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Top five places to spend your birthday in the Toon

Stuck for choice on where to spend your birthday? We’ve got you covered


Once a year, we have the privilege of being celebrated by our loved ones on that one special day dedicated solely to us. While this is always exciting, what is often less so is the pressure that comes with it – there’s weeks, even months for the more meticulous of us, of planning to make sure everything goes just right.

Fortunately for us students in Newcastle, we have dozens of venues and activities within a reasonable proximity to cater to whichever vibes you’re going for, whether that be a chill day trip or a wild night out. Here’s a rundown of our top five spots to spend your birthday in the Toon – leaning in to the more wholesome activities. 

NQ64

A recent addition to Pilgrim Street, NQ64 is the arcade bar where you can sip Mario-themed cocktails all while trying your hand at the likes of Mrs Pac-Man or Dance Dance Revolution (though I’d recommend putting your glass down for that one). With a drink and a handful of machine tokens costing £10 together in a student deal, it’s a reasonable price for hours of nostalgic gaming and competition with your friends. 

Tynemouth Aquarium

Just a short metro ride away from the city centre, we have Newcastle students’ beloved seaside day out, Tynemouth. The coast is a gorgeous place to spend your birthday, and its aquarium is a great place to check out while you’re there. There’s stingrays, sharks – even seal shows. It’s a lovely spot if you’re wanting chilled vibes, where you can slowly stroll through the underwater scenes and take in cute sea creatures of all sizes.

Ouseburn

If you’re looking for a cute day out exploring, I can’t recommend Ouseburn enough. Famed for its distinctive street art, this hidden gem is just a ten minute walk from the city centre, or a short walk from Manors metro station. With its own (free) farm, live music venues, occasional markets selling handmade goods and plenty of drinking spots, it’ll fill your day up and empty your pockets nicely – at least once you beat that steep hill (it’s worth it I promise).

Pottery Painting

A classic, but so fun. An activity that is both stimulating and relaxing, it’s perfect for your birthday if you’re willing to spend a little more, but the bonus is that you get a keepsake that once fired, you can use and say, “hey, I painted that myself.” For those of us living in Jesmond, we have the Pottery Experience right on our doorstep as well, or Canny Crafty in Gosforth just half an hour away. Becoming a designer for the day, bragging rights, seeing your friend’s artistic skills exposed- what more could you wish for your birthday?

Cat/Dog Cafe

Miss your pet? Lucky for you, Newcastle is blessed with not just one, but three eateries dedicated to dining while being surrounded by fluffy friends. There’s two cat cafes (Mog on the Tyne and Catpawcino) and one dog cafe (Dog and Scone). Once you’ve paid for entry, you can go and stroke and play to your heart’s content. The combination of cakes, coffee, loved ones and furry cuteness makes for a very wholesome birthday outing.