Cheshire’s 10 best hidden gem attractions for families

It’s been a long 12-months for everyone in Cheshire and across the UK.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been tough on everyone and left most of us with a lack of places to visit.

Thankfully, with the roadmap on track, more and more places across Cheshire are opening their doors to the public.

We’ve brought you the top 10 list of the ‘best hidden gem attractions’ according to TripAdvisor.

The popular travel site has compiled a list of hidden gems from across the county.

Take a look at the top 10 below.

1. Anson Engine Museum

(Image: Geograph)

The Anson Engine Museum in Poynton comes takes the top spot in the list of best hidden gems.

According to TripAdvisor, the museum is on the site of the old Anson Colliery.

The site has been growing in popularity in recent years as engine enthusiasts from all over the world have started visiting the site.

It’s easy to see why. The museum has the largest collection of engines in Europe.

Visitors can also enjoy displays of local history items from the Vernon Estate and Anson Colliery.

2. Cholmondeley Castle Gardens

(Image: Chester Chronicle)

Number two on the list is Cholmondeley Castle Gardens located in Malpas.

The 19th century gothic castle is surrounded by ‘sweeping lawns’ and a variety of mature trees.

According to TripAdvisor, the gardens surrounding the castle provide a mix of colour and height with pleasant walks around the lake.

The site includes a Temple Water Garden, Rose Garden, a variety of mixed borders.

3. Tegg’s Nose Country Park

Tegg’s Nose Country Park sits at third on the list of best hidden gem attractions in Cheshire.

The area was originally a quarry, with quarrying taking place from the 1500’s up until 1955.

TripAdvisor said that ‘nature has softened the scars of industry’ today, with plenty to see ‘whatever time of year.’

Visitors can enjoy views over the Cheshire Plain and, on a clear day, Liverpool’s cathedrals are visible.

4. Gauntlet Birds of Prey

(Image: Manchester Evening News)

Located in Knutsford, Gauntlet Birds of Prey is the largest of its kind in the Northwest of England.

The attraction is the home to over 120 birds of prey, from small owls to the worlds biggest eagle.

Two shows are help daily and three between the months of March to October, although COVID-19 may have impacted this.

TripAdvisor added that for those wishing to get closer, the attraction we have bird of prey experiences.

This gives people the opportunity to handle and fly the birds.

5. Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker

Jonathan White
(Image: Crewe Chronicle)

Coming in at fifth place on the list of Cheshire’s ‘best hidden gem attractions’ is Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker.

The bunker remained a secret for over 50 years until it was declassified in 1993.

The site measures 35,000 sq ft and would have been the centre of Regional Government if a nuclear war had broken out.

The attraction is located on French Lane in Nantwich.

6. National Waterways Museum

(Image: chester chronicle)

Ellesmere Port’s National Waterways Museum comes in at sixth place on TripAdvisor’s list.

The docks at Ellesmere Port were designed by Thomas Telford and were in use as late as the 1950s.

Those visiting the attraction can walk around the locks, docks and warehouses and visit the forge, stables and workers cottages.

Dog owners can also take their companions along with the attraction being awarded Dog Friendly Business of the Year in 2018.

7. Lion Salt Works

(Image: Chester Chronicle)

Located in the village of Marston near Northwich, the Lion Salt Works is a restored open-pan salt making site.

The £10.23 million project opened back in 2015 and offers an incredible journey through the life of the country’s last open-pan salt making site.

According to TripAdvisor, those visiting the attraction will discover how the salt works operated and the impact of salt on mid-Cheshire’s people, economy and landscape.

8. Arley Hall & Gardens

(Image: Chester Chronicle)

The stunning Arley Hall & Gardens is located in Northwich and comes in at number eight on TripAdvisor’s list.

History and character are two of the words often used to describe the attraction.

The gardens are said to be amongst some of the finest in the UK, making them perfect for a picnic.

TripAdvisor notes that the hall is an ‘impressive’ example of a Victorian country house built in the Elizabethan style.

9. Nantwich Museum

(Image: IYA)

Number nine on the list of best hidden gems in Cheshire is Nantwich Museum.

The attraction, located in Pillory Street in Nantwich, was opened back in 1980.

The museum is a fantastic way for visitors to brush up on their Nantwich history.

Galleries take visitors through the story of Nantwich through the ages, including Roman salt making and Tudor Nantwich’s Great Fire.

10. Grappenhall Heys Walled Garden

Coming in at number ten on the list is Grappenhall Heys Walled Garden.

The Warrington attraction was originally part of wealthy banker, Thomas Parr’s estate.

TripAdvisor states that Mr Parr established a home on the site around 1830 and, after a period of demise, the walled garden were saved and transformed to their former glory.

The attraction features a pleasure garden, including three ponds, a fully stocked kitchen garden and a cafe.

Top stories from the CheshireLive newsletter

Here are the latest stories from the CheshireLive newsletter

Want to sign up to receive these stories straight to your inbox? It’s free and means you’ll never miss the most important Cheshire news of the day

You can sign up here

Not signed up but want to try it out?

You can read a preview of today’s newsletter here

Cheshire Live – Cheshire