November has arrived and with it, a second national lockdown which puts a large (temporary) full stop on the usual hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping on the high streets of Newcastle and Gateshead. We look forward to welcoming you all back for the joys of Christmas shopping in person in NewcastleGateshead but until then... stay home and stay safe.
With the first whispers of 'Black Friday deals' beginning to float around and the pull to shop online for Christmas gifts during your lockdown evenings, it is tempting to head to the big brands but if you are looking for ways to buy festive presents from North East independent shops and businesses - we have you sorted with a new Virtual Christmas Market!
Surprise your friends, family and other halves with something a bit different this Christmas and at the same time, support local shops, cultural venues and restaurants. Choose from gifts, promises of future experiences in NewcastleGateshead and explore more of what's on offer in Newcastle and Gateshead for local businesses.
We've picked out some highlights from our Virtual Christmas Market so read on for our guide to Christmas shopping online during lockdown and rest assured you are still supporting local businesses across the North East.
For the art lovers out there - take your pick from a fabulous range of original art, ceramics, homeware and jewellery by local artists and available to buy online from The Biscuit Factory. Or why not select one of their bespoke Maker's Parcels created to a theme by local artisans and creatives?
Treat your friends and family to a totally unique gift from local, independent retailer BALTIC Shop who have an online presence too selling vouchers, prints, mugs, Geordie souvenirs 'Bowie' baubles to adorn your Christmas tree, fun jewellery and quirky gifts with an arty focus.
You’ll feel very smug with your purchases and have supported Newcastle and Gateshead shops and creatives while ticking off your Christmas list.
Image from BALTIC Shop.
For any fans of history or friends and family who are enjoy exploring the rich heritage across the North East - choose from a number of guided tour gift vouchers. Available in a number of amounts, Iles Tours gift vouchers can be redeemed against a fascinating range of tours in Newcastle city centre, Northumberland, Durham and Tyneside.
CBK's Adventure Co. sell gift vouchers which can be redeemed once it's safe to do so against their lessons, courses and experiences including the popular winter Quayside Glow Tours where you can discover NewcastleGateshead from a kayak on the River Tyne itself, at night! (Pictured)
We're not sure quite what message you would be giving if you bought a gift voucher to an escape room for a family member at Christmas but we love the creativity! Buy vouchers to take part in a tricky escape challenge when it is safe to do so and buy vouchers for Newcastle's only independent escape room - Escape Key.
Food lovers are well catered for this Christmas over on our Virtual Christmas Market. Choose from vouchers at some of the top restaurants in Newcastle and Gateshead including Trakol, Marco Pierre White and SIX or order a luxury cheese board to be delivered from Matthew's Cheese Specialist who are resident in Grainger Market. Build your own hamper packed with a range of locally-sourced produce from North East Food and Drink's virtual farmer's market.
Order an Afternoon Tea to takeaway as a Christmas surprise for someone during lockdown or buy an afternoon tea gift voucher so that the recipient of your gift can indulge in person in the months to come. Afternoon tea gift vouchers at Jesmond Dene House can also be used for their takeaway Afternoon Teas or try Dreamworld Cakes in Ouseburn also sell gift vouchers.
The lucky recipient of a gift voucher from Blackfriars Restaurant in Newcastle can choose from a range of experiences, a meal out or book a workshop or cookery class.
It's been a tough year for holiday-makers with many cancelled plans and scuppered city breaks. There are so many reasons to visit Newcastle and Gateshead so why not treat a loved one or best pal to a city break in NewcastleGateshead in 2021 so they can visit when it is safe to travel? With hotels, self-catered apartments and B&Bs to suit all budgets, a long weekend or a staycation in the North East can be on the cards for 2021 - even if it is to help someone escape their four walls for one night away. Choose from a range of hotels offering special gift vouchers which can be redeemed at a later date and which make excellent presents. Sleeperz Newcastle (pictured) is ideally suited if arriving in the city by train as it is centrally located whilst Motel One is in the heart of Newcastle and even welcomes dogs. Alternatively, Beamish Hall Hotel provides a luxurious country retreat in beautiful surroundings away from the city.
A trip to the theatre or venue to experience live music and performance is a powerful gift which will create lasting memories. Sadly, it is theatres and performance venues which have been hit really hard during 2020's ongoing coronavirus pandemic but you will know friends and family who have missed the thrill of live events. Ordinarily there would be many different performances, concerts and productions to choose from at venues across the North East during the festive period but this year tells a different story.
Be part of supporting arts and culture in Newcastle and Gateshead and buy a gift voucher for one of the following venues to be redeemed when it is possible to do (please check the terms and conditions at the venue directly at time of purchasing):
If you're looking for an alternative to Netflix subscriptions then give the gift of escapism this Christmas with an online foray into Seven Stories' independent bookshop. The family-friendly attraction in Ouseburn has a fabulous independent bookshop which stocks a great array of signed copies of favourite books and gifts for all your book-loving friends and family. The bookshop is closed during the national lockdown but Seven Stories Bookshop is now part of a collective of independent book shops who are rivalling Amazon with an online presence ready for you to stock up on great children's books this Christmas.
Alternatively, families with older children or those who love the restful joy of an audio tale can now download a new collection of original short stories by Northumberland-based, performing arts charity November Club. The audio tales - Lost Found Told are inspired by traditional fairy tales and draw on the rich heritage, landscape and people of Northumberland. Settle in and listen from the comfort of your home or while you take a stroll and bring your surroundings to life.
A number of local micro breweries across NewcastleGateshead currently sell their craft beers and ales online which will help you recreate Newcastle's pub-life at home this Christmas. Order a delivery of Wylam Brewery's famous Jakehead or Hickey The Rake for the craft beer lovers in your life this Christmas or choose from a selection of Christmas gift packs from Ouseburn-based Brinkburn Brewery.
Image: Wylam Brewery Newcastle delivery
You will no doubt have a friend or family member who has REALLY missed their live football this year. Choose from a range of gift vouchers from Newcastle United including a Stadium Tour & Pub Lunch or Rooftop Tour which will give them the chance to go behind the scenes at the Toon's iconic football stadium which is also one of Newcastle's most iconic landmarks. They will be one step closer to experiencing live sport again!
Award-winning outdoor attraction, Beamish Museum has recently launched an online gift shop which is packed with excellent and unique Christmas gift ideas which reflect the exhibits and collection on show at the museum. From Edwardian-inspired spiced apple bath salts and sweet treats from the museum's famous Jubilee Confectioners onsite sweet shop to Beamish’s own version of Monopoly, hand printed Christmas cards and an exclusive bauble - take your pick from a range of wonderful presents.
Shop from across all nine of the North East museums and galleries managed by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums when you browse their new TWAM online shop. From fine jewellery and crafts offered at Laing Art Gallery to the essentials for walking Hadrian's Wall found at Segedunum Roman Fort, plus much more. This is a brilliant way to support the region's fantastic museums at the same time as giving great Christmas gifts.
Fenwick Newcastle have announced a range of ways to continue shopping during this difficult time. Treat the glamourous friends and family members in your life with a bespoke Christmas hamper from Fenwick Food Hall or why not enlist the help of Father Christmas' very own Elf Delivery Service. What could be better than the arrival of Fenwick Newcastle goodies delivered to the door by an elf on three wheels?
For the cost of a couple of spiced pumpkin lattes or a Gregg's Festive Bake, why not donate a hot meal to the people in Newcastle and Gateshead community who are homeless this Christmas? Local charity North East Homeless will be spreading some much needed Christmas joy to those in real need in our local community on Christmas Eve. The charity and their volunteers will be out on Christmas Eve providing warm Christmas dinners to the most vulnerable. The meals will be a turkey or vegetarian Christmas dinner with all the trimmings prepared by staff and volunteers at their Fish Quay Hub where they will also be serving food.
Find out more and make your £4.99 donation through NEOffer.co.uk's Christmas campaign.
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