Hertfordshire has a lot to offer for people moving there and has become one of the most desirable counties to live in thanks to its low crime rates, excellent schools and affordable living costs.
In addition to the many beautiful towns and villages in Hertfordshire, there are also a number of great museums and cultural spots to visit.
In this article, we’ll be taking a look at some of the best places to live in Hertfordshire. We’ll also look at some of the pros and cons of living there, the best pubs and restaurants as well as the best cultural spots to visit.
St Albans is one of the poshest and sought after areas in the whole of Hertfordshire. It’s in a great location and sits within the London commuter belt, so if you work in the capital and need to commute, it’s ideal. There are plenty of restaurants, shops and cafes as well as a number of great primary schools, so it’s ideal if you have young children.There are also multiple public and private secondary schools in the area.
The average property prices in St Albans are quite a bit higher than the average for Hertfordshire but this is to be expected considering its location and the fact that it’s considered an upmarket area.
Watford is another great place to live in Hertfordshire. It’s home to a number of beautiful parks, as well as a wide range of amenities that are appealing to people of all ages, so it’s a great place for families. It’s also in an excellent location for commuters, with London just a short train ride away.
The average property prices in Watford are considerably lower than those in St Albans and when you consider how much it has to offer, it’s no wonder it’s one of the fastest growing areas in Hertfordshire.
A beautiful market town in a highly desirable area, Harpenden has seen many new people move to it in recent years and for good reason. It provides a quieter alternative to some of the more bustling areas in Hertfordshire while still offering plenty to residents, including many incredible natural spaces.
It’s further from London than Watford and St Albans but it’s still quite convenient to get into the capital via the nearby M1 motorway. It’s worth pointing out that property prices in Harpenden are very high and roughly double the average for Hertfordshire.
Tring is another picturesque market town that’s become popular thanks to being in a good spot for commuters, reasonable property prices and being home to some great amenities, including the Natural History Museum.
Property prices in Tring are about the same as the average for the county as a whole. There are a number of detached and semi-detached properties available to rent or buy.
Hitchin provides a good mix of rural and urban lifestyles for residents and is a convenient location for commuting to London, either by train or car.
Just like with Tring, property prices in Hitchin are typical for Hertfordshire and considerably lower than some of the more sought after areas like St Albans.
Why move to Hertfordshire?
There are plenty of great reasons to relocate to Hertfordshire. These include –
- Great location – Hertfordshire is in close proximity to London, which makes it an ideal location if you need to commute to the capital. Being a southern county, it also enjoys very nice summers and much milder winters than northern England and Scotland.
- Excellent schools – If you have kids, then a large number of excellent schools in Hertfordshire are another big draw. It has a range of different public and private schools, with 121 of them being ranked “outstanding” by Ofsted.
- Low crime rates – It’s important to feel safe when you move to a new area and this is certainly something Hertfordshire can offer, being one of the country’s safest regions to live.
- The abundance of culture – Hertfordshire also has plenty to offer in terms of culture. There are great shops, restaurants, bars and cafes to be found throughout as well as museums, art galleries and exhibitions. Some of the cultural highlights to be found in Hertfordshire, include Paradise Wildlife Park, The Cathedral & Abbey Church of Saint Alban, Ashridge Estate and Hatfield House.
- Perfect place to raise a family – Hertfordshire is an ideal place to raise a family due to the reasons mentioned above. In fact, uSwitch named it as the best county to raise a family in the UK.
What are the downsides?
There are some downsides to living in Hertfordshire of course. Below are the main ones.
- High property prices – The property prices in Hertfordshire are quite high when compared to many other counties in the UK. This is mostly due to it being such a desirable area to live and the fact that it neighbours London.
- Traffic can be an issue – The narrower streets and roads found in Hertfordshire’s towns and villages means congested traffic conditions are not uncommon, especially during peak times.
Best places to eat and drink
- The Greyhound – The Greyhound is one of the best pubs to be found in the county and is popular with visitors and residents alike. In addition to the great menu, there’s also a very nice beer garden, making it an ideal place to visit during the summer.
- St James Restaurant – If you’re looking for a more traditional restaurant, then St James in Bushey would make a great choice and serves a range of great European-inspired dishes and desserts. There are also plenty of vegetarian options to choose from.
- Kazoku – If you’re a fan of Japanese food, then Kazoku in Hitchin is a must-visit. They serve a range of delicious Japanese tempura dishes, including sushi, prawns and oysters. There are also a range of currys to choose from as well as grilled skewers.
- Sopwell House – Upmarket and in luxurious surroundings, Sopwell House is a former manor house that’s now a hotel and spa with a number of restaurants inside. Not only is the food fantastic but having a spa nearby means you can make an entire day of it.
- The Bull – The Bull is a traditional, family-run pub with an ever-changing menu that locals rave about. Their Sunday roast is a highlight and there’s always events going on there, so it’s a great choice if you’re looking for somewhere upbeat.
Best places to visit
- Hatfield House – Hatfield House is a beautiful country house that has expansive gardens to explore. The park and gardens are open to the public from Thursday to Sunday each week and make for a great place to spend a few hours, especially during the summer.
- Paradise Wildlife Park – Paradise Wildlife Park is another great place to visit in Hertfordshire. It’s known for its hugely diverse range of animals, including tigers, lions, penguins, camels, zebras and meerkats to name just a few. There are also plenty of events and experiences going on there throughout the year, making it a great place to visit with kids.
- Natural History Museum at Tring – The Natural History Museum at Tring is a great place to learn about things ranging from dinosaurs and the ocean to human evolution and space. It’s also free and you can easily book tickets online for guaranteed entry.
- Cassiobury Park – Cassiobury Park is one of Hertfordshire’s most beautiful natural spaces and would make a perfect day out. As well as the park, there’s also a number of walking trails, tennis courts and two cafes. There’s also a miniature train ride, so it’s perfect if you have young children.
- The Cathedral & Abbey Church of St Alban – The Cathedral & Abbey Church of St Alban is one of the UK’s most historic buildings and inside you can find some beautiful wall paintings dating all the way back to the 13th century. It’s immense in size and there’s so much fascinating history to learn about, so you could easily spend a few hours there.
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I’m Paul Smith, Founder and Director of HouseMoveHelper. I have a great love of business, marketing, the wilderness and love to travel. You can learn more about me here.