10 Top Things to do in Newcastle
When you think of England some major hotspots probably spring to mind. First port of call would most likely be London with all its art, culture and fab shopping. For a taste of ancient history and sprawling countryside, you’d be likely to investigate places like Scotland or Wales with all their great lakes and grand old castles. If it’s sea and fun you’re after, Brighton will keep you entertained, day and night. But there’s another great city which is worthy of a mention. Newcastle upon Tyne has plenty to offer, including a generous helping of culture, history, art and shopping. What was once considered to be a grim industrial town, has now turned out to be a major hub. In fact, when I delved a little further, I found so many interesting things in this delightful Northern city, that I had a hard time narrowing it down!
Nee Place Like It!
Ride Around ‘Toon’ for FREE!I’m not the only one with a soft spot for Newcastle. Wink Bingo has organized a special treat for locals and visitors alike STARTING JUNE 5TH!. They’ve joined forces with Newcastle’s main bus company to provide FREE RIDES on all buses displaying the Wink Bingo logo and phrase “NEVER WASTE A JOURNEY TO THE TOON!”.
To celebrate this incredible promotion and pay homage to this wonderful city, I’ve put together my Top 10 list of cool things to do in Newcastle:
1. QuaysideQuayside used to be a busy dock during the industrial era. In recent years it has turned into quite the trendy area with lots of re-developments, including art centres, shops, eateries and swanky housing projects. Although Quayside has become a bit reminiscent of London’s Docklands, it has still managed to retain its Northern charm. But what makes the area really stand out from the rest is its view of the colossal Tyne Bridge, which has become known as Newcastle’s signature landmark.
2. Victoria TunnelIf you happen to be in Newcastle, a visit to The Victoria Tunnel is a must. This impressive tunnel was built in the 1800’s so that wagons could transport coal from one side of the city to another. The rich history doesn’t end there. During WW2, The Victoria Tunnel was converted into an air raid shelter and saved thousands of Geordie lives. It was recently restored to its original glory and you can book a guided tour to discover this ‘modern’ wonder for yourself.
3. The Discovery MuseumSpeaking of discoveries, The Discovery Museum provides a fun exploration of science, history and industrial development. People of all ages can learn from the static and interactive exhibits. Discover the key roles that Newcastle and Tyneside played during the industrial revolution, not just locally, but on a global scale! There’s a whole wing dedicated to Newcastle’s maritime endeavors, as Ill as other sections exploring local society and culture. The Museum also houses the fab Turbinia Café, where you can enjoy some rest and refreshments whilst taking in the views.
4. The Biscuit FactoryThe Biscuit Factory is another Geordie gem. The building which was once used for the manufacturing of Biscuits (hence the name), is now home to a leading contemporary art gallery. For a healthy dose of modern culture, Newcastle’s Biscuit Factory is a must see. Discover a massive selection of paintings, original prints, ceramics, jewelry, textiles, modern furniture and more. If you can’t afford original pieces, the Museum Shop has plenty to offer. In keeping with the theme, the complex also houses an artisan restaurant called The Factory Kitchen, which is supervised by award winning Northern
Chef - Andrew Wilkinson.
No Northern city would be complete without a castle. Although Newcastle is typically associated with its industrial history of the last couple of hundred years, its roots go way back to medieval times. Newcastle Castle’s foundations Ire laid down some 1800 years ago by the Romans. The site has since been inhabited by the Anglo-Saxons and William the Conqueror, plus it served as a stronghold during the old wars between Scotland and England. Over the centuries, the site went through many up and downs (literally). Most recently, the old Castle Keep and the Black Gate have been restored and re-opened to the public as Newcastle Castle.
5. Newcastle Castle
6. Belsay Hall and GardensFor some grandeur and greenery, I recommend a visit to Belsay Hall and Gardens which falls just 14 miles north-west of Newcastle proper. This Grade I listed building and its stunning gardens Ire built by Sir Charles Monck in 1810, proving that the North can be posh too! Take a wander around the grand Pillar Hall atrium or stroll through the delightful Quarry Garden, where you’ll feel like royalty, for the afternoon at least.
7.Grainger MarketNo trip to Newcastle would be complete without a visit to Grainger Market. Grainger Market is part of the famous Grainger Town that was built back in the 19th century. The Market itself has been beautifully constructed with a cover to keep you warm and dry. Just like the old days, you’ll find meat and vegetable stalls, as Ill as fishmongers, cobblers, bakers and street food. There are also hairdressers, haberdasheries, jewelers and plenty more. Grainger Market also hosts one of the smallest Marks & Spencer branches, which happens to be the chain’s original Penny Bazaar!
8. Exit NewcastleIf you’re looking for some action and adventure, check out the city’s hottest escape game company called EXIT Newcastle. See if you can solve the various mysteries and riddles so that you can plot your escape from the various rooms. EXIT Newcastle has 3 different escape room games of different levels. Escape games provide thrilling entertainment for groups of all ages. Families can go together, or groups of mates can play before a fun night out. The games are also ideal for hen/stag nights, or corporate events and fun days. Save your group a spot in advance by booking online via EXIT’s Ibsite app.
9. Flight Sim CentreFor some family fun (or for the big kids out there), why not pay a visit to the Flight Sim Centre in Newcastle. Turns out you don’t need to be a pilot to discover what it really feels like to fly an airplane. Flight Sim Centre Newcastle gives you the chance to fly 3 different types of aircraft: Learn what it’s like to be a commercial airline pilot in the Boeing 737 simulator. For those with a penchant for the classics, check out the Spitfire simulator…. And if you fancy yourself as Tom Cruise in Top Gun, you can fly in the special F-35 fighter simulator. This is the only F-35 simulator in the UK that is available to the public. These simulators are the real deal! Bookings for Flight Sim Centre can also be made online via their website.
10. Newcastle BingoIf you’re reading this, you probably enjoy a good game of Bingo. Why not go for the full Bingo Hall experience? Apparently, this great game is very popular with Geordies. In Newcastle there are so many Bingo Halls, you’ll be spoilt for choice. You will find all the main providers, as well as more intimate Bingo Clubs like Top Ten Bingo & Social Club or Luckies Amusements & Bingo. Newcastle also hosts regular pop up Bingo events, such as the hugely popular Bongo’s Bingo, where entertainment and Bingo Games come together to provide an action-packed evening.
If you live in Newcastle, why not take this great opportunity to re-explore your home ‘toon’. Who knows what you might discover. If you’re from elsewhere in the UK, you can take advantage too! I highly recommend a visit to this great Northern hub. Go on, check it out… You might even get a Wink Bingo bus ride for free!