Seven things to do on St George's Day

by Katie Rowe

Category: Things to do
April 15 2016

Make the most of our Patron Saint by visiting sword-clashing medieval festivals, powdering your nose for a Georgian photoshoot or staying in a 12th century hotel that’s hosted Kings and Queens of yesteryear.

1. Boo the dragon at Wrest Park (23 - 24 April)

A man dressed as St George wearing a suit of armour and holding an English flag

Discover the man behind the myth at Wrest Park, the grand estate that’s home to the biggest St George’s Day festival in England. Witness the ultimate showdown as St George takes on his arch nemesis, see armoured jousters clashing head-on in a dramatic tournament and don’t miss fearless fighting displays at the Roman gladiator's arena as this medieval spectacle unfolds on the 23 and 24 April.

2. Pull on a petticoat in Bath (23 April)

Two ladies in georgian fancy conceal their faces with fans

Get the Georgian look at No.1 Royal Crescent who are offering exclusive Georgian makeovers on St George’s Day. Choose your costume and have your makeup done by Bath Academy of Media Makeup artists, followed by a professional photo-shoot. Watch fashion demonstrations, explore the Grade I listed museum and try on costumes throughout the day.

3. Celebrate Warkworth's Pageant in Northumberland (23 - 24 April)

A knight in armour holding a St George's Cross shield stands in front of Warkworth Castle

Crowning a hilltop above the River Coquet and steeped in history, the dramatic fortress of Warkworth Castle is one of the best places to experience a Medieval-themed St George’s weekend. Mingle with medieval townsfolk, musicians and noblemen, see sword-combat displays and cheer the mysterious knight in his shining armour as he faces his famous foe.

4. Come face-to-face with dragons at Colchester Zoo

A close up of two komodo dragons at Colchester Zoo

Komodo dragons are the closest thing to experiencing a fire-breathing dragon, and it just so happens that Colchester Zoo in Essex is home to a number of these incredible reptiles. Come St. George’s Day, why not enter the dragons’ den on a Komodo dragon experience where you’ll be taken behind the scenes of a state of the art enclosure by the passionate zoo keepers and learn all about these giant reptiles on a day out at the zoo you’ll never forget.

5. Experience the Feast of St George in London (24 April)

Gingerbread in the shape of St George and the dragon

Borough Market’s annual festival of food, music, storytelling and dance will involve a visit from some European friends; St. George is also the patron saint of Spain’s Catalonia region. As patron saint of farmers, shepherds and butchers as well as England, St. George is a character well suited to being celebrated at Borough Market, which will be filled with the sounds and aromas of both cultures. Try a ‘red and white flag’ pizza, a St. George’s Day coconut cupcake or a dragon-shaped baguette.

6. Stay at The George Hotel in Kent

A four-poster bed with red cushions, just one of the George Hotel's luxury rooms

What better way to celebrate the most English day of all than with a snooze at the aptly named George Hotel, a 13th century building which hosted King Edward in 1299 and Queen Elizabeth I in 1573. Although the building dates back more than 700 years, it has a distinctively modern twist to it. Saunter up the magnificent staircase and you’ll pass two full suits of armour on your way up to your individually-designed bedroom combining period features with contemporary décor. A standard double, including a full English breakfast, costs £130 per night. 

7. Learn the art of dragon slaying in Cheshire (23 - 24 April)

A battle between a St George and the dragon is played in the grounds of Beeston Castle

Discover the legend of St George, as his story is brought to life in the expansive grounds of Beeston Castle. Enjoy medieval music, food, side-splitting storytelling and of course the big battle between St George and the dragon. Aspiring knights can get involved too as St George teaches you the art of dragon slaying. Do you have what it takes to be knighted by the saint himself?

>> Find more exceedingly English holidays ideas

Katie Rowe

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