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Urban Buzz in Newcastle Upon Tyne - Nightlife, Art, and History in Northeast England's Biggest City

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Hoping for a lively city break with a dash of culture, vibrant street life, and perhaps a breath of fresh sea air? You're going to like Newcastle Upon Tyne. You'll find renowned contemporary art venues here, plus classical music, shopping, and very lively nightlife. There are Roman ramparts and medieval castles nearby. North Sea beaches and the wild moorlands of Northumbria are on your doorstep.

Central Newcastle Upon Tyne

 

Newcastle Upon Tyne's city centre is a medley of medieval and modern sights and attractions. The hub of the oldest part of town is 12th-century Newcastle Castle, the stronghold that gives the city its name. The eclectic Great North Museum:Hancock has galleries dedicated to everything from natural history to Roman Britain and ancient Egypt. North of the Castle, you'll see clusters of stylish Victorian buildings around Grey Street and Grainger Market. Dozens of bars, cafés, restaurants, and clubs liven up Bigg Market neighbourhood, hub of city nightlife.

 

  • Newcastle Castle, Castle Garth, Newcastle NE1 1RQ; Tel: +44 191 230 6300; Website: Newcastle Castle
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  • Great North Museum:Hancock, Barras Bridge, Newcastle NE2 4PT; Tel: +44 191 222 6765; Website: Great North Museum:Hancock

Newcastle Quayside

 

On the banks of the River Tyne, Newcastle Upon Tyne's Quayside is a lively, regenerated neighbourhood. It's packed with places to eat and drink. In earlier ages, this was the city's merchant quarter. You can glimpse what life was like in 17th-century Newcastle by visiting Bessie Surtees House, once the home of a local noblewoman. For the best view of 7 iconic bridges that span the Tyne, take a 2-hour cruise with a company like River Escapes.

 

  • Bessie Surtees House, 41-44 Sandhill, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 3JF; Tel: +44 191 269 1200; Website: Bessie Surtees House
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  • River Escapes, Quayside, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 3DX; Tel: +44 1670 785 666; Website: River Escapes

 

Gateshead

 

Cross the River Tyne to Gateshead for a taste of cutting-edge art. The BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, a remarkable venue within a former industrial building, has placed this neighbourhood on the south bank of the Tyne on the cultural map. So has artist Antony Gormley's Angel of the North, an airliner-sized steel statue that towers above the A1 highway on the outskirts of Gateshead. Nearby, the huge metallic shell of the Sage Centre hosts concerts and shows.

 

  • BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, South Shore Road, Gateshead Quays, Gateshead NE8 3BA; Tel: +44 191 478 1810; Website: BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art
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  • The Angel of the North, Durham Road, Low Eighton, Gateshead NE9 6AA; Tel: +44 191 433 3000; Website: The Angel of the North

 

South Shields and Jarrow

 

Two historic attractions make the short journey from central Newcastle Upon Tyne to South Shields worthwhile. A visit to Arbeia takes you back in time to the heyday of the Roman Empire in Britain. Built almost 2,000 years ago, this legionary fortress has been carefully and colourfully recreated. Nearby, Bede's World is another time-trip. This visitor centre focuses on the early missionaries who brought Christianity to this part of the world in the 7th and 8th centuries.

 

  • Arbeia Roman Fort and Museum, Baring Street, South Shields, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE33 2BB; Tel: +44 191 456 1369; Website: Arbeia Roman Fort and Museum
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  • Bede's World, Church Bank, Jarrow, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE32 3DY; Tel: +44 191 489 2106; Website: Bede's World

 

Newcastle's seaside and aquarium

 

Newcastle Upon Tyne's seaside starts north of the mouth of the River Tyne. Kiteboarders and windsurfers head for sandy beaches such as Longsands at Tynemouth. A stroll along the sands here is guaranteed to blow away any cobwebs left over from late-night partying in town. For a taste of the Dark Ages, you can find tumbledown ramparts and the remains of an early Christian settlement at Tynemouth Priory and Castle. Nearby, seals swim in an outdoor pool at Blue Reef Aquarium, which is also home to a plethora of other marine creatures.

 

  • Tynemouth Priory and Castle, Pier Road, Tynemouth, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE30 4BZ; Tel: +44 191 257 1090; Website: Tynemouth Priory and Castle
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  • Blue Reef Aquarium, Grand Parade, Tynemouth, Newcastle Upon Tyne NE30 4JF; Tel: +44 191 258 1031; Website: Blue Reef Aquarium