To see reminders of Newcastle’s maritime history, take your kids for a walk along the Shipwreck Walk in Stockton. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, many ships were shipwrecked as they tried to navigate entry in Newcastle Harbour. Today, it’s a great family walk which combines history with scenic views.
If you’re coming from the Stockton ferry terminal, wander along the foreshore and enjoy the views back to Newcastle. It’s a flat walk 15 minute to the start of the breakwater. To keep kids occupied, you can do the Newy with Kids Stockton Foreshore Scavenger Hunt.
You can even stop for a swim before you venture out to the Shipwreck walk.
It’s estimated that over 200 vessels were lost entering or leaving Newcastle Harbour and their memories as you wander down Stockton breakwater. Although the remains of timber ships didn’t remain, the wrecks and hulls of steel and iron ships remained and were used in the construction of the breakwater.
It’s an easy stroll along the flat paved track so suitable for strollers or wheelchairs. Just be mindful during big seas as waves can wash over the path. There’s also feral cats along here too so take care.
From here, there’s great views of Nobbys Lighthouse and any coal ships entering or leaving the harbour.
As you walk along the path, look down to see the plaques marking the ships and the years they sunk.
This rusted hulk is what remains of the Aldolphe, a French ship which had sailed from Antwerp, Belgium. The ship was caught in huge waves and was pushed onto the wreck of the Colonist, an earlier shipwreck. Although the 47 men were successfully rescued, the Adolphe unfortunately was wrecked and remains a remnant of the Stockton shipwrecks.
Venture out to the viewing platform for a better look at the hulk as well as views of the mighty Stockton bridge in the distance.
Keep your eyes peeled for seals as you can often spot them on the rocks or splashing in the water.
If you’re coming from Newcastle, you can catch the ferry from Queens Wharf and walk to the breakwater. If you’re driving to Stockton, there’s parking available near the breakwater.
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