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Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Exploring Newcastle With Travelodge

Any regular readers of my blog will probably already know that I'm from waaay up in the north of England and live in Durham, which is just outside of Newcastle. I think it's so easy to forget how amazing your hometown is when you see it just about every day and you forget to appreciate how many amazing things you have right on your doorstep so when Travelodge challenged me to visit the top 10 tourist attractions in Newcastle in 24 hours as part of their #TravelodgeTourist campaign, I couldn't wait to be involved. I love travelling and trying out new things so Karl and I set out on Sunday to explore a very sunny Newcastle and to rediscover just how wonderful of a city it really is. 

1.   T H E   A N G E L   O F    T H E    N O R T H 
Naturally our first stop was the Angel of The North. When you see anything related to the North East, whether it's a travel guide or a post card, chances are it's the Angel which will be the main photo. Every time we venture into Newcastle we have to drive past it but we realised that we'd never actually been up close to it (or at least I hadn't since I was about five!). The Angel is situated in the middle of a big green with a few little snack trucks around it, so it's such a lovely place to sit on the grass with a picnic on a warm day!

2.   T H E   D I S C O V E R Y    M U S E U M 
Our next stop was The Discovery Museum, which is located right in the centre of Newcastle itself. With three floors of permanent and temporary exhibitions, the Discovery Museum tells you everything you need to know about the North and the history of Newcastle, with an exhibit that takes you right from the Roman times to modern day Newcastle, showing you how Newcastle has evolved over the centuries. It was so interesting to see all of the everyday items that were invented in Newcastle and to learn about its history and best of all the museum is completely free!

3.   C H I N A T O W N 
After we left the museum, we had a stroll through the city to Chinatown, which is obviously full of Chinese culture and amazing Chinese restaurants, on a long street lined with lanterns. We stopped off for a drink of bubble tea (exploring can be thirsty work!) and I just want to stress how blooming delicious it was. I had passionfruit green tea with mango bubbles and oh em gee, it was to die for. 

4.   G R A I N G E R   T O W N    A N D    S H O P P I N G 
Of course, you can't venture into a city centre without doing a little bit of shopping and Newcastle is perfect for it. There's the intu Eldon Square shopping centre which houses huge shops like Topshop, River Island and New Look (where we spent quite a lot of time I can assure you!) while there are also smaller shops lining the streets with a Space NK and cute and quirky markets, meaning there is literally something for everybody. 

5.  ST    N I C H O L A S    C A T H E D R A L 
I absolutely love Cathedrals. I'm not religious but there is something so soothing and peaceful about the atmosphere in a church or a holy building and the St Nicholas Cathedral is not different. It's such a beautiful building with amazing architecture and it welcomes everybody, whether you want to visit for religious reasons or to explore the incredible decor and features the Cathedral has to offer.

6.   N E W C A S T L E    C A S T L E 
Another building that's full of history, Newcastle Castle is just a few minutes walk away from Cathedral and with it's history going back almost 2000 years it's definitely worth a visit, especially because the city actually grew from the castle itself. When we arrived we were delighted to find there was some kind of Lord of The Rings convention on and there were people everywhere dressed as characters including Legolas and Frodo - amazing right?! They also had falconry and food stalls packed with LOTR themed food. It was literally one of the coolest things ever.

7.   T H E    Q U A Y S I D E 
The Quayside is one of our favourite places to go when we head into the city. Not only is it lined with lovely restaurants and bars but the views of the river and the bridges are spectacular. There was a huge market running almost the whole length of it when we arrived on Sunday so we had literally so much fun browsing all of the different stalls and, as you do at a market, stuffing out faces with food. Can you think of a better way to spend the afternoon? It also has it's own little "beach", complete with sand, deck chairs and surfboards which is such a surprise. I mean you're walking along the riverside in the middle of a city and you come across a square full of sand, palm trees and deckchairs. 

8.  T H E   T Y N E    B A R    A N D   T H E    N I G H T L I F E 
Newcastle is famed for its nightlife but I promise you we aren't all like the Geordie Shore lot. I mean, I don't even drink! Anyway there are fantastic pubs and clubs throughout Newcastle which all put on events and themed nights, both for students and non-students and I know most people from my area absolutely love Newcastle for a night out. We walked along the Quayside to the little pub called the Tyne Bar, which quite frankly was adorable and a real traditional, English pub. When we arrived there was an amazing band playing on the outdoor stage, complete with a bloody discoball no less. We found out that the Tyne Bar offers free gigs constantly, making it absolutely ideal for those who love live music. It's such a hidden gem!

9.   T H E   F O O D:  T H E   H E R B   G A R D E N
After a long day of exploring we were absolutely ready for some grub so we stopped off at the Herb Garden, a small but uh-mazing restaurant close to the castle, which was recommended to us by the lovely Amy from The Girl In The Bowler Hat and let me tell you, the gurl did guuuurd with her suggestion. The ceiling was absolutely mesmerising with hundreds of those round lightshades (do they have an actual name!?). The atmosphere was so relaxing with fantastic service and highly instagramable food, which is obviously extremely important right?! The food was fantastic. Karl had pepperoni pizza while I had the super food salad with halloumi cheese and we both loved it and know we'll definitely be back!

10.   J E S M O N D    D E N E    P A R K 
The only one on the list we didn't manage was Jesmond Dene Park as by the time we'd finished our food, time was getting on and we didn't have quite enough of it to squeeze it in. I was gutted because it looks beautiful on the photos so I decided to include it anyway as we'll certainly be visiting the next time we're in Newcastle! I love Newcastle because you have the best of both worlds. You have the hustle and bustle of the city yet just a few miles away you have the serenity and peace of the countryside.

So there we have it - our day exploring Newcastle as a #TravelodgeTourist! It is a wonderful city and I think because it's so far north it's sometimes overlooked so if you ever get the chance to visit please do!

Amy x

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Add your comment

  1. I'm so glad jesmond dene made it on the list even though you didn't get there! It's definitely worth a visit if you haven't been before - such a lovely walk!
    Amy x

  2. Wow looks like an amazing place to visit!! I love the architecture of the buildings

    Candice | Beauty Candy Loves

  3. I love Newcastle, my mates lived in Jesmond so I have visited the park and bars round that area many times, I feel like I might have to take a trip back and do some more of the cultural attractions on your list.


  4. It looks like I''ll have to take a day trip to Newcastle soon! It looks lovely!


  5. Gorgeous photos! I've never really been to the North of England living in South West Wales but would love to - it looks so pretty : ) xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

  6. I enjoyed this post so much. Obviously I'm biased but I really do think that Newcastle is the best city in the country and so many people don't realise what it had to offer!

    There's a couple of places on your list I've not made it to yet. The Discovery Museum looks great and I've been wanting to visit St Nicholas for ages cos I hear it has a great cafe for cake!

    Chloe x

  7. It sounds like you had such a fab time, and all your photos are gorgeous!
    Jodie, xo // Jodie Loue

  8. This makes me miss Newcastle so much! The Herb Garden is just sooo nice x
    Eleanor Frances // UK Fashion & Beauty Blog

  9. I've never been to Newcastle (Southerner over here!) but it's somewhere I've always wanted to visit.. especially after seeing your gorgeous photos! I may have to look into booking a few days away to the area soon! x

    Small&Blonde ♥

  10. Ah my beloved Newcastle. Oh how I miss it !!

    Thanks for painting such a pretty picture and reminding me of old favourites I have to re-visit next time I'm up North. (Jesmond Dean Park is lovely for an Autumn stroll)

    Almost Everything

  11. OK so the LOTR festival was what I took away from this post. JK, Newcastle is gorgeous! I've barely visited the north and had no idea it had so many beautiful things to see! x

    Martha Jane | http://www.marthajanemusic.com

  12. I'm at Newcastle like everyday since I work there and I never even noticed how pretty the buildings etc. actually are, always forget to look up! X


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