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  • Writer's pictureKelly

What's On This Weekend - What's on in the North East for families

I have been doing a weekly what's on guide for a while now and it always proves popular with our readers. I have now decided to turn it into a weekly blog post, so it is easier for you to find and come back to when stuck for ideas. To find out What's on in the North East for families read on.

I will just update this post every week, so save it to come back to.

Make sure you check the details and booking info. Click on the GOLD links to find out more

If you have a family friendly event that you would like us to include in our guides please click HERE

For more great ideas, check us out on Facebook, Instagram

You can also advertise your business every Friday for free in our very popular Facebook Group. HERE

*This post contains ADs*

You can find some ideas HERE for indoor options.

Scroll to the bottom of this post for even more ideas

AGLOW at Auckland Castle should be on everyone's to do list this Christmas!

(ad)We were invited to the preview night for Auckland Castle's spectacular new light trail. We absolutely loved it. It was fantastic!

What you can expect.


  Absolutely huge Christmas tree, the biggest in the North of England, standing at 30 metres tall with over 750 metres of fairy lights.


The longest outdoor light tunnel in the country, over 100 metres long. It is mesmerising.


A captivating light show projected onto Auckland Castle. We absolutely loved this segment. Make sure you stay to see most of it. The little mice are adorable.


If you need warming up you will love the illuminations with real fire.


The river is absolutely stunning with a fountain.


See Santa and his mischievous Elves in Santa's village we thought the Santa was amazing and the elves were very entertaining! Younger kids will love this bit. You can also find the fairground rides, food and drink and some seating along with fire pits to keep warm.

Find out more in our Review post HERE

 Chirstmas Days at Beamish Museum!

Running until the 24th December you can soak up the festive atmosphere and discover the delights of Christmas in the 1820s, early 1900s, 1940s and 1950s.

There will be delightful decorations, festive food, merry music and Christmas crafts.

As you walk around the museum, keep an eye out for the elves who have escaped from Elf Wood, grab a copy of the free Elf Trail from the Entrance or the museum’s website and see if you can find all the elves.

 NEW FOR 2023!  Help the museum celebrate Christmas in the 1950s aged mineworkers’ homes, council houses and police houses for the first time!

Christmas at Beamish daytimes are included in admission and are free to Unlimited Pass holders and Friends of Beamish members, pay once and visit free of charge for a year, including all daytime events. Christmas evenings is completely sold out now. You must book a visit to see santa in advance.

Beamish is open daily from 10am to 4pm (last admission 3pm, closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day).


Stellar Projects presents: Nightfall 2023: Play Among the Stars!

Come out and play with the stars in Stewart Park, Middlesbrough after dark from Wednesday 29 November – Sunday 3 December.

#Nightfall23 tickets are on sale NOW

Nightfall stargazers near & far, you’re invited on an adventure as magical as a shooting star.

Get ready for a galaxy playground descending from the Middlesbrough night sky, full of hopeful stars bursting to play, dance & fly. And across five nights, a cosmic event for all the family will unfold, revealing enchanting twinkling, shimmering stars and their story untold.

#Nightfall23 will take visitors through Stewart Park in Middlesbrough following a trail of colourful light artworks and performance transforming the familiar landscape and features of the park!

At the end of the trail there will be drop-in workshops for families and live music where you can stay for a while and enjoy some warming food and refreshments.

Tickets are £14.50 per adult & £9.50 per child. Under twos are free - but they still need a ticket.

Saturday 2nd

Elmer Rainbow Trail - Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens

Plotters Forest Trail - Raby Castle

Walking with Ghosts Tour - Durham

Weardale Community Choir - Consett

Free Christmas Family Funday - Belmont Industrial Estate

Saltburn Light Swicth On & Parade

Clay Bauble Crafts - Souter Lighthouse

Forum Shopping Centre Characters & Crafts

Family Christmas Funday - Durham Centre

Biscuit making - Ikea

Christmas Crafts - Ushaw

Painted Bauble crafts - Grainger Market

Nature event - Jesmond Dene

Sunday 3rd

Reindeer Dash - Bridges Sunderland

Frost Fest - Land of Oak & Iron

The Original Santa Claus Tour - Newcastle Cathedral

Make a tree decoration - Ikea

Mini Elves - Stack Seaburn

Saturday 2nd & Sunday 3rd

Durham Christmas Festival

Winter Wonderland - Rainton Arena

A Georgian Christmas - Kirkleatham Museum

Free Ice Skating at Metrocentre if you make a food bank donation.

Cullercoates community advent calander

Decorate a winter ceramic heart - Woodhorn Museum

Walkaround Father Christmas - Wallington

Festive storytelling - Belsay

Decorate a Gingerbread - Baltic

Preston Park is Christmas Ready

Advent Procession & Carols - Durham Cathedral

Christmas Kingdom - Bamburgh Castle

Christmas in Neverland - Castle Howard

Father Christmas has lost his gifts trail - High Force waterfall

Artic experience - Metrocentre

Lego Exhibition - Dorman Museum

Quentin blake trail WWT Washington

Christmas Stocking Trail - Sunderland City Centre

Christmas character VR Trail - Sunderland City centre

Visit Santa - Bridges Shopping Centre (Please note the grotto has a new look for this year)

Lapland VR Ride - Bridges Shopping Centre

Aglow - Auckland Castle

Christmas Daytimes now open at Beamish

Christmas Crafts & Stories - Seven Stories

Fairytrail and Christmas Decorations - Gibside NT

Oh Yes It Is ..... Christmas at Ormesby Hall NT

Snowman Trail - Middlesbrough Town centre

Cinderella - Durham Gala

North Pole Express - Tanfield Railway

Santa Specials - Weardale Railway

Enchanted Garden Grotto - Lanchester Garden Centre


🎄𝕊𝕒𝕥𝕦𝕣𝕕𝕒𝕪 𝟚𝕟𝕕 𝔻𝕖𝕔𝕖𝕞𝕓𝕖𝕣

Christmas Market - Plants Plus Garden Centre

North East Festive Fayre - Beacon Of Light

Festive Fair - Redhouse Community Centre

Christmas Market - Blue Bell Hotel Middlesbrough

Christmas Market - Blyth Community Centre

Christmas Craft Market - George of Piercebridge

Christmas Market - St Columbus Church Wideopen

Christmas Market - Newcastle Cat & Dog Shelter

🎄𝕊𝕦𝕟𝕕𝕒𝕪 𝟛𝕣𝕕 𝔻𝕖𝕔𝕖𝕞𝕓𝕖𝕣

Gateshead Christmas Fayre - Marriot Hotel

Christmas Market Jesmond Dene House

Made up Norths Winter Market - The Boiler Shop

Bedale Christmas Market

Christmas Market - Richmond Market Place

🎄𝔹𝕠𝕥𝕙 𝔻𝕒𝕪𝕤

Durham Christmas Festival

Spennymoor Christmas Market

Malton Christmas Market

Carlisle Christmas Market

Newcastle Christmas Market

York Christmas Market

Harrogate Christmas Market

Raby Castle Christmas Market

Stockton Sparkles

Carlisle Christmas Market

Did you know that most of my content is brought to you with no financial incentive? If you appreciate my posts, why not buy me a virtual coffee?

If you would like your family friendly event adding to our guide free of charge, please fill in this FORM

Other Ideas for this weekend

Christmas Movie countdown  

Where to go Ice Skating

Light Switch on dates

Festive Trails

Christmas Markets

Panto Guide

Festive events to book

Where to see Santa on a train  

Winter walk ideas Breakfast,

Lunch and Afternoon festive teas

Over 100 indoor attractions

10 Castles to visit this year

Our favourite National Trust Properties

Spring walk ideas (Also nice during Autumn/winter)

Head to one of the North Easts fab Museums

Woodland Walk and hunt for Zog

Things to do when the weather is rubbish

Potters World - Lanchester Garden Centre

For more great ideas, check us out on Facebook, Instagram

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