What to See and Do in Newcastle

What to See and Do in Newcastle

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

Newcastle upon Tyne is the largest city in North West England. Known for its pubs and clubs, the Tyne Bridge, Newcastle United Football Club and its followers, the “Toon Army”, and for hosting the Great North Run, it has enough shops, nightlife and attractions to keep visitors busy for a few days. Trips just outside the city also add numerous attractions to the list. Although the Tyne Bridge is probably the most iconic image of Newcastle, the new Millennium Bridge is fast catching it up. It’s the only bridge over the River Tyne that is specifically for cyclists and people on foot, and its ingenious tilting mechanism that “blinks” when it is raised has made it a popular attraction. So, what else can you do with a few days in Newcastle?

Nightlife

Consistently voted one of the best spots for nightlife in the UK, and even in Europe, many people come here to try the many bars, clubs and restaurants. Much of the nightlife is around the Quayside area, and also Bigg Market, although there are places all around the city. The Gate, in the city centre, also has some great bars, restaurants and clubs, as well as a multi-screen cinema.

History

Newcastle isn’t only popular with party-goers. It has a history stretching back to before Roman times, but it was the Romans who really left their mark there. The Castle Keep, in the city centre, and Hadrian’s Wall are the two most important historic attractions in the area, and both have visitor sites with lots of information. The Great North Museum is also worth visiting if you are interested in history.

The Arts

With the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, the region has improved its art offerings. Of course, the famous sculpture, The Angel of The North is also nearby. There is a wonderful theatre in Newcastle, The Theatre Royal, which hosts impressive touring productions, including some by the Royal Shakespeare Company. Music is not neglected in Newcastle either, with a number of venues offering everything from classical and jazz to rock, pop and dance.

Outside the City

Harry Potter fans might be interested in taking a day trip to Alnwick Castle, where many scenes were filmed. If that doesn’t interest you, then why not head out to one of the region’s wonderful beaches, including Whitley Bay, and Tynemouth. Newcastle and the surrounding region has a lot more to offer than just clubs and pubs, so if you get the chance to explore this region, then don’t neglect it.

Alex is a travel writer and blogger. He writes about touring around the UK and Europe by car, train or plane as well as where to find the best coach tours . Image by Glen Bowman