BEST FOR: FIRST DATES
There’s nothing quite as nerve racking or exhilarating as a first date. It’s the first time you’ve met someone romantically (often the first time you’ve met them full stop) and you’re given the unenviable task of getting through the day/evening without making a fool of yourself (which is a challenge in itself) and then making a decision about whether you want to see them again – tricky stuff. Make life easier for yourself with a trip to a crazy golf course. It’s perfect – if the date is going well you can bond over your failure to conquer the course and if not you can focus on your game and insist you are the next Rory Mcllroy. With a new space-themed course set to open in Newcastle’s former Co-op building, there’ll be plenty to keep you on par.
Adventure Leisure crazy golf course coming soon
BEST FOR: A CHILLED SATURDAY
Did you know that the Northern Poetry Library in Morpeth is home to the largest collection of post-World War II poetry in England outside London? That’s right, hidden in our own back garden, people travel from near and far to discover these works. If you’re something of a bibliophile we can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday than perusing the 15,000-plus volumes of poetry – with numerous first editions and signed copies thrown into the mix. There are regular exhibitions and special events and many of the works can be borrowed to devour in the comfort of your own home. Happy reading.
BEST FOR: FAMILIES
Parents, we know how tricky it can be trying to find new places to take your children that strike the right balance between education and entertainment – and perhaps more importantly, don’t break the budget. Well, we’ve discovered a gem: The Captain Cook Schoolroom Museum. Free to visit, this interactive museum in Great Ayton transports you back to the charity school where young James Cook was educated. Experience life in an 18th-century school, learn more about the British explorer and snap a selfie with the man himself – what more could you want? (Dads, don’t worry, there’s a well-stocked gin shop too).
BEST FOR: MEETING PEOPLE
Every year Maker Faire at the Life Science Centre brings together hundreds of crafters, coders, bakers, DIYers and inventors for a spectacular two-day celebration of ‘making’. But what do you do for the rest of the year? Why not join the rest of Newcastle’s crafty community at Maker Space, a shared workshop in the city that brings together like-minded people to complete different projects. You can join the group (and get access to specialist tools and expertise) for a low monthly fee, or pop along to a Welcome Wednesday to give it a try. Sessions end with a trip to the pub, so it’s a great way to make new friends and show off your latest inventions. You never know, you might find the Steve Wozniak to your Steve Jobs.
BEST FOR: FUN WITH FRIENDS
Build your own fire and toast marshmallows (or challenge your mates to a bush tucker trial or two), fling yourself off a 300ft zip wire, lend your brain to the perplexing 3D Spider’s Web puzzle and then don blackout goggles and follow a rope into the wood in the middle of the night – this is the ultimate get down and dirty, active weekender. Broomley Grange in Stocksfield offer a range of on-site and off-site adventure activities, accommodation for up to 64 people and everything you need to embarrass your mates and prove once and for all who is the leader of the pack.
BEST FOR: ACTIVE INDIVIDUALS
Strap up your helmet and squeeze into your wetsuit: whether you want to keep the kids entertained or set out on a slightly more active date than normal with your loved one, Cullercoats Bike and Kayak have the means to explore the coast. You can hire a fleet of bikes to strike out on your own or take part in a guided tour. If you’re more of a water baby, take to the high seas – or the Tyne – for a kayak trip you’re unlikely to forget. Thrillseekers can undertake coasteering, where you explore the wild and rugged terrain along our shore. Don’t worry, you’re in safe hands here: the company won two accolades at the North East England Tourism Awards in 2016.