The Student Guide: What To Do In Nottingham

Are you a student living in Nottingham or soon to be moving to the East Midlands city? Want to know what there is to do?

There’s SO many places to experience that you’ll be spoilt for choice, check out our 8 firm favourites in this blog – you know you want to!


1. Have Some Drinks At Pepper Rocks

This cocktail bar hidden away in the city centre on Pepper Street, is such a great place to have some drinks with friends.

With 3 floors of jungle themed interiors with tons of seating from comfy sofas to chairs and tables to outdoor benches, Pepper Rocks makes the best spot to have a catch up over cocktails.

They offer happy hour cocktails everyday from opening until 10pm, you can enjoy their Cherry Bakewell Martini or Mango Breeze for only £5.50 – how cool is that?!

If you’re feeling peck-ish then scran a hotdog from Bunk Dog, which offer Icelandic style hot dogs with meat or veggie options – mmm!

This place is cheap and cheerful, and its only a short walk away from Market Square – you’ve gotta experience it for yourself.

If you want to find out more about the best places to drink as a student in the city we have just the blog for you here.


Address: 12 Pepper St, Nottingham NG1 2GH

2. Walk Around Highfields Park

Highfields Park will become a staple of your student life at the University Of Nottingham as it forms part of University Park campus and has done since 1921.

This 121-acre park has Grade II listed features and is such an amazing green space within the city with tons to do and see.

You can walk around the lake, go boating during the summer months, play a game of outdoor sports, sit and have a picnic enjoying the scenic views.

There’s even a cafe and a programme of events at the Lakeside Arts Centre!

This tranquil park offers a great place to go for a stroll after a day of lectures on campus, and if you’re keen to clear your mind, then it’s the best place for it!



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Address: University Blvd, Lenton, Nottingham NG7 2RD

3. Discover The Art At Nottingham Contemporary

Nottingham Contemporary is an art gallery which is one of the biggest in the UK, with so much to do and explore like free exhibitions to events to activities.

If you have an hour or two to spare whilst in the city centre, then this place is a must!

There’re so many intriguing pieces of contemporary art to explore with an exhibition programme which is constantly changing.

The architecture and interior of this place is great too, you’ll get some cool insta pictures!

There’s even a café which offers amazing coffee, grilled cheese sandwiches and cakes to name a few, so you can treat yourself after exploring the art.

The gallery is situated near the National Justice Museum and an array of pubs so you can make a day of exploring some of the other must-see’s in the city.


Address: Weekday Cross, Nottingham NG1 2GB

4. Go For Food At Baresca

If you’re wanting to try out the food scene in the city then Baresca is a MUST.

This award-winning bar and restaurant in the heart of Nottingham on Byard Lane offers Spanish dishes inspired by Barcelona cuisine.

Sit and relax whilst soaking up the hints of Gaudi architecture then delve into the menu of tasty dishes like Garlic and Chilli Prawns, Patas Bravas, and Pork Belly Tacos – yum!

The atmosphere in this place is just as good as the food, with regular live music and a friendly and relaxing vibe, it’s the ultimate place to get food and drinks whilst conversating with your pals.



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Address: 9 Byard Ln, Nottingham NG1 2GJ

5. Get Involved With Watersports At Spring Lakes

Spring Lakes is a Watersports Centre in Long Eaton. Despite being a 25-minute drive away from the city centre, its accessible by public transport and a great place to go during the summer – you’ll see why!

There’s an aqua park with a range of inflatable slides, climbing walls and obstacles so you can make a day out of it with your flatmates and have a laugh.

They also offer other outdoor activities like wakeboarding, paddle boarding, open water swimming along with tons more.

Not to mention, you can sit and sunbathe on their beach space too or make the most of their boating lake!

If you get hungry or thirsty then the Water’s Edge Café is on-site for some tasty refreshments and bites to eat.


Address: Pasture Ln, Long Eaton, Nottingham NG10 2FZ

6. Learn About History At Nottingham Castle

Nottingham Castle museum is a historical attraction which dates back to 1068.

It’s famous for its medieval history, being the place where Robin Hood and his merry men would break in and out of.

There’s so much to do at the castle from exhibitions to tours to events to talks, their programme is never-ending.

Why not explore the tales of the legend Robin Hood and test your virtual archery skills?

Or go down below and explore the city of caves which are carved out of sandstone below the castle (that’s if you’re brave enough to).

There’s also galleries where you can discover the creative and industrial history of Nottingham. If that doesn’t suit you, then the castle grounds offer stunning views and student admission is only £12.

So, bring along your ID card and delve into the history of Nottingham Castle.



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Address: Lenton Rd, Nottingham NG1 6EL

7. Watch A Gig At Rescue Rooms

If you’re a music lover who’s wanting to experience the gig scene in Notts, then the Resue Rooms is the place to go.

This 450-capacity live music venue and nightclub puts on some great shows and nights out and is a favourite amongst students and locals.

The venue offers an intimate to concerts and has hosted musical legends to up-and-coming artists across a variety of genres.

Inside there’s a bar stocked with all the bevvs you could want, an outdoor patio area and a kitchen area – they’ve got it all here!

For the next academic year, they’ve got some great concerts coming up from the likes of Jay Electronica, Crawlers, Since September and Lonely The Brave to name a couple.

Why not get some gigs booked in with your flatmates?!



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Address: Rescue Rooms, Masonic Pl, Goldsmith St, Nottingham NG1 5LB

8. Go Gaming At MeetspaceVR

MeetspaceVR offers students in Nottingham with a unique experience to get competitive in virtual reality games.

Located in the Victoria Centre, the 250 square meter venue has plenty of indoor seating, a bar and retro games which are free to use whilst waiting for your VR experience.

There’re tons of VR games an fun things to get involved with like Zero Latency which is a free-roaming experience where up to 8 people can play. There’s also a VR escape room and VR arcade with different games.

So, if you’re a game lover who’s unsure what to do during your free time from uni then head here with your friends.

Although, it is on the pricier side of things to do in the city centre but we’re sure it’ll be worth it!


Address: Unit 2, Pipers Court, Berkshire Dr, Reading RG19 4ER

Tarrah, that’s it from us on what to do in Notts!

Head out from your student accommodation and have a blast exploring these places, there really is something for everyone to enjoy within our recommendations.

Read more here: 8 Easy And Fun TikTok Cocktail Recipes To Try This Freshers.