Located in southeastern England, Kent is the perfect place for a staycation. If you’re looking for somewhere with beautiful beaches, magnificent castles, exciting culture and a thriving food and drink scene, then you’ll definitely love Kent. Nicknamed the ‘Garden of England’, Kent boasts a ton of breathtaking natural wonders. The best way to explore these spots is through the wealth of outdoor activities on offer.
As well as the outdoors, there are also thriving cities and towns to explore like Canterbury and Rochester. Prefer somewhere by the sea? The seaside resorts of Margate, Ramsgate and Broadstairs offer stunning blue flag beaches. Read on to discover more about staycations in Kent.
Types of accommodation
You’re never too far from your perfect accommodation in Kent. One of our favourite ways to enjoy the views and the weather in Kent is by camping. There are plenty of campsites all around Kent that offer a variety of facilities. Whether you’re happy with back to basics campsites or fully equipped holiday parks, there’s plenty of choice. If you prefer something a little more luxurious, glamping is a fantastic way to immerse yourself in nature without having to compromise on comfort. There is a whole range of glamping options, from cosy tipis to shepherd’s huts.
Kent also has a large choice of B&Bs, traditional inns and hotels for those of you looking for a little more luxury and service. Alternatively, you could choose to stay at a holiday cottage. This works best for longer stays or if you’re visiting with the family as it offers you more flexibility.
You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to attractions in Kent. There’s a whole range of things to do to appeal to all ages. One of the must-dos in Kent is to visit a castle, and there are so many magnificent ones to choose from. Dover Castle is one of the largest castles in England. Founded in the 11th century by William the Conqueror, the castle has plenty of things to explore including audio/visual effects of the castle during WW2.
Another great castle is Leeds Castle. Set on two islands in a beautiful lake, the grounds are made for exploring. Get lost in a maze of 2,400 yew trees or check out the landscaped gardens. Other must-see castles in Kent include Pevensey Castle, a former Roman Saxon shore fort and Hever Castle, the childhood home of Anne Boleyn.
Looking for somewhere to take the kids for the day? Give them a taste of Africa at the Port Lympne wild animal park. Spread over 600 acres, there are over 900 animals to see, including giraffes, black rhinos, tigers, lions and leopards. Buckle up in a safari truck and admire these magnificent creatures up close. There are also daily talks, gorilla feeding and behind the scenes tours of the park.
As one of the sunniest and driest parts of the country, Kent is bursting with bright blooms and lush plants. It’s difficult to choose from such a wide choice of gardens, but one of our top choices would be Goodnestone Park Gardens which has plenty of charming features and ancient, twisted trees. Another must-see is Sissinghurst Castle Garden which boasts a diverse range of plants divided into themed areas. Looking for somewhere to take a date? Scotney Castle Garden is a beautiful spot which surrounds the ruins of a 14th century moated castle. For some extensive countryside views, visit the 19th century Emmetts Garden.
Prefer a garden with a side of wine? Kent is home to some excellent vineyards, and with its temperate climate and south-facing chalk soils, it’s no surprise that Kent is at the heart of the UK’s wine growing industry. Biddenden Vineyards is Kent’s oldest family-run vineyards and produces 11 different grape varieties for white, red, rosé and sparkling wines. Choose from self-guided or guided tours which include talks, tastings and food platters. Another fab spot is Chapel Down. Boasting over 100 acres of vineyards, Chapel Down produces a range of sparkling and still wines, as well as a few spirits. The winery offers tours, three-course lunches and wine tastings. Other renowned vineyards include Barnsole Vineyard, Gusbourne Estate, The Mount Vineyard and Woodchurch Wine Estate.
Places of interest
One of the classic Kent views is the White Cliffs of Dover. Stretching for eight miles, the cliffs get their name from the chalk composition of the cliff face. There are miles of footpaths you can take to enjoy the views, and during the spring, the cliff tops burst with wildlife. Keep an eye out for the two wrecks lurking in the shallows – one of the SS Falcon and the Preußen, a German trade vessel.
The White Cliffs of Dover lie within the Kent Downs AONB. There are endless outdoor opportunities in this beautiful area of Kent, including walking, cycling, horse riding and canoeing. Whether you want to go wildlife spotting or picking apples in an orchard, the choice is yours.
Another photogenic spot is Botany Bay. Surrounded by magnificent white cliffs and towering chalk stacks, the bay is the best place for fossil hunting, exploring rock pools and chilling on the sand. You can even swim if you choose to as there are lifeguards during the summer.