A holiday in Northumberland and County Durham can be anything you want it to be. From the bustle of the regional capital Newcastle to the quiet of the Northumberland countryside, your break can be as energetic or as peaceful as you choose - and we haven’t even mentioned the coastline yet.
Northumberland’s epic, sweeping coastline stretches from the Scottish border down to the lively resort of Whitley Bay, and is dotted with ancient castles, historic religious sites, and sandy stretches of glorious beach.
County Durham holidays are filled with character and charm. The Durham Heritage Coast surrounding Crimdon Dene Holiday Park is effortlessly stunning, while an afternoon strolling through the chic city of Durham with its boutique-lined cobbled streets and awe-inspiring gothic cathedral is a fantastic way to spend a day.
There are five Parkdean Resorts holiday parks all along the 80 mile stretch of coast from Hartlepool to Berwick, and each offers a different experience. From the peace and quiet of Church Point Holiday Park to the entertainment packed Sandy Bay Holiday Park, there’s something for everyone on a Parkdean Resorts getaway in this region.
Eager to find out more? Read on for a full guide to what the North East has to offer for holidaymakers.
Reasons to Visit Northumberland and County Durham
Remote sands or lively resorts, the choice is yours
Alnwick, Bamburgh and Dunstanburgh
Delicious Craster Kippers and Doddington Dairy Ice cream
Five holiday parks fit for family fun!
Theme parks, petting zoos and much more
You’ll feel a world away from your worries when taking in the landscape along the coastline and further inland.
Whether you’re admiring Lindisfarne and Holy Island from afar or up on the wild moorland of the Northumberland National Park, an escape to some picture-perfect scenery is never far away in this part of the world. For a true scenic experience, we recommend rising early and watching the sun rise from the North Sea, bathing the unspoilt landscape in dramatic light and colour.
Beach fans are well catered for in Northumberland and also along the County Durham coast. With Whitley Bay and Tynemouth Longsands receiving Blue Flag Awards this year, these are well worth a visit, for the combination of lively seaside towns and impeccable sand alone.
However, if you’re looking to escape to some untouched stretches of coast, then why not spend the day at Druridge Bay? Close to Cresswell Towers Holiday Park, Druridge is one of our favourite beaches, and once thought to be a possible site of invasion during the Second World War - so keep an eye out for some fortifications dating back to that era.
South of the River Tyne lies the impressive Ocean Beach Pleasure Park - the largest theme park in the North East, which features white-knuckle fairground rides, laser quest and go karting - enough for a high-quality day out.
Further inland, the Angel of the North is the region’s most iconic structure, and is well worth a quick stop off to pose for some photos. There’s so much more to see all across the region - click the link below for some of our top picks.
History & Culture
The areas of Northumberland and County Durham have been fought over for millennia, and there are the castles and fortifications to prove it, from the Roman era through to the Viking age and beyond.
Taking in castles such as the ones at Bamburgh and Alnwick are a must, but arguably the most unmissable historical site in the whole region is Holy Island of Lindisfarne, just off the coast towards the northern end of the county. Crossing the causeway at low tide to see the historic Priory and spot the local wildlife is an unforgettable day out. Further south, we recommend visiting the Royal Navy Museum at Hartlepool, which includes a beautifully preserved 19th century warship.
Seaside food with a twist is the order of the day along the North East coast. Sample some Craster Kippers in the village of the same name, or indulge in a plate of hot pan haggerty - a super simple potato-based dish that’s sure to fill you up.
In terms of fish and chips, just down the coast from our Whitley Bay Holiday Park is Marshalls at Tynemouth, which is a consistently highly rated chippy - look out for the blue plaque that commemorates the time Jimi Hendrix got chips from the establishment while on tour in the North East in 1967!
A stone’s throw from Crimdon Dene Holiday Park is Tweddle Children’s Animal Farm, which provides an irresistible combination of a go-kart track and a petting zoo! Animals include alpacas, goats and Shetland ponies, and all are available to be hand-fed by the little ones.
If you count some little centurions amongst your brood, then there a plenty of Roman-related activities at the Segedunum and Arbeia Roman forts - ancient fortifications that once guarded Hadrian’s Wall.
Outdoors & Adventure
Northumberland holidays are the holy grail for mountain bikers, with plenty of thrilling trails to be found inland around Kielder Forest - taking advantage of the untouched natural beauty that abounds in this part of the county.
If water sports are more your thing, then surfing tuition is available at hotspots such as Beadnell and Amble. Finally, there are plenty of hiking trails along the coast - where you could discover a deserted beach to rest your weary legs on.
For a bombastic summer evening’s entertainment, Kynren can’t really be matched. A vast, open air show running through hundreds of years of English history, featuring a massive cast and some impressive pyrotechnics, this is pretty impressive for a stretch of farmland near Bishop Auckland!
If music is more your thing, then don’t miss the Mouth of the Tyne Festival, featuring bands big and small at venues all across Tynemouth resort.
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Our holiday parks received two gold awards at the 2020 British Travel Awards.