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    18 Things To Do In The North East Before You Die

    Whatever the weather, there's something fun to do.

    We've got a three-day weekend coming up.

    And there are few things more traditionally British than trying to make a good go at doing lots of stuff over a bank holiday. In fact, the only thing more commonplace than cramming in some rest, relaxation and – yes – a bit of drinking on a three-day weekend might be the whole thing being rained off. But fear not: come rain or shine, BuzzFeed's got your back for a great weekend in the north east of England.

    schultzstm/Chris Stokel-Walker / Via flic.kr

    1. Take in some history and culture at Gibside Hall, Rowlands Gill.

    Orangeaurochs / Via flic.kr

    This National Trust property is impressive not only because of its amazing buildings, but because of the land in which it sits. There's a reason people come up to the north east, you know. Once you wander round Gibside Hall's grounds, you realise why.

    More info here

    2. Play volleyball by the Tyne Bridge. Really.

    Newcastle NE1

    Yes, that's the famous bridge you can see in the background. Every summer a small section of the Quayside in Newcastle becomes a sandy beach, with deck chairs and a volleyball net.

    More info here

    3. Peruse Jesmond Dene, Newcastle.

    Akuppa John Wigham / Via flic.kr

    Okay, so perhaps you can't make it out the city this weekend. Well don't worry -- as long as the sun's shining, you've got a paradisical retreat to which you can walk. Jesmond Dene's burbling stream can quell even the most work-weary heart.

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    4. Take a picnic to Saltwell Park, Gateshead.

    schultzstm / Via flic.kr

    This Victorian park in Gateshead was once looking a little shabby, but a relatively recent rejuvenation has given it a new lease of life. Now it's back to its old splendour, and is just the place to take friends, a picnic rug, a good bottle of wine and bags of nibbles.

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    5. Pick your own fruit at Brocksbushes farm, Stocksfield.

    Fried Dough / Via flic.kr

    We're still a little early for some fruit, but fill up your picnic basket with some freshly-picked produce from Brocksbushes farm, where you can get your fill of fruit, just off the A69. When the sun bleaches over the fields, there's nothing finer.

    More info here

    6. Cycle out to (and round) Hamsterley Forest, Durham.

    Simon James / Via flic.kr

    Why not take your bicycle out for a ride to Hamsterley Forest, in Durham, where the grass is green and lush? Keen cyclists head for this part of the region because of its beauty.

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    7. Gaze in awe upon Durham Cathedral.

    Bs0u10e0 / Via flic.kr

    Almost everyone who's ever taken a train up or down the East Coast Main Line has gawped out the window at a fleeting view of Durham Cathedral, high up on the hill, but bank holidays are the perfect excuse to get off the train and take a close-up look.

    More info here

    8. Eat fish and chips on the beach at Seahouses, Northumberland.

    farne.co.uk / Via flic.kr

    Want to taste the freshest food the world has to offer? How about freshly-caught fish found in the North Sea that morning? Seahouses serves up some of the best fish and chips in the country for good reason -- and the views somehow improve the taste.

    More info here

    9. Stand in the shadow of Souter Lighthouse, Marsden.

    plambertuk / Via flic.kr

    You can't miss Souter Lighthouse, nor would you want to. You can also get a history lesson as well as a great view: this was the first lighthouse in the world specifically built to use an alternating current electricity supply.

    More info here

    10. Go back in time at Beamish, Stanley.

    Chris Sampson / Via flic.kr

    Okay, so the prices may have gone up since you were a kid (and if you lived within a 50-mile radius, you almost certainly went here on a school trip), but an adult visit to Beamish can be worth it, not just for the fun of seeing how the Victorians lived, but also to rekindle memories of school days.

    More info here

    11. Feel the full power of High Force, Durham

    B Campbell / Via flic.kr

    Well, look at it.

    More info here

    dvdbramhall/Chris Stokel-Walker

    12. Have a proper pub lunch in Corbridge

    Mike Fleming / Via flic.kr

    The Black Bull in Corbridge is a particularly notable place for good pub grub -- but you could stop in at pretty much any pub in rural Northumberland and find fine food that'll fill you for the rest of the day.

    More info here

    13. Watch a film at the Tyneside Cinema

    Simon James / Via flic.kr

    Everything's gone wrong, and even the puddles on Newcastle's Northumberland Street are too deep for you to cart high street shopping down. Take an hour and a half out to watch a film at Newcastle's main independent cinema, in its grand surroundings.

    More info here

    14. Wander the aisles of Barter Books, Alnwick.

    dvdbramall / Via flic.kr

    It might be the model train that chugs its way around the tops of the bookshelves. It might be the friendly staff that serve customers at this former train station in Alnwick. Or it might be the fact that when it's pouring down outside, you can step in out of the rain and instead get a noseful of the smell of the history of man, bound up in thousands of books. Barter Books is worth a visit, bank holiday or no.

    More info here

    15. Make some new friends in one of our great pubs.

    Fenners1984 / Via flic.kr

    This is The Olde Ship Inn at Seahouses. Yes, places like this still do exist -- and if you're sensible and friendly, you'll receive a warm north east welcome, come rain or shine.

    More info here

    16. Eye up the exhibits at the National Glass Centre, Sunderland.

    Reading Tom / Via flic.kr

    The banks of the Wear aren't the canalways of Burano, I'll give you that. But it doesn't make the National Glass Centre any less interesting. You'll get a parmo instead of pasta pomodoro, but crafty glasswork by some of the medium's best artworks are displayed here.

    More info here

    17. Walk through the corridors of Belsay Hall, Northumberland.

    John Lord / Via flic.kr

    This 19th century mansion has been lovingly maintained, and hosts art installations on a regular occasion. But walking through its grand corridors, imagining you have the run of the place, can take you away from the dreariness of the office job and somewhere more Romantic.

    More info here

    18. Grab a bite to eat at Dunston Staithes, Gateshead.

    Jake Cook / Via flic.kr

    Even if it's driech and dreary, you can still travel to places and revel in the rain. Moody weather makes Dunston Staithes all the more attractive – and there's a decent café sat on the banks of the River Tyne where you can sit and watch the rain speckle the windows.

    More info here

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