Tynemouth is a surprising gem on the North-East’s coastline making it a must-visit for both locals and those from further afield. To help inspire your next trip, these are the most incredible things to do in Tynemouth.
For those of us lucky enough to live in the North-East of England (yes, you read that right), Tynemouth is one of those places that is hard not to love. You’ll find pristine golden beaches, rugged cliffs, a ruined Priory and some of the best independent coffee shops, eateries and boutique shops. Once you visit Tynemouth, you’ll soon understand why this town consistently makes the Sunday Times’ ‘Best Places To Live’ list.
Whilst many of us could only dream of living here, Tynemouth is still the perfect place to visit whether it’s just for the day or for the whole weekend. I love it and I’m almost certain you will too!
MY FAVOURITE THINGS TO DO IN TYNEMOUTH
Kicking things off is probably my favourite thing to do in Tynemouth altogether and we regularly visit just to stroll around this excellent market. Every Saturday and Sunday, between 9am and 3:30pm, Tynemouth Market pops up right inside the beautiful Victorian metro station and features hundreds of quirky stalls and street food offerings. Think antiques, collectables, retro games and locally made ceramics and prints alongside well-known local street food traders such as Acropolis (Greek food), Ouseburn Coffee Co and others where you can get a chicken tikka wrap (unreal FYI) or bratwurst. It’s dog friendly too!
TYNEMOUTH CASTLE & PRIORY
Tynemouth Castle & Priory is probably the largest and most popular attraction in Tynemouth and is very hard to miss! The historic ruins of the castle and priory rise from the headland and can be seen all along the coastline whether you’re heading north or south. English Heritage now manage the site where you can wander the through the ruined buildings and admire the views down to King Edwards Bay or across the River Tyne. It’s said that here was one of the largest fortified areas in the whole of England though that didn’t stop the Danes ransacking on more than one occasion. The coat of arms of Tynemouth still bears reference to the three Kings of Northumbria who are buried at the Castle & Priory.
LONGSANDS BEACH & KING EDWARDS BAY
It’s no secret that the North East has some of the most beautiful beaches in the country and both Longsands Beach & King Edwards Bay have to be right up there with the best. Longsands Beach and its gloriously golden sand stretches from Tynemouth up to Cullercoats. It’s a blue flag beach and perfect for summer days building sandcastles with dips in the sea as well as winter days blowing the cobwebs away. Dogs are allowed in the off-season and don’t be surprised to see swathes of surfers braving the North Sea no matter the weather. Stay tuned for the impending renovation of the Tynemouth Outdoor Pool! We’re coming for you Bondi Beach!
King Edwards Bay is equally as beautiful with its smaller beach protected by high cliffs and the Tynemouth Priory. If you’re a lover of fish, try Riley’s Fish Shack down on the beach itself; it’s one of Condé Nast’s best beach shacks for good reason.
TYNEMOUTH SURF CAFE / BRACKBURGER
You’ll find Tynemouth Surf Cafe on the Grand Parade overlooking Longsands Beach and you’ll struggle to walk past without wanting to grab a pint of beer and take in those beautiful views. The cafe has now teamed up with the legends behind Brackburger so I would highly recommend heading here for some of the best burgers in the North-East! My favourites are the BBQ Boss (ft a Newcastle Brown Ale battered onion ring) and the Some Like It Hot buttermilk chicken burger.
LAND OF GREEN GINGER ARCADE
Probably the most unique place on this list, the Land of Green Ginger is a shopping arcade inside an old church where you can find bars, a pizza shop and a great pet shop that we always seem to buy something from! Make sure you pop in and have a wander around.
The mouth of the River Tyne is protected by two huge sea walls, one North / one South, and they make for a perfect location to stretch your legs. Near to the Prior Haven car park, and exactly where I finished the Coast 2 Coast bike ride back in 2015 (in just 2 days), you can wander along to the Tynemouth Lighthouse.
Before we had Evelyn, we had never visited Tynemouth Park but it’s a great place to visit to keep the kids entertained. We played the 18 hole Lost World Adventure Golf (ok I admit, this one was for us not Evelyn who hadn’t long turned one) and there’s so much more to do; row a boat around the Victorian Boating Lake, get lost in the maze or bounce around on huge inflatable slides. The Greenhouse is a great place to refuel with fish and chips or a fish finger sarnie.
REGULAR JO’S COFFEE
This is the best coffee in Tynemouth without doubt! Regular Jo’s Coffee can be found at the Tynemouth Market at weekends or now in their own surf-vibe store on Percy Park Road. You’ll find excellent speciality coffee, locally made sweet treats (hello Proven Goods doughnuts) and even CBD offerings too thanks to Karma Coast. You can switch out to oat milk or decaf coffee for no extra charge too which is a nice unexpected touch. There are a few seats outside in the tiny courtyard which is dog friendly too or you can perch on a stool indoors or just grab a takeaway and carry on exploring.
DEEP NORTH DOUGHNUTS
A new addition to Front Street, Deep North is an independent artisan doughnut and coffee shop that does not disappoint. Everything is made from scratch and honestly these are some the best doughnuts that you can find in the North-East. Sticky Toffee Pudding is my go-to flavour with a toffee and medjool date cheesecake filling and a toffee sauce & butter biscuit crumble topping. I’m not sure there’s any other way to kick start a day in Tynemouth!
LONGSANDS FISH KITCHEN
It would be practically impossible to come to the coast without ordering fish and chips so why not indulge at the award winning Longsands Fish Kitchen. You can either take away (and try your luck with the seagulls) or eat in but whichever you choose you can be certain that you’ll be treated to great quality produce. There’s always a queue for a reason! Prices are a little high but you get what you pay for; haddock or cod and chips will set you back £14.50 though a little cheaper if you take away.
Another relatively new addition to the Tynemouth foodie scene, Toast is a high quality bakery come breakfast café where each table comes with its own toaster. Yes that’s right, you will never be able to complain about burnt toast again. Open for walk-ins only from Thursday to Sunday, you won’t be disappointed with the coffee or the pastries or any of the breakfast offerings on freshly baked sourdough.
DUE NORTH MENSWEAR / RUBY & FRANK LADIES WEAR
Situated right next to each other, these two independent boutiques are great if you’re in the mood for some clothes shopping. I could have spent a fortune in what was Flamingo & Finch (now Due North) which stocks brands such as Passenger, Makia and other under the radar labels. I only ended up buying a shirt and a hat but I could have bought the whole store! If you’re after something a bit more local, you’ll find a load of t-shirts displaying popular local spots and references.
This is one for those with children and it’ll certainly keep the little ones occupied for a few hours. The aquarium is open daily from 10am and there are a variety of different talks and feeds that you can experience; the seal show at 12pm is the highlight. It’s only a small aquarium but you’ll still see plenty of underwater creatures including reef sharks and rays. Evelyn loved her first experience of an aquarium here; she was mesmerised! It costs £16.25 for an adult day ticket, £11.50 for a kid up to 12 and under 3’s are free.
On a weekend, if you’re arriving early in the morning (which I’d always recommend), head to Priors Haven Car Park just past Tynemouth Priory and you can expect free car parking which is awesome. We also parked for free on a Sunday behind the Tynemouth Aquarium here if you’re looking to explore from the Northern edges first.
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