Home of the tyrannical sheriff from the stories, Nottingham is one of the best places to visit in the United Kingdom. The city is known for its very famous inhabitant, the Robin Hood, who stole money from the rich to feed the poor. However, in recent years, this story is not the only thing that Nottingham is famous for. Named the city of literature in 2015, Nottingham is the birthplace of many famous English authors who are known around the world.
The city of Nottingham is somewhere you can find a very diverse set of activities. Whether you are a student, an art enthusiast, or a literature fanatic, you can find just about anything that excites you in this beautiful city. From mouthwatering eateries to classic old school pubs, this city will offer you the perfect combination of relaxing and exploration that you have planned to do on your vacations. So, let us move on to a list of things to do in Nottingham.
1. Nottingham Castle
A castle that is now rebuilt from the ashes, the Nottingham castle, is a landmark that you should see. This beautiful piece of architecture was torn down during the English civil war. While it is true that the United Kingdom has numerous castles, not many can be seen in a list that includes the Tower of London or the Windsor castle, both being a significant part of the English prestige. The castle serves as a museum for history lovers after being rebuilt. Here, you can find pieces of Wedgwood jasperware pottery and Alabaster carvings, restored from the 15th century. The museum is also home to masterpieces made by the likes of Henry Dawson, Richard Bonnington, and Stanley Spencer. For art lovers, a castle is truly a remarkable place without which, your trip to Nottingham would be incomplete.
2. Wollaton Hall
An immaculate piece of architecture made during the late 16th century. The Wollaton hall was built by Sir Francis Willoughby and was established as a “prodigy house.” From then on, most of the English architecture you see, all over the United Kingdom, has been influenced by this Tudor House. Made with limestone, Ancaster stone, and external carvings involving heavy ornamentation, the Wollaton hall is truly a masterpiece of English engineering.
Wollaton hall also possesses a natural history museum inside it, made in 1926. So, people who are interested in learning more about the grand building and the history surrounding it can visit and get their curious minds fulfilled. Apart from the natural history museum, the Wollaton hall also consists of about 500 acres of parkland, where you can also find an industrial museum. A visit to the Wollaton hall is an absolute must, in our opinion.
3. City of Caves
Made mainly on a sandstone ridge, Nottingham has several caves that have been restored by the authorities. The word Nottingham, itself, means “place of caves,” thereby showing that this city was once a city of caves. At the Broadmarsh shopping center, you can explore the caves and have an enriching experience through almost a thousand years of history. The caves are also home to the only underground tannery in Britain. Along with a tannery, the caves are also part of the air-raid shelter used in the Second World War. This site is one of the best things to do in Nottingham.
4. National Justice Museum
As you may know, the United Kingdom is home to a vast number of museums. There is a museum for almost every significant incident that has happened in the country’s history. The National Justice Museum offers you something a little different. This is an interactive museum. Therefore, visitors can interact with people dressed as judges or jailers and learn about their roles. The National Justice Museum is set in a courthouse that was made in the 14th century. Now refurbished and remodeled, the museum also offers you the chance to take a look at old underground jail and the gallows making this an exciting experience.
5. Nottingham Contemporary
One of the most significant contemporary art centers of the city, the Nottingham contemporary, was established in 2009. The façade of the modern art center pays tribute to the city’s lace heritage. Situated in the Lace Market area, the contemporary art center is free for anyone to visit and holds up to 5 exhibitions every year where some of Britain’s famous upcoming artists come to present their art. Some of the names on that list are Lara Favaretto, David Hockney, and Frances Stark.
6. Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem
Claimed to be one of the oldest public houses in England, the Jerusalem Inn was established in the 12th century. The pub was made in a castle’s sandstone crag. Although there is no official document stating that the inn is that old, it is still a beautiful sight to see. The pub’s elegance and aroma make it look very ancient and one that is straight out of the history books. The inn also has an old pit that used for cockfighting and another which is claimed to be owned by the castle’s Gaol. The name of the inn might seem unique to you. The name had come about after, supposedly, Richard the Lionheart stopped here on his way to the third crusade.
7. Highfields Park
Highfields Park is a 121-acre green space owned, now, by the University of Nottingham. The park was established recently in 2018 and can turn out to be one of the perfect places for you to visit during your vacations. The park also consists of a small boating lake with an island that is reachable through stepping stones. If you are looking for things to do with your children, this park would be a great option.
8. Southwell Minster
Known as the seat of the Bishop of Southwell and Nottingham, the Southwell minster is a minster and cathedral, which is a famous landmark in the city. The architecture of the Southwell Minster is claimed to be one of the most elegant pieces of Romanesque architecture in England. The most important thing to know about this cathedral is that it is believed to have been first put in place in the year 627, by the first Archbishop of York, Paulinus. Truly a remarkable place if you love history and one of the best things to do in Nottingham.
9. Dh Lawrence Birthplace Museum
As mentioned earlier, Nottingham was home to numerous English writers who, through their writing, have contributed to the world of literature significantly. D.H Lawrence is one such author who has inspired the world through his Novels. The birthplace museum of this legend of English literature can turn out to be a great day out for you. The small house has been restored to show visitors how life looked like for the mining communities back in the 19th century. If you are looking for things to do in Nottingham for free, this museum would be a perfect choice.
10. Nottingham Playhouse
The Nottingham Playhouse, established as a repertory theatre in 1948, is the place to go if you want to watch a play or attend a live music show. The current building of the playhouse was opened in 1963, and, since then, has been a houseful at every event. Nottingham’s leading theatre, the Nottingham playhouse, creates bold plays of all genres. Whether you are interested in comedy, drama, dance, or music, this theatre has every kind of entertainment that you require. A visit to Nottingham without going to the famous playhouse is incomplete, so this is one of the things to do in Nottingham.
The list that we have shared above has been carefully selected to inform you about the top tourist locations in Nottingham. With so many places to go to, tourists get confused about where they should spend their time. After all, you don’t visit Nottingham every year. Keeping that in mind, we have come up with a list that will help you enjoy your trip to the fullest and let you know about all the fun things to do in Nottingham. We hope that you find this list useful and make an informed decision while planning out your trip.