Newcastle can trace its roots back to Roman Britain, and you can still see the remains of the medieval castle that gave the city its name. The beautiful neoclassical buildings of historic Grainger Town, such as the Theatre Royal and Grey’s Monument, are evidence of Victorian prosperity. There are plenty of contemporary attractions, too, such as the restaurants, lounges, and apartments of Quayside. Across the Tyne, the neighboring town of Gateshead boasts Sage Gateshead, a Norman Foster–designed concert hall.
The locals, known affectionately as "Geordies," have a fierce civic pride that’s matched by their enthusiasm for life. They will tell you just how beautiful the broad steel arches of the Tyne Bridge can be at sundown. Or how you can easily spend a day exploring the city’s many cultural attractions, from the Great North Museum: Hancock to the Life Science Centre.
If shopping is your thing, you’re sure to find a bargain at Eldon Square, one of the largest city center malls in the UK; or if you’d prefer to surround yourself with greenery and fresh air, Town Moor is an expansive common that’s bigger than New York’s Central Park. And don’t forget, the beaches of Northumberland and Hadrian’s Wall are nearby—if you can drag yourself away from Newcastle’s many charms, that is.