PEDESTRIAN.TV has partnered with the City Of Newcastle to help plan your next lil' getaway.

Newcastle is one of NSW’s most bountiful gems. Over the last few years, it’s developed a rep for hosting some of Australia’s most gorgeous surf beaches and a huge number of chic restaurants, boutique stores, cultural hubs, and of course, classic pubs to boot.

In short, it’s way more than just a pit-stop location on your way to, say, Byron Bay.

Considering it’s just a hop, skip and a jump away from Sydney (it’s approximately a two-hour drive), it makes for the perfect weekend getaway destination for winter, summer or anything in between.

Whether you consider yourself a foodie, an outdoor adventurer or someone who likes to ‘rock up and see what happens’, you’re bound to find something that tickles your fancy there.

In my opinion, asking a local for recommendations ahead of visiting a new spot is a must, and if you’ve ever spoken to a Newy resident, you’ve probably gotten the vibe that they’re proud as heck of their town (and for a good reason).

Here’s what a bunch of ’em recommend getting up to when you visit (and what they think is actually better than what you get in Sydney).

Food & Drink

Modus Merewether, The Grain Store and The Falcon are all incredible.” — Tim

“For drinks, Saints Gin Bar is a must. I would recommend Scotties, Ship Inn, Oh My Papa or Light Years for dinner and then Three Monkeys is a must for brekky. If you’re not in the mood for a sit-down sitch, fish and chips on the beach during sunset is unbeatable.” — Cass

“For Pizza, I would recommend Masa Madre (they make their own sourdough bases), Foghorn (for NY style Pizza and a to-die-for on-site brewery) or Centrale Napoli (Italian style). They’re all incredible and on par (if not better) than what I’ve had in Sydney.” — Max

“For casual food, I would absolutely recommend Kitami, Antojitos and Rascal. For cocktails: The Koutetsu and Ginger Meg’s are bomb.” – Bell

Arts & Culture 

“Have you heard of a little slice of paradise called The Hamilton Station Hotel? I’ve seen Joyce Manor, Trophy Eyes and Northlane there before they were huge. It’s also bolstered the local Newcastle music scene heaps, with acts like RAAVE Tapes and the Gooch Palms all coming up there.” — Sam

“Definitely hit up The Gal! They host heaps of cool queer art shows and parties. I also love how much street art is so easily accessible in Newcastle! Especially around Darby Street, it just gives everything a little pop.” — Jessie

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“When I lived in Sydney, I would travel up to Newcastle for gigs at the Cambridge Hotel. The novelty hasn’t worn off since living here. I’ve seen so many incredible live acts here (including Alpha Wolf and Stand Atlantic most recently), and the vibes are always high.” — Steve

“You’ll 100% be in luck vintage and op shopping around Newcastle. My regular haunts are usually Sourced on Darby or The Conscious Exchange.” — Dee

“Our festival scene is packing a huge punch these days. This That is back after COVID (keen), and the New Annual arts festival starts in September too, which is really exciting for the local scene here.” — Bruce

Active & Outdoor

“Sydneysiders love a coastal walk, so I would highly recommend Bather’s Way. It’s quite popular now, but it’s definitely worth getting up early to soak in the gorgeous view and check out all the beaches along the way.” — Jaimee

“Literally any ocean pool. I know Sydney’s got the Coogee and Maroubra Baths, but nothing comes close to the Mereweather Ocean Baths, The Bogey Hole, The Soldier’s Baths or Ladies Baths.” — Sarah

Sounds like there’s a whole dang bunch to do, hey? Before you start alerting the group chat to plan a weekender, head to the Visit Newcastle website for heaps of detailed itineraries on how to spend time in the city.

You’ll probably land on even more gems Newy has to offer and find yourself petitioning to become an honorary local before you know it.