Durham Tourist Attractions

The North East of England is often overlooked by holidaymakers seeking a rural slice of tranquility; the rolling Pennine hills, dipping valleys and winding rivers of County Durham set the scene for some spectacular attractions of both prehistoric, and modern interest. Arguably one of the most beautiful cathedrals in England, the Norman Durham Cat sits atop a hill looking down upon the sprawling cobbled city, closely guarded by the Romanesque castle. Together they form one of the most prolific World Heritage Sites in England, and are just the prequel to an abundance of historic, exciting and outstanding attractions. Find cottages in Durham


Shildon Rail Museum - flckr - Draco2008The National Railway Museum, Shildon

Do you ever wonder where in England, the famous steam engines of the 19th Century retired to? Wonder no more. The National Railway Museum of Shildon is the retirement home of over 200 locomotives, which range from the iconic 'Flying Scotsman', to the 'Evening Star' (the last steam-powered train to be built in England.) Durham's first 'national' museum is the only one in the U.K (of it's size) to focus solely upon the history of British railways, and features art and advertising propaganda, alongside signaling, decorative and engine exhibits. Visitors are encouraged to experience the vintage workshop, where production practices dating back to the Victorian era are still demonstrated.

Crook Hall and Gardens, Durham

While medieval buildings are a staple of Durham's diverse architecture, the beauty of 13th Century Crook Hall still surpasses any expectation. Enveloped within just 4 acres of immaculately kept gardens, Crook Hall provides the grandeur befitting of secret walled gardens, and gargoyle guarded ponds. Little has changed within the 13th Century interior of the hall; open to visitors daily, and inviting them to view a down-sized domestic medieval castle, that to this day remains a family home.

The Beamish Museum, Stanley

A world-famous attraction  of immense character and eccentricity, The Beamish Museum located in Stanley is the undisputed choice for experiencing the 'living culture' of the North East. Lively characters in period dress seemingly go about their daily lives, upon cobbled streets dominated by Georgian and Victorian architecture. The Pit Village is uncannily similar to those of the North East during the coal mining years, and visitors are invited to experience school life, shopping and harvesting, while the redundant  mines at 'The Colliery' offer a glimpse of life as a coal miner during the 19th Century. Don't fancy walking? Hop aboard a horse drawn double-decker carriage, or one of the early 20th Century sight-seeing buses for a fascinating guided tour.


13:04:2009 13:27:24 - flckr - Glen BowmanRaby Castle, Staindrop
Located just outside the charming town of Staindrop, the aristocratic Neville's legacy is still unmissable. Fourteenth Century Raby Castle (home to the Vane family for over 300 years) represents one of the finest surviving medieval castles in England, and one of |Durham's most diverse attractions. Famed for it's rich collections of sumptuous 18th and 19th Century art, Raby's doors are always open to those hoping for a glimpse of Munnings and De Hooch paintings. Raby Castle's 200 acre deer park offers a variety of experiences, from widlife tours and walks, to child friendly assault course and treasure trails. Adults too will find the charming gardens a tranquil escape from the modern world, with photographic opportunities to be had within the secluded 'Walled Garden', resplendent with rose bushes, creepers and untamed beauty. Find holiday cottages in Durham


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