Kent Castles & Gardens
We think that one great reason to visit Kent is to see all of our beautiful gardens and the castles that are found within the region. We have more castles than any other county in the country, chiefly because we are so close to Europe and always used to be under the threat of invasion. Whether you're staying by the coast or in the countryside, you'll never be too far from one of these great buildings! All children enjoy being King or Queen of the Castle and in Kent they’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing which castle they wish to rule over, with over seven castles in this beautiful county there’s a lot to see and savour. In addition to fortified homes there are many fine historic country houses with magnificent gardens that make for a lovely day out. These include Groombridge Place which has a variety of fun activities within the grounds, Hole Park Gardens with their beautiful array of gardens to explore and Godinton House who offer a lovey selection of events throughout the year. Along with all of these great places to visit we can’t forget the lovely hop gardens, vineyards, and a wealth of locally grown produce which also attract visitors to the area. You can find out more about these activities here.
Leeds Castle is frequently described as “the most beautiful castle in the world”, it’s steeped in history and was even used by the notorious king, Henry VIII. The castle used to be a Norman stronghold and has stood proud for over 900 years. Not only do visitors go to view the castle there are also lots of activities to do whilst there, these include; taking a leisurely punt around the moat, trying to crack the yew tree maze, watching the breath-taking falconry display and even taking a Segway tour around the grounds, along with much more.
Hever Castle is the childhood home of one of Henry VIII’s most famous wives Anne Boleyn. The castle has been open to the public for 50 years this year and the attractions within its grounds have become better and better year upon year. There’s even an opportunity to try your hand at archery during the February half term and weekends from March until the end of October.
Scotney Castle can be described as something straight out of a fairy tale, dating back to the 14th century this beautiful castle finds its home in a lovely wooded estate. The shops on the grounds sell their own Scotney bitter and honey made from their own bees, there is also a yummy tea-room and woodland picnic area to enjoy your lunch.
The very splendid Dover Castle is found perched on top of the iconic White Cliffs of Dover, overlooking the narrowest part of the English Channel and is known as the ‘Key to England’. It has guarded our shores for over 20 centuries and is a great medieval fortress with a long interesting history to find out about whilst you are there.
Tonbridge Castle guards the River Medway, it’s said to have the finest gatehouse in England and is a true gem. There’s a one hour mp3 guided tour which gives you lots of interesting information about the castle and there’s 14 acres of stunning grounds to go exploring.