The one thing I love about Christmas is the continental Christmas Markets come to town. These seem to have appeared over the last few years, I first visited one when I was in Belfast visiting my parents a few years ago. I was then pleased to find we also had one in the centre of Newcastle Upon Tyne and now I make a point of visiting every year. I love visiting the Christmas markets as there is such a lot of variety.
The Newcastle Upon Tyne Christmas market is right in the centre of town under the shadow of Greys monument at the top of Grey Street. It is easy to get to, you can get a metro directly to Monument metro station and you will come out next to the market. Alternatively you can get a bus to town and walk to the Monument or drive into town and park at one of the many car parks in the town centre.
The market goes along both Grey Street and Grainger Street with plenty of different stalls to look at. There is a mixture of food, crafts and plants from all over Europe, you will definitely find something of interest. The market is open from 9am to 8pm, but it is better to go around lunchtime as all the stalls will be open. You will also be able to get something to eat from the vast range of stalls cooking food in front of you.
I took my parents and my son to visit on a rather wet day and we had a good wander round. My son was fascinated by the food on offer. In a short space of time we walked past Dutch waffles, Paella being cooked in large pans, A noodle bar, German currywurst sausages being cooked on a large round grill and my son’s favourite, crocodile steaks. There was a stall where you could get Springbok burgers, kangaroo burgers, crocodile steaks and ostrich. You could also buy them to take home with you and my son was absolutely desperate to try some. I relented and got him a kangaroo burger which he enjoyed.
We found a lovely van full of cheese from France. I couldn’t resist telling my mum to turn around and then camera in hand said “Say Cheese!” Needless to say we both burst out laughing.
There was a gorgeous selection of cheese and we bought some which gave my mum a chance to practice her French with the man behind the counter. He did speak excellent English but it was fun trying to remember our French.
There was an excellent array of sweets which I have to admit were very tempting. It is the sort of stall where you go to buy a few but end up spending lots of money. We then found the cakes from Italy which smelt gorgeous.
My son wanted to buy the lot but I managed to persuade him to be happy with a slice. I personally loved the plant stall as it was full of Christmas cheer.
We found this lovely stall that sold bottle holders and leather diaries, I was really intrigued by the bottle holders they looked like knights. These would be a talking point on any table.
There were also stalls with local produce, we found a lovely farmers stall with a range of sausages and pork pies. As well as food there was clothing, there was a stall with scarves and a stall with hats. Stopping here was a bad move as they had furry Russian hats with badge on. My son fell in love with these and I had to buy him one. It actually does really suit him and will keep him warm.
We had a lovely time browsing the Christmas market and it is well worth a visit. When you have finished you are in the centre of Newcastle so you can easily pop into Eldon Square and finish your Christmas shopping.