6 romantic places to visit in Hertfordshire
PUBLISHED: 13:52 26 January 2021 | UPDATED: 17:17 26 January 2021
Credit: www.mjt.photography / Alamy Stock Photo
Love is in the air, everywhere I look around... Well maybe not everywhere but certainly there are beautifully romantic places in Herts, even perfect spots to pop the question this leap year.
Dockey Wood is not just famous for its trees but also for an incredible annual display of bluebells. To use the word 'spectacular' is to understate this experience. The sweep of colour is amazing, the air is so fresh and the setting is ideally romantic for that special moment.
Want the best of both worlds? Enjoy the bluebells and then climb the 172 steps to the top of nearby Bridgewater Monument. Built in 1832 in memory of the third Duke of Bridgewater who lived in Ashridge House, the top of the tower with its views over the National Trust estate is a great spot to pop the question - you will never forget it!
Perhaps you would prefer a pretty village for that romantic feel? How about Sarratt near Rickmansworth - one of the most picturesque in the county. There are lovely walks, great pubs, swans on the village pond and a church.
The Church of the Holy Cross might just be the romantic spot you are seeking as it appeared in the film Four Weddings and a Funeral.
If you would prefer to be surrounded by beautiful gardens, fabulous fountains and in the footsteps of royalty then the place for you might be Hatfield House, which is not only magnificent but set among the most stunning of grounds.
Hatfield House was built in 1611 by Robert Cecil adjoining the site of the earlier Old Palace (left)where Elizabeth I spent much time, as did her father. Henry VIII may well have popped a question or two himself at Hatfield. Hopefully yours will be more successful.
If you like the idea of time travelling, another option is to take a stroll in Verulamium Park in St Albans. Here you will find the remains of city walls and a main gate dating back to Roman times. The 100-acre park (above) is on the site of the old Roman city of Verulamium. The area has been the site of many important archeological digs but if you prefer the more modern times of the park, there are many strolling areas, beautiful gardens and a wonderful lake which is home to a fantastic array of swans, herons and all manner of other water birds.
Ye Olde Fighting Cocks is at the edge of the park and claims to be the oldest pub in Britain, dating back to the 8th century. So there are many quiet corners in which to pop the question in this part of the county and, who knows, you might pick the exact spot where a Roman soldier went down on bended knee all those years ago.
RAIL & CANAL
If you need to get up a head of steam before making a proposal why not take a walk or a cycle ride? Where? Along a railway line of course. No, don't worry, the tracks are long gone, so it will not be too bumpy. We are talking about the Nickey Line which runs from Harpenden to Hemel Hempstead and is picturesque as well as being very popular with steam railway enthusiasts.
Why is it called the Nickey Line? Some say it is to do with the knickerbockers worn by the railway workers of the 1870s. Others say it's because the line connects to the parish of St Nicholas in Harpenden. Either way, the Nickey Line could be just the place to get your romance on the right track for a long future. Another route you could follow is the Grand Union Canal - one of the most famous and flows through the county. The towpath between Tring and Berkhamsted lends itself to pleasant walks and more than a few places where you might just be tempted to take the plunge - into marriage that is!
Talking of water, Buntingford is well worth a visit for the river Rib. It runs alongside the Roman Ermine Street so it has plenty of history going for it. It even has a one-cell 18th century jail called The Cage - perhaps not the best place for a proposal. Better is the lovely nearby ford. Take your wellies and be careful about going down on one knee though, your ardour might be dampened.
These are just a few of so many fantastic places for romance in Hertfordshire. Whatever your choice, take courage and let us hope the answer is 'Yes!'