The 10 Best Things to Do in Barnard Castle, United Kingdom (UK)

August 2, 2017 Stefan Strunk

Barnard Castle is a market town in Teesdale, County Durham, England. It is named after the castle around which it grew up. It is the main settlement in the Teesdale area, and is a popular tourist destination. The Bowes Museum has the best collection of European fine and decorative arts in the North of England, housed in a "magnificent" 19th-century French-style chateau. Its most famous exhibit is the 18th-century Silver Swan automaton, though art includes work by Goya and El Greco.
Restaurants in Barnard Castle

1. The Bowes Museum

Newgate | Barnard Castle, Barnard Castle DL12 8NP, England +44 1833 690606
Excellent
65%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

The Bowes Museum

It’s been delighting visitors for more than 100 years, and now a £12m revamp has transformed The Bowes Museum into a must see 21st Century place to visit.A romantic history, stunning galleries, great location, fine dining, top class Exhibitions, family fun events, a thriving toddler group – all these can be discovered inside this fabulous listed building which resembles a French chateau.And that’s not all. It’s surrounded by parkland, woodland walks, formal Gardens and a newly opened children’s play area.No visit is complete without a browse in our shop, or a delicious snack in Café Bowes.If you’re looking for a great day out, make The Bowes Museum your destination of choice. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for up to the minute info on what’s on when.

Reviewed By stonerage - Bradford, United Kingdom

Came here after recommendation from friends. I'd never heard of the Bowes Museum but there's a lot to like, the castle and grounds are lovely, the exhibits are very varied from paintings to pottery, fashion to furniture, toys, silver and metal goods and more. Something for everyone and loads of activities for kids. The story of John and Josephine Bowes, the founders adds such a special meaning to the whole place and of course there is the silver swan, don't get caught out, it is only activated once a day at 2pm! A nice cafe too.

2. Eggleston Hall Gardens

Barnard Castle, Eggleston, Barnard Castle DL12 0AG, England +44 1833 650553
Excellent
55%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 222 reviews

Eggleston Hall Gardens

Reviewed By johnhouston2 - Knaresborough, United Kingdom

Although the house at Eggleston Hall is closed in winter, the other amenities remain open, and include a smart little gift shop and equally smart cafe, as well as the garden.
We only had coffee in the cafe, but it was fine. For those requiring further sustenance, the menu is quite extensive and the food we saw being served looked OK.
The garden is what you might expect at this time of year, and seemed dull and rather drab. The layout is rather nice however, and one can imagine that it will be lovely in Spring and Summer.

3. The Garage Spa

Greta Bridge DL12 9SE, England +44 1833 863100
Excellent
67%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
3%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 171 reviews

The Garage Spa

Adjoining the historic Morritt Country House Hotel, at The Garage you'll find everything you expect from a modern spa and more. Created with imagination and luxurious rural simplicity, sumptuous decor awash with warm natural stone and timber welcomes you like an old friend. The Garage is no ordinary spa. Want your nails done? Step into the paint shop. Not firing on all cylinders? A full body MOT is just the ticket. Need to put on the brakes after exploring the stunning Teesdale countryside? Make The Garage your destination. We've put a unique and luxurious spa on the map and look forward to welcoming you to our one-of-a-kind facilities and gorgeous treatments.

Reviewed By SkinnyJonny - Durham, United Kingdom

We've been coming to the Garage Spa for several years and the venue always provides a very friendly welcome with such caring, attentive staff. This was a welcome break prior to another very long high altitude climbing expedition in the Himalayas. My wife and I really enjoy the tranquility, the quiet unique environment, and the freshness. This time we were on the morning MOT with a couple of treatments supported by refreshing coffee and followed by a lovely light lunch. We'll be back for a post-expedition relaxing spa :-)

4. Bowes Castle

Bowes, England
Excellent
22%
Good
48%
Satisfactory
28%
Poor
2%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 35 reviews

Bowes Castle

Reviewed By johnhouston2 - Knaresborough, United Kingdom

Although the keep here is not the largest historical pile you will come across, I like the fact that the four impressive walls are still standing, and largely intact. Even more impressive is the fact that this historic ruin has been standing here for over 800 years.
Perhaps not worth making a special effort to come and see, but certainly worth a visit if you a e passing by.

5. High Force Waterfall

Forest-In-Teesdale, Middleton in Teesdale DL12 0XH, England +44 1833 622209
Excellent
60%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 808 reviews

High Force Waterfall

Reviewed By Stella P

With just an approximately 30 minutes and very easy and relaxing hike, you arrive at a spectacular waterfall that captivates you. Normally there are two Waterfalls but, sadly, when we visited there was only one. Still, it was well worth it and was a very fun and enjoyable activity for all. Looking forward to visiting again.

6. Mainsgill Farm

East Layton, Richmond DL11 7PN, England +44 1325 718860
Excellent
60%
Good
27%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
4%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 260 reviews

Mainsgill Farm

Reviewed By David D - milton Keynes, United Kingdom

We always stop at Mainsgill Farm on route to Glasgow, sometimes just for coffee and sometimes Lunch. It is a very large Farm Shop with a large dining room. This can get very busy and if you tern up a short time after a coach trip there can be a bit of a delay in getting seated. However as the staff don’t take payment when you order at the counter this delay is reduced so these long queues actually move quite quickly. There are always a good selection of specials and the breakfast is very good, in fact all the food is good. There are always a good selection of cakes and scones and they do what looks like a good afternoon tea. The staff are friendly and helpful, also there always seems to be many of them on duty which is good.
This is not like a Motorway service area, nor is it like a transport café. It is more like a garden centre and the shop, both food downstairs and all other sorts of things upstairs are well worth visiting. It can get very busy, this is luck of the draw.

7. Bowlees Visitor Centre

Bowlees | Middleton in Teesdale, Barnard Castle DL12 0XE, England +44 1833 622145
Excellent
61%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 179 reviews

Bowlees Visitor Centre

Acres of accessible countryside, miles of quiet rural roads, an abundance of wildlife and one of the best places in the UK to enjoy the night sky are just some of the reasons why you should make the North Pennines AONB a place to discover and explore. Situated amidst stunning woodland in Teesdale, next to Low and High Force Waterfalls, and surrounded by rolling fields boasting some of the best hay meadows in England, Bowlees Visitor Centre has all you need to make your visit to the North Pennines a memorable one. Outdoor enthusiasts can make the most of the vast expanse of unspoilt land and sky by exploring on foot or wheels, or by simply sitting back and soaking up the scenery. We have booklets for self-guided walks, bike rides and nature-spotting, so you can explore at your leisure. At Bowlees Visitor Centre, children can get to grips with nature through a range of hands-on events - inside and out - that focus on learning, living and most importantly, laughing.

Reviewed By pjags - Darlington, United Kingdom

This visitor centre has been recently been refurbished and it is a good place to park when exploring the surrounding countryside as well as a offering a good selection of food and drink. Behind the centre are several Waterfalls and a river all in a...MoreThanks for such a great review.

8. Raby Castle

Raby Castle Raby Park, Darlington DL2 3AH, England +44 1833 660202
Excellent
64%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 496 reviews

Raby Castle

Reviewed By daves5655 - Durham

We have recently visited Raby Castle, although only 11 miles from home we had never been. I can only say it is well worth a visit. The Gardens are beautiful and the castle itself is very impressive with lots of historic paintings and furniture. There is a cafe in the grounds serving lovely food.

9. Barnard Castle

Scar Top, Barnard Castle DL12 8PR, England +44 1833 638212
Excellent
40%
Good
47%
Satisfactory
11%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 584 reviews

Barnard Castle

Reviewed By Angela C - London, United Kingdom

This used to be one of northern England's largest Castles and was partly dismantled during the 16th century, but still it manages to cover more than two hectares.
It is set on a high cliff, Scar Top, above the River Tees and named after its 12th century founder, Bernard de Balliol. This provides stunning views and good photo opportunities.
It is maintained by English Heritage but only open until the end of March 2018 on Saturdays and Sundays from 10am until 4pm.
You can see Richard III's boar emblem carved above the window. The sensory garden is worth a visit ( probably better in spring/summer) with its scented plants and tactile objects. The garden is suitable for disabled access.
Unfortunately there is no parking on site. There is a small shop.
The cost is £5.40 for adults and £3.20 for children or a family ticket for £14.
SAT NAV: DL12 8 PR

10. Egglestone Abbey

Egglestone Abbey Abbey Lane, Barnard Castle DL12 9TN, England +44 1904 601901
Excellent
44%
Good
42%
Satisfactory
14%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 182 reviews

Egglestone Abbey

Reviewed By johnhouston2 - Knaresborough, United Kingdom

Properly known as the Abbey of St Mary and St John the Baptist, Egglstone Abbey is an abandoned Premonstratensian Abbey (the White Monks) on the banks of the river Tees just outside Barnard Castle. Founded circa 1195 it was used as an Abbey for many years until a combination of lack of funds and the ravages of wars resulted in it being sold and converted into a house.
Parts of the original church are still standing (the north and west walls of the nave) but I understand that the bulk of the site is what was left of the converted house.
Whatever the case, these are interesting ruins to explore.

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