Newcastle on Tyne
Newcastle Travel Blog› entry 2 of 4 › view all entries
May 10th, 2008 – by: ms_travelr
So the next morning after breakfast, we took the bus into the city. The concierge was very helpful in informing us which bus to take otherwise who knows where we would have ended up. Anyhow, onto Bus 45 to Eldon Square (2pounds) and from there on foot to explore the city.
When we reached the Earl Grey monument, there was a group of photographers with mega lenses and a camera crew hanging around waiting for something or someone. We were told that at 12 noon (it was 11:55) there would be a dancer on top. Well, exactly 12 noon she was on top and did alittle contemporary dance number. One had to look though binoculars to really appreciate it, no wonder the mega camera lenses. Still it was impressive that she dared to do that. After a few minutes of watching, we made our way slowly down to Quayside with a few stops along the way.
The first was St. Nicholas Cathedral. Apparently this was the weekend of the Embroiderers Exhibition so there were tables full of St Nicholas items including children's song books in Dutch. Alittle side note - December 6 is the Feast of St.
Back to Newcastle...down at the river's edge also known as The Quayside, we noticed the plaques with 'Hadrian's Wall Trail' on the ground and alot of hikers walking along the river. Well, I had the intention of walking along parts of Hadrian's wall or at least touching it so I asked a couple of hikers and was told that it begins at Wallsend (which I knew) which was about 6 miles "that way" pointing east but the best preserved part was "2 days walking" that way, pointing to the west. To my disappointment Wallsend was further out than I thought and we only had a day in Newcastle. We could have taken the metro but it was already 3 pm. So.....just another reason to come back to this fair town and rent a car.
At this point I was pretty bummed out about not seeing the wall so we decided to enjoy our walk along the river edge and admire the 7 bridges including the very impressive Millennium Bridge. Afterwards we checked out some other 'old' stuff. We headed up to the Castle Keep which was built by Henry II and the Black Gate. It took about 97 steps up to the tower top but the view was worth the climb. Of course going down was alot easier and once on the ground floor, we sat awhile in the garrison which was pretty cool...literally cool...before heading back out into the warmth. We followed the remaining sections of the old city wall to the arch of China town and the stadium of Newcastle United. Then back down to The Quayside to meet up with the others for dinner at the Pitcher and Piano.
I was amazed at the many groups of bachelors and bachelorettes out celebrating. They were easy to spot..wearing the same printed t-shirts or pink sashes. Usually the bride- or groom-to-be was wearing a veil, crown or a hat of some kind. The most memorable was a group of guys dressed as super heros. Absolutely priceless !!
Unfortunately when the nightlife was starting up, we had to head back to the hotel. Wake-up call: 03:40; pick up at 4:40 to head to the airport then home. All in all, Newcastle was well worth the visit and I hope for a return date later this summer. Gotta get to that wall.
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