This gastropub in Beamish is the perfect place for young visitors to let off some steam and work up an appetite. The large outdoor play area and garden will keep the kids entertained before they choose from the children’s menu with its own colouring-in section. Offering great value for money, with a main, two sides and dessert for just £5.95, there is something for everyone here.
Why the kids will love it: Your little ones can join you for afternoon tea from Monday to Saturday with their own platter featuring ham and cheese finger sandwiches, a chocolate brownie and a vanilla cupcake with raspberry cream.
Red Row Estate, Beamish, Durham DH9 0RW
01207 232569 www.blackhorsebeamish.co.uk
On chillier days the log fires at The Woodmans Arms create a welcoming atmosphere for an informal dining experience, whilst the outdoor terrace is perfect for an al fresco feast with all the family. Locally-sourced produce features heavily on the menu and ingredients can be altered to accommodate allergies. Kids can enjoy mains such as the curry of the day, mac and cheese or a wood-fired pizza with pick-your-own toppings.
Why kids will love it: The epic ice cream sundaes for dessert – the sticky toffee glory with pieces of homemade sticky toffee pudding, butterscotch sauce and salted caramel ice cream is our favourite combination.
Whickham NE16 5BB
0191 488 8998 www.thewoodmansarms.com
This pub has uninterrupted sea views. The relaxed atmosphere is welcoming and due to its proximity to the coast and dog-friendly ethos, this is a great place to refuel and refresh – your four-legged friends can enjoy complimentary biscuits, water and even ‘doggy frozen yoghurt’ in the Promenade’s snug. Younger diners will easily find food on the menu that they’ll enjoy, whether they choose from the main menu of jacket potatoes, sandwiches and pub classics, or whether they opt for a smaller children’s portion such as ham with egg and homemade chips.
Why the kids will love it: The ‘naughty chocolate cake’ alone is enough to tempt big and little kids alike to return to The Promenade time and time again.
1–2 Queens Parade, Sunderland SR6 8DA
0191 529 2226 www.thepromenadesunderland.co.uk
This traditional pub on Seahouses harbour has a reputation for quality home-cooked food including a popular Sunday carvery with towering Yorkshire puddings. The beer garden is the perfect place for dining al fresco with stunning views of the Northumberland coast towards the Farne Islands. A whole host of family food favourites are on offer to keep everyone happy and the extensive children’s menu features popular dishes including wholetail scampi and chips, cheese and tomato pizza or chargrilled chicken breast.
Why the kids will love it: They’ll be entertained for hours watching the comings and goings in the harbour below.
Seahouses NE68 7SQ
01665 720283 www.bamburghcastlehotel.co.uk
This community pub in the heart of Cullercoats has a contemporary feel and serves freshly prepared, home-cooked food. Settle into the relaxed restaurant, or when the sun’s out, choose a table on the large outdoor terrace. Look out for family-friendly events throughout the year, including ‘family fundays’, festivals and special offers on children’s meals. From Monday to Friday, if you order from the adult menu, your kids can eat for just £1, choosing from a range of sandwiches, mains and epic desserts, including a Daim bar, peanut and caramel cake or Eton mess gateau.
Why the kids will love it: Before and after the meal there is plenty to keep diners entertained at The Sandpiper – younger children will love the outdoor children’s play area, whilst you can teach your teens to pot some balls on the pub’s pool table.
Farringdon Road, Cullercoats NE30 3ER
0191 253 5050 www.thesandpiperbar.co.uk
On the edge of Kielder Water, The Boat Inn has stunning panoramic views and a fantastic children’s menu. Even the process of choosing their meal is made into a fun game with kids selecting options from three coloured categories – mains, carbohydate-based sides and veggie sides. Mains include ‘beef burger bliss’ or ‘sxcampi sensation’, whilst sides feature ‘hunky chunky chips’ and ‘rockin’ roasted root veg’. Gluten-free and vegetarian options are also available, or alternatively you can choose to have a child’s portion of a range of dishes from the main menu.
Why the kids will love it: After playing on the shores of the lake, colouring sheets will keep boredom at bay whilst they wait for their food to arrive.
Kielder Waterside, Hexham NE48 1BT
01434 251000 www.kielderwaterside.com
On the banks of the River Tees, The Blue Bell is an 18th century coaching inn that’s full of character and charm. But the stars of the show here are the outdoor dining spaces, boasting two decking areas, a huge patio and an even larger beer garden. Using local suppliers, the menu offers options from steaks to a popular traditional parmo. Throughout the week you can enjoy two-for-one on children’s mains, including spaghetti bolognese, ‘create your own’ pizza and 100 percent chicken breast dippers.
Why the kids will love it: The outdoor space is a real bonus, offering room for children to stretch their legs whilst waiting for their ‘mega chocolate fudge cake’ dessert.
663 Yarm Road, Stockton-on-Tees TS16 0JF
01642 780358 www.bluebellatyarm.co.uk