Best Museums and Art Galleries In County Durham

We've rounded up the best museums and art galleries in County Durham in our quest to discover brilliant family attractions and places to visit near you. There are 42 County Durham museums and art galleries to pick from.Alternatively, why not explore some other sightseeing days out nearby, including tourist attractions. Find the perfect places to go with your kids and get out on your next adventure!

All the museums and art galleries we list are rated according to the ages they are suitable for, facilities and whether they are suitable for rainy days or best when the sun is shining.

Many of the places we list are historic or educational in nature and would be suitable for class trips or as ways to keep the learning up whilst having fun over the school holidays.

Find your perfect day out

Oriental Museum

  • Durham
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

The Oriental Museum is a family friendly place to find out all about a diverse range of cultures and countries, from pre history to present day. Ther...

Durham Museum and Heritage Centre

  • Durham
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Durham Museum and Heritage Centre is situated in an historic Listed building that was once the parish church of the North Bailey. It was rebuilt in t...

Locomotion3 out of 5 starstotal reviews(2)

  • Shildon
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

This nicely interactive experience brings the last 200 years of rail fully to life in one's mind, assisted in no small part by the atmosphere of one...

Beamish Open Air Museum

  • Beamish
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Beamish, Britain's favourite open air museum, set in over 300 acres of beautiful countryside, vividly recreates life in the North of England in the e...

Head of Steam - Darlington Railway Museum

  • Darlington
  • Indoor
  • Railway and Transport Attractions

Step back in time and journey through British railway history at Head of Steam - Darlington Railway Museum. Find out what Victorian Darlington - the...

The Bowes Museum

  • Barnard Castle
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

The young and the young-at-heart can explore The Bowes Museum through the provision of interactive games and activities throughout the Museum. Grab y...

Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens

  • Sunderland
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

In the Sunderland Museum discover the history of the City from its prehistoric past to the present day in exciting displays interpreting the collecti...

Preston Park and Museum

  • Stockton-on-Tees
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Set amongst 100 acres of beautiful parkland overlooking the River Tees, Preston Park Museum and Grounds offers an exciting and enjoyable day out for...

Life Science Centre

  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Hitch a ride to the stars and beyond at the Life Science Centre. Here your kids can learn loads about the weird world of science and even conduct the...

Hartlepools Maritime Experience

  • Hartlepool
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Hartlepool's Maritime Experience is the North East's premier maritime attraction. Children will love entering our mari-time machine to experience lif...

National Glass Centre

  • Sunderland
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

There are lots of ways you can enjoy National Glass Centre with your family. Help Whimsy discover his past at National Glass Centre with our fun trai...

Discovery Museum5 out of 5 starstotal reviews(1)

  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Explore the history of Newcastle and Tyneside at Discovery Museum! Take a journey through the city from the Roman times to the early millennium throu...

HMS Trincomalee 1817

  • Hartlepool
  • Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

HMS Trincomalee is the oldest British warship afloat built in Bombay in 1817! It represents the pinnacle of the ship restorer's craft (with thanks al...

Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art4 out of 5 starstotal reviews(1)

  • Gateshead
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Baltic has lots of great things for the whole family to discover. Situated right by the Millennium Bridge on the NewcastleGateshead quayside, it is f...

Laing Art Gallery

  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Laing Art Gallery has something for everyone to enjoy. A dynamic exhibition programme brings an exciting variety of art to your doorstep, while fun l...

Seven Stories

  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

The fun will fly off the page at Seven Stories, Newcastle. Take your kid to The National Centre for Children’s Books and let them discover characters...

The Great North Museum

  • Newcastle upon Tyne
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

The Great North Museum has loads of exciting and interesting things to do and discover, you can easily spend a few hours here with the kids and it's...

Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art

  • Middlesbrough
  • Indoor and Outdoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art offers a fascinating free day out for the family, with something for everyone. mima has a family programme whic...

Dorman Museum

  • Middlesbrough
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

With 8 permanent galleries and another 2 temporary ones you can be sure there's plenty to see and do at the Dorman Museum! The permanent exhibitions...

The Station

  • Richmond
  • Indoor
  • Museums and Art Galleries

Enigmatically titled The Station, this beautifully restored Victorian railway is packed with exhibits, history and heritage. Bring your brood of cult...

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