20 things to see and do in Sunderland

Posted: 01 Apr 2022

To celebrate the 20th anniversary of the opening of our Sunderland line, in March 2022, we've put together a list of 20 things to see and do in Sunderland, all close to Metro stations. 


1.Roker and Seaburn beaches - Seaburn or St Peter’s Metro
Miles of sandy beaches perfect for strolling, sandcastle building or a spot of paddling, with plenty of options for fish and chips or an ice cream treat too.


2.Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens – Sunderland Metro Station 
Discover the history of Sunderland and a few surprises, including Wallace the stuffed lion and the first ever car made at the Nissan factory, and step into a tropical paradise of over 2000 plant species in the Winter Gardens. 


3.National Glass Centre – St Peter’s Metro Station
Learn about the history of glass making in Britain, which started in Sunderland, try your hand at glassmaking or watch the experts work their magic. 


4.Empire Theatre – Sunderland Metro Station
Enjoy West End shows in the heart of Sunderland in this beautiful Victorian theatre. 


5. Northern Spire Bridge – Pallion Metro Station
Taller than Big Ben’s clock tower, Sunderland's newest bridge showcases unique engineering and modern architecture. 


6. Penshaw Monument – South Hylton Metro Station
While not on a Metro line, the iconic monument is a lovely walk from South Hylton along the banks of the Wear and through Cox Green. 


7. Stack Seaburn – Seaburn Metro Station
Enjoy street food and drink from every corner of the globe, in friendly and vibrant surroundings on the seafront. 


8. The Bridges Shopping Centre – Sunderland Metro Station
Get your retail therapy fix in the Bridges, with big name brands and places to catch up with a coffee. 


9. St Peter's Church – St Peter’s Metro Station
Step into history at this Anglo-Saxon church where the Venerable Bede lived and learned over 1300 years ago.


10. Stadium of Light – Stadium of Light Metro Station
Cheer on the Black Cats at a home game, or if football’s not your thing, check out their concerts- Ed Sheeran and Elton John play there this summer.


11. Sunderland Aquatic Centre – Stadium of Light Metro Station
Take a splash in the only 50m pool in the North East, or enjoy a whole host of other fitness options. 


12. Fans Museum – St Peters Metro Station 
A unique museum with a huge collection of football memorabilia for fans from all around the world. From match worn shirts from Ronaldo and Beckham to the boardroom table from Roker Park, all can be found at the Fans Museum.


13. Roker Pier and Lighthouse – Seaburn or St Peter’s Metro Station
Protecting Sunderland's harbour for over a hundred years, this historic structure is now open to the public for guided tours. 


14. Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art – St Peter’s Metro Station
Bringing art from around the world to Sunderland, the gallery stages exhibitions and events on contemporary art in photography, film and video. 


15. Keel Square – Sunderland Metro Station Sunderland's shipbuilding heritage is celebrated with the Keel Line, marking the length of the longest ship ever made in Sunderland and engraved with the names of over 8000 ships launched on the Wear, plus an interactive sculpture, Propellors of the City, showing names and photographs of people who worked in the shipyards. 


16. Mowbray Park – Sunderland Metro Station – A Victorian park in the heart of the city centre. Author Lewis Carroll spent time in Sunderland and Mowbray Park include and Alice in Wonderland themed playground and Walrus statue in his honour. 


17. The Fire Station – Sunderland or Park Lane Metro Station Sunderland’s newest cultural venue provides an exciting year-round programme of music, theatre, comedy and dance for all tastes – all on the city centre site of the old Central Fire Station. 


18. Get running – Sunderland Metro StationSunderland Run Festival weekend includes  3km, 5km, 10km and half marathon runs, so there’s something for everyone. 


19. Love live music – Sunderland station. Enjoy big names and local acts in the city centre, with Music In Mowbray and Lamplight Festival  


20. Lots to look forward to – Events are back for 2022, with new features like a city centre Soul food and music festival and the return of family favourites, the Festival of Light at Roker and a spooktacular Halloween celebration. Keep an eye on Events | Sunderland BID and Events - MySunderland (seeitdoitsunderland.co.uk) for full details. 


What have we missed? Tag us in your favourite Sunderland venues, attractions and days out on social media. 


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