You’d perhaps be forgiven for overlooking Royston as a travel destination.
Closely situated to a handful of larger, more iconic towns and cities (such as Cambridge, Milton Keyes and Bedford) Royston is much smaller than it’s neighbours but has the advantage of feeling more intimate, allowing visitors staying in the town’s quietly bustling centre to easily adapt to it’s idyllic ebb and flow.
Although there might not be a large variety of cultural activities to keep yourself busy during the evenings, the town is home to several magnificent eateries and the surrounding areas make for some truly satisfying hiking.
Where to Walk
There are miles of well looked after tracks and paths in the surrounding areas. We found this route from BritishWalks.org to be the most satisfying, but there are still plenty of others to explore.
Where to Stay
Despite it’s diminutive size, there are a wide range of accommodation options in the town. For those with deep pockets, the modern yet classical Banyer’s House is one of the most luxurious hotels in town.
Double rooms at this swanky establishment can cost up to £179, but if you do choose to stay here you’ll have the convenience of having one of the best restaurants in town in the same building.
Serving up breakfast, lunch and dinner with an ample brunch menu to boot, some may find the prices a little steep, but the quality is hard to argue with.
If you fancy saving on accommodation (and enjoying a stay with less intrusion) then Laurels Holiday Cottage could be right up your street. Offering a cosy double bedroom with a sofa bed for an extra guest, this tidily presented self-catered option is perfect for walkers who’d rather stay on the fringes of the town. Technically speaking, this cottage is closer to nearby Barley than Royston, but it’s nevertheless a great choice for those looking to tackle the 17.2 mile mile hike that circles around the town.
Where to Eat
Sometimes a packed lunch just doesn’t quite cut it. If you’ve spent a day hiking for miles around, you’re going to be hungry and a hastily prepared home-cooked meal might not be the best way to solve that hunger. Luckily, there are some great places to eat in Royston and despite the area’s reputation for being rather expensive, they won’t all cost you an arm and a leg.
The Fox & Duck is situated around 3 miles outside of Royston, having been awarded the Best Pub prize in the Hertfordshire Food & Drink Awards for the third year in a row, this is a family friendly country-style pub that you should definitely pencil in a visit to. Although they’re frequently lauded for their excellent roast dinners, it’s the cheerful ambience that makes this a wonderful place to visit. Arrive in the afternoon for a couple of drinks, have a home-cooked meal and then walk back to your bed, happy and satisfied.
If you’re looking for somewhere to eat in Royston proper, where you can sit down to a relaxed meal after a long day of hiking, then the Jolly Postie is the place for you. A pub owned by local brewery, McMullen, the charm of the Jolly Postie is in it’s kitsch decor which blends traditional pub elements with that of a modern bar. The highlight has to be the retro Postman’s van which can seat 6-8 people and makes for a wonderfully cosy place to munch down on some lovely pub grub.
What to Do
There’s a bit of a dearth for activities for children in Royston, however there are a still a handful of attractions that could fill out a day. The Royston Caves are small, but will no doubt fire up the imaginations of amateur historians both young and old. For older kids and adults, Apocalypse Paintball is a great way to explore the local forests and get your pulse racing at the same time!