1 – Fort Scratchley + Dinner at Scratchleys on the Wharf
Fort Scratchley has a rich history and on a hot day the tours down in the tunnels are cool, refreshing and enlightening. The fort is worth a trip just for the breathtaking views. And afterward you can take a pleasant stroll along the river to the Scratchleys on the Wharf restaurant for lunch or dinner. Scratchleys is a modern restaurant with great views over the water and some of the best seafood in town.
2 – Walk or cycle the V8 Circuit
At the end of 2017 the V8 Supercars made Newcastle their home. They may not stay here for good, but the now legendary circuit is here forever. If you’d like to take a look at it from the air or inside one of the cars – click here!
3 – Go for pizza – Top pizza places in Newy
You might be surprised by this one, but Newcastle is quite the hotbed for Italian style pizza – the standard is pretty high. If you’d like a slice of Italy, and the Italian lifestyle, head to Napoli Centrale Pizza Bar. For some fantastic Italian style pizza in a modern Australian bar/restaurant, pop into the Parry St Garage – this place is both family friendly and the perfect place for a night out, and they do half priced pizza between 3pm and 5:30pm everyday! If you stop at the Oriental Hotel you’ll get some tasty pizza in a pub environment – and Thursday night is Quiz Night, so you can show off your knowledge while you eat.
4 – Cycle from Birdy’s Café to The Source Café to Harry’s Cafe De Wheels
This is a fantastic route to cycle, and with the perfect starting-point mid-point, and finishing-point. You start at the Birdy’s Refreshment & Expresso where you can fuel up with a coffee and then hit the road – well, the cycle path! Then after cycling along the water’s edge you can stop for a bite at the Source Café overlooking the water – add the Carrington Foreshore loop if you want to get a bit more cycling in before you stop (and you can also walk the Carrington Mangrove Boardwalk if you’re keen). Then jump back on your bikes and continue to follow the water all the way along to Honeysuckle to your destination Harry’s Cafe De Wheels – you might not be on motorbikes, but it’s still a fun way to finish your ride.
5 – Newcastle Breakwall + Nobbys Head Lighthouse & Café + Nobbys Beach
This is one of the hidden gems of Newy – walk the Breakwall. If you go on a Sunday between 10am and 4pm (from May 2018) you can walk up to the lighthouse and take advantage of the café. It’s a beautiful walk with lovely views over the water in all directions. Look out for the seal and pods of dolphins (and whales in migration season). And remember you have to walk all the way to the end for it to count. Top Tip: Walk back along the sand!
6 – Walk from Honeysuckle along the river to The Kiosk Newcastle Beach
Pick a point on Honeysuckle – the vibrant waterfront area of Newy where the city meets the harbour and waterfront. Then walk along the river to Nobbys Beach, and follow the path all the way around to Newcastle Beach. It is one of the best walks in the area, and The Kiosk Newcastle Beach is a great spot to stop for some refreshments and people watching. Local Knowledge: There is a bench with seats inside the café.
7 – Blue Door Cafe Newcastle + Table Tennis + Newcastle Art Gallery + Ice Creams at Monella Gelato or Coffee Thick Shakes at Goldbergs Coffee House on Darby St
This one is pretty self-explanatory. You just need to decide what to eat and drink, whether you play table tennis, how long you spend looking at art, and if you have ice cream, thick shakes or both! You should also make sure you leave time for a wander along Darby St to check out all the boutiques.
8 – Get the Ferry to Stockton + walk the Breakwall and check out the shipwreck
Get the ferry over to Stockton and back for a great way to spend a morning and/or afternoon. The walk along the waterfront from the ferry terminal gives a great view of the city, and there’s even a shipwreck halfway along the breakwall if you get that far. Lexie’s on the Beach is worth considering if you want to stop for some food and/or drinks in a convenient location. On a very hot day, why not take a dip in the pool at the Stockton Swimming Centre?
9 – Go To The Baths – Newcastle Ocean Baths and/or Merewether Ocean Baths
Lots of places in Australia have ocean baths, but the two in Newcastle standout from the rest. Both have a rich history, and are very popular with the locals. The perfect place to do laps or relax while you lap-up some sun!
10 – Walk the Anzac Memorial Bridge and then on to Merewether Surfhouse
This walk really is a special one. It has much Australian history, emotion and lifestyle associated with it. The bridge is a work of art and a monument to those who gave their lives for Australia, and is in the perfect location overlooking the ocean. The vantage point allows you to see Newcastle from a unique perspective, and at the southern end you can see Bar Beach to Merewether and the quintessential coastal Aussie suburbs in between.
Which way to do the walk? Walking up the hill from Bar Beach and then climbing the stairs up to the Anzac Memorial Bridge can be quite a workout for some. However, there is a small car park at the top so everyone can enjoy the Anzac Memorial Bridge, regardless of their fitness level.
Is this season going to be the one where the Knights and the Jets relive past glory? Why not show them some love and get tickets! You can pick them up on the day – make sure to get there early because the games are even more value for money now that the NRL Women’s Premiership and W-League have been added to the mix – a fantastic move and a pleasure to watch!
12 – Day Trips: The Hunter Valley, Nelson Bay, etc.
So this is a bonus one, as the surrounding area is the bonus feature that comes with Newcastle! There is so much to see and do that’s in striking distance from Newy.
There’s the Hunter Valley and the world-class wine it produces.
Port Stephens is just up the road and is a must visit with places such as Nelson Bay, Shoal Bay, Mount Tomaree, One Mile Beach and Fingal Bay – all stunning! Birubi Beach is a spectacular spot too – gateway to the longest shifting sand dunes in the Southern Hemisphere, it has Camel Rides, 4×4 Tours, as well as refreshments and a patrolled swimming area. Keep in mind that it can get very busy at peak times – when you see the sand dunes, you will know why.