Days Out Attractions & Buildings
The Gateshead Millennium Bridge
The stunning bridge takes walkers and cyclists over the river into the heart of the Gateshead Quays and on to BALTIC Square and to BALTIC The Centre for Contemporary Art. The bridge opens and closes like a gigantic eyelid to let shipping pass; the technology is a world first and at night the coloured lighting is spectacular.
The Italian Gardens
Open: All year daily dawn to dusk. Admission free. In the heart of the SaltburnValley lies the Italian Gardens with their impressive bedding displays which include sub-tropical specimens in the summer months. Open: All year daily dawn to dusk. Free.
The Jury's Inn
Scotswood Road, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Tyne and Wear
The Lit & Phil
The Literary & Philosophical Society (Lit & Phil) is the largest independent library outside London, housing over 160,000 books. A wide selection of current fiction and non-fiction can be found alongside historical collections covering every field of interest. The building is one of the most intriguing and beautiful in Newcastle. They also hold music and art events.
This Theatre in the heart of Berwick stages contemporary pieces as well as more traditional shows.
The Olde Ship Hotel
Check in to The Olde Ship Hotel. With locally caught seafood on the menu, seafaring paraphernalia at every turn and a welcoming real fire this hotel offers the perfect sanctuary on stormy nights.
The Quayside Exchange
An establishment that swiftly gained a good reputation, The Quayside Exchange is set inside an historic building (grade II). There is a spacious bar and intimate brasserie. Loads of entertainment too (live bands, DJs, comedy, race nights). They have rooms for hire as well if you’re looking to throw a party.
The Sage Gateshead
This stupendous concert hall and music complex is also home to Northern Sinfonia and Folkworks (see elsewhere in this section for information regarding those two, and Music Venues for more information on The Sage Gateshead).
The Word, The National Centre for the Written Word
45 Market Place, South Shields
Teesside’s pride and joy, affectionately known as “the tranny”. One of the few transporter bridges in the world still functioning. The Transporter was erected in 1911 and has since been an industrial giant, looming over Middlesbrough like a big, blue security guard. It is open Mon-Fri, 7am–6.45pm, Saturdays 9.30am–3.15pm (closed on Sundays to traffic, but open for tours and visits), so there’s plenty of time to see the old girl in action. If you’re on foot, it’s 70p per person to cross the river but if you’re in a car, it’ll cost £1.30 per bay. It’s only fair that you pay though: the bridge has certainly paid its dues to the north-east over the years.
Tweed Main Guard
Open: Mon-Fri 10pm-5pm. Adult £3.90, Conc. £3.50, Child £2.30 Home to history and the arts, Berwick Barracks is the ideal place for a family day out.
Open access at any time. Free. Remarkably complete 16th-century town fortifications, with gateways and projecting bastions.
This smallish seaside town is full of charm and character and it is well worth paying a visit on weekends when a very popular market is held in the Metro station. Up for grabs are antiques, books, plants, cakes, clothes and records: in fact anything and everything. The most famous aspects of the town however are Tynemouth Priory and Castle, both of which are steeped in the history of religion and war. For activities with kid-appeal the Blue Reef Aquarium is a winner. Enjoy close encounters with graceful sharks and rays and stroll among the colourful inhabitants of coral reef in a spectacular underwater tunnel. Over 30 naturally-themed undersea habitats are home to an amazing variety of aquatic life. After all that sightseeing you may be in need of refreshment so head to Marshall’s fish and chip shop for the crispiest batter and the flakiest cod in miles.