As a beautiful, historic city in the north east, Durham radiates charm and is the ideal place for a daytrip or a staycation. It’s got everything you could dream of, from winding streets to bustling restaurants, listed buildings and towering landmarks. In fact, the entire old city has been listed a UNESCO World Heritage Site – and for good reason.
So, why not hop in your car and head to this fascinating city for a memorable adventure? Here are 15 places you can’t miss when in Durham and the County Durham area.
Standing grand over the city, Durham Cathedral is a wonderful sight and one of the most stunning attractions in Durham with its Romanesque-style architecture.
At the heart of the UNESCO World Heritage Site and dating back to the 11th century, Durham Castle is a visual spectacle steeped in history. It’s been continuously occupied throughout its lifespan and is now home to students of University College.
Wherever you look in Durham, you’ll see a photo opportunity, with Prebends Bridge being a Grade-I listed masterpiece. It’s one of three stone-arch bridges in the city and is the perfect backdrop for a family snap by the River Wear.
If you’re looking for a fun-filled day out celebrating nature, the Durham University Botanic Garden is a must. Home to tropical plans and a range of creepy crawlies, this 25-acre wonder will keep you entertained for hours.
A bustling hub of activity since Medieval times, Durham Market Place is renowned for its beautiful buildings and striking architecture. It’s also a great starting point if you want to check out Durham’s shopping area.
Calling all history buffs! Durham Museum is the ideal place to learn more about Durham’s extensive and fascinating history, from medieval times to the 20th century. The museum is located within the Grade-I listed former parish church of St Mary-le-Bow.
Luxury fashion shops, beautiful hotels and classy restaurants have changed the face of Durham. Top spots to visit include Riverwalk and Milburngate which have been upgraded in recent years.
Overlooking the city, Wharton Park offers a spectacular view of Durham Cathedral and is a picturesque setting for an afternoon of play of a picnic. Considered one of the city’s hidden gems, this is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.
Beamish is a world-famous open-air museum which documents life in the North East of England during the 1820s, 1900s, 1940s and 1950s. See how a farm was run in the 50s and visit a Pit Village to see what’s cooking in the cottages and to practice your handwriting in the school.
When travelling by car, you can visit the whole of County Durham in style including the nearby coastline. Durham’s Heritage Coast offers everything from colourful and dramatic landscapes to rustic beaches and cliffs.
County Durham is also home to Escomb Saxon Church in Escomb. Situated just two miles west of Bishop Auckland in Wear Valley, the church dates back to 675 AD and is one of only three complete Saxon churches.
Again, if you’re prepared to venture a little further afield, Barnard Castle in Teesdale, County Durham, is a popular tourist destination. Nestled on the north bank of the River Tees, Barnard Castle is actually a market town named after the castle around which it was built.
While in the area, you can also check out one of the most impressive waterfalls in Britain. High Force is a waterfall on the River Tees and is located in the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and European Geopark.
See highlights of the incredible railway collection at Shildon Locomotion Museum and enjoy a great day out for the whole family.
A jewel in the crown of County Durham, Raby Castle is ideal for a fun-filled family down out. As one of England’s finest medieval castles, you can explore dramatic 14th century architecture as well as the stunning parks and gardens.
While in Durham, feel free to visit our reputable car dealership in Croxdale and browse our extensive vehicle lineup.