things to do in hexham

Last Updated on: 11th May 2024, 10:36 am

Welcome to Hexham, a charming market town in Northumberland, England. Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a longer stay, there is a wide range of things to do in Hexham and attractions that will keep you entertained and delighted throughout your visit.

From historic sites to outdoor adventures, there’s something for everyone in Hexham. Explore the rich history of the town by visiting its fascinating museums and historic sites. Marvel at the impressive architecture of Hexham Abbey, built in the 7th century, or immerse yourself in the town’s border history by descending into the dungeons of Hexham Old Gaol, England’s oldest purpose-built prison.

For nature enthusiasts, Hexham is surrounded by stunning countryside and is a gateway to Northumberland National Park, where you can embark on scenic walks, go hiking, or simply enjoy a leisurely picnic in nature. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit Hadrian’s Wall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and discover the ancient ruins left behind by the Romans.

Hexham is also a town that embraces its cultural side. Attend captivating performances by international and national artists at the Queen’s Hall Arts Centre, or celebrate literature at the renowned Hexham Book Festival. Catch a movie at the Forum Cinema, or simply stroll through the town and take in its vibrant atmosphere.

No matter what your interests may be, Hexham has something to offer. Plan your visit now and experience the charm and beauty of this hidden gem in Northumberland. Get ready to create memories that will last a lifetime!

Things to Do in Hexham

Historic Sites and Museums in Hexham

Hexham is known for its rich history, offering visitors a glimpse into the town’s fascinating past. Explore the numerous historic sites and museums that showcase Hexham’s cultural heritage and immerse yourself in its remarkable landmarks.

1. Hexham Abbey

One of the must-visit attractions in Hexham is the Hexham Abbey, a magnificent structure dating back to the 7th century. With its impressive architecture and ancient sculptures, the abbey is a testament to the town’s historical significance. Marvel at the intricate details and step back in time as you wander through the abbey’s hallowed halls.

2. Hexham Old Gaol

Step into the past at the Hexham Old Gaol, England’s oldest purpose-built prison, which dates back to the 1300s. Delve into the town’s border history as you explore the museum, descend into the dungeons, and learn about the fascinating stories of its former prisoners. The Hexham Old Gaol provides a captivating glimpse into a bygone era.

3. Sele Park

Escape into nature at Sele Park, a picturesque green space in Hexham. With its peaceful atmosphere and beautiful surroundings, the park is the perfect place to relax and enjoy a leisurely stroll. Take in the stunning views of the River Tyne and immerse yourself in the tranquility of this idyllic setting.

4. Hexham House

Visit Hexham House, an elegant Georgian mansion that now serves as the local council’s administrative building. Admire the architecture and explore the grounds, which feature well-manicured gardens. Hexham House is a testament to the town’s cultural heritage and offers a glimpse into its aristocratic past.

5. Border History Library

Delve deeper into Hexham’s history at the Border History Library. Housed within Hexham Library, this dedicated space is home to an extensive collection of books, documents, and archives related to the region’s border history. Explore the library’s resources and uncover the stories and events that shaped Hexham and its surroundings.

Hexham Abbey

Immerse yourself in the rich history of Hexham by visiting these iconic landmarks and museums. From the ancient splendor of Hexham Abbey to the intriguing tales of the Hexham Old Gaol, there is much to discover in this historic town. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or simply seeking to explore the past, Hexham’s historic sites and museums offer a captivating journey through time.

Outdoor Activities and Nature in Hexham

Hexham, with its picturesque surroundings, offers a multitude of outdoor activities for nature enthusiasts. Situated near the stunning Northumberland National Park, visitors have the opportunity to immerse themselves in scenic landscapes, indulge in hiking adventures, and relax with picnics in lush green spaces.

For those who appreciate history and archaeological wonders, Hexham’s proximity to Hadrian’s Wall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, presents the perfect opportunity to explore ancient Roman ruins and embark on captivating walks along this iconic structure.

If leisure is what you seek, Hexham Racecourse hosts a range of annual events, including the highly anticipated Ladies’ Day. Experience the thrill of horseracing while enjoying the vibrant atmosphere and festivities.

For a tranquil retreat, head to Tyne Green on the banks of the River Tyne. This scenic spot offers serene surroundings, picturesque views, and a peaceful ambiance, ideal for unwinding amidst nature’s beauty.

hexham tourist spots

Hexham Outdoor Activities and Nature Highlights:

  • Explore the breathtaking landscapes of Northumberland National Park
  • Embark on hiking trails that offer stunning views of the surrounding countryside
  • Indulge in picnics surrounded by nature’s beauty
  • Discover the fascinating Roman ruins along Hadrian’s Wall
  • Witness the excitement and elegance of Ladies’ Day at Hexham Racecourse
  • Relax and enjoy the peaceful ambiance of Tyne Green

With its abundance of outdoor activities and proximity to natural wonders, Hexham provides an unforgettable experience for nature lovers and those seeking leisure options. Immerse yourself in the town’s natural beauty and take advantage of the numerous opportunities for exploration and relaxation.

Cultural Events and Entertainment in Hexham

In addition to its historical and natural attractions, Hexham offers a vibrant cultural scene that caters to all interests. Immerse yourself in the town’s artistic charm and enjoy a wide range of entertainment options.

1. The Queen’s Hall Arts Centre

hexham entertainment

The Queen’s Hall Arts Centre is a magnificent Victorian building that serves as the heart of Hexham’s cultural landscape. This iconic venue hosts performances by both international and national artists, showcasing a diverse range of talent. From music concerts and theater performances to dance recitals and comedy shows, there’s always something exciting happening at The Queen’s Hall. The venue also features art galleries that exhibit works by renowned artists, providing a delightful blend of visual and performing arts.

2. Hexham Book Festival

If you’re a book lover, the Hexham Book Festival is a must-visit event. Held annually, this literary extravaganza brings together acclaimed authors, poets, and storytellers from around the world. Immerse yourself in captivating book readings, lively panel discussions, and engaging workshops. Whether you’re a fan of fiction, non-fiction, or poetry, the Hexham Book Festival offers a unique opportunity to celebrate the written word and discover new literary treasures.

3. The Forum Cinema

The Forum Cinema is Hexham’s beloved cinema, providing a delightful escape for movie enthusiasts. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a wide selection of films, ranging from blockbusters to independent productions. The cinema offers a cozy and intimate setting, perfect for a night out with friends or a romantic date. Treat yourself to some popcorn, sit back, and let the magic of the big screen transport you to different worlds.

No matter what your interests may be, Hexham has something to offer in terms of entertainment. Whether you enjoy live performances, literary events, or film screenings, you’ll find plenty of cultural experiences to keep you entertained during your visit to this charming town.


Hexham, located in Northumberland, is a hidden gem that offers a delightful array of activities and attractions for visitors. With its rich history and breathtaking natural beauty, this charming town has something to offer everyone. Whether you’re fascinated by historic sites, eager to immerse yourself in outdoor adventures, or keen to experience the vibrant local culture, Hexham is a destination that should not be overlooked.

From exploring the ancient Hexham Abbey and wandering through the captivating Hexham Old Gaol to basking in the stunning landscapes of Northumberland National Park and discovering the remnants of Hadrian’s Wall, there are countless experiences awaiting you. Hexham is a treasure trove of wonders waiting to be explored.

So, if you’re seeking a memorable and enriching getaway, look no further than Hexham. Plan your visit today, and be prepared to be enchanted by this remarkable town’s warmth, beauty, and fascinating history. Let Hexham be your guide to a truly unforgettable journey in Northumberland.


What historic sites and museums can I visit in Hexham?

Hexham offers a wealth of history to explore. Hexham Abbey, built in the 7th century, is a must-visit attraction. Hexham Old Gaol is the oldest purpose-built prison in England. Other sites include Sele Park, Hexham House, and the Border History Library.

What cultural events and entertainment options are there in Hexham?

Hexham has a vibrant cultural scene with options for everyone. Queen’s Hall Arts Centre hosts performances by international and national artists and has art galleries. Hexham Book Festival is a must-visit for book lovers. The town also has a cinema, the Forum Cinema, showcasing a variety of films.

What can I find in Hexham besides history and nature?

In addition to its historical sites and natural beauty, Hexham offers visitors a range of options. You can enjoy cultural events, explore the town’s landmarks, and immerse yourself in the local culture. Hexham is a charming destination that has something for everyone.