After touching down in Newcastle International airport, we picked up our car and began driving. They didn’t have any GPSes left and the lady said they were 15 pounds a day to hire and that buying the cheapest would have been more affordable. She directed us to the local shopping complex which we headed in.
This shopping complex is massive. Similar to Blanchardstown, it would seem like an entire suburb was devoted to all things commercial. There was a Tesco which is a Kmart and Coles joined together spanning the length of four Tuggeranong Bunnings warehouses.
We purchased the cheapest GPS for 50 pounds and immediately settled our nerves. If you’re driving in a foreign country, let alone city, make sure you use a GPS to help you along your way.
We also took the opportunity to grab a quick meal at McDonalds before heading into town. I attribute the Maccas to my early crash for the day (fell asleep at 4:30pm until 6:30 the next morning).
Tom later had the munchies and went into a shop named “Fish n Chips” for their pinnacle dish. Normally he can tolerate strange flavours where one would normally pass but he couldn’t complete it saying it was the worst fish and chips he ever had.
After our complimentary breakfast (which looks very similar to an Irish breakfast), we went in search of a currency exchange as we forgot to do it at the airport. It turns out that you should avoid doing it at the airport as you get worse rates. We were refused by the main banks (Barclays and HSBC) as we weren’t customers. I exchanged all Euros except for the 500 Euro note as you need to provide your passport (your drivers license will not do), location of where you originally obtained the note, and your UK based phone number (or location of hotel you’re staying at). Maybe I’ll have better luck disposing the note at a casino.
We then hopped onto the red city tour buses and did a full loop of the city which took about an hour. We ended up going into the Great North Museum which had exhibits on Egypt, Iraq, Dinosaurs, Greece, and animals.
For afternoon tea, we went through the gates of China Town and had a three course meal for 7.5 pounds. Tom had the sweet corn soup and I had bbq spare ribs for entrees. We then had curry chicken and crispy beef with rice and ended with some ice cream.
We later played three games of pool and let me say that there clearly was a better. I’ll leave it there.
We checked out and went to the Discovery Museum and easily spent the next two hours there before having lunch and driving off to Hadrian’s Wall.