15 Best Things to Do in Nottingham, England

15 Best Things to Do in Nottingham, England

By will

Are you looking for a fun and exciting adventure in Nottingham, England?

Look no further!

Nottingham is the perfect place to experience the best of British culture with its numerous attractions and activities.

Whether you’re seeking history, culture, or outdoor activities, there’s something for everyone here.

This article will take you on a journey through some of the best things to do in Nottingham so that you can make the most of your time in this vibrant city.

1. Visit Wollaton Hall

Wollaton Hall
Photo by Alan Murray-Rust

Nestled in the heart of Nottinghamshire is the grand Wollaton Hall, a Jacobean-style mansion that’s sure to take your breath away.

Built between 1580 and 1588 by Sir Francis Willoughby and designed by Robert Smythson, this stunning structure is full of surprises.

Inside and out, it’s simply awe-inspiring.

The magnificent exterior features an expansive terrace lined with statues, grand staircases down to a garden courtyard, and beautifully landscaped gardens where you can soak up the sun or take a leisurely stroll.

Inside, you’ll find lavish furnishings, marble fireplaces, and intricate carvings that will transport you back in time.

Wander through the great hall and explore the historic rooms filled with antiques, paintings, and tapestries – all while enjoying views of the surrounding grounds.

To top it off, there’s also a Natural History Museum where you can discover more about Nottinghamshire’s history.

All in all, Wollaton Hall is definitely worth visiting when in Nottingham!

2. Visit The Arboretum

Victorian flower garden, Nottingham Arboretum
Photo by Alan Murray-Rust

From the grandeur of Wollaton Hall, we now turn our attention to another one of Nottingham’s must-see destinations: The Arboretum.

This beautiful park is a delightful place to enjoy some time outdoors, with plenty of walks and activities to keep everyone entertained.

The Arboretum is home to an abundance of wildlife, so be sure to bring your camera for lots of photo opportunities.

The park also offers a range of facilities, including a café and children’s play area.

The Arboretum has something for everyone; from its formal gardens and trees to its open green spaces and ponds.

You can wander around the grounds and explore the different areas as you go, or take part in engaging activities like birdwatching or orienteering.

There are also plenty of interesting events taking place throughout the year, such as musical performances and nature talks.

All in all, The Arboretum is an enjoyable way to spend your day in Nottingham – it’s a great escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life that will provide hours of fun for all ages.

3. Visit National Justice Museum

National Justice Museum
Photo by Alex McGregor

Nestled in the heart of Nottingham lies the National Justice Museum – a captivating destination for those keen to explore England’s rich history.

The museum is a unique blend of interactive displays, film installations, and historical artifacts that bring an unforgettable experience to life.

From the moment you step inside this fascinating building, you’ll be transported back in time to explore the development of law and justice through the ages.

The National Justice Museum offers a range of activities for visitors, from exploring its iconic cells and courtrooms to experiencing its immersive tours and theatrical performances.

In addition to these experiences, guests can also delve into its rich collections of objects covering crime, punishment, and policing.

Take your time as you wander through this incredible building and discover something new at every turn.

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Whether you’re interested in learning more about Britain’s legal system or just want to soak up some culture, the National Justice Museum is sure to provide something special for everyone who visits.

4. Explore City Of Caves

If you’re looking for an exciting and unique experience while in Nottingham, England, a must-see is the City of Caves.

Located beneath the Broadmarsh Shopping Centre, this remarkable network of caves has been around since Roman times and is now a popular tourist destination.

The tour begins with an audio-visual presentation that explains the historical significance of the caves.

You can then explore on your own and discover their hidden secrets such as underground tunnels and passageways.

The atmosphere underground is also quite atmospheric; as you wander through the dark winding corridors, you can almost feel your subconscious desire for freedom come alive.

With interesting facts and anecdotes from your guide, plus plenty of photo opportunities throughout the tour, you’ll leave feeling like a true explorer!

Along with marveling at these ancient sites, visitors can also enjoy some delicious refreshments in the cafe located within the caves – making it an ideal spot for a day out with friends or family.

5. Visit Nottingham Castle

Nottingham Castle is a must-see for anyone visiting Nottingham.

Located in the heart of the city, it’s perched atop a natural sandstone outcrop and offers stunning views of the surrounding areas.

Within its walls, visitors can explore its magnificent grounds, which include a chapel and an exhibition that tells the story of King Richard III’s reign over England.

It’s also home to an interesting collection of artifacts from across the centuries – including archaeological objects such as coins, pottery, and weapons.

The castle also has some great entertainment options for those looking for something to do during their visit.

There are guided tours available year-round that tell stories about Nottingham’s history, or take part in outdoor activities such as archery and jousting.

After exploring the castle grounds and soaking up its captivating atmosphere, you can grab a bite to eat at one of the various eateries found nearby or take in some local culture with performances from Theatres & Music Groups.

Whether you’re looking for an exciting day out or just want to soak up some history, Nottingham Castle is definitely worth checking out!

6. Visit Nottingham Playhouse

At Nottingham Playhouse, you enter a world of theatre and performance that is second to none.

The building itself is impressive, with its Grade II listed status making it an architectural gem in the city center.

Inside, you will find three auditoria, offering a range of productions from large-scale musicals to small, intimate plays.

There’s also a cafe bar and restaurant if you want to take in some refreshments before or after the performance.

The theatre has been entertaining audiences since 1929 and continues to do so today.

This historic venue has hosted stars such as Judi Dench, Kenneth Branagh, and Ian McKellen – a testament to its reputation for excellence.

It also offers workshops for children, giving them the chance to explore their creative side in a safe environment.

Whether it’s a serious drama or an uplifting musical, there’s something for everyone at Nottingham Playhouse – an experience that will stay with you long after you’ve left the building.

7. Explore Old Market Square

Right after visiting the historic Nottingham Playhouse, take some time to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere of Old Market Square.

This charming square is located in the heart of the city, and it’s a great place to spend some quality time with family and friends.

It offers plenty of green spaces perfect for picnics or simply relaxing while soaking in the views.

The square features an impressive array of restaurants, bars, and shops, so you can easily find something to do here no matter your tastes.

From traditional pubs and traditional English fare to international cuisine, there is something here for everyone.

You can also find a range of unique boutiques selling everything from vintage clothing to handmade jewelry.

If you’re looking for an exciting evening out, check out one of the many events that take place at Old Market Square throughout the year.

From live bands performing on stage to outdoor movie screenings, there’s always something going on here.

So come explore this delightful public space and make some memorable moments during your stay in Nottingham!

8. Shop At The Lace Market

If you’re looking for an authentic shopping experience in Nottingham, then the Lace Market is a must-visit.

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Located just around the corner from the city center, this area boasts a variety of independent stores, galleries, and boutiques that offer everything from handmade crafts to quirky finds.

Whether you’re window-shopping or searching for something special, you’ll find it here.

The historic cobbled streets are lined with traditional buildings, which feature beautiful facades and intricate details.

There’s something for everyone here – from vintage clothes to unique homewares – so make sure to explore every nook and cranny.

You’ll also find some great places to eat and drink throughout the area; stop at one of the many cafes or pubs for a spot of lunch or to enjoy a refreshing pint.

All in all, The Lace Market offers a truly unique shopping experience that’s not to be missed when visiting Nottingham!

9. Experience The Theatre Royal & Royal Concert Hall

Nottingham’s Theatre Royal and Royal Concert Hall are two of the most iconic venues in the city.

Located in the heart of the city, these venues offer a range of cultural experiences from big-name musicals to classical concerts.

Whether you’re looking for a night out with friends or an evening of high-brow culture, this is the place for you.

The Theatre Royal has been entertaining audiences since 1865, and today it offers everything from drama to comedy and musicals.

With its huge stage, amazing acoustics, and comfortable seating, it’s no surprise that this venue is popular with locals and tourists alike.

As well as hosting touring productions from around the world, the theatre also puts on its own shows throughout the year.

The Royal Concert Hall also features an impressive array of performances; whether you want to see a classical concert or watch some jazz, there’s something here for everyone.

Both venues offer an unforgettable experience that’ll make any visit to Nottingham special.

10. Visit The Exchange

The Exchange in Nottingham, England is a must-visit for those looking to explore the city.

Located in the heart of the city and surrounded by shops, bars, and restaurants, it’s an ideal spot to while away an afternoon.

Step inside and you’ll be instantly transported to another world; the building itself is a former Victorian library, with high ceilings and ornate detailing.

The Exchange boasts a range of activities for all ages, from interactive art installations and workshops to live music events.

There’s even a cafe where you can enjoy a coffee or light meal after wandering around the building.

For those seeking adventure, there’s The Adventure Centre which offers activities such as climbing walls, zip wires, and archery.

Whether you’re looking for something fun or educational, The Exchange has something for everyone!

Don’t forget to take some time out in the Peace Garden too – it’s an oasis of calm amidst all the hustle and bustle of the city center.

11. Explore Sherwood Forest

No visit to Nottingham is complete without exploring Sherwood Forest, the legendary home of the outlaw Robin Hood.

This ancient woodland is located just outside of Nottingham and spans over 1,000 acres. Here, you’ll find plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities such as walking, cycling, and horse riding.

There is also a network of paths that take you through the forest’s diverse habitats, so you can observe a variety of wildlife in its natural environment.

The forest has some great historical sites too, including the Major Oak which is believed to have been Robin Hood’s hideaway.

This majestic oak tree stands proud at over 800 years old and is widely considered to be one of Britain’s oldest trees!

The forest also features the ruins of King John’s Hunting Lodge, plus a visitor center with an excellent exhibition about the history and wildlife found in Sherwood Forest.

So if you’re looking for an escape from city life, then look no further than Sherwood Forest – it’s sure to give you a taste of freedom like no other!

12. Visit Meadow Lane Stadium

If you’re a sports enthusiast visiting Nottingham, then make sure to visit Meadow Lane Stadium.

This iconic venue has been home to Notts County Football Club since 1910.

It’s an incredibly evocative place and one that you simply must experience for yourself.

A trip to the stadium will allow you to get up close and personal with the ground’s impressive architecture.

You can wander around the terraces, soak up the atmosphere and take in the views from each of its four stands.

The stadium is also home to a museum where visitors can learn about the history of the club, view memorabilia, and even walk down the tunnel onto the pitch itself.

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Meadow Lane is definitely worth a visit if you’re looking to explore one of England’s most historic sporting venues.

Whether it’s taking in a game or just soaking up some local culture, this is one location that will give any traveler an unforgettable experience.

13. Visit National Ice Centre

The next stop on your Nottingham, England itinerary is the National Ice Centre.

Here you’ll find yourself surrounded by a world-class ice rink and an Olympic-size ice hockey arena.

Whether you’re a spectator or a participant, this is sure to be one of the most thrilling experiences of your visit.

You can take in a game of ice hockey in the warm embrace of the arena’s grandstands, or take to the ice yourself for some recreational skating.

The center also hosts figure skating classes, curling leagues, and slalom ski competitions – there’s something to appeal to all tastes.

Take advantage of all that the National Ice Centre has to offer and enjoy its high-tech facilities.

There are concessions available throughout the day and night, while dedicated coaches are always on hand to help you hone your skills.

So make sure you bring along your skates and get ready for an unforgettable experience!

14. Visit The Glee Club Nottingham

The Glee Club Nottingham is a must-see destination when visiting Nottingham.

An award-winning comedy venue, the Glee Club offers locals and visitors alike an evening of non-stop laughter and fun.

From top international comedians to local talent, you can be sure to be entertained at this popular spot.

The venue itself is modern and comfortable with plenty of seating areas, so you can find the perfect spot to enjoy your night out.

The stage is large and allows for great visuals, making it easy to appreciate the performance from any angle in the room.

Plus, the sound system is state-of-the-art so you’ll get crystal-clear audio all night long.

To make your experience even more enjoyable, why not take advantage of the Glee Club’s renowned food and drinks menu?

They serve delicious meals that are sure to tantalize your taste buds as well as a wide selection of beers, wines, spirits, and cocktails – perfect for getting into the spirit of things!

So don’t miss out on this exciting nightlife option while in Nottingham – head down to The Glee Club today!

15. Play In The Nottingham Bowl

For a fun and exciting day of bowling, head to the Nottingham Bowl! This lively alley allows visitors to take on a classic game with a modern flair.

Enjoy the classic lanes along with great music, delicious food, and an exciting atmosphere.

Get your friends together for some friendly competition or join in one of the many tournaments held at the Nottingham Bowl.

It’s a great way to spend an afternoon or evening with family and friends.

The Nottingham Bowl is suitable for all ages and skill levels.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced bowler, they offer plenty of options to enjoy.

The staff is friendly and helpful, so everyone can have a good time in a safe environment.

They also provide all the necessary equipment including bowling balls, shoes, and scorecards.

Plus, their concession stand offers snacks and drinks that make it easy to refuel between games!

So if you’re looking for some active entertainment in Nottingham, grab your friends and head over to the Nottingham Bowl for an enjoyable time filled with laughs and memories!

Best Things to Do in Nottingham – Final Thoughts

In conclusion, Nottingham offers a wide variety of activities for all types of travelers.

From exploring historical sites like Wollaton Hall and Nottingham Castle to enjoying the nightlife at The Glee Club, there’s something to please everyone.

I especially enjoyed visiting the City of Caves and learning about its fascinating history.

Nottingham is a great place to explore and create lasting memories.

It has so much to offer, including beautiful parks, amazing restaurants, and plenty of entertainment options.

Whether you’re looking for culture or adventure, you won’t be disappointed.

Overall, I had an incredible time in Nottingham.

It quickly became one of my favorite cities in England and I can’t wait to go back!

With so many things to do, I’m sure you’ll have just as enjoyable of an experience as I did.

FAQs

What are the best things to do in Nottingham with kids?

The best things to do in Nottingham with kids are visiting the Wollaton Hall and Park, the City of Caves, and the Nottingham Industrial Museum.

What to do during the day in Nottingham?

The best things to do during the day in Nottingham are visiting the Go Ape Sherwood Pines, the Lost City Adventure Golf, and the Nottingham Treasure Hunt Trail.

Is Nottingham worth visiting?

Yes, Nottingham is worth visiting because it is known as one of the UK’s top destinations and has amazing attractions for kids and adults.

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About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.