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Things to do in County Durham

Top recommendations from locals

From sightseeing to hidden gems, find out what makes the city unique with the help of the locals who know it best.
Museum
“Fascinating museum. Learn about North East culture. Go down a mine, ride on trams, visit Victorian houses (including the dentist!). 20 mins drive. All day visit and free returns. ”
  • 52 locals recommend
Church
“Be sure to call in at The Georgian Window Gift shop which is like an Aladin's cave full of wonderful colourful scarves jewellery gifts and Durham gifts such as Durham fridge magnets and lots more This shop is on the way to the cathedral”
  • 23 locals recommend
Museum
“A must see sight in the North of England! Brilliant art museum in the French style and great cafe. Close to the market town of Barnard Castle which is nice for a walk around.”
  • 25 locals recommend
Monument / Landmark
“Antony Gormleys Angel of the North stands 20 meters high just of the A1 welcoming visitors as they enter the city of Newcastle and Gateshead. You can pull up beside the Angel and walk to the sculpture. There is no fee for visiting the site.”
  • 17 locals recommend
Natural Feature
“A stunning waterfall in gorgeous surroundings. please note that there is a charge to access the waterfall which goes towards the maintenance of the access pathway. ”
  • 21 locals recommend
Natural Feature
“Fantastic for enjoying the outdoors - walking biking and lots for the kids ”
  • 18 locals recommend
Cinema
“Programme of comedy, plays etc in the theatre and of films in the two-screen cinema”
  • 7 locals recommend
Castle
“Durham Castle is possibly the only castle to be used as a student dormitory! It can also be visited by tourists.”
  • 6 locals recommend
Landmark
“A beautiful, family owned castle set in stunning grounds. Deer and cattle roam the surrounding fields. A cafe providing locally sourced produce is a must! ”
  • 7 locals recommend
Asian Restaurant
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“If you would like something a little less formal then Zen is lovely, it is Thai food and the restaurant is beautifully presented and has a nice bar if you just fancy a drink. The Court Inn next door is great for food and drinks too.”
  • 3 locals recommend
Entertainment
“Just extraordinary! An absolute must see. Open air night time spectacular!!”
  • 11 locals recommend
Café
“A small rustic cafe and coffee shop which is superb for breakfasts, lunches and cakes.”
  • 3 locals recommend
Bar
“Whisky River is a prestigious bar located next to the river. They do all kinds of cocktails and its the perfect spot to start off your night.”
  • 3 locals recommend
Store
“Killhope is a multi-award winning 19th century mining museum in the centre of the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, where you can experience the life and work of the lead mining families of the North Pennines. Famous for its iconic working waterwheel, stunning landscape, fascinating lead mining history, scenic walks and amazing wildlife. You can also accompany one of their guides on an unforgettable underground mine tour. Killhope offers an amazing day out for the whole family, whether you’re looking for fun or to immerse yourself in history.”
  • 12 locals recommend
Bar
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“This restaurant is small and cosy, it does a large variety of delicious meals and its perfect for gin lovers.”
  • 2 locals recommend
Place to eat
“This is a circular walk taking in the magnificent High Force Falls, stop off at High Force Hotel or carry on to Bowlees for tea and scones! Yummy! ”
  • 8 locals recommend

Top restaurants

Asian Restaurant
“If you would like something a little less formal then Zen is lovely, it is Thai food and the restaurant is beautifully presented and has a nice bar if you just fancy a drink. The Court Inn next door is great for food and drinks too.”
  • 3 locals recommend
Bar
“This restaurant is small and cosy, it does a large variety of delicious meals and its perfect for gin lovers.”
  • 2 locals recommend
Cocktail Bar
“The Boat Club is situated on the river and has a lovely terrace to enjoy a few drinks on in the sun. They serve meals during the day and play music at night so that you can party away.”
  • 1 local recommends
Bar
“Tangos is a fabulous restaurant with quirky decor and many meals to suit anyone. They serve spectacular cocktails and are situated on Elvet Bridge which makes for a perfect location to start your night in the City.”
  • 2 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Bella Italia is a small Italian restaurant located next to the river. Perfect for guests to go and have a light lunch or evening meal followed by drinks.”
  • 1 local recommends
Bar
“By day, the Bishops Mill is a busy pub serving lots of cheap but delicious meals. By night this pub is turned into one of Durhams biggest night clubs and has loud music so that you can dance the night away.”
  • 1 local recommends
Bar
“The Cellar Door is a British restaurant over looking the river and the perfect place to celebrate special occasions.”
  • 2 locals recommend
Bar
“Missoula is a large venue which comes alive at the weekend. With a large dance floor and outdoor areas why not give it a visit and dance the night away.”
  • 1 local recommends

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