There’s plenty of things to do in Stoke on Trent and you’ll be surprised at some hidden gems that this wonderful city possesses. We’ve put together this list of the best things to do in Stoke on Trent for when you next visit the Potteries. Let’s dive into it shall we?
Born and bred in the Potteries this place has been my home for over 30 years and whilst the city is not much to look at (although that is slowly changing every year) it contains some of the most polite and wonderful people in the country with a rich history.
From museums to gardens and some wonderfully quirky attractions there’s certainly lots to see and do if you ever find yourself in the city.
Without further ado, let’s dive into all the things to do in Stoke On Trent.
Trentham Monkey Forest
Situated just down the road from Trentham Gardens the Monkey Forest is a really unique, affordable and wonderful little attraction.
The only one of its kind in the country you can head into a forest where monkeys roam free.
It’s relaxing and educational with keepers on hand to deliver all the information you require.
There’s an extortionate amount of space for the monkeys and it’s always a very popular attraction especially when the weather is nice!
Museum of Horrors
The UK’s first Museum of Horrors resides right here in Stoke on Trent as horror fans can get up close and personal with some of horror TV and films most recognisable props and costumes.
Step inside a variety of themed rooms as you’re given a guided tour of the macabre. In addition to movie and TV items the museum also houses Staffordshire’s only true crime room where guests can get up close and personal to real life crime scene evidence from some of the world’s most notorious cases.
Twice a month the Museum of Horrors is overtaken for special interactive actor days for the bravest of guests. This ‘waiver signed’ experience will test your limits of fear as is absolutely not for the faint hearted.
This brand new attraction opened in October 2023 to rave reviews and is very quickly putting Stoke on Trent on the map.
Museum of Horrors is based in Fenton in Stoke on Trent and is owned by the same couple who also own the Haunted Museum which resides just around the corner.
The perfect blend of commercial horror and real life paranormal investigation attractions located right around the corner from one another, these are two attractions that are not to be missed!
World of Wedgwood
The World of Wedgwood takes guests through a history of British industrial and design.
Shop Wedgewood, grab a bite to eat and indulge in the regular visitor tours they put on throughout the day.
The tours provide an exclusive insight into the production process and a chance to see at first-hand unique artisan skills that are employed to create the iconic Wedgwood product.
Potteries Museum and Art Gallery
Housing a whole collection of decorative arts, costumes, local history and more the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery isn’t just the home of plates and pots.
The museum houses some incredibly unique artefacts including human remains, Viking pieces and a whole number of set recreations showing a Stoke On Trent of old.
In September 2021 the museum will be opening its brand new expansion which will be the new home of the beautiful Spitfire that has been housed in the museum for many years.
The iconic plane has been beautifully restored and will be on display in this stunning glass expansion to this Stoke on Trent landmark location.
Gladstone Pottery Museum
The only complete Victorian pottery factory where coal-burning ovens roasted and created the world’s finest bone china.
Gladstone Pottery Museum is a step back in time and offers sights, smells and sounds into the history of Stoke-On-Trent.
Try your hand at making your own pottery and have a wheely good time.
I’m here till Thursday folks!
Based in Hanley The Dudson Museum was created in 1999 when the original Dudson Factory site, which dates back to 1809, was regenerated by a range of private and public sector partners.
The museum is located within a Grade II listed bottle oven and explores the fascinating history of the Dudson family ceramic tableware business.
Trentham Treetop Adventures
A step-up from GO-APE courses and a much more intense workout this intermediate course takes you through the trees before you brave a freefall drop at the end.
I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to Trentham Treetop Adventures but you certainly need a good level of fitness as I quickly found out dangling from the trees, absolutely exhausted.
Check out my rather tiring VLOG of the experience HERE
I’ve always loved Waterworld ever since I was a kid and with the brand new expansion there’s even more to see and do!
Waterworld installed the UK’s first trapdoor water slide which allows brave guests to stand on a door before a countdown begins and you shoot down the slide at a ferocious speed.
Other new rides include Cyclone which takes guests on a little raft adventure into a giant barrel before flying down multi-coloured tubes into a giant dome.
The new Tornado Springs expansion was a huge step forward for this indoor water attraction but the old rides are equally as entertaining.
Take a look at all of the rides at Waterworld Stoke HERE
From an amazing splash pool with water rapids, hot spas, fountains and a 65m dragon slide to swimming lessons and multiple 3G football pitches, Dimensions has something for all the family.
Grab a Costa Coffee and put your feet up. Whilst it’s no Waterworld in terms of the ride offering (far from) it’s certainly the cheaper of the two local waterparks.
Situated next door to Waterworld is Adventure Mini-Golf Stoke where you can play 18 holes surrounded by the jungles of the ancient Inca empire.
The mini-golf centre is well themed and comes with a nice sitting area to chill out and grab a drink and the course also includes various animal figures dotted around and its own waterfall!
The recently opened mini-golf course is owned by Waterworld owner Mo Chaudry so expect package deals for those two attractions in the months to come.
Want to step up your golf game beyond crazy golf?
Goin Golf is for you.
With state of the art virtual driving ranges you can practise your game no matter the weather in this Fenton based indoor golf attraction.
Use real clubs and perfect your game at any skill level on hundreds of courses around the world.
Want something more fun? Then try your hand at the putting green upstairs or even play one of the varieties of golf-themed games on the big screen.
If you want to grab 6 buddies for a little night out upgrade to a VIP room where you’ll have a mini-bar to house drinks you bring to the venue, a TV and a virtual golf experience along with a moving floor that adjusts to the terrain on screen!
Watch the football (or the golf) and enjoy one of the most affordable VIP experiences at any venue in Stoke on Trent.
Check out our recent visit to Goin Golf HERE where we were invited for a tour around and to try our hand on their brand new simulators.
Apedale Valley Light Railway
Are you stuck choo choo choosing things to do in Stoke?
Then look no further.
Using historic steam and diesel locomotive trains visitors are told the story of the Industrial Narrow Gauge Railway – unsung heroes of British industrial heritage.
All aboard this fun-filled experience at one of Britain’s oldest heritage steam railways!
Enjoy a traditional family day out at this volunteer-run railway for families and rail enthusiasts.
Grab yourself some afternoon tea or indulge in the numerous activities that take place at this Blythe Bridge based venue.
Check out the latest movie offering at Cineworld in this comfy 9-screen cinema.
The cinema also hosts early screenings of movies and puts an extra effort into midnight premieres including Avengers night where costumed characters greeted guests at the midnight screening of Avengers: Infinity War.
With a whole counter of drinks and cinema snacks on offer and little freebies for every limited screening (posters/cards) Cineworld really is the best cinema in Stoke on Trent in my own personal opinion.
A much older cinema compared to that of Cineworld above but if you’re loyal to Odeon or take part in their Limitless screenings then this is the cinema for you.
It’s a cinema that does feel a little lost in time but it’s always the first to host to all the latest blockbusters on offer and is very close to many other attractions on this list such as Adventure Mini Golf, Waterworld and this little number…
Tenpin Ten Bowling
Home to a whole host of arcade games, pool tables, bar and 30 bowling lanes Tenpin Ten is a wonderful time for all the family.
Host to a range of bowling tournaments and always a fun and friendly time have food and drinks delivered to your lane as you smash as many pins down as you can.
The staff are always friendly and lanes are always well maintained (the same can’t be said about the lane computers).
There is also another VR place just down the road from XP-VR in Hanley city centre.
The premise is the same but the building comes with more VR stations and serves food.
Planet VR features 5 virtual reality pods, each with its own 3D simulation headset and over 50 games included and the UK’s first ROTO VR interactive chairs.
Whilst Paralysis Escape room is incredible it’s limited to just two rooms at the moment with more to come.
Granted they are more detailed than their local rivals Escape Stoke up the road but Escape Stoke offer a more family-friendly experience as opposed to the adult-only experience that Paralysis offer.
From Harry Potter themed magical rooms to a brand new superhero room Escape Stoke is certainly the best family escape room venue in Stoke.
Great staff, wonderful detailing and a great array of puzzles to keep your brain ticking, I do rather enjoy a trip to Escape Stoke!
Mscape is the newest escape room venue to be set up in Stoke on Trent as the company aims to provide the most realistic experience possible.
With such wonderful trailers on their website whetting the appetite for what the room contains the venue has some great reviews so far on Tripadvisor.
I particularly like the look of the witchcraft room as a rogue warlock has come into your ritual room and cast various spells causing your book of magic to be locked.
You need to reverse his spells and find the key to your book of magic. So you can access the highly protected “removal of magic spell” to cast on the rogue warlock.
Haunted Museum Stoke
Stoke now has a Haunted Museum, that’s right!
Come and explore the world of the paranormal at this Fenton based spooktacular venue.
With numerous photo ops, a shop and guided tours available this attraction is certainly going to be a draw for the city.
Interested in the macabre or wish to explore the paranormal the venue offer overnight stays and investigations.
Come on down if you’re feeling brave enough!
The original go-karting arena in Stoke on Trent as Fastlane Karting have upgraded to a two-level track for 2021.
Speed around in your karts for this pedal to the metal full-throttle experience.
Great for stag doos or just a place to hang out with friends in a fun and chilled environment.
There’s also Goin Golf (mentioned above) right next door and both of these together would make for one hell of a lads night out!
Team Sport Karting
Based in Burslem Team Sport were the latecomers to the Stoke on Trent karting scene.
Boasting the longest indoor go-karting track in Stoke and with a host of state-of-the-art electric go-karts that reach 40mph speed around the track for the ultimate karting experience.
Team Sport Karting in Burslem was the first to offer a multi-level track in Stoke on Trent before Fastlane Karting later introduced theirs, most likely to compete with their local rivals which means more fun for us!
Stoke Ski Centre
Based in Festival Park, Stoke Ski Centre is specifically designed to imitate the mountains and help you train or just to have fun.
With constant work going into improving our slope surface, we are proud to claim it as one of the best in the country.
Get some snowboarding or skiing lessons or just have free roam of the slope to do as you wish.
The venue has two slopes including a family slope and an adrenaline slop for those looking for a real thrill.
I always remember having snowboarding lessons at Stoke Ski Centre and being dragged up to the top of the hill by the chair lifts will always be a comedy memory I’ll treasure with me forever.
An indoor inflatable obstacle course spanning 14,000 square feet in Festival Park is fun for all the family.
The attraction includes a soft play area for younger children including a sensory room and refreshments.
The Main Arena features an Obstacle Course, a Bubbly Air Bed, a Dual Lane Bungee Run, a Basketball Hoop, a Base Jump, a Drop Slide and lots more!
Inflato isn’t just for kids it’s got more than enough inflatable obstacles to challenge the most athletic adults too!
The Trentham Estate is home to the award-winning Trentham Gardens featuring The Italian Garden by Tom Stuart-Smith, and the Floral Labyrinth and Rivers of Grass by Piet Oudolf and vast wildflower and woodland meadow plantings by Nigel Dunnett.
There’s a wonderful sculpture trail, a mini-railway, adventure playground, family-friendly maze and seasonal boat trips to keep the family occupied!
Trentham Shopping Village
With 50 shops and 14 cafes and restaurants can also be found at The Trentham Estate. You’ll find something for everyone here.
I’d highly recommend the food, it doesn’t matter which restaurant you choose all the food is fresh, incredibly tasty and the service is always top-notch!
Based in Longton Potteries Potions has to be the go-to place for Harry Potter fans up and down the country.
Selling a whole host of officially licensed merchandise, not to mention some in-house creations Potteries Potions really is the one-stop-shop for all you wizards and witches out there.
Housing a broad range of Noble Collection prop replicas to clothing, potions, chocolate frogs and more the shop is beautifully designed and you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to goodies you want to snap up on your next visit.
There are also some great photo-ops for kids of all ages in this two-storey wizard wonderland.
The Regent Theatre
I may be biased in saying this but after being to some of the most prestigious theatres in the country I still much prefer my local theatre in Hanley.
The Regent Theatre is a beautiful venue hosting a whole range of productions.
With such a huge stage mixed with elegant seating and regal surroundings it really is such a beautiful venue that Stoke can be proud of.
From Annie to The Exorcist I’ve seen them all at The Regent Theatre and was amazed every time.
I was even invited to watch the ballet one evening and I wasn’t bored.
Ballet is not my cup of tea at all but the surroundings (not to mention the free champagne on the press night) certainly made for a romantic and endearing affair.
If you’re looking for more variety in your productions than your stage shows then look no further than the Victoria Hall.
From The Circus of Horrors to The Darkness playing an incredible intimate gig there I’ve certainly seen enough shows to know that coupled with the Regent Theatre, Stoke on Trent really does have entertainment nailed down to a tee.
You can check out my review of the incredible Circus of Horrors HERE
Port Vale Football Club
The biggest team in the Potteries (I’m biased) head down to Vale park on a matchday or dine in luxury with an absolutely mouthwatering Sunday Dinner offering.
Vale Park has stepped up its game under new ownership and is an absolute joy to visit lately.
Such warm and friendly staff and not to mention incredible new owners have put Port Vale on the map.
From community work to hospitality that gets better season after season Port Vale football club are certainly going places on and off the pitch.
Check out my review on their wonderful Sunday Lunch offering HERE
Stoke City Football Club
I suppose I have to mention Stoke City when it comes to Stoke based attractions.
The ground is certainly great to take a tour around but the club is more corporate in its running than that of Port Vale and it shows.
There’s no family-friendly warming atmosphere at Stoke City but what I will say is that their hospitality packages are some of the most affordable and indulgent as any I’ve ever experienced.
I always remember when Stoke City were in the Premier League I’d take clients to see a game against Manchester United or Liverpool that you’d usually pay a fortune for at other grounds.
Stoke City didn’t charge any more than £150 per person which for a Premier League hospitality area with seats, meals and half-time/full-time refreshments is an absolute steal.
I was quite confused adding this one to the list but after looking at the address for Alton Towers it has Stoke on Trent as the city it’s based in on the letterhead.
Still quite confused because of just how far away from Stoke it actually is I’ve added it to the list regardless.
The UK’s biggest theme park and host to some of the best rides in the country including the legendary Nemesis coaster and the world’s first 14-loop coaster in The Smiler.
A gem in the UK Theme Park crown and an absolute joy to visit no matter the time of year.
So as you can clearly see Stoke on Trent has a whole host of attractions and things to do in the local area. I was quite surprised myself when researching this article just what a variety of attractions there our in our wonderful city.
As always with many of our longer list articles this piece will add new attractions as and when they open keeping the list as fresh and as relevant as humanly possible.