Art in the North East
- No fly
- Half board
Art, architecture and sculpture await you on this exciting art-themed break
As well as visits to six art galleries and museums during your holiday, ranging from the fabulous Bowes Museum to the state-of-the-art Baltic Centre in Gateshead in the company of your expert host, you’ll also see Anthony Gormley’s famous Angel of the North and visit Durham’s magnificent cathedral, regarded as one of the great Romanesque buildings of Europe.
All breakfasts (B) and dinners (D)
Local expert guide
- Cancellation rights
- Expert host talks
- Hosted welcome drinks reception
- Free Wi-Fi
- Hotel porterage
Included excursions and visits
- Angel of the North, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art and Sunderland Art Gallery
- Shipley Art Gallery and Laing Art Gallery
- Durham Cathedral and the Bowes Museum
Radisson Blu Hotel, Durham Frankland Lane, Durham, DH1 5TA 0191 372 7200
The Radisson Blu Hotel is a modern 4-star hotel situated in an enviable location in the heart of the city with spectacular views of the River Wear and Durham Castle.
There are 207 rooms.
Tea coffee making facilities
Food and Drink
All your breakfasts and dinners are included and served in the Collage Restaurant and Grill. The hotel also has an inviting bar where you might like to pause for lunch, snacks or afternoon tea. As you'd expect there are plenty of restaurants and tempting tea rooms in the city centre too.
Other Hotel Information
Please note: the hotel has an on-site car park with 120 spaces which are available on a first come, first served basis. Disabled bays are available. Charges of £9 apply per overnight stay.
Indoor swimming pool
The hotel is located in the city centre on a bend along the banks of the River Wear, 220 yards from the main shopping area and just a short walk to the steep cobbled streets of the old town, cathedral and castle.
From the A1(M): Take Junction 62 and follow the signs to Durham City Centre along the A690. After crossing the River Wear, stay in the left-hand lane and turn left at the traffic lights. Then take the first immediate left to Framwellgate Waterside. The hotel is on the left. There is car parking for approximately 180 vehicles, with charges approximately £9 for overnight.
The rail station is about 1.5 miles from the hotel. Details of train services may be obtained from National Rail Enquiries on 03457 484950, or you can visit their website for up-to-date timetables and bookings.
If you wish to pre-book a taxi, the hotel recommends Durham Taxis, telephone number 0191 371 2727. Durham Taxis is not associated with Saga; any contract is between you and them, and all queries about their service must be referred directly to them.
A taxi from the train/bus station should cost around £4-£5.
Once you arrive
On your day of arrival, please aim to get there after 2pm; any earlier and your room may not be ready. Your luggage will be portered from reception to your room, but if you need help with your bags from the car park, please request this when you check in. Check out time is at 11am.
Angel of the North, Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art and Sunderland Art Gallery
Stop to see Antony Gormley's iconic work. Britain's largest sculpture, created by Gormley in 1998, is among the country's most famous works of public modern art. Assembled on the site of a former colliery, it recalls the industrial heritage of the region as its open arms welcome visitors to Tyneside.
Admire the striking modern work at the Baltic Centre which is housed in a landmark industrial building beside the River Tyne in Gateshead. Just over a decade old, the international Baltic Centre has displayed modern works by Damien Hirst, George Shaw and Yoko Ono. It also organised the 27th Turner prize in 2011, the first time the award had been held outside the Tate.
Sunderland Museum houses a collection of British art from the 19th and 20th centuries, including works by Edward Burra, L S Lowry and Sir Edward Burne-Jones. The museum's main emphasis is on the region's natural history and geology, as well as its ship building and coal mining legacy. It also has the largest collection of Sunderland lustreware pottery in the world.
Included on 4 nights itinerary
Shipley Art Gallery and Laing Art Gallery
The Laing Art Gallery is set in the heart of the Newcastle. The gallery is home to a number of British paintings and watercolours from the 18th century to the present day. Works by Burne-Jones, Reynolds and Turner are represented, as well as those by the Northumberland artist John Martin including his powerful ‘The Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah’. There is also an interactive display of 400 years of regional art and craft.
The north east's arts and crafts are celebrated in all their glory at the Shipley Art Gallery in Gateshead, which was created in 1917 when solicitor Joseph Shipley bequeathed 504 paintings. The collection has since grown considerably and now contains nearly 800 paintings and over 700 exhibits of ceramics, glass, metalwork, jewellery, textiles and furniture. The portrayal of the Blaydon Races by William C Irving is perhaps the most famous of the gallery’s many paintings, which also includes pieces by Dutch and Flemish old masters.
Included on 4 nights itinerary
Durham Cathedral and the Bowes Museum
Visit one of the world's finest Norman buildings, Durham Cathedral, during a walking tour of this medieval city. The cathedral's nave vault is supported by massive columns while the pointed arches across it are among the earliest examples and show how the Romanesque style developed into Gothic. The 12th-century Galilee Chapel, at the west end, is the resting place of the Venerable Bede (673-735AD), the theologian who wrote the famous Ecclesiastical History of England. His bones were brought to Durham in 1022 and laid in this tomb in the 14th century. You also view the exterior of the nearby Norman Castle. William the Conqueror ordered its construction in 1072 as a ‘motte and bailey’ castle. It was rebuilt in stone by Bishop le Puiset in the 12th century, and transformed from a fortress into a comfortable residence by later prince-bishops. It is now used by Durham University.
Please note: the city of Durham sits on a hill and your walking tour will involve walking along sometimes steeply sloping streets and over uneven surfaces including cobbles.
Later head for the Bowes Museum, designed in the style of a magnificent French chateau and built by John Bowes and his wife, the French artist Joséphine Benoîte-Coffin-Chevallier. Throughout their marriage they collected a staggering 15,000 objects, succeeding in their goal to create a world-class museum in John's ancestral home of Teesdale. The museum is also well known for its impressive archaeological galleries. Among the exhibits you will see European fine and decorative arts, a suite of English period rooms and collections of paintings, ceramics, fashion, and musical instruments. Don't miss the astonishing, clockwork silver swan.
Included on 4 nights itinerary