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Newcastle and Gateshead attractions

With its museums, art galleries, stunning architecture, 2,000 years of history, Newcastle and Gateshead offer so much more than just a party lifestyle. From the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art the biggest gallery of its kind in the world to the Centre for Life where science is brought to life. Then you can turn the clock back at the Newcastle Castle, which charts the city’s history from the Romans and if you’re into sport, then a tour of the home of Newcastle United – St James’ Park – is not to be missed.

Just a few minutes’ walk downstream from central Quayside and you come to an area known as Ouseburn. The valley was once known as the cradle of Newcastle’s Industrial Revolution, but it is now a creative and artistic hub. Here you will find the Valley Bouldering Centre, a state-of-the-art indoor climbing gym suitable for all ages and abilities. Ouseburn is also home to Seven Stories, a visitor attraction and repository of Britain’s most influential children’s literature. You can explore the amazing world of children’s books, with words and pictures brought to life through regular exhibitions and activities.

Ouseburn Farm is a gem of a visitor attraction just a mile from Newcastle city centre with pigs, sheep, goats, rabbits, lizards, tortoises, ponds and woodland. The valley is also home to one of Newcastle’s must-see hidden attractions: the Victoria Tunnel. Built in 1842 to transport coal underground from the centre of Newcastle to riverside jetties, the 2.5 mile long tunnel was converted for use as an air raid shelter during World War II.

Our picks

Discovery Museum
Discovery Museum

Blandford Square, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4JA

Immerse yourself in the spirit and history of Newcastle at the Discovery Museum. Discover Newcastle’s impact on the world, including Turbinia, the ship that revolutionised power generation, the early lightbulb and first windscreen wiper. Donations are welcome and entry is free. Visit website

Newcastle Castle
Newcastle Castle

Castle Garth, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 1RQ

Steeped in history, this imposing Norman fortress is a rugged reminder of northern England’s turbulent past. This was no baron’s stately home. The Castle was a grim reminder of royal authority where armies gathered and criminals were imprisoned and executed. It is where the story of Newcastle began; the reason the city got its name, and has the most commanding views across the city and the River Tyne. Explore the ancient passageways and chambers, discover the hidden stories of its inhabitants and take a journey through The Gateway to Old Newcastle. Visit website

Newcastle Racecourse
Horse racing

Newcastle Racecourse, High Gosforth Park, Newcastle upon Tyne NE3 5HP

Newcastle Racecourse is home of the prestigious Northumberland Plate Festival and the glamorous Ladies Day. The racecourse is located within the 812-acre estate of High Gosforth Park, just five miles from Newcastle city centre. With 60 race meeting throughout 2020, on the jumps course and all-weather track, Newcastle is one of Britain’s busiest racecourses. Newcastle Racecourse also shares the High Gosforth Park estate with Parklands Golf Club and the Border Minstrel Pub. Visit website

The Escape Key
Escape room

60-62 St Andrew’s St, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 5SF

The Escape Key is Newcastle’s premium escape room attraction. Offering a truly immersive experience, the intricately derailed and beautifully-themed rooms will have guests feeling like they’ve stepped into another world. With four rooms in the historic Gallowgate area of the city, overlooking a witches’ burial ground and plague pit, the unique rooms are based on Newcastle’s rich history. Far from your average, budget experience, The Escape Key is consistently ranked number one on TripAdvisor and has even been listed in the world’s top escape rooms. Visit website

River Escapes
River Tyne

East Quayside Pontoon, Newcastle Quayside, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 3DX

River Escapes cruises offer an unrivalled way to experience Newcastle and Gateshead’s famous riverside. To add that extra special touch it can be can arranged for you to sail under Gateshead Millennium Bridge too. With a fleet of two luxury equipped vessels accommodating up to 150 people, the River Escapes Fortuna and the River Escapes Coventina, there is something to suit all tastes, budgets and requirements. All vessels are comfortable with bar and catering facilities onboard so you can sit back, relax and enjoy the changing sights of the River Tyne. Visit website

Angel of the North
Angel of the North

Durham Rd, Low Eighton, Gateshead NE9 7TY

Created by Antony Gormley, the Angel of the North first spread its wings in February 1998 and has become every bit as famous as its fellow North East landmarks the Tyne Bridge, Durham Cathedral and Hadrian’s Wall. Standing 20m tall and with a wingspan of 54m, this stunning contemporary sculpture is now as famous a work of public art as the Eiffel Tower in Paris or the Statue of Liberty in New York. Overlooking the A1 at Low Eighton in Gateshead, the Angel stands on the site of the former Teams Colliery miners’ baths, and is seen by a staggering 33m motorists a year, making it one of the most viewed pieces of art anywhere. Getting up close and personal with the Angel is an experience every first time visitor to the area should make time for, not just because it is breathtaking, but because it helped kick-start a renaissance that has seen Newcastle-Gateshead now regularly cited as a must-see by the travel industry.

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Image credits: ©duncanandison/gabe9000c/Jérôme Rommé/; Getty Images/iStockphoto Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

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