Bedford is a pleasant riverside town near the cities of London, Oxford, and Cambridge.
Bedfordshire’s county town boasts delightfully unspoilt countryside, a historic centre packed with arts and culture, and a bustling high street, so there’s much to see and do when you visit.
If you’re looking to broaden your horizons, we’ve put together our list of five fun things to do in Bedford. So, book your train and get exploring!
Kicking off our list of things to do around Bedford is Bedford Park. As the largest urban park in the town, here you’ll find a wide expanse of lawns, formal gardens for you to peruse, and a cricket pitch for the sports lovers.
Originally built in the 19th century, this wonderful park pays homage to its Victorian roots, with the original bandstand featuring a copper-clad roof and a Tudor-inspired cricket pavilion. This glorious park is every bit as charming as you’d imagine.
Wander through the mature trees, stroll around the ornamental lake or stop off for a quick dip at Bedford’s main public bath, Robinson Pool. With all this on offer, it’s no wonder Bedford Park is the number one attraction in Bedford.
Herring Green Activity Farm
No list of things to do near Bedford would be complete without a mention of the Herrings Green Activity Farm. This activity farm is just five miles from the town centre and will have adults and children cooing in awe at the collection of birds at prey.
Home to a whopping 200 species of bird, you’ll be able to handle and watch these marvellous falcons in flight. If feathered friends aren’t your thing, you’ll also find horses, cows, and a selection of small critters (such as rabbits, guinea pigs and hedgehogs) to handle – there’s something to entertain the whole family.
Saint Paul’s Church
If you’re looking for things to do in Bedford for free, look no further than Saint Paul’s Church. Looming over St Paul’s Square, this 13th-century church has been standing tall for over 800 years.
Step into this imposing place of worship and take in the tall ceilings, stained glass windows, and impressive alter. After you’ve gazed in awe at the medieval building, head outside and enjoy a picnic by the river.
First built in the 11th century by Henry I, Bedford Castle overlooks the Great River Ouse. While there isn’t a huge amount of castle left after it was destroyed by Henry III, visiting this prehistoric monument is a fun thing to do in Bedford. You’ll find fine lime kilns, the foundations of the great hall, and an archaeologically significant mound that’s been preserved since the 2000s here.
The Higgins Art Gallery & Museum
If it’s culture you’re after, The Higgins won’t disappoint. Combining three cultural venues, the Higgins Centre is a one-stop-shop for all things heritage. Boasting fine collections of decorative arts, wonderful watercolours, and rich history, there’s something for the whole family here. With regular exhibitions scheduled throughout the month, there’s almost certain to be something that piques your interest.
Explore Bedford with Thameslink
So, what are you waiting for? Grab your e-ticket, hop on the train, and get stuck into everything Bedford has to offer.