If you’re staying in one of our Hemel Hempstead serviced apartments, you’ll know how conveniently placed it is for the station, from where it’s a short journey into London.
But if you’d rather spend some free days exploring the countryside around Hemel Hempstead instead of going to the metropolis, there’s plenty to do that’s just a short drive away.
Dunstable Downs – Monday
Part of the Chiltern Hills, the escarpment of Dunstable Downs is a great place for walks and picnics. Owned by the Natural Trust, it’s an area of outstanding beauty. The Downs are famously windy and therefore attract hang gliders and also gliders (if you want to have a go, contact the London Gliding Club who offer experience flights). It’s also a very popular area with kite fliers, so there’s always plenty of activity to watch – or take part in – whilst you’re there.
ZSL Whipsnade Zoo – Tuesday
Whipsnade is London Zoo’s country cousin. As you’d expect, there are plenty of exotic animals, from penguins to rhinos, big cats to meerkats, butterflies to bongos. And you can find out more about the animals at the daily talks, or buy one of their experience packages. Make sure you wear comfy shoes as the zoo covers a lot of ground, but there is a safari bus and a train.
Bletchley Park – Wednesday
Historians and fans of puzzles and computers alike will be interested in a trip to Bletchley Park, the top secret centre for codebreakers in the Second World War, and the birthplace of modern IT. The park is also home to the National Museum of Computing which charts the history of computers from the Colossus to the present day.
Hatfield House – Thursday
The historic Hatfield House was the childhood home of Elizabeth I. Open from Easter until the autumn, the venue offers something for all the family as you can visit the house, the formal gardens, the Park Farm or the park itself. Events and markets are held at Hatfield House throughout the year so keep an eye out for what’s on.
Active days – Friday
If you’re looking for adrenaline activities rather than gentle walks, you could give white water rafting a go. Using the course built for the 2012 Olympics, the Lee Valley White Water Centre provides all the thrills – and possibly the spills – of travelling through fast-flowing whitewater, whether it’s in a raft, on a hotdog or hydrospeeding
If you’d prefer a dryer activity (as long as it isn’t raining), try swinging through the trees at Trent Park’s Go Ape. Fun for all the family!