Day Trip to Newcastle
As I am trying to write something about it, I realize I find it really, really hard to actually let my ideas flow in their natural course. Well, what I can say; it all started with doubting questions: “Is it worth?”, “What can I do instead of going there?”, “Isn’t it a bit expensive?” and all sorts of skeptical ideas till I realized that I am going to NEWCASTLE for sure.
One of the advantages of being a student at this university (University of Bradford) is the fact that once a fortnight or so there are day trips. And not any kind of day trips but those where you have your own time to do whatever you want with it in great locations or cities. So, last Saturday we enjoyed a wonderful day in Newcastle. We set off promptly at 8:30am with great expectations that in two hours and three quarters we will be wondering the streets of the North East England city. Apart from the fact that I slept the whole way to Newcastle, I managed to open my eyes just in time to catch a short glimpse of the 20 metre high sculpture that watches the city known as “The Angel of the North”. I really liked it and I was impressed by it. There were only 15 minutes that kept us apart from the urban whereabouts and I could not mask my excitement.
The adventure began in the parking lot near The Sage music centre. After crossing the sumptuous venue, we had the chance to admire the great architecture of the music centre which combines curved glass and stainless steel. The route took us then to the Baltic Art Gallery where we had the chance to contemplate in front of contemporary art but also we took the lift to the “viewing platform” to take photos and admire the panoramic sight of the city and indeed the River Tyne. After leaving the art gallery, we crossed the Millennium Bridge which is a pedestrian and cyclist tilt bridge that links Newcastle and Gateshead together. The view itself was spectacular; moreover, we even had the chance to see it opening, allowing river traffic to pass.
Our pathway led us along the River Tyne to see the “famous bridges” and to further “penetrate” the heart of the city. In our strolling we passed though Bessie Surtees House and The Castle, built by Normans on the same site as the Roman fort. The Castle is a wonderful example of the medieval times and its top floor gives the satisfaction of an astonishing panorama of Newcastle.
The sun and the warm atmosphere motivated us to spend a couple of hours just strolling around the citycentre, getting lost among crowded squares, smelling different specialties offered by the Christmas market, looking up taking the full glory of the Victorian and Georgian architecture. This happened, of course, in the Grainger Town, just right in the heart of the city! Alas, what a scenery!
The last two hours were spent inside this time, in the Discovery Museum, which is indeed a clever choice in terms of museums if you’re visiting Newcastle for the first time. We had a fascinating time there as it includes many multimedia exhibitions and scenarios of “the Newcastle Story”: from Romans to modern times or from the history of the River Tyne to science maze exhibitions the Discovery museum was a nice and pleasant way to know the local history and to sense at least a small part of the past days.
After enjoying a warm cappuccino at the museum’s restaurant, we left wondering the streets, this time at night as we spend so much enjoyable time at the museum. During night, Newcastle is very much alive as day time. With the streets animated by young people having their time, we took our way to the Tyne Bridge to cross to the other side so we get to the buses. The view from the bridge at night is breathtaking. We spend some time just contemplating both the scenery and the day out, on the both sides of the bridge. This gave us two different view perspectives, former, the famous bridges which were lit by hundreds of flickering little lights, suggesting the past, the unforgotten glory of the former days and the latter the Millennium Bridge which was a rainbow of colours which together with The Sage formed a symphony of modern thoughts, the future, the glimpse of brighter and richer days.
The way back to Bradford was shorter, with no sleep, dominated by thoughts accumulated during the day. We could not believe that the time passed so quickly and we have to come back to the daily routine. The moment we got home we transferred all the photos on the computer and looped them several times as they are the proof that we visited Newcastle and we liked it.
And as you noticed, instead of “I”, I used the plural, “We”, because we were two, me, Julia, and Raphael my boyfriend who took the photos which can be seen in the gallery. So, nice to meet you all and hope my “travel notes” to inspire you as they inspire me as well.