A popular destination for tourism and weekend city breaks, the university city of Nottingham combines modernity, a history of lace making and Robin Hood tales of old. Modern trams make getting around the centre of Nottingham easy, so car hire can wait a day or two - why not visit one of the museums including the Sherwood Foresters display in the landmark castle, near the banks of the River Leen?
Alternatively, choose from the cathedral, art galleries, two theatres and a Royal Concert hall, or regular musical events including the Nottingham Folk Festival in June. Mortimer’s Hole has historic city caves, hidden in the sandstone beneath the streets. Wine and dine at a variety of restaurants and bars to suit almost all tastes - you will notice the friendliness of the local Nottingham people. The big Old Market Square in the centre is impressively open and the Council House has distinctive Baroque architecture, with the Guildhall nearby. To the south is the bright Broadmarsh shopping centre, with the larger Victoria centre in the east.
With your hire car collected, consider the Arboretum near the centre or Highfields Park to the south west of Nottingham, where there is no shortage of tranquillity and green space. Wollaton Hall is to the west near Beeston, easily reached with car hire and comprising an Elizabethan house on hill with beautiful surroundings and a lake. Alternatively, train enthusiasts might like to ride on the restored steam railway from Ruddington to Loughborough.
Sherwood Pines in the East Midlands tempts the adventurous with treetop Tarzan swings and ropes. Situated to the east of Mansfield, there is also a lodge restaurant and pub in the middle of the forest. A narrow gauge railway enables you to chug through the trees and visit the Sherwood art and craft centre too. To the north of Nottingham is Rufford Abbey Country Park (near Ollerton), an award winning location with a lake to walk around and formal gardens.
With car hire, Belvoir castle near Grantham makes an interesting day trip with opulent displays, manicured gardens and enough to occupy a full morning or afternoon (to obtain good value from the admission fee). For younger visitors, Whitepost Farm Centre between Mansfield and Newark offers a special day out with animals. Enjoy your stay!
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