Father's Day is looming. Whether you want to show your appreciation for dad or grandad (or in fact any father figure in your life), avoid the mad scramble for socks and lame cards - we've got a whole host of Father's Day treats that will get you in their good books for at least a few months!
For the discerning dad who appreciates a good beer, Woodforde's A Brewery Tour Fit For Dad is just that; the perfect opportunity to learn all about the brewing process (using only the finest locally sourced ingredients) through a guided tour of the brewery. Not only that, but there's also the chance to sample some of their award-winning range of ales (they've won two Champion Beer of Britain awards)! £10 per person, pre-book by calling 01603 722218.
If he's more of a whisky man, the English Whisky Company have an ideal offer: fathers go free on a tour of St George's Distillery on either Saturday 18 or Sunday 19 June, if accompanied and paid for by their son or daughter. Visit the distilling floor to see how the whisky is made, see the whisky in casks, and breathe in the amazing aroma caused by the Angels Share escaping before finally finishing with a taste of one or two of their wonderful (and also award-winning – we're a county of winners here!) malt whiskies. It's bound to be popular though, so book to ensure you won't miss out on a spot (call 01953 717939).
Holkham never fails to provide a rather classy offering for Father's Day; take him to see Holkham Cricket Club play Castle Rising Cricket Club in the beautiful grounds (19 June). They've been playing in the park since the early 1840's so you'll be watching years of tradition! Afterwards treat dad to a bite to eat at the Beach Café, where there will also be live music from 12 noon until 4pm. No need to book – just drop in and enjoy.
It may not be happening on Father's Day itself, but a great treat for anyone with a sense of humour are tickets to Return to the Forbidden Planet (22 – 30 July), coming to the Maddermarket Theatre. Yes, it is a musical and that might not be every dad's cup of tea, but it's a jukebox musical – so they'll probably have heard of most, if not all, of the songs featured... and they're real corkers! Expect Monster Mash, Great Balls of Fire, Good Vibrations and Jonny B Goode plus many more classics from the 60's and 70's, all accompanying a truly entertaining story (based on Shakespeare's The Tempest, with elements from a few more of the Bard's plays sprinkled in for good measure) which'll take you to outer space! Tickets are £12 / £10 concessions.
Killer Queen perform at the Theatre Royal this summer (28 August, 7.30pm); they're a highly talented Queen tribute group who have performed their fantastic show across the globe, featuring an array of the supergroup's legendary hits. Tickets are available now priced £7 - £23.50; a perfect Father's Day treat, we reckon, and the fact that it's a few months away makes it something to look forward to!
If there's sunshine and blue skies – or just a distinct lack of rain – get outside and celebrate, Norfolk style! Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse has a whole day of activities along a Norfolk theme, on Sunday the 19th, with vintage vehicles on show, inflatable football and costumed characters, plus free chips for every dad, too!
Barnham Broom have plenty of options to spoil dads - why not book him in for a golf tuition break? The offer includes a one-night stay, breakfast, two golf lessons, a putting lesson and a nine hole golf playing lesson - all from just £135 per person. Afterwards you could treat him to something out of their impressive golf shop - a must-visit for any keen player! Alternatively go a little off-piste and book a Father's Day Spa Special with a deep tissue back, neck, shoulder and scalp massage all for £47 – they're worth it! Spa days aren't just for females, after all.
Fathers go free with every full paying person at Banham Zoo on 19 June, whilst Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is offering Guided Canoe Trails (19 June) for the adventurous; this is a chance for you to explore the Broads via canoe with the comfort of a fully qualified, experienced instructor (no matter how much front you put on, no one wants to be stranded on a canoe in the Broads!) If larger, more 'stable' vessels are a more suitable option then get dad to be the captain of his own ship (well, boat) with a special Fathers' Day offer: enjoy three hours out on the water for the price of two with Broads Tours. It's first come, first served though, so don't leave it too late to get down there!
To explore the Broads from a different perspective, hire bikes from Broadland Cycle Hire or Waveney River Centre and follow the Broads by Bike routes, or for something more city-focused pick them up from Abellio Greater Anglia (situated at the Train Station, but you must pre-book - call 0845 6007245 or book online). Take a cycle tour of the Norwich 12 buildings; check out the Norwich Cycle Map for details on routes and keep fit whilst you sight-see!
For football fans, a tour of Norwich City Football Club's stadium is bound to be a gift right on the money! Enjoy a tasty lunch at Yellows before starting the official tour; you'll see highlights that you're unlikely to get to see on match day including the dressing rooms, player's tunnel and the Director's Box! Contact the club for prices and further details (0844 826 1902).
After all that excitement, it's time to think about food. The Norwich Food & Drink Festival returns to The Forum again this year on Fathers' Day, so go for a wander round the delicious food stalls, cookery demos, Adnams beer garden and the ever-popular Battle of the Bangers (round the corner on St Peter's Street), where you can sample an array of delicious sausages and vote for your favourite flavour! Once you've enjoyed the live music and entertainment - and warmed up your stomach, of course - you won't have to move far for more delicious food; The Library Restaurant Bar and Grill, Bill's and Côte Brassie all offer tasty lunch and dinner options within a 2 minute walk, or travel outside of the city to The Artichoke at Broome, The Norfolk Mead or The Walpole Arms or, for excellent vegetarian and vegan options, head over to the River Green Café. Mambo Jambo, Namaste India and Thai Kitti are also great city-centre options if you fancy cuisine from distant lands without travelling too far yourselves!
To plan a trip to Norwich please visit www.visitnorwich.co.uk