A Walk Through The Past: 10 Best Things To Do In Newark-on-Trent, England - Updated 2021

best things to do in newark-on-trent uk

Situated on the banks of the Trent River, Newark-on-Trent is a market town, that grew around Newark Castle, the famous ruins where King John died, in 1216. Newark-on-Trent is linked with the national railway, so you can reach the town from the major cities of the UK.

The old market town boasts one of the finest Georgian market squares in the UK and is rich in history, with a dramatic castle and museums. Spending time in Newark-on-Trent means stepping back in time, to enjoy old England. Read on to learn more about the best things to do in the area!

1. See the fascinating Newark Castle

Newark on Trent UK Market Square
Source: Photo by user Marcin Floryan used under CC BY 2.5

A post shared by @nenanalak on Dec 23, 2016 at 12:42pm PST

Remember the famous Robin Hood and King John stories from your childhood? The real King John died at this castle, in the year 1216. The ruins of Newark Castle includes a Norman gate and a series of underground passages and chambers. And best of all, visiting is free of charge!

After exploring the ruins, spend some time in the beautiful garden, overlooking River Trent. There are lots of benches to rest and your kids can run and play. There are plenty of wonderful photography opportunities here, for those who love snapping some pics.

Newark Castle and Gardens

Address: Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, UK

Website: Newark Castle and Gardens

2. Be amazed at St Mary Magdalene Church

best things to do in newark-on-trent uk | be amazed at st mary magdalene church

Located next to the large marketplace of Newark-on-Trent, St. Mary Magdalene Church is a medieval parish church, with a magnificent spire, famous for its musket ball hole, which allegedly struck the church during the 1664 Civil War. One of the church’s treasures is the 16th-century painting entitled “The Dance of Death”, which can be found in the Markham Chantry Chapel and depicts a foppish young man, reaching for his purse. It’s a forever reminder that nobody can escape death, despite his or her wealth.

Another interesting monument is the Fleming Brass, one of the largest brasses in England, which commemorates the life of Newark wool merchant Alan Fleming, who died in 1361.

St. Mary Magdalene Church

Address: Church Walk, Newark NG24 1JS, UK

Website: St. Mary Magdalene Church

3. Get ready to fly at the Newark Air Museum

A post shared by Dave Black (@daveb2701) on Jun 29, 2017 at 12:33pm PDT

Indulge your pilot dreams at the Newark Air Museum, a VAQAS registered venue and an Accredited Museum, located on the former World War II airfield of Winthorpe, Newark-on-Trent. The museum has a diverse collection of more than 74 aircraft and helicopters and is open 361 days of the year. It’s a dream for all aviation enthusiasts!

Newark Air Museum

Address: The Showground, Drove Ln, Winthorpe, Coddington, Newark NG24 2NY, UK

Website: Newark Air Museum

4. Visit the historical Newark Town Hall Museum

A post shared by Aura Journeys (@aurajourneys) on Mar 12, 2017 at 9:55am PDT

Another must-visit museum in Newark-on-Trent is the Newark Town Hall Museum and Art Gallery. Walk through the indoor Butter Market from the market place, and you will arrive at the museum. It has a small art gallery, where new artists display their pieces and there are also pieces from older, established artists.

Play Georgian dress-up and enjoy the other educational activities, which are suitable for both adults and children. Continue your exploration to the Town Hall and visit the Lord Mayor’s Parlour, the Council Room, and the absolutely stunning Ballroom, with its marble pillars, topped with gold leaf, a huge chandelier and a breathtaking ceiling.

And it’s free; it’s one of the biggest charity museums in Britain.

Town Hall Museum & Art Gallery

Address: Market Place, Newark NG24 1DU, United Kingdom

Website: Town Hall Museum & Art Gallery

5. Pay your respects at the National Civil War Centre Newark Museum

The National Civil War Centre is worth a visit for those who love history and it is the UK’s only museum dedicated to displaying the brutal story of the 17th century Civil War, between Crown and Parliament. The Civil War was Britain’s deadliest conflict and it shaped Britain’s modern world. The interactive displays show compelling details of why brother fought brother and father fought against son and how a once all-powerful monarch lost his kingdom and his head. You can also play with costumes at the museum!

National Civil War Centre - Newark Museum

Address: 14 Appleton Gate, Newark NG24 1JY, UK

Website: National Civil War Centre - Newark Museum

6. The Queen's Royal Lancers and Nottinghamshire Yeomanry Museum

The Queen’s Royal Lancers and Nottinghamshire Yeomanry Museum displays the military history of some famous Cavalry regiments. The self-guided tour starts on the ground floor, where you will see a replica of a Great War trench, on display. On the next floor, accessible by stairs or a lift, is the main body of the museum, which, set out in chronological order, starts with the formation of the Cavalry and leads right up to the recent Gulf War. If you have family that served in the British military, in the past, this is a perfect place to get to know more about their history.

The Queen's Royal Lancers and Nottinghamshire Yeomanry Museum

Address: Thoresby Court Yard, Thoresby Park, Nr Perlethorpe, Nottinghamshire, Newark NG22 9EP, United Kingdom

Website: The Queen’s Royal Lancers and Nottinghamshire Yeomanry Museum

7. Shopping time at Newark Market

Newark Market
Source: Photo by Flickr user Alex Liivet used under CC BY 2.0

Visiting a local market is one of the best things you can do when travelling to a new city and Newark Market is something that you shouldn’t miss, with its cobblestone road and red and white stalls. Newark Market is a lovely, eclectic market, that opens in the Market Square on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. You will find fresh produce here, the delicious smell of fresh bread, and also flea market stalls.

An insider tip is to get the good stuff at bargain prices at the end of the market time, which is lunchtime.

Newark Market

Website: Newark Market

8. Go karting with ELK Motorsport

Who says you can’t get an adrenaline rush in an old historical town like Newark-on-Trent? Check out ELK Motorsport, where you can try go karting with your families and friends. With its first-class staff and well-maintained track, you will race like a pro, because they even change your kart seat in between races.

There are no food places in the area, so if you plan to spend a whole day at the racetrack, bring some takeaway from the market.

Elk Motorsport

Address: The Circuit, Drove Lane,, Winthorpe, Newark, Nottinghamshire, Newark NG24 2RB, United Kingdom

Website: Elk Motorsport

9. It’s high time at Old Bakery Tea Rooms

A post shared by Laura Mcleod (@369laura) on Apr 15, 2017 at 5:55am PDT

Enjoy a real English treat at the Old Bakery Tea Rooms, a quaint restaurant with a lovely, warm welcome. It serves fine coffee and exquisite homemade food, for those who like a little class with their breakfast. Enjoy high tea or cream tea with a hearty snack. Or you can try the locally produced ginger beer and/or cloudy lemonade. You will not be disappointed.

The Old Bakery Tea Rooms

Address: 4 Queen’s Rd, Newark NG24 1EL, UK

Website: The Old Bakery Tea Rooms

10. Enjoy the real local ales at Castle Barge

best things to do in newark-on-trent uk | enjoy the real local ales at castle barge
Source: oramp1979 on Instagram

The Castle Barge is definitely not your average pub. It was built on an old Spillers grain barge, moored at the Trent River, in Newark-on-Trent. Spend your evening with the riverside views from the upper deck and large outside seating area. Or you can try their great range of local ales at the basement/bar area.

Cocktails hours are every day, from 5 until 8 pm. The kitchen is open until 7 pm, with traditional pub food, as well as award-winning pies and sausages and British steaks. A warm welcome awaits you at Newark favourite’s pub.

Castle Barge

Address: The Wharf, Newark NG24 1EU, UK

Website: Castle Barge

A walk to remember

Enjoy a walk into the past, in Newark-on-Trent, through its museums and castle ruins. Live the old English life, with its high tea and local ales, while remembering the glory of the past.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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