THINGS TO SEE & DO
Herefordshire and its neighbouring counties, Gloucestershire and Worcestershire, known as The Three Counties, are some of Britain's most rural areas. Herefordshire especially is a county 'with mud on its boots'. If you are keen to explore the natural world, there is no better place to be.
From outdoor activities like walking and cycling; to exploring local market towns, castles, country houses and gardens; relaxing in the many country pubs or discovering The Shire’s rich cider history - there is something to suit every interest and taste.
An abundance of scenic walks and cycle rides can be enjoyed directly from the orchard, and many more outdoor activities available just a short drive away.
You’ll find information about our favourite local walks, cycle routes and more included in your Welcome Pack when you book your stay.
There are many well marked footpaths in Putley and our surrounding area, or a short stroll around Dragon Orchard takes about 20 minutes.
Stepping out onto one of the signposted footpaths nearby, you can find yourself in woodlands, orchards and open rolling fields in mere minutes.
With miles of winding lanes and fantastic views in every direction, our surrounding area is perfect for cycling. It is easy to stay off busy roads, making it safe to go out with the family.
For the adventurous of spirit, there are some serious hills to tackle with breath-taking views and exhilarating descents. For mountain bike enthusiasts, Haugh Wood is about a 25-minute ride away, with many downhill routes of varying difficulty.
The River Wye runs through Herefordshire and is accessible at several places. If you have your own craft, we would recommend putting in at Ross-on-Wye and paddling to Kerne bridge or Symonds Yat. A fantastic half or full day paddle. When you land, 'The Saracens Head Inn’ at Symonds Yat is a very friendly pub that does great food and has beautiful views over the Wye up to Yat Rock.
For those looking for a rental option, there are a number of canoe hire companies based at Symonds Yat.
For outdoor climbing, Symonds Yat is a world-famous climbing spot and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Take in the spectacular views from Symonds Yat Rock Viewpoint and look out for the many Peregrine Falcons, Goshawks, Sparrowhawks and Ospreys soaring nearby.
There are also indoor climbing centres close by –
‘The Warehouse’ in Gloucester.
'Liquid Gold' - from Blossom to Bottle
The Spiritual Home of Apples and Cider
Herefordshire is famous for cider - over half of the cider apples consumed in the UK are produced in our county alone. Dragon Orchard (and the surrounding village of Putley) has been a key part of the county’s rich history with cider. Great-Grandfather Harry Taylor was Orchard Manager to Squire John Riley, and together they transformed the physical landscape of Putley in the 1870s, planting up intensive Bittersweet Apple Orchards, which remain the quintessential Herefordshire view to this day.
Dragon Orchard is the perfect place to discover the process of cider making from blossom to bottle. Starting with a walk around the orchard, then a visit to Westons Cider or the Bulmers Cider Museum, one can learn first hand of the fascinating process of how the simple apple becomes ‘liquid gold’.
HEREFORDSHIRE CIDER CIRCUITS
The Herefordshire Cider Circuits are two circular routes around the county of Herefordshire, visiting cider producers and specialist retailers. Ideal for keen cyclists, or those who wish to take the car and fill up the boot with bottles along the way.
An excellent starting point is the Cider Museum in Hereford, where you will discover the history and development of cider production.
PLACES TO VISIT
There are a plethora of beautiful villages and towns to explore that are steeped in the rich rural history of Herefordshire.
There's the iconic black and white Market House in Ledbury, or the famous 'Mappa Mundi' in Hereford - the largest Medieval map of the known world that dates back to the 13th Century - plus much more to be explored.
Just 6 miles away is the historic market town of Ledbury. With its iconic black & white Market House, walled gardens, plus many pubs, book shops, charity shops and cafes, Ledbury is a great destination for a short day out.
A short drive a little further up-hill and into Worcestershire, lies the dramatic Malvern Hills, famed for their spectacular, panoramic views and pure, fresh water springs. Face east to gaze out over lowland Britain, and west to marvel at the rolling countryside of Herefordshire, and far yonder into Wales over the Black Mountains. Perfect for a longer walk with the dogs on a clear day, and to get a sense of perspective.
With a beautiful Cathedral, Chained Library containing the historic ‘Mappa Mundi’, the Cider Museum, and the river Wye running through the city, Hereford is a beautiful place to take a walk, visit a cafe or pub (of which there are many) and soak up a bit of history.
Herefordshire is famous for its food and drink. With a strong focus on local food and a growing national awareness of where our produce is coming from, more and more cafes and restaurants are sourcing their ingredients from within the 'Shire. Below are a few of the places that we often like to visit and can personally recommend.
Just over the hill in Woolhope lies our favourite local, The Butchers Arms. We often head over there on a sunny day to enjoy the beer garden.
The pub is family run, and the landlord very friendly. Local Ales, Ciders and delicious, honest pub grub with a twist (and very generous portions!) – we highly recommend.
For those in the mood for something a bit 'more fancy', The Feathers Hotel in Ledbury, is the place.
A traditional coaching inn that serves beautifully crafted plates for a truly gastronomic experience.