Five ways to spend Valentine’s Day in the North East

Valentine’s Day is a wholly overrated and futile day. That’s not to say we won’t do anything to ‘celebrate’, but we don’t see the point in spending a truck load on swanky meals, billowing gowns, shiny things or over-priced flowers. In this work-orientated life we lead, Valentine’s Day is a nice opportunity to let your significant other know how much you care and spend some quality time together amongst the chaos of our daily lives.

Here are a few ways you can spend your Valentine’s Day in Newcastle with minimum spend and maximum romance:

  1. Breakfast: First things first, breakfast on Valentine’s day is best made in bed. But if you’re a culinary nightmare (like Craig) and you want to treat your significant other to a special morning treat, then we have a few places to recommend (dropping hints like bombs, you might say). If you live in or nearby NE3, Deli Espresso on Salters Road is your go-to place for breakfast. At £4.50 for a full english, there’s no point in heading any further afield. If you’re in the city, we’d recommend Olive and Bean on Clayton Street, a lovely cafe spread over two floors, serving breakfast until 12 and some of the best fridge cakes I have ever had in my life.
  2. Coast by day: Why not head out of the city and explore the coast? As a child of the coast myself, I’m drawn back there every fortnight for a lovely meal and a free-for-all in my mam’s food cupboards, but there are plenty of special ways to spend Valentine’s day at the coast. A walk along from the lighthouse to Tynemouth will not only please your pedometer, but you’ll also experience some of the most beautiful coastline our country has to offer. Why not grab fish and chips at Pantrinis and eat them on a bench at the bandstand, looking out over the sea? If you’re there, you might as well pick up a couple of tubs of Di Meo’s ice cream to keep you company on your trek to Tynemouth.
  3. Coast by night: Spending the evening at the coast no longer means inhaling middle aged men’s sweat in 42nd Street or strategically vomiting in Havana’s toilets to make space for more trebles, there’s actually a wide array of nice places to go along the North Tyneside coastline (don’t sound so surprised!). Why not head to the Tynemouth Surf Cafe for a couple of long island iced teas, and then stumble along to Barca and Lola Jeans for more cocktails. After kick out, a walk down to the priory to have a bit of quiet time wouldn’t go amiss, then hail a cab to take you back to your dressing gowns and hot water bottles.
  4. City by day: If you’re in Newcastle during the day, you should go and visit the axolotl at the Hancock Museum. No one should be alone on Valentine’s day, especially not someone this cute – so go along, say hi, we’re sure he’ll appreciate it. While you’re up that part of town, you might as well go for a brew at Quilliam Brothers and tuck into a slice of chocolate and banana cake or peanut butter chocolate brownie (other cakes are available, but we love these!)
  5. City by night: All pent up from my first visit last night, Newcastle’ finest comedy club The Stand is a perfect way to spend Valentine’s evening in the city. Upstairs the bistro serves a tasty pre-theatre menu (or so I’ve heard) and downstairs you can get various formed of fried potatoes to accompany your night of laughs and lager. At just £15 a pop, you’ll get a night filled with cheesy chips, comedy and cheap drinks – what more could you want?

Whatever you do for Valentine’s Day, remember it’s just an excuse to spend money popularised by greetings card companies, so why not take this opportunity to support some of the fantastic local businesses we’ve mentioned. Let us know your other favourites in the comments!

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