Newcastle is bordered by Cooks Hill, Hamilton and Wickham. Across the river sit the suburbs of Carrington and Stockton. The Port of Newcastle is the largest bulk shipping port on the east coast of Australia and the world’s leading coal export port. However, despite nicknames over the years such as “Steel City” and “Coal Town”, Newcastle is shedding much of its previous blue collar image in favour of a vibrant arts and technology-focused future.
“OVERLOOKING THE OCEAN AT THE END OF NEWCASTLE BEACH IS KING EDWARD PARK. THE PARK BOASTS ROLLING GRASSY PLAINS THAT CREATE A NATURAL AMPHITHEATRE WITH AN ORIGINAL VICTORIAN ROTUNDA IN THE CENTRE.”
Originally occupied by the Awabakal and Worimi people, Newcastle was discovered by Europeans in 1797. It was known as a “hellhole” because many dangerous convicts were sent there to work in the mines. By 1823 Newcastle had become a typical Australian pioneer settlement and began to attract free settlers. In the 1920s the Newcastle arts scene started to blossom despite the heavy influence of mining and ship-building in the region. Now the suburb has a selection of historical structures, from the convict-built “Bogey Hole” ocean pool, to Fort Scratchley, which was built in 1882, to the stunning Christ Church Cathedral overlooking Newcastle and the 1930s art deco University House on King Street.