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Newcastle

Travel Guide Europe United Kingdom England North East England Newcastle

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Introduction

Newcastle upon Tyne, from the Millenium Bridge

Newcastle upon Tyne, from the Millenium Bridge

© All Rights Reserved nicojammes

Tucked away in the cold northeastern corner of England, the North Sea port city of Newcastle might not be the first name on every traveller's itinerary. However, the many historic buildings and bridges together with the recently revamped quayside area make Newcastle an interesting and atmospheric place to visit.

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Sights and Activities

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Events and Festivals

Evolution Music Festival is held on the bank holiday weekend at the end of May. It is a weekend long music festival on the Newcastle/Gateshead Quayside, which boasts dozens of high end music stars from Dizzy Rascal to Iggy Pop. You can purchase tickets which cost around £35 for the full weekend, but you can also just go down to the Quayside and enjoy the music for free without getting close to the stage.

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Weather

Likely to be cold, even by English standards, however not as wet as the west coast. Summers are from June to August, when temperatures are around 20 °C. Frost and snow during winter are not uncommon, but mostly it is well above zero with some showers. Most of the precipitation falls during the autumn and winter months.

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Getting There

By Plane

Newcastle International Airport (NCL) handles both flights within United Kingdom and to several international destinations in Europe, Africa and North America. The airport can easily be reached from the Newcastle Central Railway station by a direct service and journey takes around 30 minutes.

To/from the airport

  • Rail: Airport station on the Tyne and Wear Metro is directly connected to the terminal through an indoor walkway. The station is the northern terminus of the green line with frequent, direct services to Newcastle (22 minutes) and Sunderland (55 minutes) city centres.
  • Road: The Airport is connected to the A1 trunk road by the A696 dual carriageway. A regular bus service also runs from the airport to Newcastle and southeast Northumberland. A half-hourly service links the Airport to the nearby villages of Ponteland and Darras Hall, as well as Newcastle City Centre, on Monday to Saturday only, with the last journeys around 6:00pm. Service 74A operates a limited service to the city centre at other times.

By Train

On the East Coast main line, direct train services link the city to London, York, Durham, Edinburgh and Aberdeen. A branch line runs across Northumberland as far as Carlisle. Train fares, availability of seats, timings and onward connections can be checked at the official National Rail Enquiries website

By Bus

Direct bus services are available to London and across England with National Express and Megabus.

By Boat

Direct ferries to the Netherlands and to Scandinavia, including IJmuiden near Amsterdam and several places in Norway, like Bergen.

Netherlands
DFDS Seaways between IJmuiden (Netherlands) and Newcastle.

Norway

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Eat

There are places to eat in pretty much every street in Newcastle. If you are looking for something on a budget then you have several fast food restaurants around the city centre. However, if you are looking for a little more classy places then you truly are spoilt for choice. A fine Italian on Dean Street called Marco Polo or a little further down the street (towards the quayside) is a place called Roscos, which not only has an amazing selection of food but a pretty cool interior as well.

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Sleep

Budget

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Albatross51 Grainger StreetHostel83
Britannia Hotel Newcastle AirportPonteland WoolsingtonHotel-
Euro Hostel Newcastle HallsGarth Heads Off Melbourne StreetHostel-
Grainger Hotel1-3 Graingerville North Westgate RoadHotel75
Roselodge HouseBenwell Lane BenwellGuesthouse73
The George Hotel88 Osborne Road, Jesmond, NE2 2APHotel-
YHA Newcastle upon Tyne107 Jesmond Road Tyne & Wear, NE2 1NJHostel-

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Keep Connected

Internet

Internet cafés can be found in many cities and towns. All UK public libraries provide access, often branded as "People's Network", usually at no or little charge, though there is usually a time limit. Some hotels/hostels also offer internet access, including wifi, but most times at a cost. Using the internet on your personal phone can become expensive very quickly, with carriers charging 100's of times the local rate for data. To avoid these expensive roaming charges, you can hunt for wifi at a local cafe or hotel, or rent a mobile hotspot via several providers including DATAPiXY, and XCOM Global.

Phone

See also: International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to the United Kingdom is: 44. To make an international call from the United Kingdom, the code is: 00

In case of emergency, call 999 or 112 from any phone. Such calls are free and will be answered by an emergency services operator who will ask you for your location, and the service(s) you need (police, fire, ambulance, coastguard or mountain rescue). You can call this number from any mobile telephone as well, even if you do not have roaming.

Although the number is declining, you can still find payphones in many public areas, especially stations, airports etc. You can usually pay with cash and sometimes by creditcard or, for international calls, special phonecards are still available.

Mobile phones are heavily used. The main networks are T-Mobile, Vodafone, Orange and O2. 3G data services are available, usually priced per megabyte and coverage is usually very good in the UK, however it may lack in rural areas. Roaming on your personal phone plan can be expensive. To manage costs, consider purchasing a local UK SIM card for your phone. Several companies offer local SIM cards including Telestial, and CellularAbroad.

Post

The Royal Mail provides postal services in the United Kingdom. The Royal Mail's store fronts are called Post Office and offer services ranging from sending letters and packages to foreign currency exchange. Use the branch locator to find the nearest Post Office branch. There will be at least one post office in any town/city and there are quite often post offices in larger villages. It's common for a post office to be incorporated into a grocery store, where there will be a small counter located at the back of the store for dealing with post related matters. All post offices are marked with signs that say 'post office' in red lettering. Post boxes can be found at any post office and standalone large red post boxes on the streets or red boxes in the sides of public buildings.
For sending packages overseas, it might be a good idea to check prices and services with international companies like TNT, UPS or DHL.

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This is version 19. Last edited at 8:05 on Aug 27, 13 by Utrecht. 34 articles link to this page.

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