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Newcastle might have a reputation for hen and stag dos, but £250 million of arts and culture investment over 20 years has seen a city transformed into what Lonely Planet calls the ‘hipster capital of the North East.’ You’ve explored beyond the beaten track in Berlin and Helsinki – why not Newcastle?
8.30am: Start your day with breakfast at Hotel Indigo Newcastle. We all know it: breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
9.30am: Stroll along Quayside and take in Newcastle’s famous bridges: including the High Level Bridge, the Swing Bridge, Redheugh Bridge, the King Edward Bridge, the new Tyne Bridge, the Queen Elizabeth Metro Bridge and the Gateshead Millennium Bridge.
11.30am: Cross the Millennium Bridge to the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art and join the daily Exhibition Spotlight Tour (also at 13.30 and 15.30) to get a bitesized introduction to the art on show, and then explore your favourite parts in more depth on your own.
12.30: Walk past the Sage Gateshead to admire its architecture and then head over to Grainger Market.
13.00: Explore Grainger Market for a spot of shopping and street food, and if you’re still hungry after that, make your way to The Broad Chare for pie or scotch eggs.
14:30: If the sun is shining, hop on the Metro all the way to the golden sands of Tynemouth Sands beach – walk its length, watch Newcastle United train, or if you’re brave, sign up for a surfing lesson. If it’s a dull day, explore the libraries and archives of the Mining Institute instead and learn about the history of this industrial city.
17:30: Head back toHotel Indigo Newcastle to freshen up and relax with a signature cocktail at the the Marco Pierre White Steakhouse Grill before heading out again.
18:30: Spend the evening at the Live Theatre – founded in 1973 by Geoff Gillham, Val McLane and among others, actor Tim Healy with the aim of reflecting regional and working class life in its performances. Book tickets in advance and you might be lucky enough to catch a world premiere of a play by Catrina McHugh or the Northumbria University Students’ Final Showcase.
21:00: Treat your tastebuds to a late dinner at Peace and Loaf which, despite its humble exterior, is in fact one of Newcastle’s finest fine dining restaurants. While the taster menu will set you back £75 per person, there is a prix fixe menus at £25.95 for three courses.