Things to do in Bedfordshire, England

Welcome to Bedfordshire, England! This picturesque county is rich in history, natural beauty, and cultural heritage. From stunning countryside landscapes to charming market towns, Bedfordshire offers a diverse range of attractions and activities for visitors. Explore the historic sites, immerse yourself in the local culture, and indulge in delicious traditional cuisine. Whether you're a nature lover, history enthusiast, or simply seeking a peaceful getaway, Bedfordshire has something for everyone. Come and experience the beauty and charm of this hidden gem in the heart of England.

Things to do

Woburn Abbey

Woburn Abbey is a historic house located in Bedfordshire, England. It is the ancestral home of the Duke of Bedford and has been the residence of the Russell family for over 400 years. The house is surrounded by beautiful gardens and parkland, making it a perfect place for a leisurely stroll. Inside, visitors can explore the opulent state rooms, which are filled with exquisite furniture, fine art, and historical artifacts. The Abbey also houses a fascinating collection of antiques, including one of the largest private collections of silver in the world. Guided tours are available, providing visitors with a deeper insight into the history and heritage of this magnificent house.

Whipsnade Zoo

Whipsnade Zoo is one of the largest zoos in the UK and is located in the beautiful countryside of Bedfordshire. The zoo is home to over 3,500 animals, including elephants, lions, giraffes, and penguins. Visitors can explore the zoo on foot or take a ride on the Jumbo Express, a narrow-gauge steam train that provides a unique perspective of the park. There are also daily animal talks and demonstrations, where visitors can learn more about the different species and their conservation efforts. Whipsnade Zoo is a great place to spend a day with family and friends, and there are plenty of picnic areas and cafes for a relaxing break.

Wrest Park

Wrest Park is a stunning country estate located in Silsoe, Bedfordshire. The park is known for its beautiful gardens, which feature a mix of French, Dutch, and Italian styles. Visitors can explore the formal gardens, which include parterres, fountains, and ornamental statues. The park also has a woodland area, perfect for a peaceful walk. The highlight of Wrest Park is the magnificent mansion, which showcases the architectural styles of the 18th and 19th centuries. Inside, visitors can admire the grand rooms, intricate plasterwork, and impressive art collection. Guided tours are available, providing visitors with a deeper understanding of the history and design of this remarkable estate.

Stockwood Discovery Centre

Stockwood Discovery Centre is a museum and gardens located in Luton, Bedfordshire. The museum showcases the history of the region, with exhibits on archaeology, geology, and social history. Visitors can explore the galleries, which feature a range of artifacts, including Roman coins, medieval pottery, and Victorian costumes. The Discovery Centre also has beautiful gardens, with a variety of plants, sculptures, and a sensory garden. There is a café on-site, serving delicious food and drinks, as well as a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs. Stockwood Discovery Centre is a great place to learn about the local history and enjoy a peaceful day out.

Dunstable Downs

Dunstable Downs is an area of outstanding natural beauty located in the Chiltern Hills, near Dunstable in Bedfordshire. The downs offer breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside and are a popular spot for walking, kite flying, and picnicking. The area is also known for its rich wildlife, with a variety of birds, butterflies, and wildflowers to spot. Visitors can explore the visitor centre, which provides information about the local flora and fauna, as well as the history of the downs. There are several walking trails to choose from, ranging from short strolls to longer hikes, allowing visitors to fully immerse themselves in the beauty of this natural landscape.

Shuttleworth Collection

The Shuttleworth Collection is a unique museum located in Old Warden, Bedfordshire. The museum is home to a collection of vintage aircraft, cars, and motorcycles, all of which are in working condition. Visitors can explore the hangars and see the impressive collection up close, with knowledgeable guides on hand to provide information and answer any questions. The museum also hosts regular flying displays, where visitors can witness these historic aircraft taking to the skies. In addition to the aviation collection, there is also a beautiful Swiss Garden to explore, with picturesque landscapes, woodland walks, and a charming tea room.

The Higgins Bedford

The Higgins Bedford is an art gallery and museum located in Bedford, Bedfordshire. The museum showcases a diverse range of art and historical artifacts, with collections spanning from ancient Egypt to contemporary art. Visitors can explore the galleries, which include paintings, sculptures, ceramics, and decorative arts. The museum also has a dedicated children's gallery, where young visitors can engage with interactive exhibits and hands-on activities. The Higgins Bedford is housed in a beautiful Victorian building, which adds to the charm of the museum. There is a café on-site, serving refreshments and light meals, as well as a gift shop where visitors can purchase unique souvenirs.

Mead Open Farm

Mead Open Farm is a family-friendly attraction located in Billington, Bedfordshire. The farm offers a range of activities and experiences for visitors of all ages. Children can meet and feed a variety of farm animals, including sheep, goats, pigs, and cows. There are also tractor rides, indoor and outdoor play areas, and a large sandpit for little ones to enjoy. Mead Open Farm also hosts daily shows and demonstrations, such as sheep racing and milking demonstrations. Visitors can relax and enjoy a meal at the on-site café, which serves a selection of hot and cold food. Mead Open Farm is a great place to spend a fun-filled day with the family.

Bedford Park

Bedford Park is a beautiful public park located in the heart of Bedford. The park features expansive green spaces, flower beds, and a picturesque lake. Visitors can enjoy leisurely walks, have a picnic, or simply relax and soak in the peaceful atmosphere. There are also tennis courts, a bowling green, and a children's play area for those looking for more active pursuits. The park is home to several events throughout the year, including outdoor concerts and festivals. There is a café on-site, serving refreshments and snacks, as well as public toilets for convenience. Bedford Park is a lovely place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy some tranquility.

The Forest of Marston Vale

The Forest of Marston Vale is a community forest located in the Marston Vale area of Bedfordshire. The forest covers over 60 square miles and is a haven for wildlife and nature enthusiasts. Visitors can explore the forest on foot or by bike, with a network of trails and paths to choose from. The forest is home to a variety of habitats, including woodlands, wetlands, and meadows, providing a diverse range of flora and fauna to discover. There are also several lakes and ponds, perfect for fishing or birdwatching. The Forest of Marston Vale is a great place to reconnect with nature and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.