Ashridge Estate | Berkhamsted Castle | de Havilland | Gorhambury | Knebworth House | Hatfield House | Letchworth Museum | St Albans Museum | Verulamium | Shaw's Corner | Scott's Grotto | St Albans Cathedral | Tring National History Museum | Verulamium Museum
The high point of the estate's 4000 acres of woodland, heath and open parkland is the Bridgewater monument. This fine 108 ft fluted column, which towers over the beech clad Chiltern Hills, was erected in 1832 as a memorial to the 3rd duke of Bridgewater, and is open to the public. Visitors can also enjoy the many miles of pathways and bridleways through the rich woodlands and across the wild open countryside. A wide range of activities and events for all the family take place through out the year.
Opening times: Estate all year. Visitor Centre: Mar~Dec, 12 to 5pm
Admission Charge for Bridgewater Monument only
Location: Moneybury Hill, Ringshall, Berkhamsted HP4 1LX
Tel: 01442 851227 & 755557
Run by National Trust - Website
Facilities: Parking, tea room, visitor centre, shop.
Little remains of the castle site today, except for its crumbling motte and bailey and a unique huge double moat. In its heyday it was one of the most important castles in England. Originally built just after the Norman Conquest - the later stone keep was owned by the Black Prince (eldest son of King Edward III) and was where King John of France was imprisoned.
Opening times: all year, Summer, daily 10am to 6pm; Winter 10am to 4pm (closed Xmas hols)
Location: Near Berkhamsted station HP4 1HF
Run by English Heritage - Website
Facilities: Parking nearby.
A small working aircraft museum dedicated to de Havilland aircraft manufacture. The hanger and surrounding site contains over 30 aircraft, including Tiger Moths, Mosquitos and Comets, plus a collection of de Havilland engines and other memorabilia.
Opening times: first Sun of Mar to last Sun of Oct, Tue/Thur/Sat: 12.00 - 17.00, Sun & BH: 10.30 - 17.00 Admission Charge
Location: Salisbury Hall, London Colney, AL2 1BU - Tel: 01727 826400 & 822051 - Website
Facilities: Parking, café, shop.
Little remains of the original Elizabethan mansion house, built by Sir Nicholas Bacon in 1563, except for a small chapel and clock tower. The later Palladian-style house, built by Sir Robert Taylor (circa 1774/84), was erected to host the family's growing collection of 17th century portraits. The house is a member of the Historic Houses Association and open for guided tours on Thursday afternoons during the summer months.
Opening times: May~Sep, Thu 2pm to 5pm Admission Charge
Location: Off Bluehouse Hill, St Albans AL3 6AH - Tel: 01727 854051
Facilities: Parking, entry price includes mandatory guided tour.
Knebworth began in 1492 as a Tudor manor house, built by Sir Robert Lytton, and has been the home of the Lytton family ever since. The exterior was later redecorated in Gothic style by Victorian novelist Sir Edward Bulwer-Lvtton. The formal gardens were originally laid out by Edwin Lutyens in 1908; they include a deer park, a maze, a herb garden by Gertrude Jekyll and a walled garden. Children can enjoy the dinosaur trail in the wilderness garden, a miniature railway and an adventure playground.
Opening times: open daily - times vary, see - Website for details Admission Charge
Location: Knebworth SG3 6PY - Tel: 01438 812661
Facilities: Parking, café, shop, garden centre.
Hatfield House, built by Robert Cecil from 1607 to 1611 in a traditional Elizabethan style, is the home of the 7th Marquess of Salisbury. The house is exquisitely furnished with beautiful tapestries, period furniture and many famous paintings. The house is enclosed by 42 acres of magnificent gardens, including a Jacobean formal knot garden, a scented garden and open parkland areas. Close to the house is the Tudor Palace of Hatfield, the childhood home of Elizabeth I, where she held her first Council of State after she was crowned Queen in 1558.
Opening times: House: Wed-Sun & BHs 12 to 5pm; East Garden: Wed only 11am to 5.30pm
Park: Tue-Sun & BHs, 10am to 6pm Admission Charge
Location: Hatfield AL9 5NQ - Tel: 01707 287010 - Website
Facilities: Parking, café, restaurant, shop.
Situated at centre of Britain's first garden city, Letchworth's small town museum contains a range of exhibits on local wildlife, geology, arts and crafts and archaeology. The museum looks out onto the town's central park area (Broadway Gardens), which is lined by several other fine early 20th century buildings of note, including the town hall and an outstanding Art Deco cinema. A ten minute walk away is the 'First Garden City Heritage Museum', which tells the story of Ebenezer Howard's dream to help people from slum areas to live in a more green and open environment.
Opening times: all year, Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri, Sat (closed BHs), 10am to 5pm Small admission charge for First Garden City Museum only
Location: Broadway, Letchworth SG6 3PF - Tel: 01462 685647 - Website
Facilities: Parking nearby.
The Roman theatre, and other remains, were once part of one of the finest towns in Roman Britain, called Verulamium. Destroyed by Boadicea during the revolt of the Iceni, it was rebuilt almost immediately afterwards. The large semicircular theatre site was unearthed in 1847 and would have accommodating over 2000 spectators during Roman times. Remains of the Many finds at the site are exhibited in the nearby Verulamium Museum.
Opening times: all year, daily 10am to 5pm (4 in winter) Closed Xmas Admission Charge
Location: St Michaels, St Albans AL3 6AH - Tel: 01727 835035 - Website
Shaw's Corner is an Edwardian house and garden in which George Bernard Shaw lived until his death in 1950 (aged 94). The interior decor and furnishings remain much as he left them, with many literary and personal effects on show. The generous rear garden has many mature trees, shrubs and richly planted borders, with views over the Hertfordshire countryside. Near the bottom of the garden, hidden behind the trees, is Shaw's small revolving writing hut (shown here), complete with his pens, ink, glasses and old typewriter, just as he left them.
Opening times: Mar~Oct Wed-Sun (also BH Mons), Gardens: 12 to 5.30pm, House: 1 to 5pm Admission Charge
Location: Ayot St Lawrence AL6 9BX - Tel: 01438 829211 - Website
This unusual series of decorated underground chambers and passages were constructed around 1760 by the Quaker poet John Scott. The grotto is Grade I listed, and its internal walls and domed ceilings are finely decorated with intricate patterns using stones, flints, shells and coloured glass. Visitors should wear sensible shoes and bring a torch as the grotto is not lit.
Opening times: Apr~Sep, Sat & BH Mon 2 to 4.30pm Donations welcome
Location: Scott's Rd, Ware SG12 9JQ - Tel: 01920 464131 - Website
Facilities: Parking (on street) - not suitable for wheelchairs.
The abbey church and gate house are all that remain of the original buildings from a 10th century Benedictine community. The church is the second longest in England and became a cathedral in 1877. The original church was built on the site of the execution and burial of Britain's first martyr, St Alban, circa 250 AD. Parts of the cathedral and gate house are built from recycled Roman masonry scavenged from nearby Verulamium. Close by, Georgian buildings line a street leading down to the river and a water mill.
Opening times: daily, 9am to 5.45pm Donations welcome
Location: Sumpter Yard, St Albans AL1 1BY
Tel: 01727 860780 - Website
Facilities: Parking (200 mtrs), café, shop, restaurant.
Part of the Natural History Museum (London), it houses thousands of preserved and mounted mammals, birds, fish and insect specimens, portrayed as they would have looked when they inhabited the world's forests, hills, plains and seas. The red-brick Victorian house and its collection were once owned by the scientist and collector Lionel Walter Rothschild. The property and its contents were given to the nation in 1937 after his death, by the Rothschild family.
Opening times: all year, Mon-Sat 10am - 5pm, Sun 2 - 5pm (closed Xmas) Free Entry
Location: Akeman Street, Tring HP23 6AP - Tel: 020 7942 6171 - Website
Facilities: Parking, café, shop.
Remains of the Roman city of Verulamium, including its theatre and city wall, lie on a grassy site south-west of the centre of St Albans. Many finds from the site, including superb mosaics, are exhibited in the Verulamium Museum.
Opening times: all year wkdys 10am to 5.30pm, Sun 2pm to 5.30 pm (closed Xmas) Admission Charge
Location: St Michaels, St Albans AL3 4SW - Tel: 01727 751810 - Website
Facilities: Parking (charged), shop.
Please note that the above information was accurate at the time this page was last updated. This information is subject to change at any time (opening times in particular), therefore if you plan on visiting any of the above attractions, please check the owner's website first or phone them for the latest details.