'Covid' section in this post to read about our experience of visiting the museum during the pandemic and check with the Discovery Museum website before visiting to check which areas will be open. 
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National Lottery #ThanksToYou : North East Discounts & FREE Cinema Tickets

For making their work possible, this National Lottery Open Week, National Lottery funded projects across the UK want to say #ThanksToYou to the National Lottery players by offering free entry or other special offers!


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Kafeneon | A Fantastic Greek Restaurant in Newcastle

This post is based on a visit in June 2021. Please check the Kafeneon website and Social Media for up to date menus, prices and booking information before making plans.  

You will find Kafeneon in the heart of Newcastle. Their taverna-like restaurant has been part of the Bigg Market since 1998, one of those rare places which is still there and has survived since my own clubbing days. 
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AGL Holiday Homes at Bockenfield Country Park, Northumberland : A Review & Tour

 Disclosure - May 2021 Advertisement. Any re-shares after this date have not been asked or paid for. 


This post features a review and photos of AGL Holiday Homes - beautiful dog-friendly lodges with hot tubs which can sleep up to 8 in Northumberland. 
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50+ Dog Friendly Days Out & Places To Stay Across North East England

I am often asked to recommend places to visit with both children and dogs across North East England. Now I am not currently a dog owner but we have had family dogs in the past and we regularly look after dogs too. However, I once mentioned that Northumberlandia was dog friendly and was contacted by an irate reader who said it's clearly not dog friendly as dogs have to remain on leads and it restricts them. 



To me, dog friendly means dogs are made to feel welcome. It doesn't necessarily mean they are allowed off their lead. Personally, I wouldn't feel comfortable letting a dog off a lead when there were lots of children and other dogs around in any situation but that's just me. 
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The Seaview Restaurant at The Fishing Boat Inn, Boulmer : A Review

The Seaview Restaurant at The Fishing Boat Inn, Boulmer : A Review

Today I would love to recommend the Seaview Restaurant at The Fishing Boat Inn, Boulmer. Boulmer is a small fishing village in Northumberland. There is literally nothing there except for the beach, The Fishing Boat Inn, RAF Boulmer and a few holiday cottages. That is definitely part of its charm though.  

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What's On for Kids across North East England : May Half Term 2021

This post is updated regularly. Please check back for new events soon. 

Attractions regularly change their opening hours, admission fees, booking policies and offerings. I try to keep this post as updated as I can but it is important that you check updated details with the venue direct before setting off. Many attractions will require pre-booking. 




Many attractions will still be closed or partially closed this year but they have still been included as this post is used every year/school holiday - please double check which areas will be open before booking/visiting to avoid disappointment. I have previously worked with many of the attractions mentioned in this post. Please follow Government guidelines and advice. 
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Day Trips to Whitby & Scarborough - Ideas for things to do

I have not been paid or asked to share this post, I just know a lot of you are always on the lookout for days out by public transport and thought this was worth a share. 




We absolutely love visiting both Whitby and Scarborough and think it is brilliant news that Go North East have launched a daily bus service from the North East. This service allows you to spend 7 hours in Whitby or 6 hours in Scarborough which is more than enough time to enjoy a few attractions. 
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Warkworth : A Visitors Guide with Kids

Warkworth is a beautiful village in Northumberland with a castle, lovely pubs and riverside walks. The gorgeous beach is just set back from the main village centre and usually nice and quiet. 

Warkworth : A Visitor's Guide with Kids

This post will share some of our favourite spots in the village and I hope to add to the post as we explore further. 

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North East Museums : Reopening Information & How To Book

Disclosure: I am working with some of the attractions mentioned in this post throughout 2021 but this post does not form part of that partnership. 

North East Museums : Reopening Information & How To Book


OH MY GOODNESS I am SO pleased that our museums & galleries are re-opening soon. We visited a few last summer when restrictions had eased and really felt at ease and that attractions were taking safety super seriously. I am beyond excited to share and plan actual days out which offer something different to a walk or a play park and are suitable for rainy days too. 
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The Fun Shack Newcastle : Review & Deals

 The Fun Shack Newcastle is due to re-open on 17 May 2021. The photos in this post were taken pre-pandemic and obviously, things may have changed slightly now but they should give you an idea of what to expect. At the moment, they are allowing groups of up to 6 to book as per Gov guidelines. 

The Fun Shack Newcastle : Review & Deals

Tables seat 5 so if you book for 6 people, you will be spread across two tables and they won't be directly next to each other due to the way they have been set out for social distancing / maximum space. 

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Watergate Forest Park - Dog-Friendly Nature Walk & Cafe

This post is based on a visit in May 2021. Please check information with venue direct when making plans as things can change over time. 

Watergate Forest Park - Dog-Friendly Nature Walk & Cafe

Watergate Forest Park is super easy to get to by car - it is just off the A1 near the Team Valley in Gateshead. The site opened in 2000 and is on a former colliery (which you will see nods to around the park). It is also accessible by public transport by bus from Gateshead Interchange (at time of publishing buses 69, X31, X70 and X71 stop nearby but please double check this before planning a trip). 
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50+ Baby, Toddler & Pre-School Classes Across North East England

A question I am asked a lot is if I know of any baby/toddler/pre-school classes so I thought I would ask followers for their recommendations and pop them altogether in a post. Information is correct as of April 2021. At time of publishing, not all of these classes will be fully running but do keep an eye on their social media / sign up to their mailing lists for updates. 

50+ Baby, Toddler & Pre-School Classes Across North East England



If you would like to recommend a class to add to this list, please email sam@northeastfamilyfun.co.uk with the details. There may be a slight crossover in some of the areas the classes take place - I have tried to go off their main areas. 
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Help Your Child Understand & Manage Their Everyday Worries & Anxiety (with the Help of Melva Mapletree)

 This is an April 2021 advertisement. Any subsequent shares of this post have not been asked or paid for. Melva image credits : Mortal Fools. I am not a Mental Health professional, please consult your GP if you have any concerns. 

Help Your Child Understand & Manage Their Everyday Worries & Anxiety (with the Help of Melva Mapletree)

Melva online is a fun mental health resource, suitable for children aged 7-11 (and their families) to support their wellbeing and better understand and manage their everyday worries during what has been a very chaotic time for us all. 


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Secret Garden Seaton Delaval Review

This post is based on a walk-in visit in April 2021 and a booked table in May 2021. 



I decided to wait a few weeks before visiting myself and I have a table booked in a couple of weeks, but this Friday lunchtime, Steve was off work so we decided to pop along and make use of their street food/coffee shop takeaway service. 

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Lightwater Valley - What's On


Lightwater Valley is a theme park in Ripon, North Yorkshire which is perfect for families with under 10s to enjoy.  


Treetop Trails (formerly Treetop Nets) are now included with admission and is your chance to walk amongst the treetops and bounce with all of the family. 

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2 for 1 Garden Entry with Gardeners' World Magazine

 
Thanks to Angela in our North East Days Out Facebook group for posting a reminder that the popular 2 for 1 Garden Entry with Gardeners' World deal is now available. 




We usually order this every year (we skipped last year for obvious reasons) and usually find that we make our money back on just one visit to Alnwick Garden. 
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Wynyard Hall Gardens, Woodland Walk & Superworm Trail

This post is based on a visit in April 2021. Please double check information with venue direct before setting off as information and facilities available change over time. 

Wynyard Hall Gardens,  Woodland Walk & Superworm Trail

This year we are spending a lot of time here in the North East and I am investing in a couple of annual passes. Somewhere I have been meaning to visit in a long time is Wynyard Gardens. I have visited a couple of times before but it has always been part of a special event. The gardens always look gorgeous so we decided to combine our visit with Wynyard Woodland Park with a trip to Wynyard Gardens which is only a couple of miles away. 
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Burn It Up North Shields Review

(ad) This post is based on us attending a press event on 19 April 2021. We have not been asked or paid to share this post. Please double check details before making plans/booking as information can change (especially relating to opening hours, the booking process and food vendors/prices). 

Burn It Up North Shields Review

I have included a menu and prices at the bottom of this post so make sure you scroll right to the end if you want to check them out. 

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Visiting Ouseburn with Kids

 
Seven Stories has launched a pavement cafe in Ouseburn. It looks like it will be a fantastic place to stop off with kids for refreshments or a light bite to eat when visiting the area. 


The new pavement cafe will be open from Thursday - Sunday 11am-4pm and will serve traybakes, muffins and cakes based on favourite children's stories. 
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Always Dreamed About Starting Your Own Business?

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I think this past year has been a chance for many of us to take stock and think about what we really want from life. Many of us have been furloughed / working reduced hours which has given us the time and space needed to start a new hobby or learn a new skill. 



Those of you who watch my Instagram stories will know that my brother has been furloughed as a chef, taught himself carpentry from scratch and has been making mud kitchens and tables which he has really enjoyed. There are 1000s of people like Mark who may be thinking about taking their new found skills to the next level or turning their hobby into a business but are perhaps not sure where to start. Or maybe have a business idea but are unsure how to take the first steps or where to apply for funding. If this is something you are interested in exploring, this post is for you. 
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Wynyard Woodland Park : Visitor Information

This post is based on a visit in April 2021. Please always check details direct with venue before setting off as information can change over time. 

Wynyard Woodland Park : Visitor Information


Wynyard Woodland Park is a play area which many of you have recommended to us over the years. I am so pleased we finally made the trip and spent a sunny morning here in April. It is fantastic! 
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Richardson Dees Park, Wallsend : Visitor Information

Richardson Dees Park in Wallsend, North Tyneside is somewhere we used to visit a lot when Harry and Heidi were little and we lived in Wallsend. It was lovely then but having a bit of cash spent on it, it's even better now.

Richardson Dees Park, Wallsend


Richardson Dees Park has a large enclosed play area with decent play equipment for all ages, an outdoor gym, sports pitches (including tennis courts and a bowling green), woodland walks, ducks to feed, a cafe, a skate park, lots of green space and public toilets. It is very easy to reach via public transport or car too. There are picnic tables and benches dotted around the grounds but it does get popular and I recommend bringing a picnic blanket if you're going to spend a few hours here. 
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Pirate Themed Crazy Golf, Morpeth (Review)

This post is based on a visit in March 2021. Please check the Crazy Putt website and social media for up to date information.

I love Crazy Golf and it's a nice activity to enjoy for all ages. One of my children who shall remain nameless is not a fan though and has multiple meltdowns whenever we play / spends the whole time accusing others of cheating or not following the rules properly which can be stressful for us if we play together as a family. I guess it's one of those activities you either love or hate! 

Pirate Themed Crazy Golf, Morpeth (Review)

I still persist and book these things though and recently we tried Crazy Putt Adventure Golf at Morpeth Family Golf Centre. Despite one child pretty much crying the whole way around because the rest of us were 'cheating' 😳 the rest of us really enjoyed this course and declared it the best outdoor crazy golf course we have tried. 

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30 of the Best Things to do at Kielder with Kids

This post was published in April 2021. Not all of these facilities will be open at all times and many are seasonal. Please ensure you contact venues direct to check facilities and opening hours/booking requirements before making plans. Also note that prices may have changed since posting so please do check this too. 

30 of the Best Things to do at Kielder with Kids


We absolutely love Kielder. The remote village, forest and reservoir is just three miles South of the Scottish border and it is one of those places where you really feel as if you are in the middle of nowhere. There is very limited phone signal making Kielder the ideal spot to really switch off from the world.

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Durham Botanic Garden : Visitor Information

This post is based on a visit in April 2021 when not all facilities were open due to Gov restrictions. Please check their website for up-to-date information before visiting or making plans. 

Durham Botanic Garden : Visitor Information


At time of publishing, Durham Botanic Garden is free to visit and open Monday-Friday 10am - 2:30pm. You do not need to pre-book and can just walk in. The cafe, toilets and indoor facilities/bird hides are currently closed. I would still recommend as a nice peaceful walk with points of interest or a place to meet up with friends/family (within Gov guidelines) and it is lovely for a stroll. There is plenty of seating throughout the gardens and it wasn't too busy at all on the day of our visit in the school holidays. 

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Tyne Riverside Country Park : Visitor Information

This post is based on a visit in April 2021. Please check with venues direct for the most up to date information. 

Tyne Riverside Country Park : Visitor Information

Tyne Riverside Country Park is situated on former industrial land by the River Tyne near Newburn. It is a lovely spot with various facilities and perfect for riverside strolls and woodland walks. The park is very well connected and part of the Wylam Waggonway and some areas are suitable for cycling and horse riding. 

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Wansbeck Riverside Park

This post is based on a visit in April 2021. 

Wansbeck Riverside Park is a large nature reserve in Ashington, Northumberland.  Expect riverside walks, a large public play park with lots of space to run around, flat surfaced paths, green space, lots of seating and a cafe. It is FREE to visit.

Wansbeck Riverside Park


We used to take the kids often when they were little as it was an ideal spot for dog walking and also a good spot for blackberry picking. We revisited on Easter Bank Holiday and it was just as good as I remember. 

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Nelly's Moss Lakes A 1.5 Mile Easy Pushchair Friendly Walk at Cragside

This post was published in April 2021. Please check details with venue direct before setting off as facilities, opening hours and information can change. Please follow Government guidelines. 

Nelly's Moss Lakes A 1.5 Mile Easy Pushchair Friendly Walk at Cragside


At time of writing, visits to Cragside must be pre-booked for members and non-members. We pre-booked our visit online. Tickets are released in the early hours of Friday morning (just after midnight) for the following week. If you are unable to book a slot, I recommend giving Cragside a call on the day you would like to visit. They usually have a number of no-shows and cancellations and can often squeeze you in. 
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Land of Oak and Iron Heritage Centre

 This post is based on a visit in March 2021. Please check with venue direct for any changes in information before you visit. 

Land of Oak and Iron Heritage Centre



The Land of Oak and Iron covers an ancient woodland area around Derwent Valley. It is a fantastic area for wildlife spotting, walking and cycling. Situated just off the A1 near the Metrocentre, it is a nice place to enjoy some fresh air after shopping or equally, a destination in itself. 
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20 Budget Hotel Rooms in Northern England which Sleep 5


The question I am probably asked more often than any other is if I can recommend any hotel rooms which sleep 5 and do not break the bank. The struggle is real! Especially during peak travel times. 

20 Budget Hotel Rooms in Northern England which Sleep 5


I have searched high and low to try and find a list of reasonably priced hotel rooms which sleep 5 in Northern England. Please note, I have not tried and tested these rooms myself so they are a starting point for your research rather than a list of recommendations. Family rooms tend to state they can sleep a maximum of 2 adults + kids so many of these may not be suitable for families with older teens or a group of 5 adults (not that I would want to share a room with teens anyway). 

I hope you find this list useful, please email Sam@NorthEastFamilyFun.co.uk if you have any other recommendations for me to add to this list. The more the merrier! Prices and details checked March 2021. Please check details direct with hotels before booking as information can change. 

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13 North East Days Out which are perfect to enjoy with Grandparents

 

13 North East Days Out which are perfect to enjoy with Grandparents

Many places in the North East are aimed primarily at kids and parents but what about grandparents? Today's post features a round up of North East days out and attractions which are perfect for everyone in the family and multi-generational days out - from kids to great grandparents. These places offer a ride variety of activities for all ages, from mining sites to beach walks.

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10 UK Zoos Where You Can Stay Overnight

The Premier Inn links in this post are (ad) affiliate links. I have not been otherwise compensated to write or share this post. 

10 UK Zoos Where You Can Stay Overnight


We love visiting UK Zoos. I know they can sometimes be controversial but I have always found the conservation efforts and charity work offered by our zoos to be second to none. Many of our UK Zoos are charities and by staying overnight, you can help to support their important work. 
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Baby & Toddler (and beyond) Swimming Lessons in North East England

Advertisement - this post has been sponsored by PaddlePod, a lush local business who I have used in the past and I am more than happy to recommend. 

Baby & Toddler (and beyond) Swimming Lessons in North East England


Under the current UK roadmap and at at time of publishing, swimming pools can re-open from 12th April. Hurrah! Prior to the pandemic, my three used to go swimming once a week after school and I would say it is the one thing they have really missed above all else this year. Swimming has so many health and wellbeing benefits and is something they really enjoy too.
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Family-friendly Beer Gardens to try this Summer

I love a cold beer or a glass of wine in the sunshine as much as the next person. I'm a strong believer that the fact I'm a parent does not mean I cannot partake in this little pleasure (obviously please drink responsibly).

20+ Beer Gardens with outdoor play areas in north east england

 
Here is my roundup of child-friendly pubs throughout the North East that serve food alongside a good selection of drinks and also have a nice outdoor space and a play area to keep the kids entertained. Let me know in the comments if there's anywhere else I should add to my list.
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13 Outdoor Crazy / Mini Golf Courses in North East England

Some of these outdoor golf courses are able to re-open on 29 March 2021. This date is subject to change and booking is at your own risk. Not all of these courses will be taking bookings at this time.

13 Outdoor Crazy / Mini Golf Courses in North East England

 
Sometimes attraction websites are not updated and I always find the best way to find out recent info/ask questions is via the attraction Facebook page. Courses may require pre-booking, especially during peak times. Please check all info before visiting/booking direct with venue, follow Government guidelines and have fun! 
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10 Roman Sites to Visit with Kids across North East England

 

to Visit with Kids across North East England

The North East is home to many Roman sites and places of interest and visitors travel here from across the world to visit. We are spoilt for choice and very lucky to have these on our doorstep. 

Over the years we have visited these attractions and the kids have learned so much about Roman History through experience which I am grateful for. 

Why not set yourself the challenge of visiting all of these attractions over the next few years? 

Prices and information correct as of February 2021. Please check details and opening hours before setting off and follow current travel advice and Government restrictions. 


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