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.

This post has been written to include information when attractions are fully open with no restrictions in place, please check individual websites for up-to-date information, opening hours and pre-booking requirements. This information can regularly change.  Prices correct as of March 2021. 


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

Woodhorn is a historical museum in Northumberland focusing on an old mining site which is great for grandparents and children as it allows them to see into the near past. Woodhorn lets you look at old mining equipment and immerse yourself in life in a mining town. Walking through a set up of old Miners cottages is a great way to encourage families to share their own stories. 

Woodhorn is very accessible, the staff have been trained to deal with dementia and there is of seating. You can also enjoy a bite to eat in the lovely cafe overlooking a small play park. 

South Beach Blyth

13 North East Days Out which are perfect to enjoy with Grandparents - south beach blyth

South Beach at Blyth has two play parks, an ice cream parlour and fish and chip restaurant (sit in or take away). It is a nice place for an afternoon out - you can go on a nice walk along the beach and after the kids can go to the park and then everyone can have some fish and chips afterwards. There is plenty of seating along the prom too. Oh and you can hire a beach hut if you fancy making a day of it. 
  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: Free Parking NE24 3PL. Several buses to Blyth stop nearby - check local timetables. 
  • Accessibility: The prom is wide, flat and accessible.
  • Admission: FREE 
  • Website: N/A


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

Beamish is a living museum that specializes in making you feel like you have stepped back with old buses and trams as well as old-fashioned shops you can actually buy from and houses that you can visit, one of which is a traditional sweet shop.

Beamish also utilizes actors to make the "town" feel more lively and runs a programme of special events across the year. You pay once and can visit as many times as you like for a full year which makes Beamish an excellent choice for those who like regular meet ups with the family, 
  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: Free parking (DH9 0RG). Beamish is accessible by bus and has its own stop - see here for information. 
  • Accessibility: Beamish is accessible (including vehicles) and has a changing places toilet but due to the historic nature of the attraction, some areas may not be accessible to all. See here for info.
  • Admission (Annual Pass) Adults £19.50, Seniors and Students £14.50, children aged 5-16 £11.50, family (1 adult + 2 children) £36.50, Family (2 adult + 2 children) £51, Family (2 adults + 1 child) £44.50.
  • Website: https://www.beamish.org.uk/

Locomotion Museum, Shildon 

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

Locomotion Shildon is a large museum featuring many trains and carriages plus information on their usage across the decades. The museum allows you to look at trains both old and new and learn about life in the railway town. 

There are model displays, indoor and outdoor picnic areas, a cafe, hands on exhibitions for kids and a lovely train-themed playground outside. You can even enjoy a train ride on selected dates (small charge applies). 
  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: Free parking (DL4 2RE). Public transport is also available including train - check website for information once the attraction re-opens. 
  • Accessibility: The museum is fully accessible. See here for info. 
  • Admission: FREE
  • Website: https://www.locomotion.org.uk/home


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

Enter the world of Lord Armstrong who was a Victorian inventor, innovator and landscape genius. Cragside House is crammed full of ingenious gadgets and most of them still work.

As well as the house, there is is a woodland landscape with gardens, water courses to be explored, a fabulous play park and estate drive. The tearooms overlooking the lake are worth a visit or you can bring a picnic. Cragside is HUGE and the kind of place you can definitely spend all day. 
  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: Cragside is not accessible by public transport. There are several car parks (included with admission).
  • Accessibility: Partially accessible, see here for information. 
  • Admission: Free for National Trust Members or Adult £8, Child £4, Family £20, Family (1 adult) £12. These prices will increase as more of the estate re-opens. 
  • Website: https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/cragside
Read about our trip to Cragside with Grandparents here. 

Alnwick Garden 

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

Alnwick Garden is a luscious garden with a grand cascade water display running through the centre and several different areas to explore including a rose garden, poison garden and water garden. There is lots of fun to be had for all ages and you can even add on a game of crazy golf as the garden is home to it's own adventure golf course. 

Alnwick garden is a lovely place for a summer picnic or you can visit the pavillion cafe or maybe splash out and dine in the on-site treehouse which is pretty special. The garden hosts a range of events across the year. 
  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: Catch a bus to Alnwick. There is a paid car park at the garden (NE66 1YU). 
  • Accessibility: Alnwick Garden is accessible - see here for information. 
  • Admission: 

Tanfield Railway

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

Tanfield railway is the world's oldest railway and somewhere you ride a vintage steam train with victorian carriages. You can enjoy a six mile round trip through beautiful countryside and a spectacular wooden valley. This vintage train experience is great for everyone and you can enjoy a drink and slice of cake at one of the cafes at either end of the route.

I recommend alighting at Causey Arch and taking in the spectacular views / enjoying a quiet picnic here.

Whitehouse Farm 

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

Whitehouse farm is big day out where you can visit, feed and interact with a wide variety of farm animals including chickens, cows, sheep and pigs. Whitehouse farm also has a birds of prey area which has regular displays across the day including various owls. 

As well as the animals, there are large indoor and outdoor play areas, an indoor picnic barn, outdoor picnic tables and a reasonably priced cafe. We have many happy memories visiting Whitehouse Farm with the family and it has been one of our favourite multi-generational days out for over 10 years. It is a perfect day out whatever the weather. 
  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: Whitehouse Farm is not accessible by public transport (you could catch a taxi from Morpeth town centre). There is a large free car park on site. 
  • Accessibility: Whitehouse Farm is mostly accessible, see here for information. 
  • Admission: Adults £11.75, Children (2-16) £10.50, Seniors and students £10.50, Family (2 adults + 2 children) £39.95, Family (2 adults + 3 children) 4.95
  • Website: whitehousefarmcentre.co.uk
Read our review of Whitehouse Farm and see more photos here. 

WWT Washington 

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

At WWT Washington you can "Discover a safe haven of wide open spaces bursting with wetland nature" and you can explore the open space and feel the fresh air on your face. WWT Washington is an excellent choice for wheelchair users and the area has been designed to be accessible to all. Of all of the places we have visited over the years, WWT Washington remains to be the place which has impressed me the most with their accessibility.

You can visit bird hides, spot exotic birds, listen to various talks, visit the otters, enjoy the countryside views and kids can burn off energy in the playpark. There is a lovely cafe onsite and picnics are welcome. 

Read about a previous visit to WWT Washington and see more photos here. 

Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens 

Sunderland museum and winter gardens

The Winter Gardens are indoors so a fantastic option for rainy days. There are lots of exhibits to enjoy which are nice and varied and there is definitely something for everyone.

From a 'time machine' exhibition which takes you through the decades to an exhibition sharing the region's mining heritage, Sunderland in the 20th Century, a Victorian gallery, lost worlds and more. Don't miss the dinosaurs hiding in the Winter Garden. There is a coffee shop onsite and a regular programme of activities and visiting exhibitions.  

Preston Park, Museum & Grounds 

13 North East Days Out which are perfect to enjoy with Grandparents  - preston park museum and grounds

Preston Park, Museum and Grounds is another of our favourite days out and one which we think offers fantastic value for money.

There is a lot to keep all ages occupied across the site including a Victorian Street with a real sweet shop and tea room, museum which features vintage toys, walled garden, woodland walk, fantastic adventure playground, skate park and cafe. Butterfly World is just next door and there are lovely walks to enjoy around the grounds. 

Preston Park organises a fantastic range of events across the year. 

  • Parking/Directions/Public Transport: There is a free car park on site (plus overflow) and Preston Park is served by buses or a 12 minute walk from Eaglescliffe Train Station. Find out more here. 
  • Accessibility: Mostly accessible, see here for information. 
  • Admission: (Annual Pass) Adult £5, Children/over 60s/students/unwaged £3, Under 3s free, Family (1 adult + 3 children) £10, Family (2 adults + 3 children) £15
  • Website: https://www.prestonparkmuseum.co.uk/
Read about one of ou previous visits to Preston Park and see more photos here. 

Seaton Delaval Hall 

13 North East Days Out which are perfect to enjoy with Grandparents - seaton delaval hall

Seaton Delaval Hall is one of the smaller North East National Trust sites but still well worth a visit. There are beautiful landscaped gardens to walk through with secret nooks and crannies and surprises, wonderful countryside views to enjoy, woodland to explore and of course the Hall itself. New editions include a new play area for children and a new Brewhouse Coffee Shop (opening soon).

You can extend your visit and enjoy the the Holywell and Seaton Sluice walk with a longer walk at 5.75 miles and a shortened version at 4.5 miles.


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

See the amazing historical stories of England in this epic outdoor performance which takes place in Bishop Auckland each summer. Travel through time as you see significant moments of history played out in front of your eyes against an original soundtrack, amazing choreography and pyrotechnics. 

I have watched Kynren a few times now and never tire of the show, it is brilliant and everyone should see it at least once. It is on fairly late so I would recommend to families with older children. 

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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. 

Remember face coverings are required for indoor attractions / shops for those aged 11+ (usual exemptions apply)  

Check for local lockdowns / travel restrictions before visiting anywhere. 

Always check updated opening hours / protocols with venues direct before setting off as things may have changed after this post was published. 

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


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