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Rochester Cathedral Arch

Castles and Gardens

5th September 2019

Whether you’re looking for a somewhere grand to explore, or just the perfect spot to set up your picnic on the floor we’ve got you covered with our selection of exciting castles and gardens.

So, buckle up your walking boots and pack your picnic blankets to explore these wonderful castles and gardens, set in Kent’s calm countryside.

Majestic Buildings

A stunning architectural masterpiece in the centre of a delightful City, Canterbury Cathedral is the perfect place to explore with its picturesque stained-glass windows and spectacular stonework, it is steeped in rich history. From mesmerizingly intricate monuments to learning about Thomas Becket’s mysterious murder, there are lots of things to discover on a tour around the majestic medieval church. Why not explore another of the former Archbishop of Canterbury's passion projects? Rochester Castle's Norman tower-keep was built by William of Corbeil in the 12th Century and still reaches 113 feet tall. Take a tour round the remarkable remains and contemplate it's rich history, then ramble round the grand expanse of greenery surrounding the castle itself. 

Charming Castles

Wander around the vibrant gardens at one of the National Trust’s gorgeous gardens. Step into the history of Sissinghurst Castle Gardens, once home to the women’s land’s army, it’s now a scene of calm and tranquillity. Sit amongst nature for a breath of fresh air, then head to the plant shop where you can browse an array of flourishing flowers to brighten up your own garden. Alternatively, indulge yourself in a trip to the thirteenth century Hever Castle, once the childhood home of the noble Anne Boleyn. Absorb the Castle’s deep history and amble round the peaceful moat surrounding the castle itself, then unleash your inner adventurer and try to escape from the winding paths of the Yew Maze. 

Perfect spot for a Picnic

Looking for a place to have a picnic? Hunt no further. Whether you want to wander around a Victorian Walled Garden and explore the produce of Quex Park’s greenhouse or potter round Ightham Mote’s remote scenery, there is lots to explore in the Kent countryside. From medieval knights to King Henry VII’s courtiers, travel back in time around the quaint house on its own secluded island. Or, why not take a romantic saunter through the picturesque Quex gardens? 

Riverhill Himalayan Gardens

Spice up your day-off by taking a trip to the Riverhill Himalayan Gardens. Set near Sevenoaks in Kent, the gardens are known for their blanket of bluebells in the woodland in early spring and array of vivid rhododendrons and delicate azaleas in late spring. With magnificent sweeping views and rare ancient trees, the Riverhill gardens have a hub of glorious nature to view. Once you have explored the greenery, why not treat yourself to something tasty from the café and enjoy your cosy beverage in the crisp air of the gardens? Lounge in luscious gardens 

Curious Collections

Enjoy the impeccable work of architect Samuel Wyatt with a journey to the imperial Belmont house and gardens. If you’re looking for something quirky, this house has accumulated one of the largest personal collections of clocks in the country. With a delightful range of traditional and modern style gardens Belmont House has an abundance of fantastic fruits and floral displays. Get inspired by the intriguing collection of antiques at Chiddingstone Castle. Remodelled in the 19th Century to resemble a Medieval castle, this eloquent house is filled with Denys Eyre Bower’s personal collection of antiques from around the world. From fascinating Stuart and Jacobite trinkets to Japanese items, there are plenty of pieces that will feed your curiosity. 

Picturesque Places

Pace peacefully around the picture perfect Penshurst Place. Stroll through the exquisite gardens and then ponder the mixture of marvellous paintings, tapestries and fancy furniture that line the former dwelling of the Sidney family. Take in the beautiful scenery by hiring a bike to explore the calming countryside and wonder through the woodland trial. Then let the kids expend their boundless energy by completing the Maize Maze or take a look at some royal toys through time at the fascinating toy museum? Then head over to Scotney Castle to roam the romantic garden and 14th Century moated castle, situated in a gorgeously green woodland area. Hop over to the little Scotney Farm to walk along the hop farm and enjoy a peaceful meander through the vivaciously vibrant gardens. 

Historical Houses

Relax in the gardens that are as quiet as a mouse at the serenely sublime Godinton House. Set in 12 acres of glorious greenery, dive into the house’s Jacobean history. Then explore the unique carvings, furniture and porcelain collated by those who have lived there. The homely feel extends throughout the rooms and gardens to the much-loved Billiard room where you can taste delicious home-made cakes and refreshments. Immerse yourself in luxury when visiting Walmer Castle, the former residence of famous faces from the Duke of Wellington, to the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. Explore the exhibits that bring the Duke's career to life with an exclusive look at the original Wellington boots and then take in the extraordinary views of sublime scenery, from the Queen Mother’s garden to the long and luscious Broadwalk garden.  

Leeds Castle

Previously home to King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon, this fantastic castle is steeped in intriguing history. Follow the story of the castle and its grounds from room to room with visual displays and interactive activities to entice everyone. Stroll around the gigantic grounds, filled with striking horticultural displays and adventurous areas like the winding maze, complete with unique underworld grotto. Tackle the 12-hole adventure golf with it's very own miniature Leeds Castle, then head inside to immerse yourself in a world of paintings, treasures and antique clothing styles. Are you a dog lover? Enjoy learning about the evolution of canine collars throughout the years spanning five centuries. Lead the way to Leeds Castle


Dover Castle 

A medieval Great Tower, unmissable views across The Channel, 80 acres of grounds and secret wartime tunnels - it's safe to say a visit to Dover Castle makes for a historic day out! Discover a wealth of history and keep any eye for events throughout the year, from jousting to summer quests. Dive into Dover

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