TripAdvisor’s wild reviews of Hertfordshire’s most popular tourist attractions that are dead wrong


Hertfordshire is full of beloved and famous sites. Visitors love our beautiful countryside and quaint historic towns.

We may not be a tourist hotspot, but Hertfordshire has a number of popular attractions that draw people from all over the world to the county.

Some of our most famous locations include Warner Bros. Studios. in Leavesden, home of the Making of Harry Potter tour, and Hatfield House, once owned by Henry VIII.

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We have activities for the whole family, like at Paradise Wildlife Park. We also have beautiful locations perfect for a photo shoot, such as the Hitchin Lavender Fields.

All of these attractions have received hundreds, if not thousands, of rave reviews on TripAdvisor. But not everyone was happy with their trip to Hertfordshire, and some visitors were so unhappy with their experience that they left comical and savage reviews on TripAdvisor.

We’ve rounded up some of the most critical comments below. Herts Live does not endorse any of these criticisms.

Hatfield House

The West Range of Old Hatfield Palace

There are over 900 positive reviews of Hatfield House on TripAdvisor, many with only glowing words to say about the beautiful site and its grounds. But not everyone was happy.

One reviewer said: “I had planned to take the parents here who love gardening. What can I say, it’s £11 to go into the park to walk among abandoned articulated lorries, scorched earth, abandoned literature scraps and random wooden shacks – what a complete joke when you can do it for free at any festival site.

“The gardens themselves were poorly maintained, needed a thorough weeding. And some plants were dead. You clearly don’t spend my entry fee on maintenance. I would have been better off spending £44 on plants in a garden centre. I asked for a refund of the tickets.”

We’ll let that person know that Hatfield House, especially its gardens, is spectacular.

Warner Bros. Studio Tour

The Making of Harry Potter on the Warner Bros Studio Tour

The making of Harry Potter at Warner Bros. Studios. in Leavesden, near Watford, is arguably Hertfordshire’s most popular tourist attraction. There are nearly 45,000 reviews of the tour on TripAdvisor, and 43,000 of those reviews give the popular attraction an “excellent” or “very good” rating.

Meanwhile, the majority of TripAdvisor users who left “terrible” ratings hadn’t actually visited the studios. They had issues redeeming gift cards and contacting the customer service team.

But there are a few people who have a strong dislike for the tour and have left their reviews to read on TripAdvisor.

One reviewer, who gave Warner Bros. Studios a star, was disappointed the attraction was in Hertfordshire. They said: “It’s not in London. It’s an hour away by car and much longer by public transport. They misrepresent it as London.”

The studios customer service team replied, “Thank you for taking the time to leave your review. We are disappointed to hear that you believe your Studio Tour tickets have been mis-sold to you, as we strive to ensure that our location is clarified as much as possible on our website prior to booking.”

It’s true that the studios are definitely not in London, but it’s not that far and it could be a lot worse.

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A reviewer also added: “This place should have things to do. It’s overpriced, over hyped and full of sycophant adults. It was like walking through the worst museum in the world. I’ve visited almost all of them. Disney studios on the planet and it shouldn’t even be classified in that genre.”

Another reviewer said it was “boring and expensive”, describing the experience as consisting of “large rooms filled mostly with leftover (or in some cases recreated) tattoos from the Harry Potter production with limited interactive exhibits and a great gift shop at the end.”

Customer service replied, “The studio tour provides visitors with a unique opportunity to experience the original sets, props and costumes from the Harry Potter film series, while exploring more of the production process. I hope that despite above, you enjoyed some of the more interactive aspects of the attraction.”

If you’ve ever been to the studios, you’ll know that they certainly aren’t boring and are truly magical! These people must have had bad days.

Paradise animal park

Wildlife wading birds
Wild stilt walkers at Paradise Wildlife Park

Paradise Wildlife Park is a popular zoo based in Broxbourne. It was closed in January as construction work continues. A new ‘Jaguar Jungle’ is being built, which should be an amazing new home for the resident jaguars, as well as new mixed-species environments.

The reviews are overwhelmingly positive, but some TripAdvisor users were unhappy with the size of the animal enclosures.

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One said: “I was disgusted at the lack of space these animals had in the enclosures, I have since read reviews here of people saying the same thing and they tell us they have plenty of room and that they respect the standards.

“I for one will never stay here again as I think they are up to standard or the lack of space they have is cruel, especially given the efforts of other zoos I have visited in space and reproducing the natural environment of the animals.”

Responding to a similar review, a spokesperson for Paradise Wildlife Park said: “We can assure you that all of our animal enclosures meet or exceed breeding guidelines, as has our lion enclosure which has doubled in size this year. . [2019] and we are currently working on the other cat enclosures.”

Paradise is one of the best zoos in the country and its standards are impeccable. We know that all animals are incredibly well cared for and happy.

Hitchin lavender fields

Hithcin Lavender Fields
Hithcin Lavender Fields

There are only 18 “terrible” reviews of Hitchin Lavender Fields, compared to 408 which are “excellent”. But some of these terrible reviews are particularly scathing.

One said: ‘What a waste of money, £6 to walk through a field with hardly any lavender. Ok it’s opening day and we don’t have not had much sun.However the field is not maintained, you are trampling stinging nettles, fern.

“We arrived at the staff who are supposed to be organizing, we stood talking to each other, looking sullen as if they’d rather be somewhere else. No idea where to queue. No mention in the field of what each species is.

“Take a priceless lavender plant and pay £5.95 for my friend who is an ex-florist to tell me you can buy three for £10 in St Albans market. No customer service, just a machine to make a quick buck. no go. I would rather drive for two hours than the Banstead one.

Ultimately, places like Hitchin Lavender will charge a small fee to stay open so others can enjoy the beauty it offers.

It’s a very small price to pay and it’s a scenic place to relax.

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