Right on your doorstep

1st November 2021

As visitors flock to the district to delight in the wonderful Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, local residents can also enjoy the burgeoning tourist offering outside of the Studio Tour with a whole range of incredible food, accommodation and events on offer year-round.

With an abundance of delicious dining experiences to be had ranging from trendy cafes to gastro pubs to fine dining, you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to taking a break from the daily grind of cooking.

And as for entertainment, there’s a huge range of foodie festivals and carnival events to keep you occupied in between the local attractions and excellent leisure facilities.

If you’re dreaming of a getaway but want to keep it local, then the district is home to some uniquely wonderful accommodation options. From glamping at North Hill Farm to the hyper luxurious Grove Hotel and everything in between, staying close to home never looked so good!

Celebrating communities

Abbots Langley Applefest is a charming village festival celebrating its orchard heritage at the Autumn equinox by showcasing the community’s local foodie producers, crafters, makers and home-grown produce. It’s a fun-packed day for all the family with a lively atmosphere, incredible variety of food, live music, and traditional games. In the same village you can also party with the locals at the annual Abbots Langley Carnival, held each Summer.  A procession of marching bands and carnival floats loop in a riot of colour and fun around the village which is also home to a fun fair, street food sellers and live music to really set the party scene.

It’s all about celebrating the local community and its scenic canals at the Ricky Week & Rickmansworth Canal Festival which takes place every year in May. The main attraction for the thousands of visitors that attend annually is the wonderful array of canal boats from across the country - a terrific spectacle of over one hundred boats moored along the towpath. There are also displays, performing arts, food sellers and local makers to enjoy in this vibrant and family-friendly festival.

Fitness first

From the Aquadrome to the eight quality golf courses to the range of country, recreational and skate parks, Three Rivers leisure facilities are second to none. With no excuses to sit on your sofa, it’s time to get out, get inspired and get active!  

Try William Penn Leisure Centre which has all the fitness facilities anyone could want including a fully equipped gym, swimming pool, fitness studios, sports hall and all-weather outside courts and pitches.  Keep fit with a game of badminton, sign up to their award-winning swimming programme or join a fitness class to get your body moving and the adrenaline flowing. At South Oxhey Leisure Centre, recent refurbishments have welcomed the addition of two new contemporary swimming pools and a purpose-built group cycling studio with a range of high energy virtual classes on offer. 

If golf’s more your game, head to Sandy Lodge Golf Club for a relaxing round in the stunning landscape of the Moor Park estate. Proudly featured on the Top 100 Golf Courses, the club has the perfect blend of stunning surroundings, a warm and friendly atmosphere, a superb clubhouse and of course a first-class inland links course.  Enjoy the slower pace whilst still getting your all-important exercise and fresh air fix!

Cafe culture

If you’ve worked up a hearty appetite in the gym or even if you just fancy a break from the daily grind of feeding the family, then Three Rivers’ emerging foodie scene has got you covered with its excellent variety of pavement cafés, brunch spots, bakeries and coffee stops.  

Firth thing in the morning, the smell of baking bread wafting from Rickmansworth’s Cinnamon Square is divine and second only to the taste of the delicious hand-crafted baked goods on offer there. The award-winning artisanal bakery uses traditional methods to bake real breads and delicious treats such as their signature cinnamon buns which must be tasted to be believed!

For some of the best fair-trade coffee in the area, Rootz in Chorleywood is a family-run café serving tasty breakfasts and lunches. With a well-stocked on-site shop for local produce and interesting gifts, it’s the perfect destination for a spot of brunch, a delicious coffee and a Sunday morning mooch.    

Bringing a touch of Claridge’s to Rickmansworth, the Dolce Caffe is a French-Italian fusion café-by-day and restaurant-by-night serving up delicious fresh dishes created by their highly skilled and experienced chefs. Don’t miss their sumptuous pasta dishes, fragrant and fine fish courses or homemade patisserie cakes…all of which are mouth-wateringly good!

For a more traditional tea shop scene, you can’t beat Woodoaks Tea Shack on Woodoaks Farm for the perfect cosy cuppa alongside a thick slice of Victoria Sandwich oozing with jam and cream – the ideal spot to refuel after a relaxing woodland walk.

Out on the town

After over a year with very little in the way of a social life, it’s time to get back into the swing of it with a night out on the town. Three Rivers offers some fantastic nightlife for your evenings’ entertainment including interesting theatre, buzzing bars and top quality restaurants.

If a traditional English Country pub set in beautiful countryside is what you’re after, then The Black Horse at Chorleywood will deliver the goods. Serving up a classic pub menu using local suppliers, the venue also has an extensive wine and gin list, and cocktails on tap. For a twist on tradition, why not have your meal served to one of their quirky outdoor dining options such as the bespoke cabins, igloos or cosy huts?

If your tastebuds are tantalised at the thought of an authentic Italian feast, then Zaza in Rickmansworth is the place for you. Creating incredible Italian dishes using only the freshest ingredients, Zaza promises a real foodie experience not to be missed. For something a little different, head to Rickmansworth’s classic New York Steakhouse Prime Steak and Grill. At the heart of the menu is the highest quality ethically reared beef from the highlands of Scotland, grilled to perfection and then combined with a delicious serving of sizzling sides and a curated cocktail menu.

A lively bar serving up mezze, sharing platters and cocktails, Hudson Place is fast becoming a real social hub. With an extensive wine list, cocktail happy hour and excellent range of beers and spirits, all you need now is a Friday night and a group of friends for the perfect night out! If you’re more of a beer aficionado, head to Anchor, Tap & Bottle in Croxley Green for the evening - a craft beer tap room and bottle shop offering some of the finest craft beers, snacks and produce that the local area has to offer. For a relaxed bar vibe, The Western is a fun, vibrant sports bar in Rickmansworth offering a warm welcome and serving tasty family meals.

Your local staycation

You don’t have to go far to experience unique staycations and first-class short breaks-  sometimes looking closer to home can result in something a little bit special too!

Nestled in three hundred acres of Hertfordshire countryside, The Grove is the ultimate five-star retreat. Lovingly restored, the former home of the Earls of Clarendon is home to an award-winning spa, championship golf course and several mouth-watering restaurants. For a true once-in-a-lifetime experience, book a romantic weekend at The Grove and while away your time in the stunning grounds or indulge in a championship round of golf or relaxing spa session before sampling the incredible food and drink on offer in the hotel restaurants.

For a wonderful local family experience, head to North Hill Farm in the heart of the stunning Chess Valley countryside. This accommodation site offers a variety of fun glamping, camping and lodge accommodation and is run by a local family who really know how to create a magic moment. Rest your heads in ‘Hagrid’s Hideaway’ with its rustic bunk beds, themed furnishings, your very own bath, and a toasty wood burner or have a cosy family sleepover in ‘Owl’s Lookout.’ If you’d rather bring your own tent, then you can set up camp in the stunning site surroundings and enjoy first class camping facilities.