Your definitive guide to Ouseburn, Newcastle’s hidden gem
The place you wish you knew about sooner
Newcastle has many treasures; the Quayside, endless clubs and a glorious football stadium, but we are here to enlighten you on the more low-key secrets that Newcastle has to offer. The Ouseburn/Shieldfield area is a bubble of arty and musical delicacies. We went to explore this haven and have put together a guide of to-do's – trust us you won't regret your visit.
With a bohemian, alternative and gentrified vibe, Ouseburn is up and coming. Nestled amongst the old factories and canals of Newcastle, Ouseburn bursts culture and character. Easy enough to get to, either a metro to Jesmond station and a 15 minute walk or a 20 minute walk from Monument. The Ouseburn area is a complete change from the busy city centre vibe. For all of you southern, edgy bad bitches, it’s basically the Brick Lane of Newcastle, rah.
The Cluny and Cluny 2
Situated under Byker Bridge, the Cluny is a small music venue that hosts a variety of acts multiple times a week. The range of genres is vast, the venue certainly offers a personal, intimate experience with your latest discovered artist.
Next door is also the Cluny 2, a smaller venue still, often booked out by younger student crowds for theatre or music. Both venues are usually very affordable and well worth the money for the personal experience you receive.
Harder to categorise due to the diversity of events it offers, the Cobalt is definitely the underdog of Newcastle's music and art scene. Looking at the calendar this month alone, almost every night slot filled with a different event; a three hour Life Drawing experience for £7, a fresh (and often free) DJ set or even networking events with food provided. If anything, the neon-lit interior is a reason as good a reason to go as any – get that Insta babe!
The Biscuit Factory
Admittedly, the price of the artwork may break your student budget, however, the showcased local art is definitely worth your time and attention. Being the largest contemporary art, craft and design gallery in the North East, it is FILLED with beautiful pieces for purchase (we would even claim it is better than the Baltic, big flex!) They also have The Factory Kitchen, which is a beautiful greenhouse rooftop restaurant overlooking a quaint view of Ouseburn.
The Holy Biscuit
Although not currently displaying an exhibition, The Holy Biscuit has blossomed from a small church to a local artists support scheme. Their friendly staff make the experience all the more enjoyable and informed us of up and coming events, so head to their website for a look!
Ernest is a multi-purpose venue with regular open mic nights, live music and food served daily. Right next to the Cobalt, you can make a night out of the convenience by going for food and drinks before heading to an event. Serving delicious cakes, and coffee to match, it is the best place to head at any time of the day. It also serves a bangin' brunch right up until 3pm so is a great place if you've had a late one.
The Ship Inn
This underdog pub is definitely one to know about. With a predominantly vegan menu, yet in a very country pub setting, it is the perfect escape from the busy city. A favourite of locals, your meal can be enjoyed in a good ol' pub setting with a great selection of locally brewed craft ales.
The Tyne Bar
The Tyne Bar, ‘an Ouseburn original’, is fun and lively pub on the waterside. It appears to be buzzing most evenings with a refreshingly diverse group of people. Perhaps most excitingly is the ‘rock bottom bank account’ friendly menu; on Thursdays you can get a burger and a pint for £5.99, Tuesdays a A FREE DELICIOUS MEAL when you spend £5 on drinks and for the rest of the week the menu stays well under £10, even offering its own vegan menu. It gets better, they have an unwavering commitment to free live music, honestly what more could you want from a pub?
Directly under the Byker Bridge, the fire pit lit outside area is a great atmosphere to grab a reasonably priced Thai meal with excellent staff and service. The bar also has a rustic but relaxed atmosphere in the evening with fire pits and smores for sale!
Garage Coffee Newcastle
As coffee enthusiasts ourselves, we could not recommend this quirky coffee shop more. Converted from an old garage, (bonus points for guessing the name) the small coffee shop is rustically filled with antique, miss matching armchairs and seasonal flowers. It also hosts cool little nights such as a Mario Kart Tournament, lots of brownie points there.
Star and Shadow Cinema
If you fancy escaping the queues at Cineworld, head on down to the Star and Shadow Cinema which shows a range of films in a retro environment. The cinema is all volunteer run and puts on lots of workshops, one favourite being the ‘fix it’ one where you can fix your broken things amongst others with the help of tools and experts. This relaxed atmosphere and having to contain your frustration is a sure fire-way to actually get that thing finally fixed.
So, there you have it! Although we have given starting places for your big day out, Ouseburn really is bursting with vibrant little places to explore, so get yourself out on a sunny weekend and enjoy the delicacies the area has to offer.