The bulk of Bedfordshire's visitors come in search of a quintessentially English experience, exploring the picturesque countryside and quaint villages. However, one of the county's attractions offers a portal into the exotic - Woburn Safari Park. The park is situated on the Woburn estate, a short distance outside the county town of Bedford. This means there are plenty of exquisite hotels and guesthouses within easy reach.
Woburn Safari Park
Woburn Safari Park was opened by the 13th Duke of Bedford in 1970, in the hopes of turning around the financial fortunes of his colossal country home. Since then, the park has acquired a broad variety of exotic wildlife, attracting visitors from all over the world.
The park gives visitors the chance to drive through the grounds, where animals are allowed to roam freely. The 330-acre site plays home to some rare species, including bears, elephants, bears and even some white rhino. There's also a gift shop and a Safari restaurant, with excellent environmental credentials.
Elsewhere on the Estate
The Woburn estate extends well beyond this incredible safari park. The colossal mansion of Woburn Abbey is the centre of the estate, and is open to the public on specified days throughout the year. Inside, visitors can peruse the art gallery, enjoy refreshments in the tea room, or even book a private event such as a wedding.
Elsewhere on the estate, visitors can find a miniature railway, garden centre, deer park and some gorgeous landscaped gardens.
Hotels near Woburn Safari Park
The area around Woburn Safari Park boasts some of the best hotels in Bedfordshire, no matter what your tastes and budget.
Holidaymakers keen to hold on to the opulence of the Woburn estate can retreat to the prestigious Champneys Henlow, which offers a fully-equipped spa. Hallmark Hotel Flitwick Manor offers a similarly luxurious proposition, not far away.
The centre of Bedford is packed with great hotels and bed and breakfasts, all of which offer easy access to the town's wealth of bars and restaurants. Staying in the heart of the county town offers visitors a great base from which to explore the surrounding countryside of Bedfordshire.