Climb the grassy hill to iconic Penshaw Monument

Penshaw and Washington, Tyne and Wear

Roam picturesque parkland, spy flamingos and otters, admire sculptures and climb the secret staircase of this famous monument for panoramic views.

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A little piece of Greece in the rolling hills of Northern England, the Penshaw Monument is a beloved landmark that is visible for miles around. Built to honour a local Earl in 1844, it is modelled on the Temple of Hephaestus, god of fire, in Athens.

In summer a secret staircase in one of the columns is opened and you can climb right up to the top to survey the surrounding countryside.

From the monument it is a short roll down the hill to Herrington Country Park, a lovely open space of walking and cycle paths, scattered sculptures and a boating lake.

Continue a little further north to meet the mischievous otters and shocking pink Chilean flamingos of Washington Wetland Centre.

Penshaw is 3 miles (5km) from the centre of Sunderland (3 hours from London by train), on the northeast coast of England.

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