Norwich is a beautiful city in the east of England that’s rich with history, independent restaurants, and fun activities for couples to do together.
From exploring its picturesque cobbled streets and historic buildings to walking along its scenic river and trying out one of its many fantastic eateries, there’s something for everyone.
Whether you’re looking for date ideas in the city or if you’re visiting and are after fun things to do in Norwich for couples, check out this list for inspiration.
1. Visit Norwich Castle
For history lovers looking for a fun day out in Norwich, the castle at the heart of the city is one of the major attractions that you should visit.
With the impressive Norman keep overlooking the city, the 900-year-old castle is a fun place to explore as a couple.
The museum inside has exhibitions displaying a range of local history, including Roman and Anglo-Saxon artefacts found in the area.
A cafe on site provides a tasty lunch or a nice spot for afternoon tea.
Top tip: You can buy super cheap twilight tickets one hour before closing if you wanted a quick look around inside.
2. Take a walk along the river
The River Wensum winds through Norwich, and taking a stroll along its banks is a great way to see some of the best sights that the city has to offer.
The riverside walk takes you through the historic cathedral quarter as well as past other interesting locations like Adam and Eve, which some claim to be the oldest pub in the city.
If you go at dusk when the sun is setting, walking along the river is one of the most romantic things you can do in Norwich.
3. Enjoy an afternoon tea together
One of the best date ideas in Norwich is to share afternoon tea at one of the many venues in the city that offer it.
Harriets Cafe Tearoom is amongst the most popular spots for afternoon tea in Norwich, with it’s inviting interior capturing that of a traditional English tearoom.
The Assembly House is another top choice. Set within a beautiful Georgian grade I listed building, it’s worth visiting even without the afternoon tea.
Wherever you choose, there are few better things to do in Norwich for couples than enjoying a stack of sandwiches, scones, and cake as part of a delicious afternoon tea.
4. Discover what the lanes have to offer
The series of mostly pedestrianised streets and alleys in the centre of the city make up Norwich Lanes, home to some of the best eateries and shops in the area.
It’s worth exploring what the lanes have offer, and it’s easy to spend hours browsing the many independent shops to be found there.
From antiques and jewellery to clothes and crafts shops, there’s something for everyone. Multiple cafes can be found too if you’re after coffee or a bite to eat, such as Logans and The Little Red Roaster.
5. Explore the cathedral
One of the most romantic places in Norwich is the area in and around the cathedral, a spectacular 11th-century building. The spire has long been an iconic feature of the city skyline.
Norwich Cathedral is free to go in, and there’s a lot of history to learn about within its walls. The cloisters are particularly beautiful to wander around.
The area outside the cathedral is also a nice location to sit outside with a picnic on a sunny day.
Taking time to see the main landmarks in Norfolk, including the castle and cathedral, makes for one of the best days out in Norfolk for couples.
6. Explore Norwich on a sightseeing bus tour
Like many cities, one of the best ways to see Norwich is to book a sightseeing bus tour.
With 9 different stops along the route, you can hop on and off where you like and as much as you like, with the ticket providing 24-hour access to the tour buses.
With a pre-recorded commentary providing useful information along the way, you’ll see sights like the cathedral and castle and have the chance to hop off to explore them further.
Booking a sightseeing tour bus is especially fun on a sunny day when you can sit in the open air together and relax as you’re taken around the city.
7. Watch a show at Norwich Theatre Royal
Near the centre of the city you can find Norwich Theatre Royal, the main venue that hosts a range of shows all year round, including musicals, plays, ballet, and comedy.
Being around the corner from Chapelfield shopping centre and only a few minutes from a wide range of restaurants, getting tickets to the theatre can be part of a great day out in the city.
So, if you’re looking for things to do in Norwich for couples, make sure to check what’s on at Norwich Theatre Royal to see if there’s anything that piques your interest!
8. Catch a film
For a classic date night in Norwich, why not see a movie? Fortunately, there are multiple cinemas in the city to choose from, so there’ll always be something on.
There are two multiplex cinemas, with Vue in the city centre right by the castle and an Odeon nearer the train station in Riverside.
However, for a different cinema experience you should visit Cinema City. Situated inside a 16th-century building in the heart of Norwich, catching a film here feels unique and is a great setting for a cosy date night.
9. Go bowling at Bowling House
For a bit of friendly competition, try out Bowling House! Unlike bigger bowling venues, the five lanes here are perfect for spend a relaxing hour or two.
Not only can you challenge each other, there’s also a great selection of food and drinks available from the bar, including some tasty cocktails.
Their loaded nachos are especially delicious if you want a snack, and they’re the perfect size for two people to share.
10. Take a trip to the seaside
One of the best features of Norwich is how easy it is to get to some of the best beaches in Norfolk. Hopping on a train from Norwich station and heading to the coast makes for a great day out.
There are two main destinations that you should consider visiting, depending on what you’re after:
- Great Yarmouth is the nearest major seaside resort, and it only takes half an hour to get to by train. With a large sandy beach and lots of ride to go on at the pier, you can have a lot of fun there, making it one of the best day trips from Norwich.
- Cromer offers a quiter location than Yarmouth, but it has everything you need for a quintessential British seaside experience. For more information, you can read our blog on the best things to do in Cromer.
11. Have fun paddleboarding
Along the River Wensum, you can various places where you can hire paddleboarding. This watersport is a great way to spend time as a couple in Norwich, especially on a warm day with the sun shining down on you.
Depending on how confident you are on the water, you can either book beginner sessions where you’ll be taught everything you need to know or you can hire a pair of boards and roam free along the river.
12. Visit the Sainsbury Centre
At the outskirts of Norwich, on the campus of the University of East Anglia, you can find the Sainsbury Centre, an art gallery housed in a stylish modern building.
Along with permanent displays featuring the works of Robert and Lisa Sainsbury, there are also temporary exhibitions that generally host fascinating examples of modern and contemporary artwork.
You can also explore the sculpture park outside which makes for a great point to stop off during a walk around the university campus’ wonderful green spaces and lake.
The Sainsbury Centre was also used as Avengers HQ in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so walking around inside is certainly one of the most unusual things to do in Norwich!
13. Play mini golf in Eaton Park
Eaton Park, an 80-acre area of green space in the south-west of Norwich, is one of the city’s largest parks. It’s a lovely place for a walk or to have a picnic in summer, but it’s also home to an 18-hole crazy golf course.
On a dry day, playing a round is fun way to add some friendly competition during a date, and all for a reasonable price of £5 per adult!
14. See what’s for sale at Norwich Market
With 189 different stalls, some open most of the week from Monday to Saturday, Norwich Market is one of the oldest and largest markets in the UK.
A fun thing to do in Norwich for couples is to look around the various stalls to see what’s for sale, and with many of them hosted under the covered market you don’t even have to worry about the rain.
Norwich Market is also a great place to grab a tasty lunch, with some stalls selling a range of delicious street food including empanadas, pizza slices, and falafel wraps.
15. Have a picnic in the Plantation Garden
These Grade II listed gardens off Earlham Road are known locally as the “secret garden”, although they’re clearly signposted if you’re walking past!
The unique design of the garden, including a Gothic-looking fountain and beautifully-crafted landscape, makes it a picturesque location to have a picnic when the sun is shinning and the ground is dry..
Being a little out the way of the city centre, it also tends to be relatively quiet. So with the solitude and spectacular surroundings, it’s one of the most romantic spots in Norwich.
16. Go for a walk around Whitlingham Country Park
Situated to the south-east of Norwich, an easy walk from the station, Whitlingham Country Park offers a serene escape from the bustle of the city, without actually having to leave Norwich.
With woodlands to explore and the River Yare cutting through the park, it’s a great location to stroll around whatever the weather and take in the sights and sounds of nature.
Whitlingham Country Park is home to lots of different wildlife that you can try to spot. On occasion, it also hosts an outdoor cinema. Cuddling up to watch a film under the stars is one of the most romantic things to do in Norwich.
17. Go on a ghost tour
Norwich is easy to explore on foot, and with many historic streets and alleyways hiding many nooks and crannies, there’s always something new to discover.
However, if you really want to learn more about the history of the city and see things you may not have found by yourself, there’s no better way than by joining a ghost tour.
With Norwich Ghost Walks, a host will guide you through areas such as Tombland and Elm Hill, sharing spooky stories of the supernatural happenings in the city.
18. Try winetasting at a vineyard
Wine tasting is always a popular date idea, and that’s no different in Norwich, where you can find several great options for wine-tasting experiences.
Within the city, you can visit Norwich Wine School. Here, you’ll be able to join wine tasting hosted by expert wine tutors, so you can learn plenty while savouring the taste of each glass.
Alternatively, there are vineyards outside the city that are worth making a trip to, such as Chet Valley and Winbirri, where you can enjoy a tour as well as tastings.
19. Watch the sunset (or sunrise!)
One of the simplest but most magical date ideas in Norwich is to enjoy a sunset together, and there a several great spots for it.
Kett’s Heights is one of the most popular spots to catch a spectacular sunset, as you can get amazing views over the city. You could also book a table in the evening at the Rooftop Gardens, where you can enjoy your food along with dazzling views of the setting sun.
Even just sitting outside Norwich Cathedral is a great place to relax in the glow of the fading light, as you’ll be met with stunning images of the incredible building being painted with oranges and reds.
20. Enjoy a couples massage
One of the most relaxing things to do in Norwich for couples is to book a massage together.
It’s the perfect way to indulge and spend time together, whether you’re in need of a deep tissue massage or just after a chance to enjoy some much-needed relaxation.
There are a few options for a couples massage in Norwich, but make sure to check out the twilight spa experience at The Pigs in north Norfolk, where you can enjoy your massage along with a glass of wine before having a three-course meal.
Romantic restaurants in Norwich
The centre of Norwich is full of amazing cafes and restaurants that are worth trying out, whether you’re after lunch, dinner, or just coffee and cake.
For a romantic meal in Norwich, explore some of the independent eateries located in and around the lanes, the picturesque little streets at the heart of the city, or have a look at our op recommendations:
Gonzo’s Tea Room
Gonzo’s Tea Room is a cosy location that feels like a hidden gem, with an entrance that looks quite unassuming from the outside and could be easy to miss if you don’t know where to look.
Along with an eclectic decor, it also offers some of the tastiest burgers in the city, as well as being on our list of the best restaurants in Norwich.
The Lamb Inn
If you like pub grub, the Lamb Inn offers the perfect location for a romantic meal out.
While it’s in the very centre of Norwich, just around the corner from the market, it’s located in a courtyard, making it feel quiet and secluded.
Grosvenor Fish Bar
The standout fish and chip shop in Norwich is Grosvenor Fish Bar, which isn’t your standard chippie.
While you can grab food for takeaway here, there’s seating downstairs from the bar which has a great atmosphere for a date night idea in Norwich.
Norwich date ideas FAQs
Where can you find unique and creative date spots in Norwich?
For unique and creative date spots in Norwich, consider exploring the Norwich Lanes, a quirky and charming area with independent shops, cafes, and galleries.
Another option is to visit The Plantation Garden, a hidden Victorian garden offering a tranquil escape within the city.
What are the best outdoor activities for a fun date in Norwich?
Norwich offers plenty of outdoor activities for a fun date, such as going paddleboarding on the river, going on a scenic bike ride along Marriott’s Way, or taking a romantic walk through Whitlingham Country Park.
What are the best free things to do in Norwich for couples?
If you’re looking for budget-friendly date ideas, head to Norwich Cathedral, where you enter for free and take a look around inside the spectacular building. Alternatively, pack a picnic and head to Mousehold Heath for a budget-friendly outdoor date with stunning views of the city.