Sunday, 1 November 2015

Newcastle's Hidden Gems

I have lived on the outskirts of Newcastle my whole life and I have been visiting the city centre most weeks since I was a child. Now as a 31 year old mum I visit Newcastle with my own children, long gone are the days of leisurely shopping trips and wild nights out on the lash in toon with my friends getting mortal (drinking in Newcastle and getting drunk) most weekends. 

I like to think that I know my way around Newcastle well as I have visited that often, but I think when you live somewhere you kind of take the city you live in for granted and stick to places you know and don't appreciate all the wonderful things around you. So when Travelodge got in touch to ask about hidden gems in Newcastle I was unsure of what to say. Newcastle has a bit of a reputation as a party city full of hen and stag parties and the cast of Geordie shore getting mortal, along with football fans in black and white strips. Yes Newcastle is like that it has an amazing night life with so many bars and clubs and a very loyal football team following with a city centre stadium.



The city is more then just that though, it is actually a really lovely city full of shops, bars, restaurants and beautiful buildings. One thing I love in Newcastle is the shops, I know this is not a hidden gem but all the shops are together with a bustling Northumberland street full of high street favourites such as Marks & Spencer and a huge Primark. Northumberland street leads you to Eldon square a large indoor shopping mall jam packed with shops and department stores such as John Lewis, Debenhams and my personal favourite Fenwicks. 

If you are visiting Newcastle then a visit to Fenwicks is a must as it is huge and if you are visiting in November or December you simply must visit the iconic Fenwicks window display which is truly magical whatever your age. If you are visiting the toon with Children then they will be delighted with Fenwicks toy department which is located on the top floor and is home to every toy they could wish for.The American diner located in the toy department is a firm favourite dining option with my children. 

If you are visiting with children then a trip to the Hancock museum (Great North Museum) is a great way to keep them entrained. Entrance is free and it is located just a few minutes walk from Haymarket metro station at the top of Northumberland street. Also located just off Northumberland street is a sandwich shop that my dad raves about called Frankie and Toni's on Ridley place if you are after a quick bite to eat. 

If you want somewhere to eat in the city then you have so many options with numerous eateries dotted around the city. I love Blackfriars which is located near China town and is an award winning restaurants located in a 13th century former medieval friary, they serve delicious locally sourced dishes as well as offering a banqueting hall menu and large parties can even book to try out medieval feasts. It is a truly unique and delicious experience. 

I love how Newcastle has a metro system with stations in the city centre and which easily transport you around tyneside, as one of my most favourite places to visit in the North east is the coast. A short 20 minute metro journey to Tynemouth is the perfect way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and unwind and blow away the cobwebs. I love visiting Tynemouth as it is small village that has a great mix of quirky little shops and some great bars and restaurants as well as a gorgeous coastline to walk along or to visit the priory, whatever the weather. 

Tynemouth beach
If you prefer to stay within the city then you can't beat a walk along the quayside, which is just a ten minute walk from the city centre. We love strolling along the river Tyne with the Tyne Bridge in the background admiring the lovely views. The quayside is a lovely place that people often go for a leisurely walk along, it is also home to some great hotels including Newcastle central Travelodge along with a selection of bars and restaurants and even a cafe where you can go and unwind by stroking cats with your cuppa. If you are in the area on a Sunday morning then a visit to the quayside market is a must as it is full of many Geordie treats from local companies. 

Newcastle Upon Tyne
Newcastle really is full of so many wonderful sites and places to visit that I can not possibly list them all. If you are a group of friends out on the lash, a couple looking for a romantic trip or a family looking for an adventure you are sure to have a brilliant time and make memories that will last you a lifetime here in the north east. Oh just don't forget if you are going on a night out don't wear a coat even if it is freezing cold as no one wears a coat on a night out ever. 

Have you visited Newcastle before or do you live in Newcastle, if so where would you class as your hidden gem? I would love to know in the comments below. 

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This is a collaborative post. 


24 comments:

  1. I was at Uni in Mbro and spent several shopping trips in Newcastle. It is certainly a great city.

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    1. I have never actually visited Middlesborough even though it is not far away, I must visit one day x

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  2. I love the place, but don't get many chances to visit nowadays. Lots of connections, as my Dad worked at Vickers before the war, and my Grandad ran pubs in different parts. Still have some family around. It's a 200 mile drive from where I am, unfortunately. I couldn't get my granddaughters out from Primark, though they pestered me to leave Windows !

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    1. My grandparents worked at Vickers too, small world! Haha your granddaughters sound like my daughter she is the same when she goes shopping with my dad she spends ages in her shops but nags him to leave his.

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  3. I have never visited Newcastle. I use to live in Cheshire, so it wouldn't have been that far, but never made it. It does look great x

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    1. It really is a lovely city and very different to what people think it is like. Oh I have never been to cheshire but have heard great things about it xx

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  4. I haven't been up to Newcastle for over ten years and even now I remember what a great time I had with my Uni Housemates who were locals x

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    1. I am glad that you had a great time when you visited xx

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  5. I have never been to Newcastle before but it looks like a treasure trove for great photos. Hope that I get to see Newcastle one day x

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    1. It really is a lovely city with so many amazing backdrops for photos xx

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  6. Some great places on your list. It has been ages since I went to Tynemouth, I must visit again soon

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    1. Thank you Alison, I love Tynemouth such a gorgeous village we don't visit very often since having the little two as it is not very buggy friendly which is a shame xx

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  7. We were hoping to visit Newcastle last week but it was rainy quite heavy so we went to the metro centre instead. Love Newcastle! I used to have a season ticket for Newcastle United so I was there on a regular basis, fab city :)

    Gemma xx

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    1. Ah you should have visited anyway as most of it is indoors now ( the shops etc) I love the metrocentre too though and could spend all day there xx

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  8. I have always wanted to go to Newcastle. I have been to Leeds and York last year so Newcastle is next on my list

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    1. I love York, you really must visit someday as there is so much for families to do xx

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  9. lol the coat mention made me laugh as we have friends from Newcastle that still never wear coats! Although we have never visited it sounds like there is loads to get up to. Fenwicks is my favourite too! :) xx

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    1. I use to think that everyone never wore coats on a night out when I was younger and had no clue it was just a northern thing. I use to go on nights out in the snow wearing a dress and heels and no coat, it was freezing but no-one ever wears a coat. Most of the clubs dont even have cloakrooms as noone at all wears a one xx

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  10. I must admit it, when I came across the words 'mortal' and 'lash' in your blog post, I could almost hear the Geordie shore cast pronounce them. ;-) I'm not a big shopping fan, but relaxing at the beach in Tynemouth is something I would really enjoy.

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    1. Haha it is just what we say for a night out, some people have no idea what we are saying half the time. No-one says half the things they say on Geordie shore though , I am sure they just made half the sayings up for the show xx

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  11. I've only ever twice visited Newcastle. Once for a squash match while at uni - we didn't see anything of it apart from the sports centre. The other time was with a friend when I visited her at Durham uni. My bank card got swallowed by the bank machine so that was a right pain the the backside.

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    1. Oh no what a shame you never got to explore xx

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  12. Newcastle sounds great, with so much to do! The Hancock museum would be great fun for kids, how wonderful that admission is free! x

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    1. There really is so much to do, I know we are lucky that we have a few amazing museums in the city that are all free xx

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