A day out in South Shields
South Shields is a brilliant day out for all ages – easily accessible by Metro or the famous Shields Ferry and with lots to do for a fun-packed day out.
The quickest way to the seafront is to leave the interchange via the main entrance and head towards the main shopping street (King Street). From here you can take a turn right and head for a 15 minute walk to the seafront where you can access a huge array of activities, with several options for food, drink and entertainment.
Here are a few suggestions of where you could go for a great family day out.
Ocean Beach Pleasure Park
A seaside theme park with rollercoasters, go carts, dodgems and much more – and it’s free to get in!
As the British weather can take a turn for the worse, there are plenty of indoor options to keep the family entertained, including Quasar, a laser quest game played out in a 6000 square foot battle zone with raised ramp sections, swirling fog, music and atmospheric lighting. You score points when you zap your opponents, but lose points when they zap you, you need at least two people to participate for up to 60 minutes a session. The minimum age is 6.
As well as all of the above there is a large indoor arcade with traditional games like air hockey, bowling and basketball. There is also video based gaming, like Mario Kart and Need for Speed racing games.
Smugglers Cove Adventure Golf
Next door to Ocean Beach is a 12 hole adventure golf - an outdoor themed crazy golf, complete with ships, treasure and gun cannons. There are also some hidden artefacts amongst the greens. It's a great way to challenge yourself with hand-eye coordination and fun for all the family to enjoy. This attraction is weather dependent but is normally open from 10am-5pm every day.
Across the road from the rest of the attractions is a state-of-the-art leisure centre, complete with huge slides, fountains and splash pools. It’s perfect for all the family, with a large gym and full-size dance studios. But that’s not all, it has a roof top viewing deck giving you great views along the coast to The Leas, and it also includes a café and coffee lounge, so it’s well worth a visit. Haven Point is one of the most modern leisure centres in the whole region, plan your visit today.
The Tyne Lifeboat – Point of Interest
Located just behind Haven Point is the Tyne lifeboat, a historic lifeboat on display. Launched in 1833 the lifeboat was in operation for over 60 years and saved over 1000 people. Having been hand-restored in 2015, it is in pristine condition, and has been on display in South Shields since 1894. This makes it the second oldest lifeboat in existence in the country and one of only three boats listed in England. It's extraordinary to think that children and adults have been visiting this boat and viewing the interpretation panels on display for around 130 years!
South Marine Park
Adjacent to the Tyne lifeboat is South Marine Park, featuring the only 9½ inch steam railway currently operating in the UK, with unique whistling steam engines there to excite people of any age. Also located here is an extensive park area perfect for a picnic, and Minchella’s ice cream café for those wanting to get something to eat or drink. One of the largest adventure play areas in the region is also located in this park, with activities including splash fun and rope helter skelters. The park is connected by a series of paths to other parts of the seafront and a wider park network covering over four miles for those who want to stretch their legs.
This beach is located centrally to the rest of the activities in the area, with deck chairs for hire in the summer months, blue flag waters and golden sands providing hours of fun for little ones.
During World War II, South Shields seafront played a significant role in coastal defence. Various structures, including pillboxes and gun emplacements, were constructed along the coastline to protect against potential enemy attacks, and you can view these from the hill near Sandhaven beach.
From Sandhaven Beach, you can walk along the coastline towards Marsden Bay. Follow the coastal path and enjoy the stunning views of the cliffs and the North Sea. The highlight of this walk is Marsden Rock, a distinctive limestone sea stack. The area is also home to seabird colonies, and you may spot various species, such as kittiwakes and fulmars. Head south from Marsden to reach The Leas, a coastal parkland area with beautifully landscaped gardens and scenic paths. Follow the cliff-top path towards Souter Lighthouse, a historic landmark and a great spot for panoramic views of the coastline. The area around the lighthouse is also known for its wildflowers and wildlife.
South Shields has so much to offer and we know you won't be disappointed in a visit there. Don’t forget up to 3 children travel for free with a fare paying adult on Metro and the Shields Ferry, making it such an affordable way to travel with the family for a seaside day out.