Best Things To Do in Middlesbrough: 10 Hidden Gems

Best Things To Do in Middlesbrough: 10 Hidden Gems

Middlesbrough is having a bit of a moment. Teesside is now well and truly on the map and the UK is waking up to one of the North’s best kept secrets. Whether you are looking for days out with the family, award-winning foodie experiences or breath-taking natural beauty, Middlesbrough has it all.

Shhh, don’t tell anyone but we’ve hand-picked the best hidden gems in the region for you to discover for yourself. Here’s our top ten list of things to do and see in Middlesbrough:

  1. Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA)

Free to enter and enjoy, MIMA is a contemporary art gallery with a difference. Internationally renowned for its exhibitions and experiences, which currently include the History of Middlesbrough Collection,  the gallery also offers families the chance to be inspired and create their own works of art using their MIMA making packs as they explore. See what’s coming up by downloading their digital brochure and start planning your trip.

  1. Preston Park Museum and Grounds

A stone's throw away in Stockton you can get lost in Preston Park Museum and Gardens. Acres of woodland trails, adventure parks offer a beautiful place to unwind. In the museum you can discover the history of the area and the families that made the park what it is today, as well as a regular programme of temporary exhibitions. You’ll also find Butterfly World is nestled on the edge of Preston Park, a magical world of tropical trees and flowers, splashing waterfalls and colourful butterflies galore – you can even meet some meerkats and reptiles too!

  1. Sky Water

If you’re looking for a little bit of glitz and glamour, look no further than Asian fusion restaurant Sky Water. Newly launched in June 2022, the dining experience offers tastes that the Chef has perfected from their time cooking in China, Japan and Korea. The interior boasts an Instagram-worthy flower wall and you can enjoy tasty, handcrafted cocktails at the stunning marble bar.

  1. Baker and Bedford Street

What used to be a pair of terraced streets in the centre of Middlesbrough has been transformed into a hub of independent bars, eateries and cool hang out spots that has something to offer every taste. Craft beers and artisan bakeries draw in those in the know, but the area really comes to life when the Orange Pip Market pops-up. The market is influenced by world-class markets in London, Brooklyn and New York and showcases some of the amazing local producers and creatives from across the region. Visit We Are Middlesbrough to find out when the market is popping up next.

  1. Roseberry Topping

This short but challenging hike offers unrivalled views across North Yorkshire and Cleveland. The walk starts from the public car park in Newton-Under-Rosberry and takes around half an hour with plenty to do on route; spot local wildlife and explore the blue-bell woods. Pack a picnic and enjoy a well-deserved rest and a snack when you reach the summit.

  1. Fairy Dell

The Fairy Dell, in Coulby Newham is only a 10-minute drive from our Portside Village development and a haven for both wildlife spotters and those seeking tranquillity in the heart of the city. According to TripAdvisor reviews, Fairy Dell is a great place to explore with both kids and dogs and the variety of woodland trails means that there is always something new to see and discover, including sculptures to spot as you stroll.


  1. Tees Transporter Bridge

While people might remember the Transporter Bridge from its starring role in 80s show Auf Weidersehen Pet – now it is one of the UK's major sites for extreme sports including abseils, bungee jumps and zip slides. It is the longest working transporter bridge in the world and an iconic symbol of Teesside’s engineering and industrial heritage. Travel to the top of the bridge in a new glass viewing life or experience the hard hat audio tour and capture your own video to take home!


  1. Newham Grange Farm

You can meet a whole host of farmyard favourites at Newham Grange Farm and even a wallaby or two! Say hello to furry friends in the Discovery Barn and run off some steam in the adventure play zone before grabbing a coffee and a bite to eat in the café. Entertain the kids at home by tuning in to see the animal’s antics 24/7 on the live animal cam!


  1. Bad Neighbour Vinyl Café

Located inside Sticky Fingers, one of Middlesbrough’s best places for a pint, music and a legendary burger, Bad Neighbour Vinyl is one of the town's best-kept secrets. Music lovers and those in the know can head upstairs “til late” and browse an impressive collection of vinyl, enjoy a coffee or craft beer in the space and hear live music performances on the bar's 1913 Bechstein grand piano.


  1. Tees Sculpture Trail

See if you can spot all 25 sculptures that have popped up across the Tees Valley. The installations celebrate the natural and social heritage of the area while protecting, preserving and enhancing the region's unique landscape. A whole host of sculptures sit in Middlesbrough itself, including Teesaurus Park – a 10 acre park where you can spot life size brachiosaurus, brontosaurus, mammoth, stegosaurus and tyrannosaurus sculptures. Download your sculpture passport and track your progress . Can you find them all?

If you’re thinking about making the move to experience all that this wonderful town has to offer, browse our brand new homes in Middlesbrough. Our popular Portside Village development is located just three miles east of the town centre, and is ideally situated for a balance between spacious green areas and the convenience of urban life.

Don’t forget to show us your favourite places to explore in and around Middlesbrough by tagging @millerhomes on Instagram and using the #mymillerhome.