South Shields is a popular coastal area on the South banks of the River Tyne with stunning cliff tops and award winning beaches as well as awe-inspiring Roman and maritime history. Journey back to Roman times at Arbeia Roman Fort, learn about Anglo-Saxon history at Bede's World, visit a keeper's cottage at Souter Lighthouse or explore beautiful sandy beaches and enjoy traditional seaside fun at the lovely resort of South Shields.
As you would expect from a buzzing seaside resort there is a great interest in the area meaning that tourism in South Shields is increasingly on the up! This is no doubt due to the area’s natural charm as well as the wealth of places to eat, drink and stay, plus getting about is easy thanks to excellent transport links via the Metro to NewcastleGateshead and Sunderland. This is an ideal destination for families looking to sample traditional seaside fun.
Beautiful beaches, twisting cliff top paths, exhilarating amusements and miles of natural beauty make our coastline a delight to explore all year round.
The long sandy sweep of Sandhaven, with its backdrop of dunes, is one of the finest beaches in the UK while Littlehaven South Shields beach has panoramic views of the harbour and the ruins of Tynemouth Priory across the mouth of the Tyne. It is an ideal spot for sailing, windsurfing and angling.
All the fun of the fair can be enjoyed at Ocean Beach Pleasure Park where there is an exciting choice of white-knuckle thrillers, colourful and imaginative rides for younger children plus amusements and video games galore. Friends and family can battle it out at the newest attraction on the seafront - Smugglers Cove, a pirate themed pitch and putt.
Away from the hustle and bustle of the funfair, the seafront parks are the perfect spot for a gentle walk. South Marine Park with its boating lake, miniature steam railway, play area, paddling pool and amazing gathering of swans and ducks is great for families. Nearby North Marine Park is the perfect setting for pitch and putt, watching a game of bowls or enjoying a stroll and taking in the great views.
Fantastic Rock Formations…
Over time, the mighty waves of the great North Sea have carved out caves, cliffs and stacks, leaving breathtaking Marsden Bay dominated by one of the most magnificent rock formations in Britain. The area is home to thousands of kittiwakes, gulls and cormorants whilst The Leas, a two mile grassy sweep, is a Site of Special Scientific Interest.
The South Shields coast is popular for cycling and walking, with a number of trails along the scenic cliff tops and the surrounding areas.
The area boasts a long and proud maritime heritage. South Shields was the home of the nation's first purpose-designed lifeboat and one of the original vessels, Tyne, is beautifully preserved at the Wouldhave memorial. Her crews saved 1,028 stricken mariners in the 19th century.
Another first for South Shields coast is Souter Lighthouse. When it was switched on in 1871, it was the first in the world specifically constructed for electric illumination by carbon arc lamps. Today, in this National Trust property, you can explore the Engine Room, the keeper's cottage and enjoy outstanding views from the top of the tower.