It is an area of open heather moors between deep dales, upland rivers, hay meadows and stone-built villages, some of which contain the legacies of a mining and industrial past. The area shares a boundary with the Yorkshire Dales in the south and extends as far as the Tyne Valley, just south of Hadrians Wall in the north.
It provides excellent country for walking, cycling, horse riding and wildlife-watching. There are many footpaths and bridleways to explore, including the Pennine Way National Trail, the C2C National Cycle Route, the Pennine Cycle Route, the Pennine Byway and the Pennine Bridleway.
Apart from the many opportunities to enjoy the unspoilt natural beauty of the area there are numerous other attractions within the locality.
Throughout the year there are a number of shows held in Weardale including England`s oldest Agricultural Show at Wolsingham with similar shows being held in Stanhope and others in several of the surrounding villages.
Hamsterley Forest is one of the top destinations for mountain biking in Northern England. There is a wide network of trails, from blue grade right up to extreme downhill trails at Descend Hamsterley.
Killhope Lead Mining Museum provides an unrivalled and award winning experience including the opportunity to venture underground and truly experience what life was like for the lead miners of the day.
Derwent Water offers opportunities for sailing, fishing, canoeing and water ski-ing.
Weardale Ski Club in the upper reaches of the dale attracts skiers from all over England when conditions allow. There are 2 tow lifts which service up to 6 pisted runs, countless unpisted runs and gullies and masses of off-piste options.
Weardale boasts some of the best Grouse shooting in the country and the high Pheasant shooting rivals some of the best available in Yorkshire.
This Heritage Railway line currently runs 18 miles between Bishop Auckland and Eastgate with a charming restored station in Stanhope itself. The Polar Express Ride attracted 45,000 passengers during November and December and further attractions are planned such as on board fine dining experiences, afternoon teas and Wild West adventures.
Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle houses a nationally renowned art collection.
High Force is one of the most spectacular and highest waterfalls in England and is a dramatic sight in full flow.
Raby Castle is a magnificent medieval fortress which sits in a 200 acre deer park with herds of Red Deer. Visitors are able to tour the magnificent interiors of the castle itself and there are also extensive gardens and other attractions.
Auckland Castle which houses the important collection of paintings by Zurbaran is undergoing works to become a major Heritage Centre.
We are ideally placed for guests to also visit Durham City with its world famous Cathedral, the ‘UK’s number one landmark’and it`s adjacent castle – a world heritage site. The city with it`s cobbled streets and one of the most stunning city panoramas in Europe is among the finest cultural and historic destinations in the UK
Newcastle upon Tyne is within easy reach by car and offers world-class culture, vibrant nightlife and award-winning dining, Newcastle has fantastic shopping facilities and the Gateshead Metro Centre is one of the UK`s largest shopping and leisure centres.
Many other historical and charming towns and villages such as Blanchland,Barnard Castle, Corbridge and Hexham are all within easy reach for our guests.