Your Summer Staycation

02 August
Affectionately known as ‘Barney’, Barnard Castle in the Durham Dales is a historic market town, named after the castle it grew around. Sitting high above the River Tees, Barnard Castle was named after its 12th Century founder, Bernard de Balliol and later developed by Richard III. 
This English Heritage property was listed in The Guardians ‘10 of the UK’s best small towns' and has so much to offer when it comes to your perfect summer Staycation. We’ve listed the top 10 things for you to do this summer at Barnard Castle. 
The Bowes Museum. 
As if looking like a French chateau wasn’t enough, the Bowes Museum, set in a stunning location, offers family fun events, toddler groups, beautiful galleries and even fine dining. 
Surrounded by stunning parkland and woodland walks, the Bowes Museum really is a hidden gem. You can download packs like Nature Trail and Woodland Fairy Trial to print out and keep the younger ones entertained while you enjoy a blissful walk around this stunning setting.

Bowlees Visitor Centre. 
Whether you want to put your walking boots to the test or sit back and soak up the beautiful sights that the North Pennines has to offer- there is something for everyone in these acres of beautiful countryside and waterfalls. With self-guided walks for grown-ups and loads of hands-on events for children that focus on learning, the Bowlees Visitor Centre is somewhere you don’t want to miss when in Barnard Castle. 

Barnard Castle. 
The main event. The castle has beautiful views and is steeped in history. If you fancy a mini eye test while you're there (we have it on good authority that this is a great spot for such activities)- try to spot Richard's boar emblem carved above a window in the south ward...
Teesdale Alpacas.
If the kids' favourite words over the summer holiday are ‘I’m bored’, wow them with an Alpaca trek or farm visit. Treks and visits can be tailored for most requirements so everyone can enjoy a day out with a difference this summer. 

Egglestone Abbey.
Set above a bend in the River Tees near Barnard Castle sit the ruins of a small monastery. This spot is a perfect location for a picnic, and soaking up the heritage and the sun- just don’t forget your sunscreen and favourite sunglasses. 

After the many activities that Barney has to offer, you and the family will no doubt be feeling pretty peckish. Cross Lanes Organic Farm is working toward an eco-friendly way of living. They serve rustic dishes made with organic, seasonal, locally grown ingredients. Cooking to order, they’re sure to satisfy the fussiest of tums!

Couples at Barnard Castle 
The town's romantic history is perfect for couples to get away together. The idyllic countryside views are complemented by the town's many antique stores, perfect for a relaxed stroll. The town is full of independent retailers selling anything from vintage items to local crafts. The many restaurants, cafés and pubs serve quality homemade food using local produce. 
Dog Friendly.
If leaving your favourite pooch at home is something you just couldn’t think to do, you’ll be pleased to know that dogs on leads are even allowed in the castle. (We’ve also made a list of dog-friendly pubs for when stomachs are rumbling.)

Dog Friendly Pubs: 
The Golden Lion, 30 Market Pl. 
The Old Well Inn, 21 The bank. 
Penny’s, 4 Market Pl. 
The Red Wall Inn, Harmire Rd. 
Three Horseshoes Hotel, 7 Galgate. 

Staying safe in the sun is important, especially during the summer months. Make sure you stay hydrated, always top up your SPF and wear a hat, and of course, keep those stylish sunglasses to hand. We love seeing your photos at Bayfields, so head over to our Instagram page to share your favourite sight-seeing snaps with us!