15 Best Things To Do Norwich, England

15 Best Things To Do Norwich, England

By will

Located in the east of England, Norwich is a vibrant city full of culture and history. Whether you’re looking for a fun day out or a weekend getaway, there’s plenty to do in this charming city.

From visiting ancient monuments to exploring the local market, there’s something for everyone.

In this article, I’ll share the best 15 things to do in Norwich that you won’t want to miss.

Visit Norwich Cathedral

Norwich Cathedral
Photo by Dave Fergusson

You’ll be in awe of Norwich Cathedral, a stunning medieval church with a captivating history!

Located in the heart of Norwich, the cathedral dates back to the 11th century and is the largest parish church in the United Kingdom.

The cathedral is renowned for its architecture and has a unique mix of styles, ranging from Norman to Perpendicular Gothic. Its most distinctive feature is the spire, which stands at 315 feet tall and is visible from most parts of the city.

Inside, visitors can explore the Romanesque cloisters, the 14th-century Lady Chapel, or the beautifully-painted ceilings. There’s also a museum that houses a collection of religious artifacts and artworks.

Norwich Cathedral also hosts a variety of events throughout the year, including concerts, exhibitions, and guided tours. Whether you’re looking for a peaceful place to reflect or an opportunity to learn about local history, Norwich Cathedral is the perfect destination for those visiting Norwich, England.

Explore the Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery

Norwich - Castle housing museum and art gallery
Photo by Rob Farrow

Experience the history, art, and culture of Norwich at the Castle Museum and Art Gallery. Get up close and personal with artifacts and artworks that span centuries, all in one place!

Explore the Roman, Anglo-Saxon, and Medieval periods of history by examining the artifacts on display. Some notable artifacts include the 12th-century Norwich Cross, the 12th-century Norwich Buckle, and the 15th-century East Anglian King’s Cup.

Marvel at the fascinating art collection, featuring works from the 16th to the 20th centuries. Discover the Norwich School of Artists, including John Crome, George Vincent, and Edward Boardman.

Learn about the local history and culture of Norwich by exploring the museum’s exhibits. These exhibits include interactive displays, photographs, films, and audio recordings.

Take part in one of the museum’s fun and educational events to gain a deeper understanding of the city’s past and present.

Whether you’re looking for a fun day out or an educational experience, the Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery is the perfect place to explore the history, art, and culture of this vibrant English city.

Take a Stroll Along the River Wensum

River Wensum
Photo by Hugh Venables

Stroll along the peaceful River Wensum and take in the stunning scenery of this historic city.

The River Wensum is home to some of the most beautiful and significant sights in Norwich, including the city’s iconic and ancient Norwich Cathedral.

As you walk along the river, you can spot the medieval castle keep, the remains of a Roman fort, and the city’s oldest bridge, the Bishop’s Bridge.

You can also see the beautiful Adnam Gardens, lined with trees and colorful flowers, and the impressive Guildhall, a historically-significant building.

The River Wensum is a great place for a leisurely stroll, and it’s a great way to enjoy the beauty and culture of Norwich.

You can explore the river’s banks, relax on its grassy shore, and watch the boats pass by.

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The river is a popular spot for fishing, canoeing, and kayaking, and it’s home to a variety of wildlife.

Whether you’re looking for a peaceful stroll or an outdoor adventure, the River Wensum is the perfect place to explore.

Go Shopping at the Norwich Market

Take a trip to the bustling Norwich Market and discover a variety of unique and interesting items from local vendors.

From handmade jewelry to unique antiques and vintage items, you’ll find something that catches your eye.

With a wide selection of local produce, including fresh fruits and vegetables, you can fill your pantry with the best of Norfolk’s goods.

Plus, you can browse the selection of fresh breads, meats, cheeses, and preserves from local producers.

Explore the many shops and stalls that make up Norwich Market, and find yourself in something of a time warp.

The market has been around since the 12th century, and much of the atmosphere and charm has been preserved.

Be sure to take the time to chat with the vendors, who are passionate about their goods and the city of Norwich.

Who knows, you might even find a unique item that you can take home as a reminder of your trip!

Attend a Performance at Norwich Theatre Royal

Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of Norwich by attending a performance at the historic Theatre Royal. Located in the city center, the Theatre Royal is the longest continuously running theater in the United Kingdom.

It opened in 1758 and has been providing quality entertainment ever since. The theater offers a variety of shows throughout the year, from Broadway-style musicals to classic plays. Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly show or a romantic evening out, the Theatre Royal has something to offer.

The theater is also known for its beautiful architecture. The design is based on the traditional style of 18th-century theaters, with red velvet seats, ornate decorations, and a stunning auditorium. It is a great place to take in the beauty of the city while enjoying a night out on the town.

The Theatre Royal also has a restaurant and bar, so you can grab a bite to eat before the show. With its long history of providing quality entertainment, the Theatre Royal is a must-see when in Norwich.

Visit the Dragon Hall Medieval Trading Centre

Discover the unique history of Norwich at the Dragon Hall Medieval Trading Centre.

Step back in time and explore the life of merchants in medieval England. This 15th century trading hall is the only one of its kind in the country and the only one remaining in the world.

Immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of medieval England while exploring the building’s rich history.

Take a guided tour and learn about the merchants who used to do business in the hall. From the Great Hall to the Undercroft, you’ll be able to explore the whole building, including its intricate woodwork and unique interior. You’ll even be able to see some of the original tools and artifacts used by traders in the past.

After the tour, you can also visit the gift shop to find souvenirs for yourself or a loved one.

The Dragon Hall Medieval Trading Centre is an incredible experience that will be remembered for years to come.

Enjoy a Tour of Elm Hill

Experience the charm of Elm Hill, a picturesque cobbled street in Norwich filled with historic buildings dating back to the 14th century.

Stroll down the cobbled street, and take in the sights of the fascinating buildings, including thatched cottages, Tudor houses, and timber-framed buildings.

As you explore the street, you’ll notice how each building has its own unique character, thanks to the history and craftsmanship that went into the construction of the buildings.

Another way to experience Elm Hill is to take a guided tour. A knowledgeable guide will provide interesting facts about the street and the buildings you can visit.

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You can also learn about the history and culture of the area, such as the legends and stories that are associated with the street.

So, don’t miss out on the opportunity to explore one of the oldest streets in Norwich and experience its history and charm.

Have Fun at the Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library

For a fun and educational day out, head to the Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library in Norwich, England. The library is a modern building with a wide range of resources and activities for all ages.

Inside, visitors can find a wide variety of books, magazines, newspapers, audio-visual materials, and more. There are also plenty of activities to enjoy, such as story-telling sessions, theatre performances, book clubs, and workshops.

The library also hosts regular exhibitions and events, including book launches, author talks, and other cultural activities. The library also has a café and a shop, making it a great place to spend the day and explore.

It’s a great place to relax, learn something new, and get lost in the world of books.

Relax at the Forum

Unwind and take a break from your day at the Forum in Norwich. Located in the heart of the city, this modern building is home to a variety of attractions and activities.

Inside, you’ll find a movie theater, multiple restaurants, a bowling alley, and a modern art gallery. The Forum also has a large open area where you can relax and take in the sights and sounds of Norwich. Take a seat in one of the plush chairs and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere.

The Forum has something for everyone. If you’re looking for fun, you can take a spin on the bowling alley or catch a movie in the theater. If you’d rather take it easy, you can browse the art gallery or try some of the restaurants. There are plenty of options to keep you entertained and relaxed.

Whether you’re looking for a unique experience or just a place to take a break, The Forum in Norwich has it all.

Take a Day Trip to the Norfolk Broads

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and explore the natural beauty of Norfolk Broads. Just a short drive away from Norwich, the Norfolk Broads is a great day trip destination.

The Broads is a network of navigable rivers and lakes, making it an ideal spot for a day of relaxation. Take a peaceful boat trip and enjoy the fresh air and stunning views of the countryside. Or, take a guided tour of the area and learn about the fascinating history and wildlife that call the Broads home.

With a diverse array of activities to choose from, there’s something for everyone in the Norfolk Broads. Enjoy a spot of fishing, go bird-watching, or take a leisurely walk along the many footpaths. If you’re looking for a spot to unwind, the Norfolk Broads is the perfect place to visit.

Explore Norwich’s Nightlife

Embrace the vibrant nightlife in Norwich and experience the city’s bustling bars and clubs.

With a fantastic selection of pubs, bars, clubs, and live music venues, Norwich has something for everyone.

From traditional pubs to craft beer bars, laid-back clubs to lively live music venues, you’ll find the perfect place to let your hair down and have a great night out.

A great option is to head to Tombland, a vibrant area in the heart of the city, where you can enjoy a lively atmosphere, great drinks, and delicious food.

There are also a range of popular clubs, such as Brickmakers, which offer a range of music and drinks to suit all tastes.

Whatever you’re looking for, Norwich has it all when it comes to nightlife.

Enjoy a Meal at a Local Pub

Relax and indulge in a delicious meal at one of Norwich’s iconic pubs. There’s nothing quite like a traditional English pub meal and Norwich has plenty to offer.

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From the classic fish and chips to the more modern and refined dishes, there’s something for everyone. Many of the pubs in Norwich are set in beautiful historic buildings with a warm and inviting atmosphere, perfect for a cozy evening out.

Not only do the pubs serve delicious food, but they also offer a great selection of local beers, ciders, and wines for you to enjoy. Whether you’re looking for a quiet evening with a pint and a bite, or you’re in the mood for a hearty meal and a few drinks, there’s a pub in Norwich to suit everyone’s needs.

Explore the Plantation Garden

Uncover the hidden gem of Plantation Garden in Norwich, a stunning Victorian walled garden that boasts a diverse range of exotic plants and flowers. Located in the heart of the city, the garden is a tranquil oasis away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Nestled among the walls and terraces, you’ll find an abundance of trees, shrubs, herbs, and plants that stretch out in front of you. The garden is a perfect place to take a peaceful stroll, admire the various blooms, and relax in the peaceful atmosphere.

Visitors can also explore the garden’s many winding paths and discover the charming rockeries, fountains, and sculptures that have been carefully crafted by the gardeners. You can also take advantage of the garden’s café, where you can enjoy a delicious snack and refreshment while taking in the beauty of the garden.

Plantation Garden is a must-visit when in Norwich, offering a unique and special experience for all ages.

Go Birdwatching at Cley Marshes

Experience a unique wildlife adventure at Cley Marshes, a renowned nature reserve in Norfolk, England.

Located on the North Norfolk coast, it’s a birdwatcher’s paradise, with over 50 species of birds to be observed.

From avocets and bitterns to marsh harriers and wigeons, this is a great spot for birdwatching.

The reserve is also a great place to explore the diverse habitat of the area, with its freshwater marsh, reedbeds, saltmarsh, and shingle ridges.

You can also visit the visitor center to learn more about the birds that call Cley Marshes home.

Whether you’re a bird enthusiast or just looking for a peaceful spot to relax, Cley Marshes offers something for everyone.

There are plenty of trails to explore and a range of events throughout the year.

You can even join an exclusive guided tour of the marshes with a local bird expert.

Enjoy a unique experience at one of the UK’s oldest nature reserves and witness the beauty of the diverse wildlife of Cley Marshes.

Visit the Norfolk and Norwich Festival

Embark on an engaging journey through the Norfolk and Norwich Festival, a vibrant celebration of the arts held annually in the city.

This festival has been running for over 20 years, attracting thousands of visitors to the city each year to enjoy art, music, theatre, and dance performances.

There are also plenty of food and drink stalls, as well as family-friendly activities, making it a great event to experience with the whole family.

The festival is held in various locations throughout the city, with many performances taking place in the beautiful Cathedral Close.

One of the main attractions is the Lantern Parade, a magical procession of brightly lit lanterns that make their way through the city streets, bringing a sense of celebration and joy to all who experience it.

There is also the spectacular finale of the festival, featuring fireworks, live music, and theatre performances.

Whether you’re looking for a cultural experience, a fun day out, or a unique way to explore the city, the Norfolk and Norwich Festival is sure to offer something for everyone.

Conclusion

I had a great time exploring Norwich, England. From admiring the majestic Norwich Cathedral to attending a performance at the Norwich Theatre Royal, there’s something for everyone.

I especially enjoyed the local pubs, where I was able to sample traditional English cuisine.

The Plantation Garden and Cley Marshes were also highlights of my trip.

I would definitely recommend that anyone visiting Norwich take some time to explore these attractions.

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt so at home in a foreign city, and I can’t wait to come back and experience more of what Norwich has to offer!

About the author

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