The Hidden Attractions of County Durham

County Durham, a district in the North East of England has always been a favourite family destination for short breaks or long weekends away. It is renowned for its beautiful scenery and it’s famous attractions such as the High Force waterfall and Durham University’s Botanic Gardens, yet still has a number of equally beautiful, relatively undiscovered spots and exciting attractions.

Take the Castle Eden Dene national nature reserve as an example. Here you can find 12 miles of wooded valley with steep banks and rough paths, a perfect location for a family day out. There’s also the stunning Hamsterly Forest on the edge of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It has 2000 hectares of mixed woodland offering cycle routes and horse riding tracks for the whole family.

If your family is not the outdoor type, there’s always the National Railway Museum with its variety of queen ethelburga’s college vehicles and locomotives. It also holds a variety of special events throughout the year and offers

demonstrations and guided tours. Or, if it’s something completely different you are looking for, then Diggerland is a brilliant family adventure park. It has over 15 rides and drives and gives you and your children the chance to drive real construction machinery. The park has an on-site cafe and educational or school groups are also welcome.

Durham is also home to numerous entertainment venues, cinemas and theatres, all packed with great shows throughout the year. However, if a good day’s shopping is more your idea of entertainment, then this city will spoil you for choices. It’s home to an abundance of small boutique and craft shops such as Wild & Funk as well as large shopping centres and garden centres. The award-winning Truffles Chocolate shop which specialists in luxury hand made chocolates is a definite favourite amongst tourists, who are sure to find something to suit their taste.

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