Re-connect with nature
Published: Thursday 30th Jan 2020
Written by: Vanessa Moore
We are so lucky in Sussex and Kent to have so many different opportunities to get outdoors to enjoy nature and the abundant wildlife across both counties. Wildlife can be seen in habitats ranging from meadows, valleys and woodlands to wetlands and coastal habitats including shingle, saltmarsh and reedbeds. There are beautiful views to be had across the countryside as so many areas of it have been designated as areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, we have the North and South Downs to enjoy, and of course miles of iconic and stunning coastline.
One of our properties, Birdsong Barn, is set in its own private 350-acre nature reserve yet is just five miles from Hastings and St Leonard’s on the Sussex coast. The owner is very knowledgeable and offers guests their very own wildlife safari tour where they will see a huge number of different species of birds, butterflies, dragonflies as well Konik ponies. The birds who visit the reserve mean there is an amazing dawn chorus during a stay at this beautifully restored and refurbished 18th century barn. Guests enjoy walking in the stunning wildflower meadows and comment on the tranquillity of being close to nature.
Developed by the Sussex Wildlife Trust, Rye Harbour Nature Reserve on the Sussex Coast offers an opportunity to get close to nature on a two mile or longer five-mile trail where you will many different species of birds, plants and animals. The new Rye Harbour Discovery Centre is due to open this year, which will mean more facilities for visitors and make it accessible year-round. Stone’s Throw, is literally just this from the nature reserve and is the perfect hideaway for couples looking to explore it as well as Rye itself and nearby Battle and Hastings.
Other nature parks and reserves include Tyland Barn Visitor Centre and Nature Park in Sandling, Maidstone, Kent Wildlife Trust’s headquarters and Sandwich and Pegwell Bay National Nature Reserve, the Trust’s largest reserve and of international importance for its bird populations.
Kent and Sussex Cottages are members of both Sussex Wildlife Trust and Kent Wildlife Trust. We sponsored Kent Wildlife Trust’s 2019 Wilder Kent photography competition last year and the winner Anthony won a weekend stay at Bumble Barn for his wonderful shot of a kingfisher.
Bumble Barn offers a unique stay as it is a stylish eco barn for those who want a family holiday with a cleaner environmental conscience. It sleeps six and is located between coastal Hythe and historic Canterbury and so is in a perfect location for exploring everything – coast, countryside and city!
For those wanting to re-connect with nature, a holiday in Kent and Sussex really is the perfect choice!