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Tynemouth is a large town in Tyne and Wear in northeast England, nine miles east of Newcastle upon Tyne. It's the largest of a series of towns on the north bank of the Tyne estuary, running into North Shields to the west and Cullercoats to the north, also described on this page. These were all historically part of the county of Northumberland, until 1974 when the Borough of North Tyneside was created within the Tyne and Wear Metropolis. Whitley Bay and the north burbs of that borough are described separately, as is Wallsend further west.


Tynemouth Castle

Tynemouth grew up around the medieval priory and castle guarding the estuary of the Tyne. It was a port in its own right, vying with Newcastle for trade, though as ships outgrew it, it was more important for coastal defence. It has sandy beaches and developed as a seaside resort from the 19th century, while the area became industrial and a commuter town for Newcastle. In 2021 the population was 10,256, which includes North Shields.

North Shields has always been industrial: it's on the muddy river not the coast so you'd never bathe here. The "shields" were fishermen's huts: the town originally huddled on the riverbank then grew up onto the ridge, with trades based on shipbuilding and on coal from three nearby collieries. These have given way to light industry and retail.

Cullercoats was a fishing village, with only a small shallow harbour so boats were drawn up on the sands. It had some industry but morphed into a beach resort, with a population in 2021 of 9356.

Get in


By train


There are no mainline trains to Tynemouth and the nearest train station is Newcastle Central in Newcastle Upon Tyne about 10 miles away.

1 Newcastle Central. Has frequent trains from London King's Cross and the Midlands via York, Edinburgh, and Carlisle. Change at Central for the Metro Yellow Line, and again at Monument. Newcastle railway station (Q2047417) on Wikidata Newcastle railway station on Wikipedia

By Metro

Map of the Tyne and Wear Metro

The district has three Tyne and Wear Metro stations on the northern loop of the Yellow Line:

  • 2 Cullercoats Cullercoats Metro station on Wikipedia
  • 3 Tynemouth Tynemouth Metro station on Wikipedia
  • 4 North Shields North Shields Metro station on Wikipedia

Trains run M-Sa every 15 min and Su every 30 min from St James and Monument in Newcastle city centre via Wallsend and Percy Main (for Royal Quays and Port of Tyne), taking 25 min to North Shields Metro (for Tyne ferry), Tynemouth Metro (for the town centre) and Cullercoats Metro. They continue around the loop to Whitley Bay, Monkseaton, South Gosforth, Jesmond and back to the city centre, then head along the south riverbank to Gateshead, Jarrow and South Shields.

Change downtown for the Green Line northwest to the airport and southeast to Sunderland.

The three Tynemouth stations are in Fare Zone C so you need an all-zone ticket. In 2022 an adult single is £3.90, and it's the same fare from the city centre, the airport, Gateshead or Sunderland.

By bus


Bus fares and zones are the same as for the Metro above. There isn't a bus station, buses make multiple stops along the main streets.

  • Arriva Bus 306 runs every 15 min from Newcastle bus station (near the railway station), taking 30 min to North Shields and Tynemouth. Go North East Bus 1 runs every 20 min from Gateshead and Newcastle Market Street to North Shields (1 hour), Tynemouth, Cullercoats and Whitley Bay.
  • Little Coaster 11 runs every 30 min from Whitley Bay to North Shields and Wallsend.
  • Bus 19 runs hourly from Ashington via Bedlington, Cramlington, Northumberland Park Interchange, Cobalt Business Park and Silverlink shopping centre to North Shields town and ferry pier.
  • Arriva Bus 53 also runs every 30 min from Cramlington via Killingworth to North Shields.

By boat


5 North Shields ferry pier is served by the Shields Ferry across the Tyne from South Shields. This carries foot passengers and bicycles and takes 7 min, sailing every 30 min M-Sa 7AM-7:30PM (Th-Sa to 10PM) and Su 10:30AM-6PM. In 2022 an adult single is £2.10 and a day ticket is £3.40. Shuttle Bus 333 links the pier to North Shields Metro Station and is included in the ferry fare.

When a previous ferry was replaced in 1987, she went to operate boat trips on Loch Ness. The Highland Council haven't announced any plans to replace the Loch Ness Monster with a larger modern version, but when (to comply with Health & Safety) they're obliged to do so, it would seem only right to offer the retired monster a home in the Tyne.

Long Sands

6 Port of Tyne has nightly DFDS car ferries from IJmuiden near Amsterdam. These sail in each direction at around 5PM to arrive at 9AM next morning. Cruise ships also dock here. Getting here:

  • Many travellers bring their own car. Follow A19 and take the first exit north of Tyne Tunnel onto A187.
  • DFDS run their own shuttle bus from city centre, see thir website.
  • A taxi from city centre is about £20, see Newcastle upon Tyne#Get around for operators.
  • Go North East Bus 11 runs from Wallsend to Howden, Royal Quays, North Shields and Whitley Bay. Royal Quays is half a mile northwest of the ferry terminal.
  • Bus 19 runs from Ashington via Bedlington, Cramlington and the east suburbs to Percy Main, Royal Quays and North Shields.
  • Bus 1 runs from Gateshead and Newcastle to Wallsend, Howden, Percy Main, North Shields, Tynemouth and Whitley Bay. Percy Main is 1.5 miles northwest of the ferry terminal.
  • Metro Yellow Line from St James and Monument runs to Wallsend, Percy Main and North Shields, see below.
  • Although the ferry terminal is north bank, most of Port of Tyne is south bank in South Tyneside, so commercial freight drivers might need to disregard these directions.

By road


Bypass Newcastle to the east on A19 through the Tyne Tunnel (toll). Exit onto A193 for North Shields, or A1058 Coast Rd for Tynemouth, Cullercoats and Whitley Bay. Motorbikes are free, the car toll in 2021 was £1.90. There are no cash booths, pay online or at a Paypoint outlet by midnight next day. Frequent users should open an account, for a reduced charge collected by ANPR. Cycles and pedestrians are prohibited and should either use the ferry, or the pedestrian and cyclist tunnels to Jarrow.

Get around

Tynemouth Priory

The buses and Metro trains from the city continue through the district. For local destinations within Fare Zone C you only need a one zone ticket; in 2022 a single is £2.30 and a day-ticket £3.60. On the Metro this covers from Meadow Well to North Shields, Tynemouth, Cullercoats, Whitley Bay, Monkseaton and Shiremoor.

Taxi firms are Tynemouth Taxis (+44 191 258 0555) and East Coast Taxis (+44 191 253 3777).

There's a good riverside walk from North Shields to Tynemouth, then north along the coast to Cullercoats. The riverbank between North Shields and Wallsend is industrial and dockland, so this is a missing link before you can join Hadrian's Wall Footpath.


  • 1 Tynemouth Aquarium, Grand Parade, NE30 4JF, +44 191 258 1031. M-F 10AM-3PM, Sa Su 10AM-5PM. Large walk-through aquarium, with sharks, stingrays, seals and, er... monkeys? Adult £14.50, conc £13, child £10.25.
  • 2 Tynemouth Castle and Priory, Pier Road, NE30 4BZ (Metro stop: Tynemouth or Bus 306), +44 370 333 1181. Apr-Oct: daily 10AM-5PM; Nov-Mar: Sa Su 10AM-4PM. The priory came first, founded in the 7th century. It was fortified in the 9th century against Danish attack, but repeatedly wrecked; monastic life was only re-established in the Norman period by the Benedictines. The castle was also re-built circa 1300, and re-fortified in later periods, including 20th century coastal artillery. The priory was suppressed at the Reformation but the church remained in use until 1668 - this doubled as the lighthouse. Three kings were buried here: Oswin of Deira in 651, Osred II of Northumbria in 792, and Malcolm III of Scotland (the fellow in Shakespeare's Macbeth) in 1093 though he was later re-interred in Scotland. Adult £7.80, conc £7, child £4.70. Tynemouth Castle (Q7860523) on Wikidata Tynemouth Castle and Priory on Wikipedia
  • 3 Tynemouth Volunteer Life Brigade Museum, Spanish Battery, NE30 0QJ, +44 191 257 2059. Tu-Sa 10AM-3PM, Su 10AM-noon. The Volunteer Life Brigades were founded in the mid 19th century, and at their peak there were 40 around England. Today only three remain: this one (the first, founded 1864), South Shields (founded 1866) and Sunderland (founded 1877). They don't have lifeboats, but assist the Coastguard with shore-based rescue. Their Watch House has a local history museum, with a working model of Breeches Buoy rescue equipment. Free, donation.
Tynemouth Pier and Lighthouse
  • Collingwood Monument, built in 1845, is the statue on a plinth next to the Life Brigade Museum. Rear Admiral Cuthbert Collingwood (1748-1810) was born in Newcastle and became second in command to Horatio Nelson. He distinguished himself at the Fourth Battle of Ushant in 1784 and the Battle of Cape St Vincent in 1797, but his best-known engagement was the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. Nelson and Collingwood each led a squadron into the Spanish fleet and out-gunned them; Collingwood took command when Nelson was killed in the action. His home was in Morpeth but he seldom set foot ashore, as the government kept him busy in the Med against the growing French threat. He gives his name to towns called Collingwood in Ontario, Melbourne and New Zealand.
  • 4 Black Middens: ah, but you probably won't see them, but you'll hear the screech as the bottom is torn out your ship. This outcrop was the reason for founding the Life Brigade, when in 1864 five ships were wrecked in three days, with the loss of 34 lives. From medieval times the channel was often set with fish traps.
  • 5 Tynemouth Pier Lighthouse stands at the end of the half-mile (810 m) breakwater, which was built 1854-95 then again to 1909 when the sea showed its contempt for the first version. A railway track on its leeward side was used during construction: they've missed a chance here for a catchpenny tourist ride. The lighthouse remains active and was automated in 1967: its range is 30 miles / 48 km.
  • 6 Fish Quay was the site of "leading lights" or navigational "transit": if you sailed upriver on a line which kept one light apparently above the other, you'd steer clear of the Black Middens and other nasty surprises. The first towers from 1539 re-used masonry from the dissolved Blackfriars monastery in city centre. They became obstructed by later buildings and were replaced in 1727 by the Old Low and High Lights. The latter is now a private residence while the Old Low Light is a small community-run museum, open Tu-Sa 10AM-3PM. These in turn had to be replaced in 1807 when the safe channel shifted. The New Lights served until 1999 when the south bank Herd Groyne lighthouse was upgraded, and they both remain as day marks. Both sets of Low Lights are at Fish Quay while the High Lights are 200 yards west on higher ground in Dockwray Square, where they're nowadays accompanied by a statue of the comic actor Stan Laurel (1890-1965), who went to school in Tynemouth and lived for a while in the square.
  • The Wooden Dolly stands in Northumberland Square 200 yards inland from Fish Quay, or did so in 2021. She's about the sixth or seventh incarnation of a ship's figurehead, but is repeatedly hacked at. The legend goes that taking a piece brings good luck at sea, so there must be lots of lucky sailors out there, since (this being the post-industrial northeast) her injuries couldn't possibly be the work of drunks and vandals.
  • Cullercoats retains a row of fishermen's cottages along Simpson St, and the watch house of the village Life Brigade (though this has disbanded). The US painter Winslow Homer stayed in Cullercoats 1881-82 and painted many scenes of its fisherfolk.
  • 7 Stephenson Railway Museum, Middle Engine Lane, North Shields NE29 8DX (No junction with A19, use A1058 exits), +44 191 277 7135. Apr-Oct. This houses a collection of locomotives from the early days of the railways (the 1826 Billy) to some early electric locomotives. The museum is on part of the old Metro test track, and so the museum often has trains running to Percy Main Metro station. Museum free, rides adult £7, conc & child £5. North Tyneside Steam Railway (Q7057065) on Wikidata North Tyneside Steam Railway on Wikipedia


Beaches are sandy
  • Beaches are sandy. King Edward's Bay is just north of the Priory and Castle, Long Sands is the half-mile strip north, then beyond is a grassy headland then Cullercoats Bay. There's a sea arch on the headland, and caves cut into the bluffs overlooking the bay. It's unclear which King Edward the first bay is named for - local legend says Edward II, perhaps frolicking in the surf with Piers Gaveston.
  • Theatre: Tynemouth Priory Theatre is on Percy St two blocks north of Front St.
  • Cinema: the Odeon is on Silverlink retail park, junction of A19 and Coast Rd A1058.
  • Golf: Tynemouth Golf Club is in Northumberland Park, half a mile west of Tynemouth Metro Station. White tees are 6182 yards, par 70, visitor round £40.
  • Swimming: if the outdoor pool at Long Sands is too bracing, head for Tynemouth Swimming Pool northwest of the golf course on Preston Road North at the junction with Coast Road.
  • Tynemouth Surf Co by the boating pool on Grand Parade is open daily 10AM-3PM.
  • North Sea Weekender is a series of water sports and other events held throughout summer.
  • Tynemouth Food Festival is held at the castle and priory. The next is probably 11-12 May 2024, tbc.
  • Coastella is a music festival held at Percy Park rugby club on Preston Ave. The next is probably 7 July 2024, tbc.
  • Mouth of the Tyne Festival is held at the castle and priory. The next is probably 4-7 July 2024, tbc.


  • 1 Tynemouth Market, Tynemouth Station. Sa-Su 09:00-15:30. Weekend market under the cover of Tynemouth Station
  • Front Street towards the Priory and Castle is Tynemouth's traditional High Street, with small shops and galleries.
  • Beacon Shopping Centre is next to North Shields Metro Station. Most shops are open M-Sa 9AM-5:30PM, Su 10AM-4PM.
  • Royal Quays Outlet Centre, Coble Dene, North Shields NE29 6DW (by Premier Inn North Shields), +44 191 296 3743. M-Sa 9:30AM-5:30PM, Su 11AM-5PM. Remainder stock from various stores. But the place is heading towards being remaindered itself, with tatty aspect, many empty shop units and poor footfall.


Sea arch at Cullercoats
  • 1 Riley's Fish Shack, King Edward's Bay, NE30 4BY (by Priory and Castle), +44 191 257 1371. M-Sa 9:30AM-10PM, Su 9:30AM-5:30PM. Deservedly popular fish restaurant on the beach. Not cheap, but worth it.
  • Crusoe's, Longsands, NE30 4HH (below Grand Hotel), +44 191 296 4152. Daily 8:30AM-5PM. Rustic beach cafe for breakfast and lunch.
  • The View, Longsands, NE30 4JA (north end of sands), +44 191 253 5459. Daily 9AM-5PM. Good menu selection, plus of course the view.
  • The Gibraltar Rock, 2 East Street, NE30 4EB, +44 191 258 5655. Daily 10:30AM-9PM. Pub with food, including a carvery.




Collingwood Monument
The two accommodation strips are along the beach straggling north into Whitley Bay, and along A19 at the west edge of town bordering Wallsend.
  • Park Hotel, Grand Parade, NE30 4JQ. This Art Deco hotel changed owners in 2021 and is closed for refurbishment.
  • 1 Grand Hotel, 14 Grand Parade, NE30 4ER, +44 191 293 6666. Smart friendly hotel in a Victorian building by Long Sands beach. B&B double £110.
  • 2 Number 61 Guest House, 61 Front St, NE30 4BT, +44 191 257 3687. Charming little B&B with tea rooms. B&B double £110.
  • 3 Premier Inn North Shields, Coble Dene, North Shields NE29 6DW, +44 333 321 1356. Reliable chain hotel near A19 and North Sea ferry terminal. B&B double £60.
  • 4 Travelodge, Silver Fox Way, Cobalt Business Park NE27 0QJ, +44 871 984 6588. Budget chain hotel opened in 2021 so it's still squeaky clean. B&B double £50.
  • 5 Village Hotel, 10 Silverlink North NE27 0BY, +44 333 321 1356. Decent mid-range place with pool and spa. B&B double £85.
  • 6 Premier Inn Holystone, Edmund Rd, Holystone NE27 0UN (junction of A19 with A191), +44 333 321 1338. Another branch of this chain, comfy enough, poor mobile / WiFi signal. B&B double £60.
  • There's another Premier Inn five miles north on A19 in Cramlington, at the junction with A189.



As of July 2021, this area has 5G from EE, and 4G from the other UK carriers.

Go next


This city travel guide to Tynemouth is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.