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January 10, 2019


Nottingham is one of the UK’s most welcoming and multi-faceted cities, brimming with both history and culture. This variety means that Nottingham is a great place for a romantic weekend away or even a last-minute date night with that special someone.

If you’re thinking of taking your beloved somewhere romantic, then you’re in the right place. We’ve compiled a list of the best the city has to offer, bringing together activities, locations and restaurants to create a complete guide on the most romantic things to do in Nottingham.

No matter your budget, we’ve found an option for you and your loved one to enjoy.

Activities and Date Ideas in Nottingham

If you’re looking for somewhere quirky to take your date rather than a traditional movie-and-dinner date night, we can help. Here are some of the most interesting and engaging date ideas in the city, simply tailor your choice to the interests of you and your loved one.

The National Ice Centre

Ice skating has always been an inherently romantic activity, partly due to its association with Christmas and partly because most skaters have to hold hands just to stay on their feet! The National Ice Centre in Nottingham is universally seen as one of the UK’s best ice skating arenas, trusted by amateurs and professionals alike. The centre is capable of catering to all skill levels and desires, with a dedicated warm-up zone and staff on hand to help you and your loved one practice before entering the main area.

This is a fun and simple way of creating memories with someone special – though, if you’ve never been skating before, you can expect to fall over a few times!

Ice Skating

The Lost City Adventure Golf

Mini-golf is a fun activity for all but becomes especially good when those taking part are all equally new to putting. The Lost City Adventure Golf course combines a warm and cosy indoor setting with talking Inca statues, crazy landscapes and interactive features to create a comedic and fun golfing experience. It’s perfect if you’re looking to enjoy something a little different with your partner and is one of the best early date ideas as it leaves space to talk and get to know each other.

Rough Trade - Nottingham

Rough Trade is a well-known name in the underground music scene and serves as a popular variety music shop with bases in London, Bristol and Nottingham. Since 1972, the business has grown and expanded by focusing on exploring every aspect of the music industry, stocking both LPs and CDs from artists across all genres.

The Nottingham store serves as both a record shop and a musical venue - making it a great location for a romantic date night. Unknown and underground artists play at Rough Trade regularly and the venue is small and cosy, allowing you to experience interesting new sounds with a loved one, without being drowned out by the screams of a huge crowd. If you’re both music lovers, then this is a great place to visit. You might even discover some new artists to enjoy together.

Hockley Arts Club

Hockley Arts Club is a quirky bar hidden away amongst the old buildings of Nottingham’s Lace Market. To access the club, visitors must pass through an unassuming alleyway with no signage at all - but if you do find your way there, you’ll be handsomely rewarded.

The club has multiple floors, each hosting a bar with a different décor and design – the one thing they do have in common is their unique and unusual styles. Combine this with the impressive array of cocktails and knowledgeable bar staff and it becomes a brilliant Nottingham date night location. Bring your loved one, find a quiet spot and chat over drinks as you admire your surroundings.

The Arboretum

When looking for romantic things to do in Nottingham, you don’t always need to opt for something expensive; often, the surroundings alone make for a romantic experience and this is where the Arboretum shines. The Arboretum is a quiet and quaint public park just 10 minutes’ walk from the centre of the city. Whilst it grew in fame due to its large collection of 19th Century trees, this location is great for a romantic stroll thanks to the incredible natural setting and peaceful atmosphere. Sometimes, the simplest activities are the ones that have the biggest impact.

Clifford Day Spa

Around 20 minutes’ drive outside of Nottingham City Centre is Clifford Day Spa, an all-in-one health club and spa solution. A spa day can be incredibly romantic as you and your loved one relax together, experiencing soothing massages and leaving with newfound energy. Clifford is particularly good because they almost always have special offers available, regardless of the month or season.

Consider your spa day as a combination of a romantic getaway and a relaxing gift for that special person in your life; though, we wouldn’t necessarily recommend this as a first date idea.

Nottingham Playhouse and Theatre Royal & Royal Concert Hall

Going to the theatre to watch a great production or play has always been romantic. Fortunately, Nottingham is armed with one of the UK’s most popular touring venues, meaning that no matter what time of year you’re visiting, there is bound to be a great theatre offering. It’s simple, it’s classic and it’s usually not too expensive, so you really can’t go wrong with this option; especially when you combine it with dinner!

Find a Romantic Place to Eat in Nottingham

There’s a reason why 90% of dates centre around eating together. Eating provides the perfect opportunity to talk, bond and share great experiences. The city is stacked full of different restaurants, dessert bars and breakfast diners, perfect for a mid-morning getaway or date night in Nottingham city centre. Here are some of our favourites.

N°/6 Bar & Restaurant

The N°/6 Bar & Restaurant is St James Hotel’s signature food destination, offering a classy and elegant approach to the classic romantic meal. Visitors are welcome to come and enjoy drinks, cocktails and food whilst taking in the soothing soundtrack and quirky art pieces. If you’re looking for a unique, romantic eating experience, this is the choice for you.

The Pudding Pantry

The Pudding Pantry is a local favourite. Moving away from the American-diner style of a dessert bar, The Pudding Pantry is quintessentially British in all aspects, from its practical layout to its Eton Mess milkshakes. The dessert offering isn’t vast but does vary in taste and approach, though the best option for a romantic snack is the taster board for two where you can share five different desserts with your significant other.

Kitty Café

The Kitty Café has combined two of the most popular things in the world - cats and good food – to create a romantic, peaceful and lovable dating destination. The Kitty Café serves as a sanctuary for rescue cats and houses them all in a café environment, fully equipped with wall-mounted sleeping boxes, ceiling walkways and scratching posts. The best part comes in the fact that you can book a table and have a quick sandwich or coffee whilst the cats surround you, making for an incredibly fun and unique experience.

If you or your partner is an animal lover, Kitty Café is an unmissable and perfectly romantic thing to do in Nottingham.

Luxury Accommodation at St James Hotel

The key to any romantic break is great accommodation. After a day of lovely activities and food, you want to return to a hotel room that prolongs the positivity and enjoyment of the day, whilst still helping you relax with your loved one.

Here at St James, we have the perfect rooms and amenities to make your stay in Nottingham as comfortable as possible. Each one of our rooms comes complete with exceptional bathroom products, a 40-inch LED TV, complimentary Wi-Fi access, tea, coffee and sleep spray. In addition, if you truly want to make your getaway romantic, you can opt for one of our luxury suites where we will also supply you with a safe, bathrobe, slippers and seating area.

Help us to create the perfect romantic experience for you. Discover our great selection of rooms here.

The St James is an independently owned hotel ideally located in Nottingham city centre. The hotel boasts 87 bedrooms, No/6 Bar & Restaurant and event space for up to 150 people.


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