Welcome to Hereford
What a wonderful destination the county is for music lovers who not only want to enjoy the amazing artists at this year’s festival, but who are looking to expand their cultural and leisure experience into a short break and take in the pleasures of this incredibly beautiful area.
From the heart of Hereford City and indeed the Three Choirs Festival, with its stunning location at Hereford Cathedral, there is so much to enjoy in the immediate vicinity and beyond.
The Cathedral itself has new points of interest, including the newly installed Ascension window. With its carved stone below, this spectacular public memorial to the elite Special Air Service regiment and its connection to Herefordshire is a place for peace, reflection and simple contemplation, and a world-wide attraction.
By far the most fascinating way to explore Hereford City is on a guided walking tour. See the What's On page of this website for more information.
For your own pleasurable walk, cut through from the Cathedral to the Castle Green, where the original Castle stood, and drop down to cross the pretty iron Victoria footbridge over the River Wye, then on to the parkland and waterside walk of the King George V Playing Fields and Bishop’s Meadows. Take in the river views from the Old Bridge and continue a leisurely amble up into the shopping and eating areas of the City Centre, with the quaint Independent Quarter around cobbled Church Street.
Looking for a little history and heritage? The Black and White House Museum in High Town is a wonderful place of Jacobean discovery with original items, room settings and events through the year. Hereford Cider Museum, a little further out of the centre, is on the site of the original Bulmer’s cider factory, and tells the story of the county’s cider heritage, which still produces over 50% of the UK’s cider. Some of the traditional methods of making are still used today by the wealth of artisan producers around the county, some of which you can visit, tour and taste.
Then a little further on from here is the Waterworks Museum; an engineers heaven, displaying a huge gleaming collection of working steam pumps that were used to supply Hereford’s water from the River Wye, plus more from around the country. Look out for their weekend ‘In Steam’ days that bring this venue alive.
With only a small number of places to stay in the City itself, it is worth looking into the farmhouse bed and breakfasts, and even holiday cottages that are in abundance around the glorious countryside. This gives you even more chance to explore Herefordshire’s delightful market towns of Leominster, Ross-on-Wye, Ledbury, Bromyard and Kington.
Take a drive or tour along the 40 mile Black and White Village Trail; a beguiling journey of medieval timbered properties and communities in north Herefordshire, famous for their postcard appeal and photo opportunities. Envelop yourself in the splendour of the Wye Valley to the south, from the birthplace of tourism, Ross-on-Wye down to active Symonds Yat and its viewpoints and picnic spots.
Enhance your cultural music visit with a trip to some of Herefordshire’s incredible gardens and historic properties. Hampton Court Castle to the north and Eastnor Castle or Hellens Manor to the east are privately owned and theatrically presented. The large estates of four National Trust properties sit majestically alongside those of generational landowners like Kentchurch Court, and the county is blessed with a kaleidoscope of stunning gardens like the Banks’ Hergest Croft, Sir Roy Strong’s The Laskett Gardens, Stockton Bury Gardens, Brobury House and Gardens, and the unique Westonbury Mill Water Gardens.
You’ll love Herefordshire’s independent shopping destinations, designed to be that bit different to the usual chain High Street stores. Visit The Hop Pocket at Bishops Frome; with 5.5 acres of independent retailers, a vast craft emporium, restaurant and garden centre. Labels Shopping in Ross-on-Wye presents outlet fashion shopping with a delicious seafood bar, farmshop and home and garden departments.
There are so many more wonderful things to discover in Herefordshire’s surprising depths to make your visit a relaxing and inspiring experience. Find more places to eat, sleep and enjoy on www.eatsleepliveherefordshire.co.uk or pick up their Ultimate Herefordshire guide at the Three Choirs Festival office.