Things To See and Do
Welcome to Belsay Hall
We have introduced limits on visitor numbers to help keep everyone safe, and you won’t be able to visit without your booking confirmation. If you’re a Member, your ticket will be free, but you still need to book in advance. To book your visit, click the button below.
Although things might be a little different when you visit, you’ll still be able to enjoy exploring the places where history really happened. And you’ll still be given a warm and safe welcome by our friendly – if socially distant – staff and volunteers.
- Gardens - Our grounds and gardens are open as usual.
- The Castle and Hall - Both indoor spaces will remain closed.
- Café - Take away food and drink will be available.
- Shop - The shop will be open.
- Toilets - The toilets are open as usual.
- Summer Explorer Quest - This summer, from 18 July, take your family on a free fun adventure quest. Download your trail map below.
- Face coverings - Face coverings must be worn in Belsay's indoor shop, café and all other indoor spaces. We won't be able to give you a face covering so please come prepared so you don't miss out.
Lose yourself in the vast 30 acre Grade I listed gardens. Follow through ravines cut out of rock to discover the jurassic-feeling Quarry Garden. Inspired by Sir Charles Monck's travels, the Quarry Garden has its own microclimate which means all sorts of exotic plants grow here.
We have one of the biggest collection of rhododendrons in the country. You'll find winter flowering varieties in the Quarry Garden and a stunning display in the Rhododendron Garden during late spring.
Enjoy year-round seasonal interest in the formal Yew Garden and Magnolia Terrace. And if you're feeling energetic why not take the Crag Wood Walk?
Power up 56 spiral stairs to marvel at the view from the top of the 14th-century defensive 'pele tower' at the top of the ruined medieval castle. The castle was built as a refuge at a time of Anglo-Scottish warfare but it was also designed to impress.
Explore the maze of rooms and keep your eye out for rare traces of elaborate medieval wall paintings. In the manor house style wing you can still see the old cooking range and fireplaces.
The whole ensemble here is the creation of the Middleton family over more than seven centuries. The estate was owned almost continuously by the family from the 13th century, when Sir Richard de Middleton was Lord Chancellor to King Henry III.
Once you've worked up a hunger from all of that exploring make your way to the tearoom, in the hall's original kitchen.
We serve hot lunches and lighter bites like soups, sandwiches and sweet treats. There are hot and cold drinks to quench your thirst too. Our stotties really are the star of the show - we recommend trying the bacon and blue cheese.
Lots of our ingredients are locally sourced and our scones are made right here in the kitchen by our chef. Highchairs are available if needed.
Second hand Bookshop
During your visit enjoy browsing our secondhand bookshop. Situated in the former laundry rooms in the old stable block, we have over 2,200 books to choose from – fiction, specialist subjects, film DVDs and music CDs.
We ask for a small donation for your purchases which goes towards the conservation work needed at Belsay Hall. We are always looking for donations so feel free to bring any unwanted books with you on your visit.