This week I was in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne and visited a few tourist must-dos. I started with The Great Northern Museum: Hancock which packs a lot in for a small-ish museum. They have a great exhibition on Hadrian's wall, with personas of people from the time telling you about the wall. The have a great collection of ancient artifacts like a Corinthian helmet and an Egyptian mummy, and even a replica T-Rex skeleton.
The piece de resistance is the massive Dippy The Diplodocus skeleton in a large exhibition room with a fantastic projection exhibition that teaches kids about climate change. The museum is a great way to spend a couple of hours.
I also went full tourist and joined the free tour of the Newcastle Castle, which was excellent. Bill the tour guide took us around the outskirts of the castle and told us about the history of the castle and its many uses through the ages. In 1080 Robert Curthose (shortpants), son of William The Conqueror, built a wooden castle on the site and sent word back to his father that he had built a "New Castle Upon The Tyne", and hence the name of the city. The castle itself has been used for all sorts of things like a prison and beer cellar among other things.
In 1975 the exterior was repaired in the style of what it would have looked like, which is an amazing mindset shift. Thinking of castles as amazing straight-lined stone buildings was a big whoaa moment for me! :-) After the tour, you pay to enter the castle and see some of what was talked about on the tour, plus you get to go on the roof and see amazing views over the city and the river, like the photo above.