Newcastle reaches out to the sea, creating Australia’s only city centre bounded by pristine beaches and an active working harbour.  A port city in transition -  Working wharves are becoming places of play; the city hums with a vibrant arts culture and an emerging food scene is evident. Some things never change - the surf is still world class, the pace remains relaxed and the friendly locals are proud of their city.

Precinct by Precinct - The citys unique geography and 200 year story have contributed to the creation of a number of distinct hubs. Explore and uncover the flavour and allure of the citys streetscapes and waterfronts each with its own unique feel and character.

Newcastle East - Where the city meets the ocean and harbour. The birthplace of Newcastle this precinct was the original town site and affords delightful contrasts and architectural diversity. Take the time to wander the back lanes or explore via the sign posted Heritage Walk. In Australia’s second oldest city, the streetscapes abound with gracious heritage buildings and this precinct showcases some of the nation’s most significant sites.

City Centre - A place of revitalisation and transition, a mixture of the raw and refined. Like countless cities across the world, Newcastle city centre has seen a migration of businesses into the suburbs. However, that trend is now being reversed. New developments, shops and restaurants are opening, bringing life back to the centre.

Civic Cultural Precinct - The soul of the city, the place where artists play. Featuring the city’s most prestigious venues including City Hall and the Art Deco Civic Theatre both built in the 1920’s. On the other side of Civic Park is the Regional Art Gallery housing a magnificent collection and attracting an impressive schedule of exhibitions. Wheeler Place is the hub for Livesites, a cultural program bringing the city to life.

Honeysuckle and the Harbour - Connecting the harbour to the city.  The harbour is home to Honeysuckle a major waterfront rejuvenation project transforming Newcastle with the creation of foreshore promenades and open squares offering waterfront cafes and restaurants - all with glorious views. The Promenade along the harbour foreshore is an easy shared pathway suitable for all the family.

The Junction - Newcastle’s prestigious shopping village by the sea. The Junction is so called because originally it was the junction point for trains converging on the way to the port from the outlying coalmines. Today this area is a junction of designer labels, fascinating jewellery and hip home wares. This is an up market shopping precinct with a smattering of first class restaurants and cafes to relax in.

Hamilton - The cosmopolitan heart of Newcastle is in Beaumont Street. Beaumont Street is the centre of all the action after its refurbishment post the 1989 earthquake. This precinct was home to Newcastle’ first Italian and Greek arrivals and there is still a strong Mediterranean focus. With many sidewalk cafes and a thriving pub-scene, this is a favourite spot with the locals. Islington at the corner of Beaumont Street and Maitland Road is the place to discover curios, fine antiques and second hand bargains.

Cooks Hill - Darby Street is the lifeblood of this funky inner city suburb. Discover the shops, galleries and food delights. Choices abound for dining from buzzy street-side cafes to fine dining. Buy the latest street designer wear, alternate music, second-hand books, quirky home wares, jewellery and local designers. Cooks Hill is dotted with private art galleries where you can chat with local artists - so explore the leafy back lanes to take home a special art piece.

A bit of background - Discovered in 1797, Newcastle is the site of the second European settlement in Australia. A city rich in history, a visit to Newcastle provides countless opportunities to uncover our convict past. Take a dip in the Bogey Hole, which was cut into ocean rocks by convict labour in 1819. You will realise the convicts amazing achievement when you see the waves crashing into the pool.

Perched high above Newcastle Harbour is Fort Scratchley, constructed during the Crimean War to protect the city from invasion. In 1942, at the height of World War II, the fort returned fire at a Japanese submarine shelling BHP, the only fort in Australia to have engaged the enemy in a maritime attack.