Malvern is an ancient and very beautiful hill location in Worcestershire, England. According to archaeological evidence, the settlements on the hill date back to the Bronze Age (1000BC); however, it is not known if these settlements were permanent.
The town was established by Benedictine monks in the 11th Century when they built an abbey at the foot of the Malvern hills. You can still visit these original priories and get a sense of how people lived over a millennium ago! The hill area is also classed as an area of outstanding natural beauty.
This is one of the first things you will notice when you step off the train at Great Malvern station. The station itself is ornately decorated in a Victorian style, something you will become familiar with as you explore the streets, but the area also has some intriguing history – like the visit of Charles Darwin.
There is no shortage of things to do in Malvern, Worcestershire, England. If you’re an outdoors person, you will love hiking in the Malvern hills and enjoy the breathtaking views from the summit. However, you don’t have to be outdoorsy to have an excellent time, as the museums and theatres in Malvern are equally as spectacular!
The Malvern Winter Glow festivals start in November and offer the perfect opportunity to kindle the spirit of Christmas in your life. They have ice skating, personalised Santa experiences, illuminated light trails, a giant observation wheel, and plenty of food and drink for kids and all the family.
Winter is the ideal time to get your skates on and zip around on the ice – the nights are dark, and the air is sharp. Enjoy a little fun on the ice with the family, then relax with a warm drink from the food quarter. Next, board the Arctic Express and make your way to Santa’s workshop to meet the big man.
One of the highlights of the Winter Glow festivals has to be Santas Grotto when you decant the Arctic Express. You will be greeted by Santa’s elves and led to the grotto to meet the real Father Christmas. He has a gift to give every child, and you get to sample some of Mrs Claus’s annual Christmas cookies.
Malvern Autumn Show
If you can’t wait until the winter weather comes in to get your fix of Malvern hospitality, then check out the Autumn Show. Autumn is the traditional time for harvesting and celebrating, and no autumn festival would be complete without fresh vegetables, cider, family fun and a giant harvest moon!
The Malvern Autumn Show doesn’t disappoint in this regard; it has giant vegetables and a Grow Zone packed full of gorgeous flowers and seasonal vegetables. It also has a giant vegetable competition so expect to see some impressive pumpkins and gherkins – you can even buy some seasonal produce!
Make your outing a day of complete family fun with the special activities at the Malvern Autumn Show. Choose from a long list of things to try, including circus skills, croquet, mini-golf, giant Jenga, bushcraft skills and pedal tractors. The show provides the perfect day out for the family and plenty of memorable photo opportunities too.
Some people love the great Malvern outdoors, but others are inspired by the history and geology of the hill area. Malvern Museum is an excellent place to learn more about the prehistoric, Roman, Medieval, and Victorian eras. Don’t miss out on the more recent 20th Century museum either!
Malvern, Worcestershire, has a long history in England that stretches back to long before records began and the town was named. In the Malvern Hills museum, you will learn about rocks and fossils to be found in the ancient landscape. At that time, it had different inhabitants too, ones with long necks…
There is loads to discover at the Malvern Museum: the archive room or gallery alone gives you some special insights into that time period in Malvern. The Upstairs Museum, for instance, offers some fine examples of medieval carpentry and some of the areas scientific achievements, like the radar lab.
At Malvern Theatres, there is something for everyone! Whether you like horrors, adventures, mysteries, or children’s classics, you will find high-quality theatre productions every month. If you love films and cinema, then you’re in for a treat.
Although, unlike regular films, theatre and TV shows, Malvern Theatres is live and multi-sensory. An intimate relationship is created between the actors and the audience as the story’s events unfold; often, the stage production also has interactive elements and settings that can’t be replicated in the cinema.
But live performance isn’t the only thing offered at Malvern Theatres. Make a day of it by visiting some of the heritage and the art displays, and enjoy a pre or post-theatre meal at the restaurant or Bistro Cafe. Malvern Theaters is a special day out for families, couples or single people.
Great Malvern Priory
The Great Malvern Priory isn’t only an active refuge for spiritual seekers; it is one of the finest examples of Norman architecture in the UK.
It is a Norman Malvern priory with stained glass windows dating from the 14th and 15th centuries, and it survived the dissolution of the monasteries ordered by King Henry VIII. Wander around on your own or sign up for one of the guided tours.
But that’s not all! Since Great Malvern Priory is a working abbey, you can arrange to have special occasions such as weddings, baptisms, confirmations, and funerals. What better way to mark a milestone in your life than with an event at an original medieval abbey?
The abbey is an excellent thing to do in Malvern. If you have a free day and want to delve into the area’s cultural past, look up the events calendar or head along for an informal tour. The priory often has events such as musical performances and poetry readings. The Abbey really brings the past to life.
Little Malvern Priory
If you head up the Malvern Hills for a hike, you should see the Little Malvern Priory below in Malvern court. It is situated on the east side of the North Hill, but that’s not the only place you might see the Little Malvern Priory before you visit. The Little Malvern Priory is an iconic feature in many paintings, photographs, and postcards. Don’t miss this lovely church!
The Little Malvern Priory dates back to 1127 and contains some fine examples of medieval church woodwork and stained glass. As well as the original stonework, church pews and glasswork, there is a single-story entrance porch that has displays of historic photographs and artefacts from the abbey.
When you visit the abbey, you won’t want to miss the original church bell that dates back to 1354. It was cast by John of Gloucester. The bell uses a wooden frame with cables and is typical of an abbey bell from the medieval period. As with the Great Malvern Priory, you can book special occasions here too.
Malvern Hills GeoCentre
If you’re interested in geology and landscape, the Malvern Hills Geo centre is not to be missed.
This centre is situated on the western slopes of the Malvern Hills and provides information and artefacts on the surrounding hills such as the Malvern Hills Area and the Malverns Hills. There is lots to see!
Start off with a series of walks in the Geopark area. The Geopark Way is a walk of 109 miles that takes in geological landscape features and settlements.
If the length of the walk puts you off, don’t worry, you don’t have to cross the finish line – walk it in short stretches to see the best features on the North Hill.
For shorter excursions, check out the Wyche Way and self-guided local walks on the North Hill that takes you in a loop of some stunning landscape in one or one and a half hours.
The Malvern Geo centre is also an excellent learning resource for children and young people. It puts on regular events to teach geological skills; check the website for details.
Ice Quest Malvern
If you’re looking for some entertaining events for your family or a special occasion, Ice Quest Malvern is an excellent place to land. Although it is called Ice Quest, a spectacular ice rink isn’t the only thing this centre has to offer. It also has escape rooms and laser quest available as a combo booking package.
Naturally, the main event in Ice Quest Malvern is the ice rink which is available for individual skating or skating parties. There are plenty of package options for you to choose from and you can also book skating lessons for any level to improve your skills. Enjoy food and beverages served at the rink side.
But, if skating isn’t your first love, head to the escape rooms. These are perfect for a corporate event or a day trip with friends. Choose from different escape room themes and battle your way out of a box against the clock. It’s an intense and fun team bonding experience.
Malvern, Worcestershire is well known for its green space but it is equally known for its heritage. These two things come together at Priory Park, offering a pleasant and interesting escape from the town.
Priory Park was designed in the Victorian era; it looks vintage, linear, and ornate. However, it is also very pleasant.
There is never a bad time of year to go and visit Priory Park; it looks lovely whatever the season. The park is large with a Waterfowl lake, a Victorian bandstand, a duck pond, a children’s play area, and members bowling green.
The park also has some beautiful duck ponds and well-placed foliage for a nice stroll.
Whether you are visiting for a day or a week, you should definitely pay a visit to this lovely green space. You can use the gardens for a picnic lunch or stroll through the inspiring green spaces. Since it’s a large park, you will work up an appetite and appreciate a sit-down and a beverage at the local bar.
The Firs – National Trust
Do you want to see where one of the world’s famous composers grew up, lived, and drew his inspiration from? If so, visit The Firs in Malvern. This is a small, quiet family home, fitting for someone of Edgar’s status and sensibility. He loved the garden and the surrounding nature.
At The Firs, you can take a grand tour of the Birthplace Cottage and the outdoor areas. There are picnic spots to have lunch at and a Visitor’s Centre with plenty of souvenirs to take home.
There is also a secondhand bookshop that is open every Friday. The perfect way to spend a day in Malvern, Worcestershire.
It’s always a treat to visit the place where a famous artist grew up. Walking into the cottage, you get a sense of how things were at the turn of the 19th Century for Edgar’s class, an educational and fun experience.
And remember to give his music a listen.
One of the main attractions of Malvern, Worcestershire is the Malvern Hills themselves, and the Worcestershire Beacon is a great place to start.
This is a moderate three-mile walk that should take you around one and a half hours to complete – just enough time and effort to work up and thirst and appetite. There is also lots to see.
You can start the trail at the Beacon Road car park; you will then walk around the western slopes of the Worcestershire Beacon, taking in the views of Herefordshire and the Black Mountains. You can then walk down the Happy Valley to St Ann’s Well, located along the Eastern slope and over Great Malvern.
After a hike around the Worcestershire Beacon, you will feel windswept and inspired. Chances are you will feel comfortably tired and be ready for sit down, a warm meal and a nice cup of tea. You might want to take a rest at the cafe at St Ann’s springs or head to Brewer’s Arms restaurant in West Malvern.
Morgan Motor Factory Tours
If you’re a bit of a petrol head, you’re going to love the Morgan Motor Company situated in Great Malvern. This car company is quintessentially English and has a long tradition of creating classic cars loved by many throughout the generations. Bear witness to the styles of the ages in the factory.
Unlike many car factory tours that show you galleries, imitation production lines, or outside factories, the Morgan Motor Company gives visitors an authentic experience. The tour will take you through the live workshop where you will see Morgan sports cars being built as you watch.
Morgan sports cars are special and not just because they bear the Morgan brand. These cars are made using a blend of rare craft skills and modern technology to create unrivalled motors. The Morgan Experience is on the same site as the factory, so enjoy some refreshments when the tour is over.
What is Malvern famous for?
Great Malvern locations have a long history that stretches back through the ages. You will find fossils and ancient artefacts in Great Malvern along with more modern attractions. It is also the place of the Morgan Motor factory, Sir Edward Elgar’s birthplace, St Ann’s Well, and Charles Darwin’s famous visit.
You will also find a famous theatre, some high-quality hotels to stay in and St Ann’s springs. Malvern is one of the most feature-rich places to spend a memorable staycation.
Does Malvern have good transport links?
Great Malvern is relatively easy to travel to despite being in a reasonably rural site – this is perhaps why it was chosen as a wartime evacuation centre.
There are two train stations in Malvern, Worcestershire: the Great Malvern train station and the Malvern Link. Both stations are fast and affordable from Birmingham.
But, you will have no trouble reaching the hills from anywhere in England, just as Charles Darwin did in 1849. It is extremely accessible and budget-friendly.
Are there lots of places to stay in Malvern?
Finding a place to stay in the Great Malvern Hills is not a problem! There’s plenty of hotels available and something to suit every taste and budget.
Check hotel listing websites for accommodation information and find hotels that are traditional and comfortable or perhaps a more modern Airbnb will suit your fancy. There are also plenty of B&Bs to choose from and some campsites.
What’s the best indoor activity in Malvern?
Most people visit Great Malvern for outdoor activities, the hills and the stunning nature, but sometimes the weather doesn’t permit hiking or walking in the gardens.
Thankfully, the Great Malvern Hills offers exciting indoor activities, such as skating, escape rooms, laser quest, Malvern museum tours, theatre, and the abbey.
When you visit Malvern you won’t be disappointed whatever the weather. If the sun is shining you can get the best out of the landscape, otherwise, you can enjoy a memorable indoor excursion.