Things to do in Tyne and Wear
The county of Tyne and Wear is situated in the north east of England around the estuaries of the River Tyne and River Wear. It was once the largest ship building area in the world. Many changes have taken place due to the closure of this traditional industry.
However the area has undergone significant regeneration creating new leisure, arts and cultural venues. Tyne and Wear has award winning beaches, vibrant cities, museums, galleries, interesting attractions, sporting facilities and entertainments to suit all.
Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne is famous for its friendly welcome, great shopping, dining, entertainment and nightlife. Newcastle has many interesting attractions. In Blandford Square is Discovery Museum - an exciting interactive experience for all.
The Life Science Centre in Times Square is a fascinating place to visit. The Laing Art Gallery not only has a fine collection of art and crafts, but provides a children's gallery with soft play area as well. Hancock Museum is the north east's premier natural science museum.
Visitors to the Gateshead area can't fail to notice Angel of the North - Britain's largest sculpture - towering over the Team Valley from its hilltop site.
Gateshead is famous as the home of the Metro Centre, Europe's largest retail and leisure complex. There's also Gateshead International Stadium, a premier athletics venue. Gateshead Quays is the historic heart of the town, now being regenerated into a world class arts, leisure and residential destination.
The Baltic is an exciting new centre for contemporary art. Other attractions include Shipley Art Gallery with a gallery dedicated to the town's history, its people and their skills. At Blaydon is Path Head Water Mill, a restored 18th century working water mill, the grounds of which have picnic areas and woodland walks.
In the Sunderland district, the city of Sunderland is situated at the mouth of the River Wear. This thriving city derived its prosperity from coal mining, shipbuilding, and glass making. Sunderland offers an excellent shopping centre, many independent shops, boutiques and restaurants to tempt you as you explore its fine old Victorian streets.
Sunderland Museum in Burdon Road tells the story of its past history through to the present day. The Art Gallery features paintings by L.S. Lowry, Victorian masterpieces and artefacts from around the world.
The Winter Gardens is an impressive modern building, home to a spectacular collection of flowers and plants.
The Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art is situated in the City Library, acclaimed for its changing exhibitions. The National Glass Centre on the north bank of the River Wear is a fascinating experience for visitors of all ages.
A short distance to the west is Washington, designated a 'New Town' in 1964. George Washington's ancestors lived in the old village from 1183 until they moved south, before immigrating to Virginia USA in 1657. The family home, Washington Old Hall, in the care of the National Trust, is a typical example of a 17th century small manor house and is open to the public.
Washington is also home to Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust Washington. South east of the town is one of the north east's most imposing landmarks - Penshaw Monument. It was built in 1844 in honour of the first Earl of Durham, John George Lambton. The monument was modelled on the Thesion, the Temple of Theseus in Athens. It is located off the A183, Chester Road, Penshaw, Houghton-le-Street, opposite Herrington Country Park.
South Shields is a busy market town in the South Tyneside district. South Tyneside coastline offers stunning cliff top walks and clean sandy beaches, ideal for family days out. Inland are several walking and cycling routes to explore.
Along the estuary is Jarrow, formerly another great shipbuilding town and the starting point for the Jarrow Marchers, who in 1936 took their 'Crusade for Jobs' to London. The Church of St Paul was part of the Jarrow Monastery where the Venerable Bede taught and wrote his history of the Church. The attraction 'Bede's World' is dedicated to the celebration of his life.
North Tyneside shares the same historic coastline. If you go to North Shields, you can visit the Stephenson Railway Museum. At Whitley Bay, St Mary's island and lighthouse is a famous landmark and the surrounding area is popular with divers and wildlife enthusiasts.
Attractions in the area include the Blue Reef Aquarium, Segedunum Roman Fort and Seaton Delaval Hall.
Days out in Tyne and Wear
Angel of the North
If you're travelling past Gateshead, whether by car on the A1, or by train on the East coast main line, you can't miss the Angel of the North.
Arbeia Roman Fort and Museum
Situated beyond the easternmost point of Hadrian's Wall, Arbeia Roman Fort stood guard at the mouth of the River Tyne.
Blue Reef Aquarium Tynemouth
There's a world of underwater adventure just waiting to be discovered at the award-winning Blue Reef Aquarium in Tynemouth.
Centre for Life
The Centre for Life is an award-winning science centre where imaginative exhibitions, interactive displays and special events promote greater understanding of science and provoke curiosity in the world around us.
Discovery Museum is the ideal place to find out all about life on Tyneside, from the region's shipbuilding heritage to inventions which changed the world.
Wildlife, a Statue of Liberty and family connections with the Queen Mother make Gibside a National Trust property which stands out from the rest.
Great North Museum
The Great North Museum is the North East's premier natural science museum. Permanent Displays include Land of the Pharaohs, Living Planet and Earthworks.
Laing Art Gallery
The Laing Art Gallery has something for everyone to enjoy, with an impressive collection of art and sculpture.
Monkwearmouth Station Museum
The museum is housed in an outstanding grade 2* listed 1840s station building commissioned by the famous railway entrepreneur George Hudson.
North East Aircraft Museum
The North of England's Premier Aviation Collection. Classic aircraft on display include : Avro Vulcan, Hawker Hunter and Falklands veteran - the Pusara. Over 30 aircraft and a collection of aeroengines all under cover.
Path Head Water Mill
Path Head Water Mill offers a great day out for all the family. Visitors can see the changes and amazing progress made to date in restoring this once derelict site in Blaydon.
Shipley Art Gallery
Relax, unwind and discover the fantastic range of art and design on show in the friendly surroundings of the Shipley.
Souter is a special place all year round and was the first lighthouse in the world designed and built to be powered by electricity. Opened in 1871, decommissioned in 1988, the National Trust acquired it and opened it to the public in 1990.
South Shields Museum & Art Gallery
An exciting day out for all the family, South Shields Museum & Art Gallery explores the story of South Tyneside through sensational displays, hands-on exhibiits and stunning art.
Stephenson Railway Museum
Re-live the glorious days of the steam railway at Stephenson Railway Museum in North Shields.
The Art Works Galleries
One of the largest commercial art galleries in Europe, The Art Works Galleries is a dynamic addition to region offering five spacious galleries all under one roof.
Washington Old Hall
British and American visitors alike will enjoy visiting the Grade I listed Jacobean manor of Washington Old Hall which was once the ancestral home of George Washington.
WWT Washington Wetland Centre
Explore a diverse mix of wetland, woodland and wildlife reserve at WWT Washington Wetland Centre - one of the North East's biggest conservation success stories.
Places to Visit in Tyne and Wear
Cleadon is a very attractive village on the outskirts of South Shields. Elegant older houses rub shoulders with impressive modern homes.
Cullercoats is part of North Tyneside, situated on the coast between Tynemouth and Whitley Bay.
Forest Hall Is situated approx 10-15 minutes drive from Newcastle city centre. It has a shopping centre which is small but has supermarkets and everything you would need close by. i.e hairdressers, chenist, bakers etc.
Gateshead is on the south side of the Tyne River, in Tyne and Wear. It is linked by seven bridges with Newcastle-upon-Tyne
Jarrow is a town steeped in history. With the Venerable Bede it was renowned as an international religious centre in the 7th century, while in 1936 its famous Jarrow crusade took place at the height of mass unemployment.
Monkton village in the heart of Jarrow has become a training ground for up-and-coming athletes at the excellent Monkton stadium. There is also a summer fair held during the Catherine Cookson Country Festival.
Newcastle is a vibrant friendly city, with a heritage spanning the past 2,000 years. Situated in the north east of England, on the banks of the River Tyne and surrounded by the scenic beauty of Northumbria.
North Shields, as its name suggests, is on the north bank of the River Tyne, opposite South Shields and eight miles east of Newcastle-upon Tyne.
South Shields is going from strength to strength, with its lively shopping area and popular open air markets, in the bustling town centre.
The city of Sunderland is on the north east coast of England, in the county of Tyne and Wear. It is situated 14 miles south east of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Situated at the mouth of the River Tyne, Tynemouth is six miles northeast of Newcastle in Tyne and Wear.
Wallsend is located in Tyne and Wear, four miles east of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
The town of Washington is eight miles west of Sunderland in Tyne and Wear.
Westoe is a historic peaceful oasis in the heart of South Shields, and has links with several famous people. It was well known to Catherine Cookson during her youth and the setting for several of the books.
Whitburn (T and W)
Whitburn has retained its village character and has links with Lewis Carroll.
Whitley Bay in Tyne and Wear is a sizeable town of 36,500 inhabitants on a beautiful crescent of golden sand which stretches northwards from Cullercoats to St Mary's Island.