Travel to Sunderland
Formerly a centre for industries including coal mining and shipbuilding, in recent years Sunderland has stepped out from the shadow of neighbouring Newcastle and emerged as a dynamic, culturally-aware destination in its own right. With stunning scenery and shorelines, world-class museums and a vibrant university, there's something for everyone to enjoy in this pleasant city on England's north-east coast.
More laid-back than Newcastle, Sunderland is nevertheless home to an impressive variety of bars, restaurants and nightclubs, many with lovely views of the sea and the River Wear. Whether you're travelling to Sunderland for an inexpensive weekend break or commuting from Newcastle, Durham
or farther afield for work or university, you can easily keep travel costs down by finding a car share to get you there.
Cultural riches by the sea
Fancy a cultural break in a scenic seaside town? Sunderland is the perfect getaway for you. Visit the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art for thought-provoking (and free!) exhibitions of contemporary art by leading international artists, or drop by the National Glass Centre for a fascinating look at the art and history of glass blowing, including live demonstrations.
The impressive Sunderland Museum and Winter Gardens
are a must-visit, too – explore the city's history from prehistory to the present day through a range of innovative exhibits, and view the largest collection of paintings by L.S. Lowry outside of his hometown of Salford (the painter was a big fan of Sunderland and visited regularly). The gardens are a true treat for the senses, with over 2,000 varieties of plants and captivating water features.
Finally, spend some time relaxing in historic Mowbray Park
in the city centre, or stroll along the banks of the Wear and try to imagine the scene during Sunderland's shipbuilding days. If the weather is fine, head out to the lovely sandy beaches at Roker and Seaburn for an invigorating swim – or simply admire the view!
Dining, drinking and more
With its large student population, Sunderland has plenty of affordable options for a great night out – especially if you've saved some money by getting here by lift share in the first place! Head to the Seaburn Strip, a stretch of varied restaurants located along the seafront in the northern part of the city, where you can find a satisfying meal for every taste and budget. Then make sure you hit some of the city centre pubs and bars, where you can meet friendly locals and students and hopefully catch some live music by up-and-coming young bands at venues such as The Independent.
Alternately, catch a musical or the latest production from the West End at the Sunderland Empire Theatre
, or watch Sunderland AFC play at the Stadium of Light
. There's no shortage of things to do in this bustling riverside city, so start looking for your ride to Sunderland now!