On the outskirts of Durham you’ll find millions of sunflowers at East Grange Farm, perfect for a family day out, a date night and of course perfect for those photo opportunities. Everything you need to know about seeing the sunflowers at East Grange Farm is here in this helpful guide.
Back for 2023, East Grange Farm opened up its ever popular sunflower fields to visitors and I headed down with my wife (as well as Evelyn) for a little wander.
East Grange Farm, based in High Shincliffe just outside of Durham, is a family farm with the family having worked these very fields since 1941. Every year, crowds flock to the farm for their special events; sunflowers in summer, pumpkins in autumn and Christmas trees at, well you guessed it, Christmas. To be fair, even though I live a matter of minutes away, I’d never heard about it and normally I’m on the ball with things to do around the North East. As soon as I saw the huge fields of sunflowers (I’m talking literally millions), I had to visit.
We visited last year in 2022 when Evelyn was only six months old so we had to return this year for more photo opportunities and a nice walk. I’m pretty sure we’ll be visiting every year from now on if only for the little one to run around!
THE SUNFLOWERS AT EAST GRANGE FARM
From the 17th August to 3rd September, you can visit the sunflower fields at East Grange Farm. Entry is via pre-booked ticket only (prices below) but you can choose between daytime tickets with entry between 10am and 4pm or twilight tickets (only available on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays) with entry between 5pm and 7pm. Once you’re in, you can stay as long as you wish until around 10pm.
For anyone over the age of 3, the cost of entry is £6. Children under 3 are free! This is for entry into the whole setup so you’ll be able to explore (and probably get lost) the absolutely huge sunflower field and sit and chill out on the grassed area.
This year you’re not able unfortunately to pick your own sunflowers but they have stems for sale at the entrance to the field for £1; we bought two this year which were a lot more manageable to carry and means there’ll be less yellow mess falling on our dining room table!
The field of sunflowers is absolutely huge. I mean huge. There are literally millions of sunflowers with both walking trails for easy access and mazes cut through the sunflowers. We loved getting right into the field though a word of warning, there are bees everywhere obviously. Last year we took a pram for Evelyn so those with families, if its dry, it is perfectly doable though sometimes it will be a tight squeeze.
Around the field there are plenty of photo opportunities with even a raised platform offering incredible views back towards East Grange Farm’s main buildings. You can pick up a quiz sheet when you enter too and apparently there are questions dotted around the field but we didn’t actually spot any for some reason.
Given the weather throughout 2023, I would say that the field of sunflowers isn’t as large and East Grange Farm are more than up-front about the difficulties that the weather cycle has had on the sunflowers. We went on the opening day and loved seeing Evelyn gain her confidence and go running off with the sunflowers towering over her. It was muddy though, and I’m sure it will be even more so the more people walk through, so don’t be afraid to take wellies!
There’s not much else I can say about the sunflowers themselves so I’ve added loads of photos below which hopefully will be enough inspiration to visit.
During the daytime, you can expect small fairground rides, birds of prey, face painting and hot food (there is a note on the website that not all may be available on the same days). Last year we visited on the evening which was definitely catered more towards adults (though there were still some with children, us included) with a bar, live music and wood-fired pizza. In 2022, We went for the Ring of Fire pizza and Our Margaret pizza courtesy of Two J’s Wood Fired Pizza and let me tell you this, they were delicious! I was expecting the return of wood fired pizza in 2023 but there was no sign of the pizza so instead there’s a marquee with hot food inside and a gin bar! There’ll be a children’s disco too on 21st August between 5pm and 7pm with just a few tickets left.
If you’re thinking of visiting East Grange Farm to experience the sunflowers, I’d highly recommend it and make sure you get on their website to pre-book your tickets. If you do go, let me know what you thought in the comments below.
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