20 things to do in Nottingham as a student

Nottingham is home to thousands of students, whether they are studying at one of the city’s two universities, or one of the numerous colleges or sixth forms. No matter what the time of year may be, there is always plenty of things for students to do. So to help you out, here are the 20 best things to do in Nottingham for students!

20. Attenborough Nature Reserve

David Attenborough Reserve - 20 best things for students Nottingham
Credit: Groundworks

Attenborough Nature Reserve, Nottingham NG9 6DY

What is it? The Attenborough nature reserve is a great outdoor area and picnic spot on the edge of the city centre.

Why go? Located 5 miles south of Nottingham, you will find the beautiful Attenborough Nature Reserve. This activity is perfect for a sunny afternoon, and there are a wide variety of trails and walks to explore. The reserve has a local farm shop and café, so no need to go hungry! Take some time to discover the astonishing array of wildlife and admire the many lakes.

How much? Entry to the nature reserve is free! However, if you are coming by car parking costs £3 for the day.

19. Nottingham Canal

Nottingham canal - 20 best things for students Nottingham
Credit: Canal and River Trust

What is it? There are over 2000 miles of canals across Nottinghamshire, including in the city centre. You can take a tour of the canals on one of the city’s many boat tours.

Why go?There are plenty of boat tours at a range of prices and durations, so there is something for everyone. If you are a student at one of Nottingham’s universities you may even end up on a party boat, as many sports clubs and societies like to celebrate the end of the year on the canals.

How much? Prices depend on who you have booked a boat tour with and what time the tour starts and ends, but a great place to start is the tours by the Canal and river Trust.

18. Goose Fair

goose fair- 20 best things for students Nottingham
Credit: Visit Nottinghamshire

Gregory Blvd, Forest Fields, Nottingham NG7 6HB

What is it? The Goose Fair is an annual five-day event In Nottingham that is full of all sorts of fairground rides and attractions.

Why go? The event usually attracts over 420,000 visitors and is great fun for people of all ages. There is a wide array of rides, attractions, and food stalls to experience, so whether you are in the mood for something sweet or savoury there will be something for you. Nottingham Goose Fair is accessible by tram and normally takes place in early October! So make sure to mark it on your calendar.

How much? Entry to the fair is free, and prices for rides are usually between £2.50 and £6, whilst food and drink prices can be anything from a £1.

17. National Justice Museum

national justice museum 20 best things to do in Nottingham for students
Credit: TripAdvisor

High Pavement, Nottingham NG1 1HN

What is it? The National Justice Museum is a museum dedicated to crime and punishments throughout history.

Why go? The museum is full of exhibitions about crimes and punishments, as well as interactive activities

How much? Adult ticket prices are £10.95 each, but if you bring a valid student ID with you then it is only £9.95. However, if you are also planning to go to the City of Caves, you can buy a joint ticket for £17.60!

16. Wollaton Hall

Wollaton Hall - 20 best things to do in Nottingham for students
Credit: Spirit Architecture

Wollaton Hall, Nottingham, NG8 2AE

What is it? Wollaton Hall is in the suburbs of Nottingham and is a beautiful Elizabethan manor house situated in 500 acres of stunning parkland.

Why go? Wollaton Hall is perfect for a day trip to admire the beautiful architecture and watch the herds of roaming deer. It is also possible to look around inside the house, and guided tours are available.

How much? An adult ticket costs £13, but concession tickets are £8.75 so make sure to bring a student ID with you!

15. Cineworld

20 best things to do in Nottingham for students - Cineworld Nottingham
Credit: Venue Scanner

29 Forman St, Nottingham NG1 4AA

What is it? Cineworld is a UK leading cinema chain that offers its visitors access to new blockbuster films!

Why go? Everyone loves the cinema, and Nottingham’s Cineworld has 14 screens and is based in the Cornerhouse, so is close to restaurant, bars, and cafes. For a standard adult ticket, it’s £11.20, but with student ID It’s £8.70. Or if you wanted to watch a film in IMAX, it’s £15.90 for an adult or £13.40 with student ID.

How much? For a standard adult ticket, it’s £11.20, but with student ID It’s £8.70. Or if you wanted to watch a film in IMAX, it’s £15.90 for an adult or £13.40 with student ID.

14. Nottingham Bowl

Nottingham Bowl - 20 best things to do in Nottingham for students
Credit: University of Nottingham Blogs

Belward St, Nottingham NG1 1JZ

What is it? Nottingham Bowl is the biggest bowling alley in Nottingham, with 48 lanes across two floors!

Why go? Whether you are a regular bowler or have never picked up a bowling ball before, you should definitely have a game of bowling at Nottingham Bowl.

How much? A standard adult game costs £7.50 but for students its just £5 for one game. Or 2 games for £10 or 3 games for £12.50. There is also a variety of drinks and food available at the alley, including pizzas, hotdogs, desserts, and even a dessert pizza!

13. Trent Bridge

trent bridge - 20 things to do in Nottingham for students
Credit: Trent Bridge

Trent Bridge, West Bridgford, Nottingham NG2 6AG

What is it? Established nearly 200 years ago, Trent Bridge is home to Nottingham’s cricket club.

Why go? If you love cricket you should definitely visit Trent Bridge, whether you are going to go and watch a match take place, or if you are going to have a tour of the stadium and its facilities.

How much? Classic Tour tickets cost £10 per adult.

12. Nottingham Forest

20 things to do in Nottingham for students - Nottingham Forest
Credit: Visit Nottinghamshire

Nottingham Forest Football Club, The City Ground, West Bridgford, Nottingham NG2 5FJ

What is it?

Why go? Nottingham is home to two football clubs, Nottingham Forest and Notts County. If you are a football fan you must visit both stadiums, whether for a tour or to watch a match, which happen throughout the year. Whether you are a season cardholder or not can affect the price of these stadium tours, which last 90 minutes long at Nottingham Forest ground and 30 minutes at Notts County.

How much? A tour of the Nottingham Forest Football Club grounds costs £10 for season card holders or £15 for non-season card holders.

11. Nottingham Contemporary

20 best things to do Nottingham - Contemporaru
Credit: Arts Council England

Weekday Cross, Nottingham NG1 2GB

What is it? Nottingham Contemporary is a beloved art gallery full of modern and inspiring art from all over the world.

Why go? If you haven’t already visited the contemporary, what are you waiting for! It is open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am to 6pm, and regularly hosts events and welcomes new exhibitions.

How much? The best thing about Nottingham Contemporary is that it is free! However, they do have an amazing gift shop where you may want to treat yourself to a few things.

10. Kitty Cafe

20 things to do in Nottingham students - Kitty Cafe
Credit: Nottingham Post

31- 37 Friar Ln, Nottingham NG1 6DD

What is it? The Kitty Cafe is a both a cat rescue centre and a cafe!

Why go? This is only cafe in Nottingham where you can enjoy your lunch whilst also relaxing with the rescue cats of the city. All of the tables have comfy armchairs and sofas, and the cafe is designed to be open so there is plenty of space.

How much? Prices depend on what you order whilst you are there, but their kitty meal deal includes any food item, cake and a drink for £12.95.

9. Ye Olde Jurusalem

20 things to do Nottingham student - ye olde jurusalem
Credit: BBC

Brewhouse Yard, 1, Nottingham NG1 6AD

What is it? Ye Olde Jurusalem is the oldest pub in England that is still up and running today.

Why go? Aside from being a great local pub, it has also been said that King Richard the Lionheart used to visit the pub. It’s based in the cliffs just below Nottingham Castle but it’s also a short 10 minute walk from the city centre. However, as it has been open for so many years the pub has almost turned into a museum itself, full of Nottingham relics.

How much? Just like any other pub you don’t have to pay to enter, and the amount you end up spending on drinks or food is completely up to you.

8. Nottingham Castle

20 things to do in Nottingham - Nottingham castle
Credit: Visit Nottinghamshire

Lenton Rd, Nottingham NG1 6EL

What is it? The castle has been standing in the heart of Nottingham for over 1000 years and now has a world class art gallery.

Why go? Nottingham castle has recently reopened after undergoing 3 years of renovations. The castle will be open from 10 am to 4 pm each day, and you can buy tickets to see the castle online.

How much? To tour the castle and the grounds it will cost £13 for an adult ticket or £12 for a student ticket.

7. City of Caves

city of caves - 20 things for student to do Nottingham
Credit: Visit Nottinghamshire

Garner’s Hill, Nottingham NG1 1HF

What is it? City of Caves is a tour of all the caves lying below the city centre.

Why go? Nottingham is famous for its caves, there are over 500 original sandstone caves below the city ground. The caves are definitely worth exploring, and are also home to one of Nottingham’s hidden bars.

How much?  It is definitely worth experiencing one of the city of cave tours whilst you are in the city, with adult tickets costing £8.75 and student and under 18’s tickets costing £7.65. However, if you are also wanting to visitor the National Museum of Justice you can buy a joint ticket for £17.60.

6. Cryptology Escape Rooms Nottingham

20 things to do Nottingham - escape room nottingham
Credit: Cryptology

107 Upper Parliament St, Nottingham NG1 6LA

What is it? Cryptology Escape Rooms are a new interactive experience that will test your puzzle solving abilities to escape the room.

Why go? Whether you want to go with your friends, family or colleagues, you are sure to have a great time at Cryptology escape rooms. Each room has a different theme, and will challenge your brain through testing your team work and puzzle solving skills.

How much? Prices depend on how many players there are. On off peak days, if there are eight of you then it will only cost £15 per person, but if it’s just two of you then it will cost £22.50 each. Whereas on peak days it will cost £18 per person if there is eight of you or £26 per person if it’s just two of you.

5. Motorpoint Arena

Bolero Square, Belward St, Nottingham NG1 1LA

What is it? The Motorpoint arena is a great entertainment venue in Nottingham, with 10,000 seats available!

Why go? You can go to arena to watch some of the worlds top musicians perform. In 2021 the arena will host big names, such as Dua Lipa, Gary Barlow, and Stormzy. However, they also host events so you never know what to expect.

How much? Prices depend on the events you have booked tickets for, but usually there is a great range in pricing depending on where you want to sit and anything else you might add on. There are also usually group discounts for groups of 8 or more.

4. National Ice Arena

Nottingham Ice Arena - 20 things to do in Nottingham
Credit: Trip Advisor

Bolero Square, Belward St, Nottingham NG1 1LA

What is it? Right next door to the Motorpoint Arena is the National Ice Arena where you can learn to skate, play ice hockey or watch competitions on the ice.

Why go? Why not spend your evening skating at the National Ice Centre, as it’s just £9 for an adult or £5.50 for a student. The centre even does foam parties and club nights for those who want to add to the excitement of skating. After you skate there is also the Sub Zero Café which has a range of meals and drinks for you to try in order to warm up. Including the ultimate stacked hot chocolate for just £3.

How much? Prices depend on whether you are having a lesson or attending a free skate, but the good news is that the arena offers student discounts!

3. Rock City

Rock City - 20 things Nottingham for students
Credit: Rock City

8 Talbot St, Nottingham NG1 5GG

What is it? Rock City is Nottingham’s ultimate music venue and regularly hosts live music and club nights.

Why go? During the academic year there is no limit to their fantastic events, and a trip to Rock City is a milestone every UON and NTU student need to meet. Rock City has an atmosphere like no other club in the city, and is well known for its great music and sticky floors.

How much? Ticket prices vary depending on what’s on that night, however prices are usually pretty reasonable.

2. Planet Bounce Inflatable Park

20 things to do in Nottingham - Planet Bounce
Credit: Nottingham Post

153-155 Huntingdon St, Nottingham NG1 3NL

What is it? An indoor inflatable park that is fun for all ages every day of the week!

Why go? Anyone from 4 years old to 65 years old can jump right into the fun at Planet Bounce with one of their jump sessions. Each jump session lasts 60 minutes, but when you book online there is an option to purchase extra time. On Sunday nights there is an ‘Inflatology session’ for those aged 18 and over when the music gets turned up and the lights get turned down.

How much? Tickets for anyone over age 16 cost £5.50, which is pretty reasonable.

1. Lost City Adventure Golf

20 places in Nottingham for students - Lost City
Credit: Visit Nottinghamshire

The Cornerhouse, Burton St, Nottingham NG1 4DB

What is it? Lost city golf is an 18-hole indoor golf course, perfect for students whatever the weather.

Why go? The golf course has its own Tiki Bar, so you can enjoy tropical cocktails and bars whilst you play, or afterwards, you can even order from their Caribbean takeaway menu. The course is open every day of the week until 11 pm, or 10 pm on Sundays.

How much? Adult tickets cost £8.50 each, but if you bring student ID it’s just £6.50 each, plus if you book in advance you get 10% off!

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