The port city of Hartlepool, with a population of a little under 100,000 people, lies upon the coast of the North Sea to the South of Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. The unique combination of over 1,000 years of history and some of the best shopping in the area await the tourist or traveller. There is much to see, and an untold number of stories to hear while visiting Hartlepool. Boasting a collection of attractions to suit all tastes, much of it begins with the beautiful setting where one can witness the flora and fauna amongst some terrific coastline.
Many that visit Hartlepool make their first visit a visit to the award winning Hartlepool Maritime Experience, a wonderful re-creation of an eighteenth century seaport. Allowing you to travel back in time to the days of the Battle of Trafalgar and to conjure up visions of Napoleon and Nelson and can capture the feeling of what it must have been like to have been on a naval frigate two centuries ago while boarding the HMS Trincomalee. Fully restored and the oldest vessel of her type that remains afloat today, this classic British frigate of the Napoleonic Era is a sight to behold.
After visiting the Hartlepool Maritime Experience a visit to the Heugh Gun Battery Museum seems like a natural transition. Suffering heavy bombardment during World War I by a trio of German battle cruisers, the Heugh Gun Battery defended the town at the Headland’s and visitors can get a feel for what it must have been like to be part of this siege.
If visiting historic buildings is your cup of tea, then a visit to St. Hilda’s Church standing on a 7th century monastery site is just waiting for you to take in the breathtaking beauty of this 12th century construction. With Hartlepool being a major seaport virtually since it was founded, a visit to the docks that were constructed during the Industrial Revolution is also in order.
With fishing, hiking, beaches, cycling, and golf all on the agenda, the area surrounding Hartlepool offers some of the best venues in the area. Seaton Carew, one of the first 50 golf courses built in the world, and frequently host for many championship events, is nearby as are the Hartlepool Golf Club and the High Throston Golf Club. Being a seaport, one can combine a round of golf with an invigorating walk amongst all of the fresh sea air.
For those that are looking for a little “retail therapy” Hartlepool offers the Middleton Grange Shopping Centre with over 120 shops and an indoor market hall. The third largest shopping centre in the North East; you should have no problems finding that something special as you browse the many shops contained within. For the more adventurous why not undertake the challenges of boulder climbing at Summerhill or the all new Walk-on-Water experience available at the Marina.
A number of landmarks can also be found dedicated to the cartoon character Andy Capp, created by Reg Smythe who lived in Hartlepool. Hartlepool is the inspirational setting for the Andy Capp cartoon series that originated in 1957.