I'm going to Notthingham, but is Sherwood Forest not what I want
April 3, 2019 7:51 AM   Subscribe

Hello, every year for professional reasons I end up in England around the end of may and usually take a couple of days to see things. This year I'm short on time so I'm not going far from where my work is taking me, so my options are limited. The question is: what should I do around Nottingham for a day or two?

I booked a stay in Nottingham thinking I'd just take a day to wander in the old woods, but it turns out, after a little bit of googling, that Sherwood Forest might not really be old woods, but rather a sort of campy park. I don't particularly care about the Robin Hood legends, I should say; I just wanted to spend some time in a small town, and the country side, in the middle of England. Given that I have already sort of booked my stay, is there anyway to get what I'm looking for?
posted by os tuberoes to Travel & Transportation around Nottingham, England (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
It’s a while since I’ve been there, but Nottingham itself is a very old city that has some attractive bits and pieces all on it’s own. Are you asking for suggestions elsewhere because you’ve already exhausted those?
posted by pharm at 8:04 AM on April 3, 2019 [2 favorites]

For clarity, I do plan on spending a full day in the city of Nottingham. I just also had these visions of big old woods nearby. No idea why :/
I would like to get out into the woods as well as visiting the town.
posted by os tuberoes at 8:10 AM on April 3, 2019

About a dozen years ago I spent a week for work in nearby Derby, and quite enjoyed the Silk Mill Museum and the Derby Cathedral.

I'd also check out Welbeck Estates which is a bit to the north of Nottingham. There's an outfit up there making Stichelton, which is a gorgeous raw-milk revival blue cheese, as well as some other food and art things to visit.
posted by gauche at 8:18 AM on April 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

Newstead Abbey?
posted by pharm at 8:19 AM on April 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

Nottingham is about 20 miles from the SE border of the Peak District National Park. Its not super woody but it is lovely countryside, stunning in some places and worth the trip, you will likely need a car to make the most of it. There are plenty of towns and villages in and around it if you want to stay overnight.

Other interesting things to do in Nottingham: National Water Sports Centre.
posted by biffa at 8:20 AM on April 3, 2019

Parts of Sherwood Forest are old woodland, parts are sort of scrubby heath, and parts are modern pine forest. There is a Center Parcs place in part of it, which is a sort of outdoorsy holiday camp. There's Sherwood Pines as well, which is a sort of outdoor activity centre kind of deal, mostly set in coniferous forest. But if you head for the Sherwood Forest visitor centre, there are some decent walks in the sort of forest you might expect (including the Major Oak). You won't find much solitude there, though, as it's a popular place for family days out.

Bear in mind that all of this is about 40 minutes by car north of Nottingham, so not easily accessible. If you can make it out that far, Clumber Park is also nice, as is Rufford Abbey.

Wollaton Hall has a nice deer park, a lake, some trees, and is pretty easy to get to. Colwick Park has some nice bits to wander about in. Bestwood Park is accessible by local bus. None of these will give you miles of dense forest, but are nice enough.

Bunny Old Wood is a couple of miles south of the city. It's quite small (you can do a lap in half an hour) but it is genuinely ancient woodland.
posted by pipeski at 8:20 AM on April 3, 2019 [4 favorites]

How about a visit the Nottingham Boot & Shoe Museum?

You could watch the wonderful Kinky Boots beforehand.
posted by humph at 8:23 AM on April 3, 2019

There are three separate pubs in Nottingham, all of which claim to be the oldest in England.
posted by Fuchsoid at 9:04 AM on April 3, 2019

The Peak District is lovely (though not particularly wooded). I don't know the southern part, which is closer to Nottingham, but you could jump on a train up to Sheffield, then another train for the short hop to maybe Hathersage or Edale, and stay overnight there. Hathersage is a pleasant little village in the Peaks, you can walk from there up to Stanage Edge and it even has a heated outdoor swimming pool surrounded by hills with sheep on. Edale IIRC is more of a hamlet, very pretty, with a couple of pubs and a visitors' centre, well placed for walks - up to the top of Mam Tor or the start of the Penine Way, for example.
posted by penguin pie at 10:09 AM on April 3, 2019 [2 favorites]

* Cave tours!
* Tapas at Bar Iberico
* Contemporary Art Gallery at the Lace Market is supposed to be quite nice.
* Lots of good wanderings around Elveston Castle if you can get into the country.
* Wollaton Hall out here in neighboring Beeston is lovely.

(I married a Nottinghamian who just listed these things to do here in Nottinghamshire, can attest to most)

Seconding the oldest pub, the Trip to Jerusalem. It has a Mos Eisley feel and is built into the hillside beneath the old castle (which is closed unfortunately.)
posted by johngoren at 12:29 PM on April 3, 2019 [1 favorite]

If you're set on seeing Sherwood Forest then there is a regular bus service from Nottingham to Edwinstowe (nearest village) which takes about one hour. It looks like some buses do stop at the visitor centre but it's an easy walk up from the village if you have to get off at the high street. That part of the forest is pretty well fenced in nowadays, so might not be what you had in mind, but there are plenty of footpaths and bridleways in the area to explore which should hopefully be a bit less confined. Rufford Abbey is on the same bus route, just on the other side of the village, so it'd be possible to see both on the same day.

The Hathersage/Grindleford suggestion is nice as well if you like the idea of going further afield, there are some woodlands around Longshaw estate and Padley Gorge (mostly silver birch I think?), amazing views from Millstone Edge and the occasional abandoned millstone especially around Bolehill Quarry.
posted by randomonium at 2:23 PM on April 3, 2019

I mean, there is always Nottingham Forest, who are currently 9th in their league haha suck it County and would be a change of scenery from either the city itself, or the countryside, if they're playing and you're at all interested in football.

If you only have a day (and if the castle is closed - which is a shame, because the tour of the caves via Mortimer's Hole was always my recommendation) and do want to see some greenery, then Wollaton Park is a good bet. Not thick ancient forests, but nice deer and a (relatively) interesting house tour. You can easily get the bus from Nottingham proper.
posted by citands at 5:27 AM on April 4, 2019

Thank you all for your suggestions!
posted by os tuberoes at 11:35 PM on April 4, 2019

« Older jquery plugin for seamless image gris.   |   installing a mini split/ductless A/C? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.