Want to enjoy some wellbeing in St Albans, but don’t know where to start? Well, I can help. I’ve rounded up the best places to have a break, take a breather and get back to your old self again.
There’s something suitable for everyone – from the boujie, budget-busting Sopwell House to the no-cost sanctuary of the Peace Garden at St Peter’s Churchyard.
So, here are my 4 top places for mental wellbeing in St Albans. Why not try them all and then tell me which one worked best for you?
1. Street Cafe, Catherine Street
If you’re in the city, and ready for a strong cup of organic coffee, then I can highly recommend Street Cafe. Situated on Catherine Street, it’s slightly tucked away from the main thoroughfare. This means you can have an unhurried meal, while enjoying the ambience in the more scenic part of the city.
For the summer months there’s also outside seating. The dark green umbrellas and red brickwork earn extra points, as it reminds me of Tribeca. If someone beeps their car horn you could almost be in NYC. To top it all off, after you’ve had brunch you can amble across the road to the Oxfam bookshop. It’s always well stocked, and personally I don’t think there’s a better use of time than coffee, cakes and books.
2. Sopwell House
Budget permitting than Sopwell House on Cottonmill Lane, is like a mini break for the mind and body. A beautiful building, boasting two luxury spas and a range of eateries that serve only the freshest food. This oasis of laid back luxury is set in 12 acres of countryside. So if you find the time between treatments, you can go for a stroll. The staff are as professional, friendly and accommodating as you’d expect for the price. If you’re lucky, or happy to go last minute, you might be able to get it at a reasonable rate.
3. St Peter’s Peace Garden
I stumbled upon this by accident. Probably during lockdown while taking the sanctioned hour of exercise with my son. It may sound trite, and a lot like a commercial, but this really is an oasis of calm in the middle of St Albans. A fenced garden set in church grounds and landscaped with beautiful flowers and greenery. There are benches to sit, and sculptures to look at, should you want to rest a while and contemplate.
And if you need some caffeine before you contemplate, you can pick it up from the Courtyard Cafe. Located just behind the courtyard it’s a small, local business serving delicious food and drink. As a side note they also sell a small range of gifts such as candles, paintings and potted plants. This has helped me out no end of times when I’ve needed to buy a last minute birthday gift.
4. Mind in Mid Herts
I may be biased, because I work here, but Mind in Mid Herts has something for everyone. It’s a one-stop shop for mind, body and soul. Based just off Hatfield Road, there are regular classes available which aim to take care of your wellbeing in St Albans. Depending on your tastes, and your talents, there’s something for everyone. You can sign up for a walking group, a creative writing class or learn about self-compassion. And if you need some support with more practical matters such as money management, Mind can help with that too.
It’s quick and easy to self refer. Just complete the form and someone will be in touch.