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Overview

Built on solid northern foundations of coal and industry, Newcastle upon Tyne is best known as the home of the Geordies - energetic folk, famous for their unintelligible accents, their civic pride and their love of a good party. Twinned with Gateshead across the river, Newcastle is the capital of the Northeast, and its history follows a familiar pattern of Roman invasion, Anglo-Saxon takeover and Norman conquest, followed by rapid growth during the Industrial Revolution, and rapid decline before a 21st-century renaissance. Today, the "New Castle" constructed by Robert Curthose, son of William the Conqueror, is dwarfed by flashy modern ...

Built on solid northern foundations of coal and industry, Newcastle upon Tyne is best known as the home of the Geordies - energetic folk, famous for their unintelligible accents, their civic pride and their love of a good party. Twinned with Gateshead across the river, Newcastle is the capital of the Northeast, and its history follows a familiar pattern of Roman invasion, Anglo-Saxon takeover and Norman conquest, followed by rapid growth during the Industrial Revolution, and rapid decline before a 21st-century renaissance. Today, the "New Castle" constructed by Robert Curthose, son of William the Conqueror, is dwarfed by flashy modern developments and the grand architecture of the Tyne Bridges - indeed, the historic Tyne Bridge and the futuristic Gateshead Millennium Bridge have become the unofficial symbols of the city. For visitors, the main attractions are the art galleries, the nightlife (always hedonistic, even in the depths of winter) and the stylishly redeveloped Quayside. Although the countryside seems far away, the city is also a handy base for exploring the ruins of Hadrian's Wall.

Joe Bindloss
About the Expert

Joe Bindloss has written more than 30 guidebooks for Lonely Planet, Time Out and other publishers, with a focus on Southeast Asia, the Indian Subcontinent and island nations.

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Joe Bindloss for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    April to October. Winters can be icy, but this doesn't stop the locals going out in frocks and t-shirts.