I recently visited Beamish Open Air Museum for the first time in more years than I can remember and I was super impressed! It’s a great value family day out in the North East and I wanted to share how much fun I had with you today…
Beamish Open Air Museum is a living, working museum in the North East of England. It’s set over around 350 acres of beautiful Durham countryside and there’s so much to do and see there that you can easily spend the full day visiting and still not see it all. There are fabulous Actors in costume everywhere who do a great job of bringing to life at various times in history. They’re all so knowledgeable and always in character making you really feel like you’ve stepped back in time!
Admission Costs – £21 for an adult, £12 for a child aged 5-15, and £54 for a family of 4. The passes allow you unlimited visits for 12 months so it’s well worth it! I was surprised at how reasonable it was considering how much there was to do, see and learn there!
You do usually have to book a timeslot to visit Beamish if you’re planning to get there before 1 pm as it gets quite busy and they want to be able to manage the flow of visitors so everyone gets the best experience while they’re there. Timeslots are available to book on the website so make sure you check in before you set off to book one if you need to. I bought my ticket and booked my timeslots the night before I planned to go and it was super easy so don’t let that put you off!
Parking there seems super easy with lots of spaces available to choose from and we got straight into the museum with no queuing needed.
And this is pretty much where the informative part of my review stops. 😂
There’s so much to see at Beamish that I forgot that I was planning to write a review of my day! So you don’t have the photos of the amazing fish and chips that I had from lunch (cooked the way they would have been back then and I don’t really have photos of everything I could tell you about.
In fact, after writing the intro to this post, we actually went back as there was so much we missed the first time and it was free since our ticket was valid for a year and I still got immersed in the day and the fun we were having so I have about six extra photos to what I had after my first visit!
The 1900s Pit Village is my favourite area – mainly because that’s where the fish and chip shop is located but also because I find the school area fascinating and I love looking around the pit cottages that really bring to life how people used to live in the 1900s!
Then there’s the Colliery area where you learn about what it was really like to work in a mine in the 1900s which I found fascinating. It’s the kind of place where you don’t need to read the signs as the exhibits and the way that it’s set up really brings everything to life but I did want to stop and read everything.
I loved the rides on the steam engines, trams, and buses around the museum too. You can absolutely walk as it’s a love walk between the main areas but there are lots of other ways to get about too!
There’s also the 1820s Pockerley Old Hall to wander around with games to play and so much to see and learn about how a wealthy family would live in the 1820s. I loved looking at the table set for a meal although I’m not convinced I would have enjoyed actually sitting down to eat the meal myself.
We also had a great time playing some of the games that were set up, not that I managed to win any games but I had fun trying!
At this point on our first visit we headed to the 1950’s town which looks like a work in progress but still has plenty of things going on to have fun looking around. I just love seeing how people used to live and how they worked with what they had! We didn’t have time to do this on our second visit though as went to the farm area instead which just shows that there’s plenty to see at Beamish and even over a few visits, you’re probably going to find something new to see each time you go.
The 1900s town area is probably the busiest area of the museum with so much going on with whole shops set up as exhibits as well as a sweet shop you can go in to buy sweets (if you can wait in the mile-long queue) and a pub as well as some tea rooms. It was so busy in this area that I don’t have a single photo from either visit but I can tell you that I loved wandering around that area!
I think that’s pretty much all of the areas covered although I absolutely didn’t do it justice and it’s probably the worst review you’ll read about Beamish if you google it but I hope it at least shows how much I enjoyed my visits and makes you want to go experience it for yourself!
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