You can’t visit The Garden of Eden, but you can visit the Garden of England! With flourishing gardens, castles and cathedrals and sheer white seaside cliffs, it’s no wonder this historic and romantic county inspired the great poet Chaucer to write ‘The Canterbury Tales’. You may feel like penning some verses yourself when you book your Kent hotel with us.
Kent was the first place Julius Caesar and his troops set foot when the Romans invaded Britain in 55BC, leading to an epic battle beneath the cliffs of Dover. The settlement of Londinium (now London) was then established around AD50 as a commercial centre for the Roman Empire. After the Romans retreated, both the Jutes (in the 5th Century AD) and the Normans (in the 11th century AD) took turns to mount invasions of Kent. In more recent history, Kent’s lovely scenery has inspired writers and artists like Chaucer, Charles Dickens and the landscape painter J.M.W Turner.
Things to do
Take a step back through the centuries as you check out the paintings and antique furniture at Penshurst Manor House, one of England’s most impressively-preserved manor houses. The 11 acres of walled Elizabethan gardens will really make your visit complete. If you want a marvellous Medieval experience, castle-hop to Leeds Castle (which has a nice big moat), Scotney Castle, Rochester Castle or Hever Castle, and wander their gorgeous gardens and parklands.
Animal lovers can check out Howlett’s Wild Animal Park, Port Lympne Wild Animal Park or Wingham Wildlife Park, while those who love car racing can head to Brand’s Hatch, one of the UK’s most beloved circuits.
Caesar’s long gone, so you won’t have a fight on your hands when you visit the white cliffs of Dover. You will, however, have the chance to walk the coastal track to the South Foreland Lighthouse and admire the views of the English Channel and the steep, towering chalk-white cliffs.
Shopping and dining
The Garden of England grows some delicious fresh food. Chow down on a succulent lamb raised on Romney Marsh, or oysters from the waters of Whitstable. Wash it down with a glass (or a bottle) of wine from one of the local vineyards, sometimes with bonus ocean views. If you can’t afford fine dining, Kent’s cafes and pubs will still provide great food in a warm and welcoming village environment.
Shopping time? Drop into the boutique stores scattered around the streets of Kent or visit a shopping village like Bluewater in Dartford, which has more than 300 stores and a range of cafes and bars to choose from.
Kent is about an hour’s drive from London
, so make your way to the UK with one of our flights to London
. Hire a car or catch a train to Kent and you’ll be able to get around Kent by bus, or better yet, by walking (and there’s a lot to see when you take a walk!) Book your Kent accommodation with us and you’ll be content in Kent.
Image from Hyougushi