Things To Do In Kent England – Known as “The Garden of England,” Kent is one of the most beautiful and popular counties in the country. From the storied White Cliffs of Dover overlooking the English Channel to medieval castles, sleepy villages, and historic seaside resorts, Kent offers a bounty of recreational and historic attractions. Highlights include the town of Canterbury with its famous university and cathedral, the beautiful town of Maidstone; and historic landmarks including Dover Castle and the 900-year-old Leeds Castle, described by Henry VIII as “the most beautiful castle. in the world.” Kent is also the gateway to Europe. The Eurotunnel crossing from Folkestone to Calais takes just 35 minutes, while ferries from Dover cross the English Channel offering a convenient service to many European ports….
Kent has it all – beautiful unspoilt countryside, nearly 350 kilometers of tranquil coastline, beautiful villages, and bustling towns and cities. Its proximity to both London and the sea makes it a very desirable place to relocate to when escaping London. From Strutt & Parker’s offices in Canterbury and Sevenoaks, the firm covers all of Kent—from the quaint seaside towns of Deal and Sandwich to the far west county town of Maidstone or Westerham and everything in between.
Things To Do In Kent England
Kent’s housing market is very varied—from traditional fishermen’s cottages and classic single-sided terraced houses to huge red-brick family homes with extensive grounds and stunning super-modern waterfront properties and barn conversions on the other side. The buyers who are attracted to the Kent property market are equally varied, with London-based cash buyers often competing against locals to snap up property. Commuter towns such as Sevenoaks are especially popular for their convenient access to London.
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Ashford is a market town offering all the high street favorites along with a range of independent shops. Since the opening of Ashford International Station, which gives direct access to Paris and Lille, Ashford has benefited from a high speed line to London. Just 15 miles from the fishing town and seaside resort of Folkestone, it is a natural choice for those who travel. The surrounding villages are especially popular.
Canterbury is just a few miles south of the beautiful Kent coast at Whitstable and Herne Bay and is surrounded by unspoilt countryside. The city itself is full of cultural attractions, many of them linked to the religious history of the city and Saint Thomas Becket; the most notable is of course the cathedral. Merchandise market, food hall and restaurant is a gastronomic highlight. Canterbury is home to one of the University of Kent campuses.
The Georgian town of Deal is a quiet and picturesque seaside resort with a fascinating history, which can be explored in the local castles and museums. The twice-weekly markets complement the town’s excellent range of independent shops; highlights include a well-regarded Italian patisserie and a quayside cafe.
Situated a stone’s throw from Kent’s coastal wetlands, Faversham is a historic port town boasting beautiful buildings and a tidal flat. It is three miles from the glorious downs and only five from the sea. Faversham also benefits from easy links to London and beyond, both by road and rail.
Towns In Kent, England To Visit Now
Maidstone is a very well connected county town in Kent with excellent schools and some beautiful historic parts. The city boasts two glorious open green spaces, used for a variety of recreational activities, and also benefits from some unique cultural hotspots, such as the community arts centre, Stepping Stones Studio.
Sevenoaks is a very pretty hill town with extremely convenient links to London, but only an hour to the coast. Sevenoaks is home to a number of impressive houses, including Knole House which was built by a past Archbishop of Canterbury. The town center has typically local architecture and some interesting and independent shops as well as a weekly market. A local shopping center has all the chains one would expect.
A historic market town, Tonbridge has an impressive Motte & Bailey Castle that dominates its centre. The market, still popular with locals and tourists alike, sells a range of local produce every Saturday. Tonbridge sits close to the M25 and has regular and efficient trains to London, making it a popular town for commuters.
Tunbridge Wells is a famous spa town located close to the Kent/Sussex border. The Georgian Pantiles attracts visitors from all over the world for its elegant colonnaded walkways. The city is a haven for the independent retailer, with a huge range of one-stop shops catering for all those with a shopping need!
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Kent has excellent rail links to London from all major towns in the county. Trains run into several different London stations in as little as 33 minutes from Sevenoaks—from most of Kent, it’s possible to get into London in an hour.
The area is increasingly known for High Speed One, the Eurostar line to the continent that carries commuter services as well as direct services to Lille, Brussels and Paris.
Kent is well blessed with motorways, with both the M20 and M2 linking London and the M25 to the channel ports.
Kent is in the closest corner of England to France and, as such, has a busy trade in cross-channel transport.
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With beautiful countryside and extensive coastline, Kent is an outdoor lover’s dream location.
Kent has all the benefits of a coast—the iconic white cliffs of Dover offer stunning scenery; the Isle of Thanet (which incorporates Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate) offers family-friendly sandy beaches; and Herne Bay, near Canterbury, has extensive opportunities for those who wish to try sailing. There are more beaches to the south, around Dungeness which together cater well for water sports enthusiasts looking for favorable wind conditions from any direction.
Knole House, set in its own grounds, borders the town of Sevenoaks and is just one of many beautiful places accessible to the public. The National Trust owns a number of properties in the county and the area also benefits from open countryside, in the North Downs, The Weald and beyond, offering unlimited opportunities for country activities such as walking, riding and cycling. . With nearly a hundred golf clubs, Kent is also ideal for golf lovers.
Kent has fabulous countryside and beautiful scenery, high speed trains to London (and France!), beautiful varied estates and a rich heritage. There’s a lot of competition for my favorite UK county – but if you’re counting the most visited, it’s probably Kent that tops the list. Not least because there are many fab days out in Kent with the children.
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But there is also a great variety of things to do in Kent with children: visit the coast, explore a series of castles, go into the countryside, find animal attractions… you can even drive a giant digger or go in a vintage theme park.
And while there’s plenty to fill a family holiday in the UK, Kent is also ideal if you’re looking for days out of London. So if you’re wondering where to go in Kent with the kids, here are my top picks to get you started.
One of my favorite Kent days out with the kids, the masses flock to Hever Castle – if we lived a bit closer, I’d be tempted to get the annual membership.
As well as being able to explore the Castle itself, where Anne Boleyn grew up and which still contains pieces from Tudor times, you can tour the grounds with a maze, water maze, lake, gardens and more to see.
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But one of the best parts are the characters that surround them: Henry VIII called me a peasant (claim to fame!) the royals to arrive, or follow them down the castle entrance.
Another fabulous Kent fortress packed with history. There is more than ancient history to be discovered at Dover Castle too, with wartime tunnels used for naval operations during the Second World War, although the site has seen centuries of use with a Fort of -Iron Age and Roman lighthouse built near the Norman castle.
The castle itself has plenty for children to get their hands on, including staff dressed in medieval costume to show them how to card wool in the kitchens, along with bedrooms decorated as they might have been for royal residents, to games.
Even when we visited on a cold winter’s day, the grounds were great for walking around with views down to the English Channel, while older children will also enjoy the underground hospital.
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Not far from Maidstone and the village of Leeds (not the most famous town in Yorkshire), Leeds Castle is easily one of the most beautiful historic sites in Kent – and there is plenty of competition for that particular title.
Sitting reflected in the lake, with peacocks roaming the grounds, this always struck me (and my daughter) as the kind of castle to keep princesses in rather than a fearsome fortress.
Once home to Catherine of Aragon, most of the rooms are decorated in a luxurious 1920s style, although you’ll also find some straight from medieval times. Outside, along with those peacocks, there is an adventure playground and
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