I’m Carli and I’m a proper Northerner. I was brought up by the sea and spent my life as a ‘grown up’ in Middlesbrough and I couldn’t be prouder to be a Teessider. I own The Olde Young Tea House based in Middlesbrough and have been brewing up a storm for 6 whole years, feeding my yummy treats and tantalising tea leaves to the masses. I also run The Tea Bee blog where I try and taste my way through Teesside, Middlesbrough and the surrounding areas to uncover hidden gems and support my local independents.
I moved to Middlesbrough when I was 18 and I’ve been here ever since. It is the next biggest town from my little seaside home of Saltburn. When I moved here it was to attend college and it seemed a million miles away from home (a mere 20 mins car ride) and it just stole a little piece of my heart. I love the area, I’m proud of the industry and you’re 10 minutes from the countryside, the beach and there are strong links to bigger cities such as Newcastle and Leeds and not to mention the fast train link down to London. Here are some tips for exploring Middlesbrough as a local...
When a friend comes to explore Middlesbrough, the first place I take them to is my little tea house because tea and cake is always number one. Middlesbrough has its nice parts and its grotty parts like every other town. My shop is a step away from this and it shows there is more to the town with nice little places and independents creating an amazing community together to really push this town forward.
Summer is the best time of the year to explore Middlesbrough because it really shows it in a different light. We are very industrial with a lot of grey and darker looking buildings. When the sun shines you really appreciate the structures and what the town has to offer. Everything is so bright and the people of Middlesbrough love a good sunny day.
Before exploring Middlesbrough you should read something about the history of the town. It’s so interesting to look at how the town looked all them years ago and how independent it was. From the tug boats to the steel industry and from the football to our historic landmarks.
You get the best view of the city from the Transporter Bridge. You can see for miles around. To look up and see the hills all around Teesside makes me super proud to be where we are. You can see all the industry shaping this area into a very proud town.
I recommend The Curing House on Bedford Street for breakfast because oh my, French toast with dry cured bacon is exactly what you need to set you up for the day. It’s one of the newer independent businesses and they’ve really got it down to a tee.
A good place to enjoy a coffee is Bedford Street Coffee. Again another new independent but they’ve smashed the coffee industry. I am not a coffee drinker myself but have had a little try of their blends and this place is a must.
Barbarossa Pizza Kitchen & Bar on Bedford Street is a great spot for dinner – their sourdough pizzas are to die for. Super fresh ingredients and the passion these fellas have for a doughy piece of heaven is fantastic.
If you only do one touristy thing in the city, make sure you go and try a parmo because you havn’t really experienced Middlesbrough until you’ve tried one. It’s a flattened chicken fillet rolled in breadcrumbs, slathered in béchamel sauce, cheese and finished off with a side of chips, salad and our good old garlic sauce.
People think Middlesbrough is ‘the worse place to live’ – thanks Kirsty and Phil, but it’s actually a fantastic community spirited place to live. Every town has their good and bad parts but we are all super proud of who we are. One of the best things to do for free while exploring Middlesbrough is to go for a roam in one of our beautiful parks such as Albert and Stewart. Rowing lakes, ducks, swans, goats and museums right next door. What more could you wish for on a free day out?
Not many people know about the Boho area of Middlesbrough. It’s an up and coming part of town that was a really run down area for quite some time but is now on the up with many bars, restaurants and creative businesses opening and so much potential.
If I had to pick a favourite neighbourhood, it would be Linthorpe. It’s where I lived when I first moved here. Quite arty and student based due to Cleveland College of Art and Design in the heart of this area. There are a couple of independents and tree filled avenues, perfect for a picture or two.
Baker Street is a good area for shopping, here you’ll find vintage shops, interior shops, beauticians and a fair few foodie joints too.
The Baker Street and Bedford Street area has the best nightlife – the little independent pubs and bars are the perfect places to get your night started. A cheeky cocktail in the Nuthatch? A pint of Pilsner at The Chairman? Maybe a delightful scotch egg from The Twisted Lip to go with one of the real ales? A stones through away from Tea House HQ makes this very very tempting after a busy baking day.
Don’t leave Middlesbrough without trying a slab of chocolate cake at my little place. It is the perfect end to a Teesside trip exploring Middlesbrough. Once you’ve had a taste of our delights you’re sure to be back for more.
- Flights to Middlesbrough