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  • Writer's pictureKelly

60+ Ideas for Half Term Family Fun in the North East

Things to do for Free

Create a nature hunt

Visit a local park - Check out Elba Park & Doxford Park

Go to the beach and collect seaglass - I recommend Seaham Hall Beach.

Go on an epic forest adventure - Check out my guide to forest walks HERE

Visit a museum - Take a trip to Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens

Take a trip to your local nature reserve and look for bugs. Check out Low Barns

Plant some pollinator friendly plants

Use your membership cards for English Heritage & National Trust

Get arty and create a masterpiece - Check This out the WOW Factor

Have a Bake-athon competition Try our Millionaires shortbread HERE

Go bird watching

Do something for your community and litter pick

Try the Sunderland Sculpture Trail - more info HERE

Create a mini reading challenge

Set the kids a photography challenge

Collect sticks and make things like wands

Create a bug house

Go pond dipping and count tadpoles

Visit a reservoir. See our favourites HERE

Visit Auckland Castle Deer Park and go for a walk our review HERE

Hike up to Penshaw Monument and take in the views, then go down to Cox Green or Herrington park Head to Hamsterley forest and take on one of the trails. Including The Gruffalo Trail. (You can purchase a pack from the visitors centre £3 but you don't need to, as there is also a free app.)

Have a movie day.

Feed the ducks at yourlocal park

Go on a bike ride - Check out our safety tips HERE

Parking charges may apply so please check the locations details first.

Cheap ideas

*Bowling - Check out Sunderland Bowl who have had a revamp. Read our review from last year HERE

*RSPB Saltholme - Easily spend the day here. Read our review HERE

*Go Camping - Check out Marfit Head in North Yorkshire, its £15 per night and stunning.

*Wolds Way Lavender - North Yorkshire, but totally worth the drive it is amazing. Check out our reasons why you should visit HERE

*Beamish museum - use up your annual pass. Some of the things we love HERE

*Tanfield Railway - Hire your own compartment for £30. Check out our review from last year HERE

*Preston park Museum and Grounds - Ticket lasts a year, loads to see and do and the cakes are fab from the tearoom. Check out our review from last year HERE

*Alnwick Castle - Again tickets last a year

*Get creative in the kitchen and make some Butter.

*Go on an epic picnic. Check out our favourite picnic spots HERE

*Go Ice Skating

*Chillingham Castle - Great day out, full of history and a lovely river walk. Last years review HERE

*Spend the day in Seaburn. Head to the beach, visit the marina, spend some pennies in the Arcades, Grab some fish and chips from one of many cafes and take an afternoon stroll through Roker Park.

*Ocean Beach Pleasure park

*Elmer Day 29th

* Gaming marathon at Harry's Game Shack

*Lambton Park reopens with a £3 parking charge and new dates. Check out las years review HERE

Don't forget to check individual websites for their up to date Covid restrictions. You may need to book in advance


Events taking place over Half Term

Anglo Saxon Week at Bamburgh Castle 29th - 31st May

Kids Rule Event Chester's Roman Fort 29th - 6th May/June

Signs of Spring Belsay Hall, Gardens and Castle (English Heritage) 29th - 6th

Bailiffgate Museum Vikings fact or Fiction 22nd May - 30th October

Scavenger Hunt Raby Castle 8th March - 31st October

Ormesby Hall Wildlife Explorers 29th - 30th May

Spanish City Turners Funfair 29th - 4th May/June

Hardwick Hall Dragon Returns Trail 29th - 6th May/June

Thirsk Racecourse The Greatest Showman on Big Screen outdoor cinema 29th May

Land of Oak & Iron Family Discovery Trail 29th - 6th May/June

Souter Lighthouse Various events throughout Half Term

Raby Castle Teddy Bears Picnic Trail Various dates

Whickham Thorns Outdoor Activity Centre Snow Tubbing - Various dates

Rainton Meadows Nature Reserve - Various Events throughout half term

West Boldon Lodge - Various Events through half term


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