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Things to do in Herefordshire

Goodrich Castle in the Wye Valley, Herefordshire.
Goodrich Castle

Herefordshire is situated in Western England adjacent to the Welsh Border, and together with Cheshire in the north the area is known as 'The Marches'.

Herefordshire is one of England's most rural counties - to the west it enjoys striking views of the Black Mountains and the Brecon Beacons, on the east Hereford is bounded by the Malvern Hills and to the south is the scenic Wye Valley.

View of Hereford from the Old Bridge, showing Hereford Cathedral and the River Wye
View of Hereford from the Old Bridge

Herefordshire is an agricultural county, famous for its hops, fruit farming and production of cider. The natural beauty of the tranquil countryside, picturesque villages and lively market towns make Herefordshire a great destination for those seeking a quiet retreat from city life.

Black and White House, Hereford
Black and White House, Hereford

Walks and Trails

There are many good walks taking you into each part of the County, call in at one of the tourist information centres for leaflets. Longer walks passing through the County include Offa's Dyke Footpath, the Wye Valley Walk and the Mortimer Trail. There are many fine gardens to visit and plenty of attractions to keep all the family happy.

Hereford

Herefordshire Tourism begins at the heart of the County in Hereford, one of only twelve cities recorded in the Doomsday Book. Hereford Cathedral contains two of Britain's most important treasures, the Mappa Mundi and the Chained Library. Every three years the Cathedral is host to Europe's oldest music festival, The Three Choirs Festival.

The Bredwardine Bridge over river Wye in Herefordshire
The Bredwardine Bridge over the River Wye

The old bridge crossing the River Wye was built towards the end of the 15th century, in 1645 the third arch was removed to deter invasion by the Scots, it was later replaced, but in a different style. In High Town the black and white old house is now the Hereford Museum and Art Gallery, which holds many events. The Hereford Cider Museum, offers tours to see how traditional cider making was carried out and a chance to sample the cider produced today at King Offa's distillery.

Hereford Cathedral
Hereford Cathedral

Church Tower, Ledbury, Herefordshire
Church Tower, Ledbury

In the east the pretty town of Ledbury lies in the shelter of the Malvern Hills - it has several fine old buildings, in particular the arcaded 17th century market hall supported on pillars of chestnut. The town makes an excellent base for exploring the Malvern Hills and surrounding area.

Ledbury was the birthplace of the poet John Masefield and hosts an annual poetry festival in July. Nearby is Eastnor Castle, which contains many treasures, it is set in wonderful grounds and has a good play area for children.

Best Villages in Herefordshire Chart

NameHighlightPopulation
1. WeobleyHalf-timbered Buildings2,985
2. PembridgeSt Mary's Church and Bell Tower1056
3. Symonds YatSaracens Head Inn on River Wye410
4. Eardisland"Prettiest Village in Midlands" winner502

Best Villages in Herefordshire

Countryside Events

At Bromyard, a market town rich in history, you can see rural England at its best. Traditional countryside events, such as Bromyard Steam Gala in July and Bromyard Folk Festival in September are held annually. Nearby is Brockhampton Estate where you can enjoy walks through miles of park and woodland, home to a rich variety of wildlife and the chance to visit a medieval moated manor house.

View of the of the Wye Valley from Symonds Yat
The Wye Valley from Symonds Yat

To the north is Leominster (pronounced 'Lemster'), an old wool town situated in a lovely valley by the River Lugg and surrounded by hop fields and apple orchards. The town is rich in historic buildings dating from medieval, Tudor and Georgian times. The 11th century Priory Church is renowned for having three naves, a 45 foot perpendicular window and a well preserved 'ducking stool', in use up to early 19th century, to 'still the tongues of nagging women'!

A Footpath through the countryside at Malvern Hills
The Malvern Hills

Kington in north west Herefordshire is a popular centre for walkers of the Offa's Dyke Foot Path. There is good hill walking with lovely views from Hergest Ridge and Bradnor Hill.

Black and white ale house - wall of the wattle and daub alehouse, Colwall, Herefordshire
Wattle and Daub Alehouse in Colwall

At Hergest Croft Gardens, there are four distinct gardens, extending over fifty acres, a treat for all gardeners. Call at the Herefordshire Tourist Information centre for a leaflet on the 'Black and White Village Trail', a 40 mile journey of the half-timbered villages of Hereford.

The Wye Valley

Hay on Wye, in the 'Golden Valley' is today known as the 'second-hand' book shop town. The annual festival held in May, attracts visitors from around the world.

The River Wye on a sunny day
The River Wye

Ross on Wye in the south of the county is a lively market town with Georgian buildings, and a 17th century arcaded market hall in the centre, now a heritage centre. The Ross International Festival is held in August and the Regatta and Carnival are enjoyed by all ages. Don't miss the nearby beauty spot Symonds Yat, rich in flora and fauna and many species of birds including the rare Peregrine Falcon.



Days out in Herefordshire

  • Berrington Hall
    A Triumphal Arch, a bedroom celebrating the victories of Admiral Lord Rodney and Capability Brown-designed gardens make Berrington Hall a top place to visit in Herefordshire
    Berrington Hall
  • Croft Castle
    Croft Castle was a fortress that gradually transformed itself into a family home in more peaceful times. The Croft family built the existing castle in the 15th century.
    Croft Castle
  • Eastnor Castle
    In the dramatic setting of the Malvern Hills and surrounded by a beautiful deer park, arboretum and lake, this fairy-tale castle is the home of the Hervey-Bathurst family.
    Eastnor Castle
  • Goodrich Castle
    Goodrich Castle is the most complete medieval castle in Britain, despite its turbulent history. Built on a rocky outcrop with exhilarating views over the Wye Valley, it gives a fascinating insight into fortress life seven centuries ago.
    Goodrich Castle
  • Hereford Cathedral
    Standing on the peaceful banks of the beautiful River Wye, Hereford Cathedral occupies a site used for worship since Saxon times. The Mappa Mundi & Chained Library Exhibition is in the Cathedral.
    Hereford Cathedral
  • Hereford Cider Museum
    At the Hereford Cider Museum, explore the story of traditional cidermaking: how apples were harvested, milled and pressed, and how the resulting juice was fermented to produce cider.
    Hereford Cider Museum
  • Hergest Croft Gardens
    Hergest Croft Gardens lie in the heart of the Welsh Marches with stunning views towards the Black Mountains.
    Hergest Croft Gardens
  • How Caple Court Gardens
    The 11 acre gardens of How Caple Court date from Edwardian times and are set high above the River Wye with views towards the Forest of Dean and the Welsh Mountains.
    How Caple Court Gardens
  • Kinnersley Castle
    Kinnersley Castle was one of the many Marches castles sited by the Normans along the Welsh border. As seen today it is mainly the remodelled Elizabethan manor house of the Vaughan family.
    Kinnersley Castle
  • Moccas Court
    Built by Anthony Keck in 1775 overlooking the River Wye, decoration including the round room and oval stair by Robert Adam.Now run as exclusive country house guests accommodation, see website
    Moccas Court
  • Wye Valley Shipley Gardens
    Shipley Gardens surround a 17th Century Wye Valley homestead standing upon the site of previous dwellings that since Roman times have administered the adjacent ford and former ferry.
    Wye Valley Shipley Gardens



Places to Visit in Herefordshire

  • Brampton Bryan
    Brampton Bryan is a small village located on the northern boundary of Herefordshire, near the borders of Shropshire and Wales.
  • Bromyard
    Bromyard is a real, old-fashioned market town where everyone is friendly and the shops are stuffed with the wildest variety of goods you can imagine.
    Bromyard
  • Eardisland
    Eardisland is a beautiful Black and White village in north Herefordshire.
    Eardisland
  • Hereford
    A city on the banks of the River Wye, Hereford is one of the largest cities in the county of Herefordshire. The city has a very fine heritage, with many historic buildings and modern shops.
    Hereford
  • Ledbury
    The pretty market town of Ledbury is well-known for its distinctive black-and-white timber framed buildings. Located 14 miles east of Hereford, it is one of the most delightful English towns to visit.
    Ledbury
  • Leominster
    Leominster is a small market town on the border between England and Wales. It has a number of attractive buildings in the High Street and a plethora of unusual and interesting shops.
    Leominster
  • Luston
    Luston is a small hamlet,it doesn't have a church. The church is 1 mile away along Eye Lane.The school was at Moreton (about 1.5 miles away).
    Luston
  • Lyonshall
    Lyonshall is a large parish in north-west Herefordshire, close to the Welsh border town of Kington. It has a population of some 750 people in around 280 dwellings.
    Lyonshall
  • Ocle Pychard
    The rural Parish of Ocle Pychard in the Deanery of Bromyard, in Hereford diocese, is situated on the main road between Hereford and Bromyard and is about 7 miles equidistant from both.
    Ocle Pychard
  • Pembridge
    Few places in Herefordshire are lovelier than Pembridge. This small village is located on the sloping sides of the valley above the River Arrow, seven miles west of Leominster.
    Pembridge
  • Ross-on-wye
    Herefordshire is known for its pretty villages and Ross-on-Wye surely tops the list. This small market town has just over 10,000 residents and the picturesque streets, shops and quaint market square draw many more thousands of tourists.
    Ross-on-wye
  • Shobdon
    We have just received a description of Shobdon from one of our readers. This description is currently being prepared for publication and will appear on this page within the next few days.
    Shobdon
  • Weobley
    You would be hard pressed to find a more rural, picturesque village than Weobley. It really is hidden away. It is not on a main road. It has beautiful, half- timbered buildings.
    Weobley










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