Pub, inn, tavern or saloon – it’s easy to become attached to your local. Whatever the season, the humble British pub is a much-loved gathering point. Whether you’re looking for a quiet pub to cosy up with your preferred tipple, a lively spot to watch the match with your friends, a busy beer garden in the summer or somewhere to enjoy a good Sunday Lunch – NewcastleGateshead has plenty of pubs to choose from.

One person’s local is very different from the next! Make your recommendations for the best pub in Newcastle and Gateshead in the comments below and we will add a “Your Choice” top pub or two.

Discover our top 13 pubs in Newcastle and Gateshead listed below…

1. The Cumberland Arms

The Cumberland Arms, which first opened its doors in 1898, continues to be an unmissable stop on any pub crawl. Overlooking Ouseburn, the region’s cultural quarter, The Cumberland Arms is a unique pub which is frequently bursting at the seams with folk musicians, spoken word events and comedy gigs. 

Whatever the weather, visitors can enjoy good beer and good food on the terrace or cosy up inside with a board game by the fire. Oozing with character, the relaxed, informal setting adds to its rakish charm. The Cumberland is also the ideal starting point for the popular Ouseburn pub crawl through the leafy valley where revellers can take in The Cluny, The Ship, Arch 2 and Tyne Bar to mention just a few.

2. The Central Bar

The unusual shape of this restored listed building makes The Central a quirky place to enjoy a drink. Situated in Gateshead - a short walk from the Tyne Bridge - punters will be impressed with the excellent pub grub and range of beverages to suit all tastes including craft ales and locally sourced beers.

Live music often accompanies your relaxed visit to The Central pub and you can also enjoy the rooftop bar during the summer months. The Central is also a dog-friendly pub where you’ll be hard pushed to find a table without a furry friend having a snooze beneath it.

3. The Forth and The Town Wall

It’s hard to choose between The Forth and The Town Wall so we’ve cheated slightly and grouped these two fantastic pubs together. These neighbouring pubs in Newcastle are situated on Pink Lane; just a stone’s throw from Central Station. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can even roll from one to the other within one evening!

The Town Wall is a spacious venue which captures the perfect blend of traditional pub sensibility with a lively atmosphere and top-quality food and drink. It’s range of draught beers and craft beers are sourced from the likes of local brewers Wylam Brewery. Across the road, The Forth is a cosy Friday-night, post-work drinking hole where you’ll often find hordes of professionals heralding in the weekend.

4. The Bridge Tavern

Situated between the stanchions of NewcastleGateshead's iconic Tyne Bridge, The Bridge Tavern is not to be missed. Now a vibrant and trendy pub with a smart interior and on-site micro-brewery, The Bridge Tavern brews bespoke real ales which are served directly to the pump.

There’s an emphasis on seasonal comfort food with a local twist, although you’ll also find favourites such as hearty Sunday lunches alongside traditional dishes such as pies and fish and chips. Sip a wine on the outdoor terrace or cosy up on the sofa with a cider; The Bridge Tavern is truly one of the best pubs on the Quayside.

5. The Tyne Bar

The Tyne Bar - image Shelley Johnson

This little pub has big character sitting right on the riverside at the mouth of Ouseburn. The popularity of The Tyne Bar has grown and grown over recent years and is often cited as a must-visit pub on the alternative scene.

Famed for their music scene, BBQs, ludicrously good deals (including Free Food Tuesdays!) and uber-kitsch outdoor glitterball in their heated outdoor area, The Tyne Bar’s sprawling space makes it a great spot for sunshine-filled Bank Holiday drinks!

6. Free Trade Inn

The Free Trade Inn, without a doubt, boasts the best views in Newcastle. Sitting in a prime location, The Free Trade offers the perfect vantage point to overlook NewcastleGateshead’s iconic vista. This small yet bustling pub oozes plenty of character and its friendly, local charm has won the hearts of many.

With traditional décor, a great selection of local ales and lagers, regular music events, and a great outdoor area, this pub ticks all the boxes. Head here on an evening to catch the stunning sunsets over the River Tyne while indulging in a refreshing pint.

7. City Tavern

City Tavern has a long history of serving up heart-warming scran and pulling you a much-needed pint in the centre of Newcastle. Established in 1923, the award-winning City Tavern has undergone a transformation in recent years to restore its charm and place it firmly back on the city’s food and drink map. Cosy up in their Library or one of the many nooks for a cask ale or choice of over 60 gins while you catch up with friends.

Children and furry friends are welcome – your four-legged pal could even join excellent company on the City Tavern’s Bar Hounds wall of fame at this dog-friendly pub! The city centre pub proudly boasts menus which are packed with freshly prepared dishes using some of the region’s excellent local produce.   

8. The Old George

The Old George, Newcastle

The Old George claims to be the oldest pub in Newcastle dating back to the 16th Century. Steeped in history with tell-tale low beamed ceilings and cavernous, open fireplaces, this classic pub is not what you would expect when uttering the words “the Bigg Market.”

Whether you sip your beer outside under a canopy of twinkling lights or enjoy your drink of choice in the snug, there is something for everyone at The Old George. Dance the night away on a Saturday night before hitting one of the livelier clubs, or tuck away in one of the corners to enjoy a more leisurely drink. Why not grab a spot of Sunday lunch on a match day and soak up the atmosphere of this traditional Geordie pub?

9. The Broad Chare

The Broad Chare on Newcastle Quayside is a proper pub. “Big on warmth, low on fussiness” you will struggle to leave once you’ve settled into a comfy leather seat to sip your ale. Upstairs, dining is uncomplicated but promises the best quality, serving up steak and kidney pudding, mince and dumplings or fish and chips – just some of the go-to dishes on offer.

The Broad Chare is famous in the area for their impressive bar snacks including large homemade scotch eggs, Lindisfarne oysters and, for the more adventurous, crispy pig’s ears. The Broad Chare is not only a popular local but has also won countless awards and recognitions including most recently making it into the coveted Great Britain and Ireland Michelin Guide 2018.

10. The Brandling Villa

Famed for belter burgers, its dog friendly menu and a vast array of whiskies, The Brandling Villa is a short stroll from South Gosforth’s metro and is one of the most popular pubs in NewcastleGateshead.

The Brandling Villa’s famous burger menu includes the hilariously named “Diagnosis: Burger” and “The Dirty Thoughts of Cheryl Cole” (a burger with a Gregg’s sausage roll!) as part of its dining repertoire, as well as a delicious vegan menu and even dishes for dogs!  Don’t miss out on the weekly Pie Nights, Burger Thursday’s and the occasional Sausage Festival. The Brandling Villa is also host to one of the best pub quizzes in the North East. While we’re on the topic, the Villa is not to be confused with The Brandling Arms - another brilliant pub just around the corner on Gosforth High Street, so why not just try both?

11. Brewdog

BrewDog holds its own as a city centre haven for beer lovers. This relaxed and trendy venue on Newcastle’s Dean Street is host to 33 taps of craft beer and a head-swimming choice from all over the world. Hang out, compare beers, play board games and listen to live music in this bustling beer house.

12. Dog and Parrot

Dog and Parrot is the trickiest of all the pubs on this list to place as it is a potential crossover venue which could quite easily sit on our top bars in Newcastle list. A go-to haunt for revellers warming up for a night at Digital or Powerhouse – you are guaranteed a great atmosphere at this lively pub. Whether you are looking to get competitive with your mates over a game of pool, to sip a cool pint on Dog and Parrot’s roof terrace or start a big night ‘out out’ with good music, great drinks and lots of atmosphere – the recently revamped Dog and Parrot is for you. The pub’s now iconic murals of music’s legendary superheroes David Bowie, Prince and the recent addition of Aretha Franklin are worth a pilgrimage.

13. The Redhouse

The Redhouse on Newcastle’s Quayside screams old school pub. It is everything you want from a good ole British pub complete with dark and cosy snug, exposed beams, eclectic décor and open fires. A warren of higgledy-piggledy corridors and rooms, it’s easy to get lost in The Redhouse. Keeping it simple with the food – you have a choice of pies, peas and mash – create your hearty meal just how you like it whether that’s with minted peas or pease pudding; a traditional steak pie or experimental chicken, chorizo and sweet potato pie. Simple, uncomplicated, quality – even your dog will be well looked after when you settle down in one of The Redhouse’s large bowed windows and catch up with your mates.

Let us know where you like to frequent or which pubs you might have stumbled upon – or into - on a visit to Newcastle and Gateshead. We’re always looking for new pubs to make the list!

We’ve also created a list of 13 Bars in Newcastle you really must check out when you are planning your next night out in Newcastle.

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