There are some beautiful and fascinating days out for you to tick off during your time in Huntingdon. We’ve rounded up a few of our favourites, including the excellent National Trust-owned Houghton Mill, the polarizing Cromwell Museum and one of England’s largest reservoirs, which makes for a wonderful place for a walk on a warm and sunny day.
Activities in Huntingdon
Days out don’t get much more picturesque than a trip to Houghton Mill on the River Great Ouse. The historic local flour mill is now owned by the National Trust who do an incredible job of bringing the site’s rich history to life, including the period in the Middle Ages when it was owned by the nearby Benedictine Abbey and going as far back as the 10th century. It’s not the biggest attraction on the planet, but you can easily enjoy an hour or two learning about its fascinating past.
Hamerton Zoo Park
Hamerton Zoo Park
If you’re visiting our Huntingdon hotel with a young family, the kids will love a trip to the nearby Hamerton Zoo Park. It’s just a 15-minute drive away and worth the mileage to see the zoo’s wonderful array of species, such as tigers, giant tortoises and wombats. Top tip, if you purchase your tickets from Hamerton Zoo Park’s website before your visit, then you can get a decent discount.
Hinchingbrooke Country Park
Enjoy a picturesque walk in the countryside with a visit to Hinchingbrooke Country Park. It’s 170 acres of beautiful woodland, lakes and open parkland that’s ideal for picnics, taking the dog for a walk or going for a stroll on warm and sunny days. A word to the wise, parking isn’t free, but it’s very reasonably priced and worth paying for this beautiful bit of nature on Huntingdon’s doorstep.
Another popular alternative for a nature-filled day out is a trip to Grafham Water. It’s England’s third-largest reservoir at the heart of 1,500 acres of countryside. You can walk or cycle the whole way around the reservoir, keeping your eye out for wildlife including bumblebees, great tits and warblers. It’s also one of Britain’s favourite fisheries, where people of all ages and abilities can have a go at fishing the reservoir for its trout, pike, perch and zander. You can also learn to sail and windsurf from Grafham Water’s watersports centre.
Among the famous names to have hailed from Huntingdon, you’ll find the looming character of the Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell. Depending on whose account of history you listen to, Cromwell was considered everything from a hero of liberty to a genocidal dictator. He was buried in Westminster, before being dug up, hung and decapitated. If that hasn’t piqued your interest in finding out more about the former Lord Protector, then we’re not sure what will. The Cromwell Museum delves into the life and history of Oliver Cromwell and his son Richard Cromwell better than anywhere else in the UK. Best of all, admission is absolutely free, although donations are warmly received.
The Manor at Hemingford Grey
Here’s another one for history and literature fans. The Manor at Hemingford Grey is reputedly the oldest continuously inhabited house in Britain. It’s a beautiful home in nearby Hemingford Grey, which survives in incredible condition considering its nearly 900 years of history. Its most famous resident was the author Lucy M. Boston who lived in the house between 1939 and 1990, writing several books and laying the award-winning gardens that you can see today. The Manor is only open on chosen dates throughout the year, so be sure to see what’s happening while you’re here, as it also runs a programme of events ranging from theatre to ghost story recitals.