Why you have to visit Norwich, even if you only have a day

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Norwich for me is home away from home. I have spent family holidays in Great Yarmouth with day trips to Norwich,  and many a time visiting friends studying at the UEA; some of who loved it so much they now live there. Norwich has been voted the happiest place to work in the UK, and I completely get why!

Norwich is a seriously underestimated city in the UK. Find out why it's one of my favourite places and why it should be on your UK bucket list!

Norwich is just charming, quirky and has everything you could need. It’s fantastic at holding on to non-chain places which many other places sadly struggle with. It’s a historical place  but it still has everything you would expect from a city and there is always something going on. Put simply, I want to live here one day.

I recently spent 1 night in Norwich following from my Glamping trip at Deer’s Glade and although there’s SO MUCH you could fit in, I still managed to go to places I hadn’t been to before. I stayed in the Wensum Guest House, a cheap and cheerful B&B about 20 minutes walk away from the centre which had free parking thrown in with the deal; an absolute budget-friendly godsend as parking can be a bit of a nightmare in Norwich.

NORWICH IN THE DAY

No visit to Norwich would be complete without a trip to the colourful Market in the centre of the City. It is the largest open air market in the country and is full of food stalls, vintage clothes, haberdashery, flowers, music…you name it, it’s there!

Norwich Market

 

Just behind the market is the glossy glass Forum building. I don’t know if it’s just me but i just can’t help wondering if I can find where they film to casually stroll past in the background and have my 2.5 seconds of fame. But anyway, the building is actually pretty cool. The last few times I have been in Norwich there has been something going on in it. Last time was an Antiques and Vintage Fair and this time was an African and Caribbean market. Variety is the spice of life! So make sure you always check out what’s going on at the Forum.

The Forum, Norwich

 

So as I have said, Norwich is super good for individual shops. The Royal arcade is a prestigious and purpose-built shopping arcade opened in 1989 and is a stunning example of art nouveau architecture and is famed for being home to boutique stores (apart from the Jamie’s Italian at the end, but whatever). I think the whole of Norwich is beautiful, but I really wish there were more streets like this in the world. Seriously, don’t you just feel like you’ve been transported back in time?

norwich-royal-arcade

Norwich Castle is the obvious choice if you’re a bit of a history buff, but it’s also a very hands on museum. I am such big kid and always spend more time messing around with the fancy dress stuff than actually learning anything. But to be honest, my brain is completely incapable of holding on to this kind of information so I usually end up just wandering around. But it really is a good museum if that’s the kind of thing you’re into.

Norwich Castle

A proper little gem in the City is the Plantation Gardens. I didn’t actually go there during this visit so don’t have any photos,  but it is just too lovely to not mention it. The gardens are free to enter, but get this, there is an honesty box. How often can you honestly say that you see one of those nowadays! This just makes me so happy!

The gardens are right next to the Cathedral but feel far away from the city. I feel they have an almost Asian look about them with a temple-like fountain and a beautiful stone wall towards the back. It’s just the perfect place to chill out for a bit, and it’s practically empty.

FOR A NIGHT IN NORWICH

For anyone who likes a bit of an alternative place to eat i would definitely recommend Mr Postles’ Apothecary. Everything about the bar/restaurant is setup as an old style pharmacy and all their drinks and food have a fabulous vintage but modern twist to match. I mean, when there are cocktails called Irish Disco Biscuit and Hanging Kebabs to munch on, what’s not to love! They have various deals on through the week so it was definitely a good budget choice. The place does feel quite ‘hipster’ but there really was a complete mixture of people in there so I didn’t feel out of place as my very uncool, bog-standard self.

There are literally a million and one bars to choose from and Norwich is big on beer and Gin. The Belgian Monk has an actually catalogue to choose from, The Tap House lets you have what I can only describe as a tasting paddle platter, The Mash Tun is a ‘Gin Palace’ and The Bird Cage lets you bring in fish and chips from the chippy opposite. Perf! I have been to some cities that are apparently renowned for its nightlife, only to find i spend half my night walking around looking for it. But Norwich just isn’t one of those places. There are bars everywhere, and because of this nowhere is rammo.

So in a nutshell, that is why I love Norwich so much! It’s a city where you don’t feel lost or out of place. The city embraces its diversity and isn’t afraid to show it off. There’s excellent food, drink, shopping and culture and It’s somewhere I will always look forward to coming back to.

 

Been to Norwich? I would love to hear about what you got up to. Comment below and share your story!

19 Comments

  1. I didn’t know that Norwich had a castle, it looks unique too. I’d give the gardens a try too, I love photography. Of course I’d give the bars a visit, just not all of them!

  2. Norwich sounds lovely! I think I would love the open air market. I always enjoy visiting the markets in a city while traveling. Its such a great way to get a local feel. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Thank you for sharing this! The Royal Arcade looks beautiful! I always enjoy being in smaller cities and enjoy everything they offer.. ofc it’s not the super famous sights that are all over social media, but personally, I prefer taking a smaller sight really in than being in an overcrowded top sight, no matter how nice it might be 🙂

    • Thank you! There’s loads to do and explore and you definitely get away from the crowds of people. It’s a lovely little break for sure

  4. The royal arcade looks cool and I would definitely pass by there. A little different than other shopping places, though I would also love to do some shopping at the market. I am a little bit like you that I like to touch things at the museums so maybe I should skip Norwich Castle to not to get in trouble 😀

    • I’m the same, love having a good rummage through all the different things on markets! Don’t worry about the castle, it’s one of those really hands on museums haha

  5. Just to add, Plantation Gardens are next to the less well known of Norwich’s two cathedral – not the one with the spire but the Victorian Roman Catholic one. Hope this helps your readers.

  6. Aw Norwich looks so cute! I really love visiting quaint towns that don’t feel as commercialized as the big cities do (which seems to be the case here, apart from that darn Jamie’s Italian apparently haha). I’m a huge fan of quirky spots too, so I have this marked on my list now! 😀

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