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Enjoy the great outdoors this summer... without breaking the bank


First written July 2017 and updated July 2021.

Harpenden has a wealth of activities available in the town and nearby, many of them are free which will bring a smile to any parent's face as the summer holidays are just around the corner. With at least six weeks to fill with fun-packed ideas we thought we would give you some inspiration!

Take a picnic to Rothamsted Park and enjoy watching the children skate or play. There’s a brand new play area (opening 24th July 2021) catering for all ages up to 15. Or, if you are feeling more adventurous, why not bring along some friends and use the public barbecues near the children's play area and between the cricket squares. Organise some races and host your own mini-Olympics!

Gather up the teenagers, the children, the bikes and the dog and make your way to the Nickey Line for some great easy riding. Could you make it all the way to Hemel Hempstead and back again?

Stroll through the new and old woods at Heartwood Forest, near Sandridge. With 45 acres of magnificent wildflower meadows and ancient woodland already established you can fulfil that dream of seeing your children running through the long grass and practise going on a bear hunt.

Verulamium Park in St. Albans offers not just ducks and rabbits but a splash park for toddlers (free, but booking required) to make them squeal with delight (and shock from the freezing water!). When exhausted you can head to the Inn on the Park for delicious ice-creams and once recuperated carry on to the a recently-refurbished play area, trampolines and adventure golf.

So far you've only spent money on the ice-creams.

If a train ride is still a novelty take the short ride from Harpenden to St Albans and jump off (when the train has stopped obviously!) for Clarence Park, just off Hatfield Road. A beautiful park full of unusual trees (time for a quiz?) but also housing a another newly-refurbished play area with a sand-pit to enjoy - who can build the biggest castle?

Too many adventures? (And we haven't even mentioned camping in the garden.) What about some frivolous fun? Zipline across Porters Hill Park... fly a kite high up on Dunstable Downs...hop, skip and jump the stepping stones at Batford Springs into the pirate park...explore the sensory gardens at Stockwood Discovery Centre, Luton…or be your own Queen in a giant chess game in Gadebridge Park, Hemel Hempstead.

The summer holidays are going to fly by!

Check out the rest of our website for full details of all these places, more ideas of things to do and to find out what's on.

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