top of page

Top 10 Hidden Gems in Hertfordshire

Updated: Mar 9

Your Ultimate Guide to exploring off-the-beaten track locations scattered across Hertfordshire.


According to recent surveys, Hertfordshire is one of the best places to live in England. And apart from the buzzing towns and cool restaurants, there are so many hidden gems around the county that outsiders may never have heard of. Why not check out some of these hidden beauties the next time you're around Hertfordshire?


In this article, we share the top 10 hidden gems in Hertfordshire which you need to add to your Hertfordshire bucket list this year. We hope you enjoy!


Image of Old Gorhambury House in Hertfordshire


1) Old Gorhambury House


Visitors can enjoy stunning views and a lovely experience when walking through the ruins. You can really imagine what it must have been like back in the day. To give some history, it was built by St Nicholas Bacon in 1560s, who was Lord Keeper of the Great Seal, to house Elizabethan.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Old Gorhambury House


1) What is Old Gorhambury House?

Old Gorhambury House is a historic mansion located near St Albans in Hertfordshire. It was built in the 16th century by Sir Nicholas Bacon, Lord Keeper of the Great Seal, and served as the family seat of the Bacon family. Today, the house stands as a picturesque ruin, offering glimpses into its rich history and architectural grandeur.


2) How do I get to Old Gorhambury House?

To reach Old Gorhambury House, visitors can follow signs from the city of St Albans. The house is situated within the Gorhambury Estate, and access is available via guided tours or special events organized by English Heritage, the organization responsible for its preservation. Parking facilities are available onsite.


3) What can I expect to see at Old Gorhambury House?

At Old Gorhambury House, visitors can expect to see the remnants of a grand Elizabethan mansion set amidst landscaped gardens and parkland. Highlights include the imposing facade of the house, the ornate entrance porch, and the ruins of the Great Hall and other chambers.


Interpretive panels provide insights into the history and significance of the site, making it a fascinating destination for history enthusiasts and architecture lovers.


Places to stay near Old Gorhambury House



Image of Old Gorhambury House in Hertfordshire


2) Roman Theatre of Verulamium


The Roman Theatre of Verulamium is a very underrated hidden gem in St Albans. It is definitely well worth a visit to understand the prominence of the city in Roman times. In the summer, visitors can enjoy experiencing it as an open air venue for various festivals.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Roman Theatre of Verulamium


1) What is the Roman Theatre of Verulamium?

The Roman Theatre of Verulamium is an ancient amphitheater located in Verulamium Park, St Albans, Hertfordshire. Built in the 2nd century AD, it is one of the best-preserved Roman theaters in Britain and offers insight into the area's rich Roman history and cultural heritage.

2) How do I get to the Roman Theatre of Verulamium?

To reach the Roman Theatre of Verulamium, visitors can follow signs to Verulamium Park in St Albans. The theater is situated within the park, and access is available via designated pathways. Parking is available nearby, and the site is also easily accessible by public transportation.


3) What can I expect to see at the Roman Theatre of Verulamium?

At the Roman Theatre of Verulamium, visitors can expect to see the remains of a Roman amphitheater, including the stage area, seating tiers, and sections of the stage wall. Interpretive panels provide information about the theater's history and architecture, offering visitors a glimpse into Roman life and entertainment in ancient Britain.


Places to stay near Roman Theatre of Verulamium



Image of Roman Theatre of Verulamium in Hertfordshire

3) Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic


This gem is a very detailed mosaic floor located inside the building which houses and protects it. Some say it's in a very strange location, however it is free to visit and take a look so it's worth it.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic


1) What is the Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic?

The Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic is an archaeological site located in Verulamium Park, St Albans, Hertfordshire. It showcases a well-preserved Roman hypocaust system and an intricate mosaic floor, providing insight into Roman domestic life and architecture in ancient Britain.


2) How do I access the Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic?

Visitors can access the Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic within Verulamium Park in St Albans. The site is marked with informative panels and is easily accessible via designated pathways within the park. Parking is available nearby, and the site can also be reached by public transportation.


3) What can I expect to see at the Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic?

At the Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic site, visitors can expect to see the remains of a Roman hypocaust, a central heating system used in Roman buildings, along with a beautifully preserved mosaic floor.


Interpretive panels provide information about the history and significance of the site, offering visitors a fascinating glimpse into Roman life and architecture in Britain.


Places to stay near Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic



Image of Hypocaust & Roman Mosaic in Hertfordshire


4) Berkhamsted Castle


Fans of visitors will love what's left of the Berkhamsted Castle. It dates back to William the Conqueror 1066, however there isn't much left of the castle (but the history of the site is so fascinating). Once you've seen the ruins and walked the perimeter, it's also worth taking a stroll through Berkhamsted itself.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Berkhamsted Castle


1) What is Berkhamsted Castle?

Berkhamsted Castle is a historic Norman motte-and-bailey castle located in the town of Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire. Built after the Norman Conquest in the 11th century, it served as a royal residence and administrative center, playing a significant role in English history.


2) How do I access Berkhamsted Castle?

Visitors can access Berkhamsted Castle by following signs to Berkhamsted town center. The castle is situated on Castle Hill, overlooking the surrounding area. Access is available via a short walk from the town center, with designated pathways leading to the castle ruins.


3) What can I expect to see at Berkhamsted Castle?

At Berkhamsted Castle, visitors can explore the ruins of the Norman motte-and-bailey structure, including the remains of the keep, inner bailey, and defensive earthworks. Interpretive panels provide information about the castle's history and significance, offering visitors insights into medieval life and architecture in England.


Places to stay near Berkhamsted Castle



Image of Berkhamsted Castle in Hertfordshire

5) London Gate


The Park has many Roman gems scattered around it, but this one is one of the coolest. This section shows the remains of a Roman wall which surrounded the city in the past. Interesting fact; this gate linked St. Albans to Watling Street, and the ruins are an example of Roman masonry and the way in which they constructed the city.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting London Gate


1) What is London Gate in St Albans?

London Gate in St Albans is a historic gateway located within the city walls. It served as one of the principal entrances to medieval St Albans and is an iconic symbol of the city's rich history and heritage.


2) How do I access London Gate in St Albans?

Visitors can access London Gate by exploring the city's historic center. The gate is situated on the corner of Holywell Hill and High Street, near the Clock Tower. It is easily reachable on foot, and visitors can enjoy a leisurely stroll through St Albans' charming streets to reach the gate.


3) What can I expect to see at London Gate in St Albans?

At London Gate in St Albans, visitors can admire the well-preserved medieval architecture, including the distinctive arches and stone battlements. Interpretive plaques provide insights into the gate's history and significance, offering visitors a fascinating glimpse into St Albans' medieval past.


Places to stay near London Gate



Image of London Gate in Hertfordshire

6) Roman Wall of St Albans


You'll be surprised at how many of the locals in St. Albans don't know about this beauty of a hidden gem! It's amazing to see how the culture has been preserved and the original wall has been captured and maintained.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Roman Wall of St Albans


1) What is the Roman Wall of St Albans?

The Roman Wall of St Albans refers to the ancient defensive wall built by the Romans around the city of Verulamium, now known as St Albans. It served as a protective barrier for the Roman settlement and is a significant archaeological and historical feature of the area.


2) How can I view the Roman Wall of St Albans?

Visitors can view remnants of the Roman Wall throughout St Albans, particularly in Verulamium Park and along nearby streets such as Bluehouse Hill and Kingsbury Avenue. Interpretive signs and plaques provide information about the wall's history and significance, allowing visitors to explore its remains.


3) What can I expect to see at the Roman Wall of St Albans?

At the Roman Wall of St Albans, visitors can see sections of the ancient stone wall that once encircled the Roman city of Verulamium. These remnants offer insights into Roman engineering and construction techniques and provide a tangible link to St Albans' rich Roman past.


Places to stay near Roman Wall of St Albans



Image of Roman Wall of St Albans in Hertfordshire


7) Welwyn Roman Baths


The Welwyn Roman Baths is a very interesting place for anyone with an interest in history. Visitors can admire the archaeological remains of a Roman bath house once attached to a villa complex discovered in the 1960's.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Welwyn Roman Baths


1) What are the Welwyn Roman Baths?

The Welwyn Roman Baths are ancient Roman ruins located in Welwyn, Hertfordshire. They are believed to be part of a Roman villa complex dating back to the 3rd century AD. The baths are a rare archaeological site in Britain, offering a glimpse into Roman life and culture.


2) How can I visit the Welwyn Roman Baths?

Visitors can visit the Welwyn Roman Baths by heading to the Welwyn Roman Baths and Hypocaust site located on the outskirts of Welwyn village. The site is open to the public, and guided tours are available, providing insights into the history and significance of the baths.


3) What can I expect to see at the Welwyn Roman Baths?

At the Welwyn Roman Baths, visitors can explore the remains of the ancient bathing complex, including the hypocaust system, heated rooms, and plunge pools. Interpretive panels and displays offer information about Roman bathing practices and the history of the site, providing an educational experience for visitors.


Places to stay near Welwyn Roman Baths



Image of Welwyn Roman Baths in Hertfordshire

8) Watercress Wildlife Association


A hidden gem just off the River Ver and the Alban Way. The entrance to the Watercress Wildlife Association is located between houses, so it can be quite tricky to find, but it's definitely worth the effort. Come here to escape the hustle and bustle of St. Albans.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Watercress Wildlife Association


1) What is the Watercress Wildlife Association?

The Watercress Wildlife Association is a local organization dedicated to preserving and enhancing the natural habitat surrounding the River Ver in St Albans, Hertfordshire. It focuses on promoting biodiversity, conserving wildlife, and maintaining the ecological balance of the area.


2) How can I get involved with the Watercress Wildlife Association?

You can get involved with the Watercress Wildlife Association by volunteering for conservation projects, participating in wildlife surveys, or attending educational events and workshops organized by the association. Additionally, you can support their efforts by becoming a member or making donations to help fund conservation initiatives.


3) What activities and amenities are available at the Watercress Wildlife Association?

The Watercress Wildlife Association offers various activities and amenities for visitors interested in exploring the natural surroundings of the River Ver. These may include guided nature walks, birdwatching opportunities, and wildlife spotting along designated trails.


Additionally, the association may provide information boards, picnic areas, and seating for visitors to enjoy the peaceful setting of the reserve.


Places to stay near Watercress Wildlife Association



Image of Watercress Wildlife Association in Hertfordshire


9) Panshanger Park


Panshanger Park is a wonderful place to relax and take a a walk in the countryside. There are loads of opportunities to see wildlife with information boards telling you what there is to see around the area!


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Panshanger Park


1) What is Panshanger Park?

Panshanger Park is a picturesque parkland located near Hertford in Hertfordshire, England. It spans over 1,000 acres and features a diverse landscape of woodlands, meadows, lakes, and wetlands. The park is known for its rich biodiversity, historical significance, and recreational opportunities.


2) How can I access Panshanger Park?

Panshanger Park is easily accessible by car, bicycle, or public transport. There are designated parking areas within the park, as well as entrances and access points along various footpaths and trails. Visitors can explore the park on foot, by bike, or with well-behaved dogs on designated routes.


3) What amenities and activities are available at Panshanger Park?

Panshanger Park offers a range of amenities and activities for visitors to enjoy. These include marked walking and cycling trails, picnic areas, and nature watching opportunities.


The park also hosts events and guided tours throughout the year, providing opportunities to learn about the park's history, wildlife, and conservation efforts. Additionally, there are facilities such as toilets and visitor centers to enhance the visitor experience.


Places to stay near Panshanger Park



Image of Panshanger Park in Hertfordshire

10) Bushey Rose Garden


Bushey Rose Garden is a very secluded and small park with loads of different flowers for flower-lovers. It's often described as a tranquil place which is also free to use and is a charming location loved by all ages.


FAQs/Things to know before visiting Bushey Rose Garden


1) What is the Bushey Rose Garden?

The Bushey Rose Garden is a beautiful public garden located in Bushey, Hertfordshire. It is renowned for its stunning collection of roses, vibrant floral displays, and tranquil atmosphere. The garden features winding pathways, seating areas, and ornamental features, making it a popular destination for visitors seeking a peaceful retreat amidst nature.


2) When is the best time to visit the Bushey Rose Garden?

The Bushey Rose Garden is at its most spectacular during the summer months when the roses are in full bloom. Typically, the peak bloom season occurs from June to August, although the exact timing may vary depending on weather conditions and the specific varieties of roses planted in the garden.


Visitors can enjoy a riot of colours and fragrances during this time, making it an ideal period to explore the garden.


3) Are there any special events or activities held at the Bushey Rose Garden?

Throughout the year, the Bushey Rose Garden hosts various events and activities for visitors of all ages to enjoy. These may include guided tours, photography workshops, gardening demonstrations, and seasonal celebrations.


Additionally, the garden may host cultural events, such as outdoor concerts or art exhibitions, adding to the vibrant ambiance of the space. Visitors are encouraged to check the garden's official website or local event listings for information on upcoming events and activities.


Places to stay near Bushey Rose Garden


Image of Bushey Rose Garden in Hertfordshire

We hoped you enjoyed discovering the local finds and less known places which are scattered around Hertfordshire. We are confident that visiting some of these hidden gems will make your Hertfordshire trip even more memorable!


Download the official APP!


Gain access to over 1,600 hidden gems and their co-ordinates all over the UK when you download our app. Add gems to your bucket-list and tick them off as you go along, as well as earn rewards/badges when you visit a certain amount.




1,199 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page