In and around Norwich you’ll find boutique townhouse hotels, country resorts, and contemporary-styled B&Bs. Many are housed in splendid heritage buildings such as old manor houses or ancient inns. Functional and modern chain hotels are found near the station and close to the airport. And lodgings in the city centre might offer impressive views of the Cathedral spire and Castle battlements from your bedroom window.
Norwich Market has been active since Norman times, and the city is still one of the UK's most vibrant retail centres. You'll find independent boutiques and vintage clothing stores in the picturesque Lanes, and branches of all the major high-street shops on London Street and Castle Street. There are 2 large malls as well as a range of department stores, including the local institution that is Jarrold.
The city’s architectural gems are known as the Norwich 12, and offer highlights from the Norman, medieval, Georgian, Victorian, and modern eras. Almost all Norwich’s sights are close together, linked by ancient streets perfect for pottering, and the riverbank is the ideal place for a stroll. The ruins of the old city walls are worth a look, too, and don't forget to check what's going on at the modern Forum.
Norwich is Britain’s most easterly city, and it features a wealth of historical buildings as well as a web of ancient streets that still trace their medieval plan. Architectural delights include the majestic Cathedral, the imposing Norman castle, and the Art Deco City Hall. Norwich also has a vibrant cultural scene, with annual festivals and some notable modern architecture, and it's been recognized as a UNESCO City of Literature.
Beer culture is alive and well in Norwich, with a number of pubs specializing in locally brewed ales and ciders. Start your evening with a pub crawl, before hitting a late-night bar or club. The large student population ensures that big-name bands stop here, while open-air festivals cater to young people and even families.
Norwich has no shortage of family activities, especially during the summer. Pottering around the Castle and Cathedral is interesting and educational, and teens will appreciate Norwich Lanes’ quirky shops and colourful market. The Norfolk Broads can be visited by boat, or you can hire a bike to cycle along the waterways. And kids can enjoy a tennis game or a spin on the swings in one of the city's parks.
Norwich’s reputation as a hotspot for the arts is evident in a lively cultural scene, and you can enjoy theatre shows, art exhibitions, and festivals all year round. Must-sees include the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts and Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery. Several arts centres and museums are housed in attractive period buildings or converted churches. And in 2012, Norwich was declared England’s first UNESCO City of Literature.
Since the annual Norfolk Food and Drink Festival started to champion the region’s culinary delights in 2004, dining out in Norwich has been on the up-and-up. There are plenty of stylish restaurants where you can sample contemporary food made from locally sourced ingredients. Norwich also has some delightful cafés and tea rooms, and there’s no shortage of international cuisine, with everything from Mexican to Malaysian restaurants dotted around the city.
Norwich is East Anglia's cultural hub, and it has actively preserved and cherished its rich heritage. Much of the old city is still in evidence in the form of medieval churches, quaint pubs, and traders’ halls. Norwich is known for its diverse shopping and vibrant arts scene, too, with a world-class visual arts centre and numerous theatres.
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