South Shields Travel Guide

  • Jubilee lifeboat memorial
    Jubilee lifeboat memorial
    by toonsarah
  • Things to Do
    by toonsarah
  • Things to Do
    by toonsarah

South Shields Things to Do

  • The Eye

    Near the north end of Littlehaven is this eye-catching (pun intended!) sculpture by Stephen Broadbent. It is a popular spot for photos as people like to pose with the eye as a frame, though I preferred using it to frame the view beyond – of the beach, the sea and Tynemouth Priory across the river. Around the “iris” are the words:“but my eye could...

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  • Conversation Piece

    Some sculptures are all the better for being in just the right place - think of the Angel of the North or Statue of Liberty, for example – and in its own less dramatic way that is true of the Conversation Piece. A group of 22 figures are dotted around a paved area near the sea at the north end of South Shields’ Littlehaven Beach. They could be...

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  • Littlehaven

    There are two good sized beaches in South Shields, plus a string of smaller ones to the south of town. The main one is larger, busier and sandier, but on our recent walk we were on its neighbour to the north, Littlehaven. This beach is 500 metres long and sheltered by the South Pier of the Tyne, so it’s a popular spot for water sports such as...

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  • The Watch House

    I have long known about the Watch House in Tynemouth but only very recently learned that there is another here in South Shields, on the opposite side of the river mouth. It sits in a prominent position at the land end of the South Pier, a wood-framed building with carved eaves and an octagonal tower. It was built in 1865 as a base for the...

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  • The Tyne lifeboat

    The world’s first purpose built lifeboat was built here in South Shields in 1789 to help rescue seamen from ships in danger off the treacherous coast or swept onto the rocks at the mouth of the river Tyne, known as the Black Middens. This boat was called the “Original” and built by Henry Greathead. The lifeboat Tyne now on display in the town was...

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  • The Jubilee lifeboat memorial

    This prominent memorial stands next to the restored Tyne lifeboat and commemorates the inventor of the world’s first purpose-built lifeboat. Or rather inventors – not because it was a joint effort but because two men lay claim to that honour. William Wouldhave and Henry Greathead (what fabulous names!) both entered a competition as launched to...

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  • So Shields

    These large billboards are part of the output of a team of artists who in the summers of 2011 and 2012 spent time down on the sea front in South Shields meeting local people and visitors to the resort. The project was known as “So Shields”, with “So here being both a word used for emphasis and also an abbreviation of “South”. The artistic team...

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  • Converse

    These 22 bronze life size sculptures were created in 1999 by the Spanish sculptor, Juan Munoz. The figures are located next to the Littlehaven hotel and represent his work titled 'Conversation piece' intended to greet visitors from land and sea. They converse with each other, with those that come to meet them and in turn become the subject of...

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  • Helter Skelter

    South shields has a fairground which opens on Good Friday every year until the end of the summer. Providing your traditional candyfloss and fish and chips fayre it's the place to hang about if you're under the age of 16 or have kids that need entertaining.The rickety old roller coaster can hardly be called a white knuckle ride and the ghost train...

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  • ART GALLERY - Find out something to do?

    Recently re-opened after a £1.4m refurbishment. Major collections in Social History & Art which are represented in two brand new galleries. FREE entry. South Shields Museum has been transformed following a £1million refurbishment. The Museum now includes:The new 'Tales of South Tyneside' gallery, exploring local history during the life and times of...

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  • DAY DOWN THE FAIR AT SOUTH BEACK

    Situated next to Sandhaven Beach, Ocean Beach Pleasure Park is a large amusement park incorporating rides, amusements and games providing you with the best family entertainment. The Park regularly changes attractions and rides to provide visitors with new exciting experiences year on year.Amusement arcade open all year round, rides open peak season...

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  • Old Town Hall

    Before the "New" Town Hall was built in 1910, this building served that purpose. It stands (like so many in this area) in the market square and has a arcaded lower floor that doubles as market space.

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  • New Town Hall

    South Shields town hall is enormous. The tower from it can be seen all around town, like some sort of civic beacon. It dates from 1910, the time when South Shields was at the peak of its prosperity and in some ways looks a bit out of place now. Inside it is fitted out with lavish oak panelling and marble flooring. It is regarded as being one of the...

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  • South Tyneside Museum

    The South Tyneside Museum is a very interesting place - much more so than I imagined it would be. We went in, expecting to spend 10 to 15 minutes in there and came out almost an hour and a half later. The reason for that is that we didn't realise just how much history was associated with South Shields, from the list of famous and infamous people...

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  • The Man With The Donkey

    John Simpson Kirkpatrick was born in South Shields in 1892 but emigrated to Australia. He served with the ANZACs in the ill fated Gallipoli campaign, where he operated as a stretcher bearer. He took wounded men from no-man's land to safety on the back of a donkey and is reconed to have single handedly saved hundreds of men. He worked seemingly...

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  • Ocean Road

    Ocean Road is South Shields' main street, running right through the town centre down to the ocean - hence its name. It is famous for having the greatest density of Indian restauants anywhere in the world - including India itself. The whole of one side of the street is filled with such restaurants (with the odd Italian place thrown in for good...

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  • Lifeboat "Tyne"

    The preserved lifeboat Tyne is the second oldest surviving lifeboat in the world. It stands in pride of place just about where Ocean Road (South Shields' main street) reaches the sea. The monument beside it is to two people (William Woodhave and Henry Greathead), both of whom claimed crdit for the lifeboat. It could not be decided who truly desrved...

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  • Beach

    The beaches at South Shields are one of its finest assets. Miles of clean, golden sand are backed by dunes and pub/cafes. The main beach is very deep too - no thin strip of sand here - which is just as well beacuse on a sunny Bank Holiday weekend it seems like half of Tyneside descends here. That's been true since I was a babe in arms, and nothing...

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South Shields Hotels

  • Premier Inn South Shields

    2 Hobsons Way, South Shields, NE34 9PQ, United Kingdom

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Athol House

    21 Westoe Road, South Shields, NE33 4LS, gb

    Satisfaction: Excellent

    Good for: Couples

  • Little Haven Hotel

    Little Haven offers probably the nicest hotel accomodation in South Shields. It is one of the larger...

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South Shields Restaurants

  • Spice 1 - Best Indian Restaurant in...

    The décor is luxuriously warm with its vibrant colour choice and evokes Indian culture with decorated pieces and ornamental items including a famous painting which has been painted on the back wall surrounded by a fountain and high arched frame. The main restaurant floor is very spacious and looks even more spacious with its high arched ceiling...

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  • Biggest Battered Fish I have EVER seen

    Just outside the Ocean Beach Pleasure Park there is a street kiosk which sells Fish & Chips. For £4 you can get a scoop of chips, and a peice of battered fish. This fish took my breath away, it was the largest peice of cod I have ever seen in my life - they literally put the entire fish into the deep fryer! I desperately wanted to take a picture,...

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  • A Shields Institution

    Minchella's is a South Shields institution. They've had cafes and ice cream outlets in the town seemingly since Roman times. Various members of the family are involved and you'll see a cafe owned by one of them and an ice cream hut owned by another. This cafe is on Ocean Road and it's a typical old fashioned cafe, with formica tables and retro...

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South Shields Nightlife

  • steventilly's Profile Photo

    The Fitzpatrick: Old Schoolhouse

    by steventilly Written Oct 11, 2005

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Fitzpatrick stands on Ocean Road, opposite the South Tyneside museum and beside where the statue of John Kirk Fitzpatrck stands (see elsewhere). The pub itself is not remarkable, being a modern "chain" style of pub, but the building and interior is worth a look, being housed in what once was the school house.

    Dress Code: Anything goes.

    The Fitzpatrick, South Shields

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South Shields Off The Beaten Path

  • jhorsfield30's Profile Photo

    "Conversation Piece"

    by jhorsfield30 Written Aug 1, 2006

    "Conversation Piece"
    Twenty two life size statues overlooking the harbour

    Weird but right along the beach from the fair and dunes arcade and next to north marine park

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Singles
    • Travel with Pets

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South Shields Favorites

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo

    The mouth of the Tyne

    by toonsarah Written Apr 27, 2015

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: One of the pleasures of a walk near the sea in South Shields, especially the northern stretches, is the variety of the outlook – not just the sea but also the river Tyne and all the shipping activity it generates, plus views across the river mouth to Tynemouth and North Shields.

    Perhaps the most distinctive features of these views are the two piers on either side of the river’s entrance, called (prosaically) North Pier and South Pier. These were constructed in the mid 19th century to help prevent silt build up within the river’s shipping channel and to provide some protection for as it entered or left the river. The South Pier, here in South Shields, was finished in 1895. It has a lighthouse at its far point which is still operational today, guiding shipping into the river along with the North Pier lighthouse and that on the smaller Herd Groyne pier which juts out at the north end of Littlehaven, right in the river mouth. The pier is 5,150 feet (1,570 metres) in length and is a popular walk although it is closed in bad weather when waves regularly break over it.

    Looking north from this part of South Shields you can see Tynemouth just across the river, with its ruined priory, statue of Admiral Collingwood and Watch House. To the west (i.e. left) is North Shields, but mostly hidden from view on this sea-facing side of town, though easily seen from the river side.

    All my photos were taken from the land end of the South Pier or the promenade by Littlehaven beach

    South Pier Tynemouth Pier Tynemouth Priory Admiral Collingwood

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