It’s the Summer holidays and we are becoming masters of dodging the rain showers, hailstones (ouch!) and thunderstorms (eek!), in true British Summertime style. Thank goodness for wellies and waterproofs! The rain hasn’t stopped our fun and we have even been treated to some spectacular rainbows, so it really isn’t all bad. If we’re very lucky then the sun will shine over the August Bank Holiday weekend, so you can make the most of these 10 fantastic things to do in Hertfordshire during the August Bank Holiday Weekend, as well as 10 fabulous days out that aren’t too far away, but definitely worth the effort.
Have a fantastic August Bank Holiday weekend, whether you pack a picnic for a family day out, or you end up having a traditional Bank Holiday barbeque under an umbrella.
The weather can change and so can the details of events, so please check directly with the venue or organisers, BEFORE you travel.
Van Hage Great Amwell – Summer Circus
Van Hage Great Amwell, Pepper Hill, Hertfordshire, SG12 9RP
The circus is back at Van Hage Great Amwell! Enjoy the new acts at the John Lawson’s Circus for 2017 from Saturday 19th to Monday 28th August 2017, with shows at 11am, 1pm and 3pm. Tickets are £6.50 per person and children of 2 years and under go free but must sit on an adult’s knee. Visit the website to book tickets or for more information.
Verulamium Museum, St Michael’s Street, St Albans, Hertfordshire, AL3 4SW
Visit the Verulamium Museum on Saturday 26th August 2017, 2-3pm and and meet a Roman soldier. Marcus Aurelius Saturnius, a Roman merchant selling olive oils and spice from around the Roman Empire, is visiting Verulamium. Meet this fascinating character who served in the Roman army as a centurion for 25 years. Take evidence of residency in St Albans District otherwise Museum entry charges apply. Visit the website for more information.
St Albans South Signal Box, Ridgmont Road, St Albans, Hertfordshire, AL1 3AJ
St Albans South Signal Box Open Day takes place on Sunday 27th August 2017, 2-5pm. Signalling demonstrations run continuously on the operating floor and there are full size signals and other exhibits in the garden. Light refreshments also available. For more information visit the website.
George’s Gate, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, AL9 5HX
Hatfield House is a stunning Jacobean mansion, surrounded by beautiful gardens and acres of park land. You can spend the day exploring the gardens and picnic in the park, or visit Hatfield Park Farm and see the animals, enjoy a tractor ride and play in the Bloody Hollow playground. You can stop for tea and cake at the Coach House restaurant and on Monday 28th August 2017 visitors can enjoy Six on Sax saxophone players, playing a range of music in the Stable Yard. Have a look at our visit to Hatfield Park Farm.
Lee Valley White Water Centre, Station Road, Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire, EN9 1AB
The new Lee Valley White Water Centre Beach and Play Park is open until mid September. The new attraction includes an inflatable slide, a giant inflatable assault course, a bouncy castle plus an array of family friendly beach games and activities. There is also a Toddler Zone, a Dora the Explorer Playzone and one of Europe’s biggest inland beaches. Visit the website for entry prices and more information, or to book your sessions.
Willows Farm Village, Coursers Road, St Albans, Hertfordshire, AL4 0PF
Willows Farm Summer Spectacular will be in full swing throughout the August Bank Holiday weekend. Go along and explore the A-maizing Maze, watch the Goat Racing and see one of the live shows with Peter Rabbit and his friends. You can visit the farm animals, have an adventure in the Peter Rabbit Adventure Playground and take a ride on Tristan the Runaway Tractor. Visit the website to book tickets or for more information.
Knebworth House, Knebworth, Hertfordshire, SG1 2AX
On Sunday 27th and Monday 28th August 2017, 10am to 4pm, visit Knebworth Classic Motor Show and marvel at the huge number of classic cars on display. Vehicles include saloons, sports, American, commercial and military, as well as classic motorcycles. A fantastic day out for the family as the Gardens, Dinosaur Trail, Park and Adventure Playground ticket includes the Classic Motor Show. Visit the website to book tickets or for more information.
Cassiobury Park, Cassiobury Park Avenue, Watford, Hertfordshire, WD18 7LG
The Cassiobury Town & Country Show will be held at Cassiobury Park, Watford on Sunday 27th August 2017 11am to 6pm and Monday 28th August 2017 11am to 5pm. There’s so much for the whole family to do and see, from an amazing array of main ring attractions to dog shows with over 22 classes daily. Visit the countryside ring and see demonstrations amongst many more exciting things. The fabulous Lyndsay Evans from Masterchef 2017 will be at the show alongside celebrity chef Alan Coxon. There will be foraging talks to bath salt demonstration workshops. Loads for the children to do from meeting Paw Patrol to watching Punch and Judy, as well as a fabulous shopping extravaganza. Visit the website to book tickets or for more information.
Benington Chilli Festival
Benington Lordship Gardens, Stevenage, Hertfordshire, SG2 7BS
On Saturday 26th, Sunday 27th and Monday 28th August 2017, enjoy the fun at Benington Chilli Festival 10am-5pm. Check out over 60 pitches of fantastic independent chilli traders with chutneys, sauces, pickles and even chocolate! There will be face painting and sand art for the children as well as entertainment including Bruce Airhead! Visit the website for more information.
Elbrook Meadow, Elbrook Lane, Ashwell, Hertfordshire, SG7 5NE
On Monday 28th August 2017, 8.30am-5pm, visit the Ashwell Show and experience a country show that’s full of fun for the whole family. See the “Lamb National” Herdwick sheep race, Falconry Display, Children’s Entertainer, Horse Show and much more. Visit the website for more information.
RSPB Rye Meads Minibeast Monday
Rye Meads, Rye Road, Stansted Abbotts, Hertfordshire, SG12 8JS
On Monday 28th August 2017, visit RSPB Rye Meads and explore the tiny world of animals that live in Bug City! Find and learn about colourful ladybirds, speedy centipedes, beautiful butterflies and buzzing bees. Sessions are 10am-12noon and 2pm-4pm, £3 for members and £5 for non-members, just grab an explorer bag and take it to the team and wait your turn. You can also try pond dipping for a small fee, or enjoy the Summer nature trail, take a walk around the reserve and have a picnic. Parking is £3 for non-RSPB members (there is no cash machine and no card facilities on site, so make sure you take cash and small change). Visit the website for more information.
In no particular order, here are my top ten family days out that are just over the borders into Essex, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire.
Remember the weather can change and so can the details of events, so please check directly with the venue or organisers, BEFORE you travel.
Audley End Miniature Railway, Audley End, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB11 4JB
Visit Audley End Miniature Railway throughout August and take one of the miniature steam or diesel engines through the Audley End Estate Woodland, picnic on the grass and enjoy a walk through the enchanted Fairy and Elf Walk! Audley End Miniature Railway is perfect for a fine day but there isn’t a lot of shelter, so aim for a dry day if you can. Book your tickets in advance to avoid disappointment. Visit the website to book tickets or for more information.
Royal Gunpowder Mills, Beaulieu Drive, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 1JY
Visit Royal Gunpowder Mills on Sunday 27th and Monday 28th August 2017, for Big Bang weekend! Get ready for an explosive end to the Summer holidays. Visit the Royal Gunpowder Mills as they welcome special effects experts Force FX for a spectacular pyrotechnics show that you won’t want to miss. The show begins at 3pm on both days and there are lots of family activities for everyone to enjoy throughout the day! Visit the website to book tickets or for detailed information about this event.
Cotton End Road, Wilstead, Bedfordshire, MK45 3DT
Herrings Green Farm has one of the UK’s largest collections of Birds of Prey, with over 200 birds on display. See the birds of prey displays, enjoy an animal encounter, you might even meet an alpaca! Visit the website for more information.
Stockwood Discovery Centre, London Road, Luton, Bedfordshire, LU1 4LX
The Brick Wonders exhibition at Stockwood Discovery Centre is open until Sunday 3rd September 2017, 10am to 5pm. The exhibition features amazing sights from around the world all made in Lego, curated by artist Warren Elsmore. A treat for all Lego fans. Entry fees apply to the exhibition. Take a look at my review to see what you can expect at the Lego exhibition and the Stockwood Discovery Centre.
Silsoe, Bedfordshire, MK45 4HR
Visit Wrest Park for the Bank Holiday weekend and enjoy music in the stunning surroundings of Wrest Park. Whether you are picnicking with friends, or taking a stroll through the grounds, enjoy the fantastic Bank Holiday bands on Sunday 27th and Monday 28th August 2017, 12noon to 4pm. Make the most of the outdoor space, grab an activity backpack and audio trail designed for kids and head out to explore the grounds, then enjoy the fantastic play area which includes its very own pavilion to climb and a zip wire. Visit the website for more information.
Dunstable Downs, Bedfordshire, LU6 2GY
Dunstable Downs is an area of outstanding natural beauty with views that stretch for miles and plenty of open space. It is the perfect place to fly a kite, have a picnic and enjoy a day in the fresh air. The National Trust shop sells kites if you don’t have one to hand and there is also a cafe with huge windows that make the most of the spectacular scenery. Visit the website for more information.
Wendover Woods Gruffalo Spotters Trail
Wendover Woods, Wendover, Buckinghamshire, HP22 5NQ
The Gruffalo Spotters Trail at Wendover Woods is open throughout August. Download the new Gruffalo Spotters app before you leave and then visit Wendover Woods for clues to lead you to Mouse, Fox, Owl, Snake and the Gruffalo! Take a look at my review for more information on the new app and how the trail works.
Chiltern Open Air Museum, Gorelands Lane, Chalfont St Giles, Buckinghamshire, HP8 4AB
Visit the Chiltern Open Air Museum on Sunday 27th and Monday 28th August 2017 and discover what it was like to live in Tudor times. Gather with the Militia to oppose the Armada in this family-friendly living history event! Meet costumed re-enactors as they bring the museum’s historic buildings to life, explore the encampment to admire reproduction Tudor weaponry and learn about bullet-making, visit the kitchen and learn about Tudor cookery and see how food was prepared for the soldiers and labourers. All activities are subject to change and weather so check the details before you travel. Visit the website for more information.
Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 0JH
Waddesdon Manor is a very impressive house with vast, beautiful gardens. Children can play in the woodland playground, discover the magical Aviary, explore the gardens and then enjoy a relaxed picnic (hopefully in the sunshine)! If you want to treat yourselves, book afternoon tea in the Manor restaurant. Visit the website for more information.
Sherwood Drive, Bletchley, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, MK3 6EB
Bletchley Park, once the top secret home of the World War Two Codebreakers, now opens its doors. Explore this amazing place, its history and its vital importance in World War Two. There are activities, challenges and puzzles you can solve with the whole family. Children can have fun in the workshops inspired by the Codebreakers, or pick up a trail and explore the grounds. Family activities are included in the admission price and your ticket includes free unlimited entry to Bletchley Park for a year. Visit the website to book tickets or for more information.
Details of events are correct at the time of publishing.
Please check the details of an event directly with the venue or organisers, before you travel.