May 31th, 2013 | Tags: Durham,

Relax and unwind in Durham

The city of Durham sits in the heart of a county which offers breathtaking countryside views and an impressive coastline. Known for being one of the most relaxing locations in the UK, Durham offers solace for its residents as well as visitors. It's a great place to unwind in one of the local spas and take walks, in the city itself and in surrounding areas.

The iconic Durham Cathedral and Castle World Heritage Site offers a glimpse into the fascinating history of  this metropolis, which was little but a hill surrounded by trees way back in AD 995. Visitors can explore the Beamish Museum, known as the living museum of the North, or the Locomotion – The National Railway Museum at Shildon, to get a bigger picture of the heritage of Durham in a leisurely and enjoyable way. 

If you’re after shopping therapy of some sort, it'll be worth checking out the cobbled streets which are home to boutiques and craft shops. The Sweet Box and TJ Doyles Traditional Confectionery will provide your sweet tooth with something exciting whilst the Gateway Shop will supply your food and craft needs. Ding Don Vintage makes for the perfect sanctuary for the fashion lovers. But if vintage isn’t your thing, you can find a whole host of high street stores to browse through.

Visitors may also want to take time out to de-stress and de-clutter the mind at one of the city's many spas and wellbeing centres. LimeHouse Spa is central to the city and is a gem of tranquillity offering guests a range of treatments, relaxation areas, a state-of-the-art gym, swimming pool, jacuzzi, sauna and steam room. Everything needed to unwind can be found here or at many other spas around Durham; you really have so many to choose from.

Having refreshed yourself, you may find that taking an easy walk is the perfect way to finish your day. The Derwent Reservoir Walk is a comfortable walk with inspiring views to take in. Alternatively, you can take one of the Prince Bishop River cruises which take in the highlights of the cathedral, castle, and bridges in an hour-long ride around.

Another popular place of interest to visit is the botanic gardens, where you can simply sit and take in the beauty. These gardens are set against mature woodlands on the southern outskirts of the city. No pesticides are used in this university garden; instead you will see a small flock of sheep which graze in the arboretum and wildflower meadows. Visitors can also enjoy the bird hides and bat boxes as well as the apiary which is accessible in the summer months.
If you wish to stay for a night or two in Durham, one option will be to book a room in a spa as most spas offer this. For the wealthier pocket, staying at the Gadds Town House will be a real treat with luxurious facilities and unique décor making it a stay to remember. For those on a tighter budget try Castle View Guest House which combines value with charm.

City pics