Arriving into Newcastle Interchange you’ll be greeted by an almost brand new station. Years ago the Newcastle line traveled 3 stations further along closer to the mouth of the Hunter River. Now a new interchange (opened 2017) serves heavy rail into Newcastle city and is the first stop for the Newcastle Light Rail. The interchange does not serve bus routes with many of them being accessible a short walk away on Hunter Street.
The light rail line opened in 2019 with the trams traveling just under 3km from Newcastle Interchange to Newcastle Beach.
It seems there are some provisions for the track to extend further west in the future.
There are 5 stops along the way with most of them being close to cafes, restaurants etc. The trams run fairly frequently, about every 15 minutes.
On a side note you can exit at Queens Wharf and take the ferry across the river to Stockton which is a pleasant short trip. Didn’t do it this time but may another time.
I highly recommend giving the light rail a go if you’re visiting Newcastle. It’s a great way to get from the train station to the more touristy spots with restaurants, bars, cafes and the beach.
If you’re interested in more details check out Transport NSW website for trains and trams.