Newcastle is where I stayed during my University years. I was pretty excited to be back again as I am so eager to find out if there are any changes made. Newcastle is the seventh-largest city in Australia, second largest in New South Wales state, located in the heart of the Hunter Region, just 2 hours drive from north of Sydney.
Coal has been at the heart of Newcastle’s economy, the world’s largest coal port is here. Besides coal, the Newcastle Hunter is a beautiful region with the existing tourism industry, agricultural wealth, wineries and education resources (Newcastle University).
2. Hunter Street & Darby Street
Hunter Street is a major road in the Newcastle CBD, I remembered when I was a student in Newcastle, we drove down to Hunter Street every Friday or Saturday for shopping and dining at the restaurants. It was first developed as the commercial and civic hub, along its spine were the pubs, banks, and department stores.
Darby Street is another favorite spot for me to hunt for a good restaurant back in the old days.
3. Newcastle University Hunter Street Campus
The newly built Newcastle University campus (below building with weird shape) is located in Hunter Street, it is a new landmark here, called NeW Space that brings the city into the precinct design by joining the community with the campus through social spaces, connecting pathways and active student learning spaces located right on the street front. Well, I still prefer the UON Callaghan campus which is surrounded by bushlands.
4. Ride on Newcastle’s Tram
The old tram was removed back in 1950 but now a new light rail tram (red in color) is running along Hunter Street. Alternatively, you may want to explore the city with “Newcastle’s Famous Tram”, it a replica of the original Newcastle working tram which was in service in 1923-1950. It vintage tram which brings you to the harbor, beaches, parks and historical landmarks in the city.
5. Newcastle City Hall & Civic Theatre
The Newcastle City Hall & Civic Theatre is heritage-listed building. If you love the theatre, then you must visit the Civic Theatre, it has beautiful ceilings and stunning auditorium, the entertainment business has been running for over 85 years.
6. Newcastle Museum
Located in the historic Honeysuckle Railway workshops, the Newcastle Museum bring to life significant moments of past, present, and future of Newcastle story – explores the natural environment, early Aboriginal life, and Newcastle’s history. The best part is entry is free. You should visit if it is a rainy day in Newcastle.
7. Beaches, Beaches & Beaches
There are a number of famous beaches in Newcastle, just to name few here are the Newcastle Beach, Merewether Beach, Horseshoe Beach, Dudley Beach, Dixon Park Beach, Nobbys Beach and Stockton Beach. Do go check out their Ocean Baths, Newcastle Ocean Baths, and Merewether Baths. Both have a long history as popular swimming spots which opened in 1922 and 1935. Water is salt water and in a big storm so can be very exciting when the waves pounding on the rocks.
Newcastle is 2 hours by car and 3 hours by train from Sydney. It is an amazing stop if you are doing a road trip from Gold Coast to Sydney or vice versa. You learn about Newcastle’s history, use to be home to the Awabakal Indigenous tribe for thousands of years and later came the British colonial with their convicts. In addition, if you love beaches, this city is for you. Lots of beach activities for beach lovers.
Where to stay?
Newcastle Jesmond Executive Villas, only 20 mins drive to Newcastle city.