If you didn't know, I live in the Nottinghamshire area and have done for the majority of my life so it's somewhere that I know pretty well and I've got so many places that I love to explore. This blog post has been in the making for a long while as I always adore reading city guides myself. But instead of sharing my favourite places around town [The Nottingham Doughnut Company if you were wondering] I've rounded up the best places to go if you're not a lover of city centres and prefer being in the great outdoors.
First National Trust property on the roster is Kedleston Hall. If you're a lover of the film The Duchess then you might recognise this place. The areas of the house that you're allowed to walk around are a little smaller compared to other National Trust houses as you only walk around one floor but the architecture is stunning and something you could easily gaze at for hours. The grounds are wonderful and there are plenty of walks that you can venture on that are dog-friendly if you want to take your pupper along for the day.
Hodsock Priory is somewhere I only discovered last year as when the snowdrops are in bloom they have an entire walk dedicated to them and it's such a beautiful sight to see. As the snowdrops are only a seasonal thing obviously it's not something you can see all year although in May they have the bluebell woods which I can imagine is just as beautiful.
There are a couple of awesome places to visit in Nottingham city centre and my favourite over the castle [still a fun visit, though] is Wollaton Hall. It's a large house as well as a deer park and the estate is full of incredibly interesting pieces of history. My personal favourite part of visiting Wollaton is wandering through the beautiful greenhouse that in the Summer is the perfect place to have lunch and soak up the rays.
CHESTNUT WILDLIFE CENTRE
My boyfriend and I went to the Chestnut centre last year and it's a wildlife park that has predominately otters and owls. It's a great little place to go for a few hours in the warmer months as it involves quite a bit of walking and is all outdoors. There are a few types of different otters at the centre as well as a tonne of different wildlife scattered around the vast grounds.
OLD HACKNEY LANE
There are a couple of cactus nurseries around the area but the one most local to Nottinghamshire is in Matlock. If you need something to do on a rainy afternoon this is a wonderful visit [as well as Matlock in general]. They have a greenhouse where you can buy cacti and then one where you can see their award winning plants which is any greenery lovers dream.
By far my favourite place to visit all year round is Clumber park. It's a National Trust country park that has many different walks for varying levels of ability. Although my favourite thing to do is to get off the beaten track as the woodland is glorious and there are always new walks waiting to be discovered.
If you're a member of the National Trust then Hardwick is an awesome alternative to other stately homes in the area. Hardwick isn't as luxurious but it's one that full of fascinating history and the grounds are absolutely stunning, especially in the Summer months when everything has come into bloom. And the pub nearby is a lovely place to finish off your trip.
If you're really into your history and stately homes then Chatsworth is an obvious choice to visit. It's a grand and luxury visit [a pricey day out I must say but you do certainly get your moneys worth]. Between the glamorous house and the beautiful vast gardens you're spoilt for choice and it's somewhere you can easily spend the entire day. If you're able to go in the week it's advisable as it gets pretty packed at the weekend and makes things difficult to see.
If you're someone who loves to walk then anywhere in the Peak District is awesome and my personal favourite is Ladybower reservoir. There is a variant of different walks for all types of abilities and it's somewhere you can happily spend the entire day as long as you take a picnic and it's definitely worth taking your camera too as there is some stunning scenery around.
Are you from Nottinghamshire? Where are your favourite places to explore?