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What to do with a 16-month old in Nottingham?

(9 Posts)
LeahE Sat 20-May-06 21:07:21

We'll be there for a few days visiting SIL and while she knows the city it's from a distinctly child-free viewpoint. Can anyone suggest things to do while we're there? DS is a very physical toddler, loves running, climbing, throwing himself off things -- so anything like a soft play centre would be ideal, also any outside attractions with lots of space for running around? Also is there anywhere to eat that's nice and toddler-friendly?

Massive thanks in advance...

thirtysomething Sat 20-May-06 21:23:36

whereabouts in Nottingham? There are various soft play places, mostly attached to pubs, although there's Hoods Hideout in Bilborough and Run Riot in West Bridgford, which are both council-run.
Wagamama in the city centre is a very child-friendly place to eat but no play area; otherwise there's the usual chains; TGI Fridays, Pizza Express, Hard Rock cafe, Frankie and Benny's. Most kids seem to enjoy riding around on the trams for a bit and the castle is a good place to let kids run around, entry is free on weekdays too. There's a fab park at the University campus where you can feed ducks, have a nice coffee and there's a good playground too. Other good parks are Wollaton Park and Rushcliffe Country park at Ruddington. There are various nice farm parks around like White Post Farm and Manor Farm but both are around 30-45 mins. from the city centre.

mandymac Sat 20-May-06 21:28:49

Hopefully Squarer will be along soon - I think she will have some advice for you. For eating, I can recommend John Lewis for afternoon or morning tea and cake - they have loads of high chairs, kids food selection (mini sarnies, fruit etc) and nice older ladies who will carry your tray if you are pushing a pushchair. For something more sophisticated, Cast, which is a bar/restaurant next to the Playhouse is non smoking, child friendly and the food is fab! There are soft play place, but as DD is only 11 months, I haven't found them yet.

Hope you have a good visit

cheeseypeas Sat 20-May-06 23:13:51

Nottingham forest in Ollerton is beatiful. Full of nice trees that you aren't supposed to climb but everyone does. Nice countrysidey play areas, a little permanent fairground. The gift shop sells an array of cheap, cute little felt robin hood hats, arrows, wooden swords, maid marrior/soldier outfits. All this and for £3 parking!

cheeseypeas Sat 20-May-06 23:16:00

Also recommend the park near the univesity as mentioned in Thirtysomething's post.

SquarewaysHereWeCome Sat 20-May-06 23:47:57

I am Squarer by the way - just on my way to bed and found this (I never usually get my name mentioned [filled with pride emoticon] Cheers Mandymac - large white wine next time is it? )

Head eastwards out of the city (bus numbers 25 or 27 if you are carfree. About a mile outside of the city on Carlton Road is a branch of the Co-op and if you walk down the road which runs parallel to Carlton Road directly behind the Co-op you will come across the Stonebridge City Farm (it's on Stonebridge Road). Its free to access, has a small outdoor play area, a cafe and sells suitable food for kiddies/parents to feed the animals (even their donkey is wonderfully gentle!)

A little bit further up Carlton Road (1/2 mile) is a further education college (on the opposite side of the road to the Co-op and that has a soft play area. I have never been to it, but a couple of friends of mine take their older kids to it. There is a babies/toddlers section by all accounts.

Wetherspoons on St James street (just off Market Square which is currently being refurbished) is good for taking young children to eat realtively cheaply. The majority of the pub is smoke free and there is so much room you don't have to worry about pushchairs etc getting in the way.

There is also Greens Mill in Sneinton which is a working windmill (if you do any baking at all I can recommend the flour they sell. Last lot I bought was some spelt flour and it is really nice). You can climb up the windmill whilst it is working (but the stairs are extrememly steep as you can probably imagine, look out the top etc, and there is a science museum which is great fun for kiddies to explore/whack at.

I just had a look for a site I had saved in favourites, but it has just changed format - it used to be better days out in Nottingham and has expanded to the East Midlands. Still got the same useful stuff on there though.

Where does your SIL live? If you have a look at the link I have given you, I will give my opinion on anything you are interested in if you like

LeahE Mon 22-May-06 12:07:45

Thank you all for your suggestions. SIL doesn't have much room so we're staying in central Nottingham. Just for a few days this time, so I think we'll have plenty to do from your suggestions in this thread -- but don't worry, Squarer, I'll be working my way through that site and be back in touch for future reference...

Thanks again!

hotmama Mon 22-May-06 12:19:23

I always go to John Lewis for lunch as they have loads of highchairs - provide free jars for lo's and do decent childrens meals for those that are a bit older and 'Happy Meal' things which are pick and mix and good nutritionally.

If you want a trip out there is always White Post Farm on the A614 and Ferry Farm at Hoveringham. There is also Wollaton Park.

I'm sure us Nottingham girls could recommend loads of places it fepends what you want - and how much you want to spend. HTH

LeahE Sun 04-Jun-06 22:55:42

Thank you all for your recommendations -- we had great food at Wagamama and Nando's, and spent time at the castle, Ferry Farm and White Post Farm. We're up again in a couple of weeks so I should get a chance to try another suggestion. Thanks again -- I don't know what we'd have done without MN!

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