Must See Attractions
In a round-up of must see Nottingham attractions, here is our top pick (and it was a tricky one too!) You can find out more information by downloading our Visitor Guide here.
Galleries of Justice Museum
Based at Nottingham’s old courthouse and gaol, there is no better way to explore the gruesome history of crime and punishment than with one of their tours. Put your family on trial in the Victorian law court and venture down below street level into the cells and dungeons to hear about the terrible conditions endured by the prisoners.
The history of Nottingham Castle is long and turbulent. Built by William the Conqueror’s son after the Norman invasion, the first incarnation of Nottingham Castle was built in 1068. Set high upon the Castle Rock and commanding spectacular views over the city, Nottingham Castle is not to be missed. The impressive 17th century ducal mansion now stands as a municipal museum, the first of its kind outside London, housing beautiful works from around the world. Enjoy a tour which includes the labyrinth of secret caves and tunnels underground.
City of Caves
A well kept secret is that Nottingham is built on more than 500 man-made, sandstone caves dating back to medieval times. Descend far below street level and discover how the caves were used as tanneries, bomb shelters and homes from the expert guides or on an audio tour, promising a walk around Broadmarsh Shopping Centre like no other.
Climb the levels of this working windmill and see award winning organic flour being made. This windmill is set high on a ridge with great views of Nottingham and the valley of the River Trent. Find out about the life and work of George Green, the famous 19th century mathematician from Nottingham, and test your minds with fun hands-on puzzles and experiments – free admission!
Wollaton Hall & Deer Park
Set within a 500-acre deer park, Wollaton Hall is a spectacular Elizabethan mansion and was chosen by Warner Bros as the set of Wayne Manor in 2012 The Dark Knight Rises Batman film. Built by Sir Francis Willoughby as a home for his family and now holds the city’s Natural History Museum, it is a popular tourist attraction and a local-love.
Built on an historic site in the Lace Market area of the city, Nottingham Contemporary is one of the few major contemporary art spaces in the UK outside of London. It opened in 2009 with a major exhibition by David Hockney and has since hosted a number of exhibitions each year from leading contemporary artists from around the world. This attraction is well worth a visit for the engaging, challenging and enthralling experiences that you are likely to encounter – free admission!
Set in more than 300-acres of parkland, Newstead Abbey was once home to romantic poet Lord Byron. Explore his ancestral home, which has been preserved intact and contains many of his belongings and his original bed. December 2015 marks 200 years since the birth of Byron’s daughter, the pioneering mathematician Ada Lovelace, who is buried alongside her father in Nottingham.
Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem
Enjoy a pint of tasty real ale and divine food whilst sat in a cave at the oldest Inn in England. The pub is an attraction in itself and draws tourists from around the world who are fascinated by its rich history. Sat at the foot of Nottingham Castle, there are numerous ghost stories about visitors who never left.
Motorpoint Arena Nottingham
Situated in the city’s fashionable Lace Market, the Motorpoint Arena Nottingham, which is based inside the National Ice Centre provides the East Midlands with a top quality indoor sports, entertainment and conference venue. Take to the ice and enjoy a couple of hours ice skating, whatever your ability, or visit the adjacent Arena, and check out what’s on. With a capacity of 10,000, the Arena has been host to many big names including Coldplay, Katy Perry, Elton John and Jake Bugg over the years, so you might find something that takes your fancy.
Theatre Royal & Concert Hall
Completed in 1865, this prestigious theatre has a proud reputation of showing the best in music, theatre and dance – from classic musicals to pantomimes and contemporary stage shows with big West End names. Over the years, the city’s cultural hub has undergone many changes, including the addition of the Royal Concert Hall in 1982.
Nottingham Playhouse and Sky Mirror
One of Nottingham’s greatest theatre for independent and contemporary performances, as well as the well loved classical and kids theatre. Nottingham Playhouse host events and different plays almost every week, and is very well loved by locals and tourists alike. Also housed there is one of Nottingham’s most famous works of art, the Sky Mirror designed by world famed artist, Anish Kapoor.