There's plenty of great family summer holiday activities and events to choose from this summer in Durham. From Coast to Countryside and everything inbetween, check out our A-Z of what to do this summer.

Different summer activities in County Durham.

  • A - Animals! Durham is overflowing with fantastic attractions filled with lots of wonderful animals to make friends with like Hall Hill Farm and Adventure Valley.
  • B - Board a train at Weardale Railway, a heritage railway which travels through the beautiful Durham Dales, part of the historic Stockton to Darlington Railway line.
  • C - City life! Enjoy a day out exploring the cobbled streets of historic Durham City, you never know what you'll discover!
  • D - Diggerland - enjoy 20% discount off pay on the day admission with our exclusive voucher.
  • E - Explore Egglestone Abbey, the perfect spot for a picnic just on the River Tees.
  • F - Feel the Force at High and Low Force Waterfalls - a great spot for enjoying nature trails, picnics and spectacular countryside views.

Collection of different summer activities you can enjoy in County Durham

  • G - Gaia has landed at Durham Cathedral. Don’t miss your chance to see this awe-inspiring artwork every day, during cathedral opening times from 10 July - 10 September. Plus a whole host of Earth themed events and experiences to enjoy.
  • H - Hamsterley Forest, over 2,000 hectares of wonderful woodland to explore - build a woodland den, follow the Zog trail, spot the Gruffalo, hire a bike or enjoy a relaxing walk.
  • I - Investigate the hidden history behind one of Durham's most magnificent buildings - Durham Cathedral on a guided tour or inside the cathedral museum.
  • J - Jump around at Infinite Air, one of the UK's largest indoor trampoline parks!
  • K - Kynren - An Epic Tale of England - travel through 2,000 years of English history, myth and legend at the UK's most spectacular outdoor live show. Every Saturday 29 July to 9 September.
  • L - Locomotion, the National Railway Museum. Get up close with incredible engineering feats in Shildon, the world's first railway town.

Different attractions and events happening summer 2023 in County Durham

  • M - Movement: The Magic of the Silver Swan at The Bowes Museum. A celebration of historic and contemporary automata, inspired by the magical mechanical mechanisms inside the museum's most iconic object, The Silver Swan, which celebrates its 250th anniversary this year.
  • N - North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. One of England's most special places, a great place to get out and get active.
  • O - Oriental Museum - The North of England's only museum devoted entirely to the art and archaeology of the great cultures of North Africa and Asia.
  • P - Parks and Gardens. Durham is filled with wonderful parks and gardens to explore and enjoy together as a family (and most are free of charge)
  • Q - Quench your thirst and try out your gin making skills at Durham Distillery. Join Durham Distillers at their new underground bar, in the heart of Durham City for tasty gin and cocktail making experiences.  
  • R - Reservoirs! Durham has lots of wonderful waterside parks and reservoirs to explore this summer, including Cow Green Reservoir, Grassholme Reservoir and Derwent Waterside Park which has lots of fun activities happening throughout the holidays.

different summer activities and attractions you can enjoy in County Durham

  • S - Seaglass collecting at Seaham, enjoy hunting for 'mermaid's tears' at one of the top seaglass collecting spots in the world.
  • T - Travel through time at Beamish - The Living Museum of the North.
  • U - Go Underground at Killhope - the multi award-winning 19th century Lead Mining Museum.
  • V - View the night sky. Did you know the North Pennines AONB has more nationally recognised Dark Sky Discovery Sites than any other part of the UK? Making the Durham Dales the perfect location for some stargazing action.
  • W - Wander through characterful gardens and a living maze at Crook Hall Gardens, a Grade 1 listed medieval hall with beautiful, interlinked gardens, on the edge of Durham City.
  • X - X marks the spot at Raby Castle’s exciting children’s trails this summer. Follow the map and see how many clues you can collect as you follow family-friendly outdoor trails, including the Mythical Adventure in the Deer Park, and Pilot Penny trail at The Plotter’s Forest adventure playground.
  • Y – Take some ‘You Time’ and treat yourself to a relaxing spa day or night away. Across the county you’ll find many award-winning spas which offer fantastic spa break packages, including personalised treatments in luxurious settings.
  • Z - Catch a few ZZZZZ's. After an action-packed day of adventure, you'll find lots of wonderful places to stay for a good night's sleep. From five star luxury hotels and grand county houses, to cosy holiday cottages and unqiue glamping huts, there's something to suit all tastes and budgets.  

different accommodation and areas within County Durham

For lots more summer holiday ideas including stunning accommodation check out our summer breaks page




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