7 of the prettiest villages to visit in Hertfordshire
- Credit: Archant
When it comes to picture perfect villages, visitors to Hertfordshire are overwhelmed with options.
Offering more rolling hills, quaint high streets and charming village greens than you could shake a Barbour jacket or Hunter welly at, these beauties are seven of our absolute favourite day trip destinations...
Just outside Tring, with the rolling Chiltern Hills on its doorstep, is the beautiful village of Aldbury.
Its pretty pond offers the ultimate in chocolate box charm, though its medieval stocks remind residents that life here hasn't always been idyllic.
In addition to its historic homes and fine views over surrounding countryside, Aldbury also benefits from a popular local, The Greyhound Inn, as well as the varied delights of the nearby Ashridge Estate.
The village's beauty hasn't been lost on film and TV producers, either: it's appeared in Midsomer Murders, Inspector Morse and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, among others.
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Easy on the eye Preston has community spirit in spades: its village pub, The Red Lion, is the UK's first community-owned public house, having been bought from Whitbread by a group of locals in 1982.
A chocolate box village with its own micropub, Wheathampstead blends a rich history with a very modern twist.
The Bull – now a Miller & Carter steak restaurant – is in a coveted location in the heart of the village, adjacent to the River Lea.
L’Olivo on Marford Road offers a fine dining feast which attracts foodies from miles around and is considered one of the best Italians in Hertfordshire.
St Ippoplyts, Hertfordshire
There are many charming period properties in its village centre, including 17th century gabled houses and 16th century timber-framed homes.
For a rural village, St Ippolyts has a surprisingly large number of pubs within walking distance; The Rusty Gun, The Bird in Hand and The Bull offer a range of food and drink options to suit all tastes.
Well placed for Harpenden and access to the M1, Redbourn boasts a busy high street packed with independent shops.
A previous Hertfordshire Village of the Year winner, its attractions include a trio of pubs and the Common, a large open space that's a huge hit with cricketers, joggers and dog walkers.
The annual Hertfordshire Show takes place just outside the village, while the Redbournbury Mill is another local attraction.
Ayot St Lawrence, Hertfordshire
With its adorable cottages and picturesque rural setting, Ayot St Lawrence is best-known for its links to playwright George Bernard Shaw (whose former home is now a National Trust property, Shaw's Corner).
Located between Stevenage, Welwyn Garden City and Harpenden, it was crowned Hertfordshire's most expensive village by Zoopla last year, thanks to house prices averaging £1,655,077.
It's home to a characterful 14th century inn, The Brocket Arms, and alongside smaller neighbours Ayot Green and Ayot St Peter, is known as one of 'the Ayots'.
Much Hadham, Hertfordshire
Named among the Sunday Times' best places to live in the UK in 2018, Much Hadham is a picturesque village with a strong sense of community spirit.
Located between Ware and Bishop's Stortford, its historic high street is flanked by characterful buildings, including The Bull, a popular family and dog-friendly village pub serving a range of hearty homemade fare.