Kent and Sussex Visitor Guide
The neighbouring counties of Sussex and Kent combine bracing beaches, famous houses, castles and historic towns. The National Trust owns many properties in the area, so our tip would be to join it to enjoy membership inclusive visits at no extra charge.
Best known as "The Garden of England", stretching from coastal Margate in the east to Royal Tunbrige Wells to the west, Kent is home to the White Cliffs of Dover, four of the original Cinque Ports, oast-houses witnessing its former hop growing days and a wealth of castles and grand houses.
Dating back to Henry VIII, Hever Castle is a must for visitors to Kent. An overnight stay allows after-hours access to the stunning grounds. Leeds Castle evolved from a Norman Stronghold through to a 20th Century retreat for the rich and famous. Chartwell, near Westerham, the home of Winston Churchill, remains much as it was when the family lived there, whilst the gardens reflect Churchill's love of nature and landscape. Sissinghurst Castle and Garden, near Cranbrook was the home and garden of Vita Sackville-West. Scotney Castle, Ightham Moat and 17th Century Batemans at Burwash, home of Rudyard Kipling, are all worthy of a visit.
The working harbour at Whitstable provides plentiful oysters. Popular seaside towns including Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate dot the Kent Coast. At Dymchuch station, board the narrow-gauge Romney, Hythe and Dymchuch Railway for a round steam journey to remote Dungeness.
Other must visit Kentish towns include Canterbury and Royal Tunbridge Wells.
Neighbouring East and West Sussex offer further coastal resorts including Hastings, Eastbourne, Brighton with its splendid Royal Pavilion, Lanes shopping area and the British Airways i360 tower, Worthing and Bognor Regis.
Walk around the ancient town of Rye with its half timbered houses and cobbled streets. Explore Lewes and experience the opera at nearby Glyndebourne. Visit the cathedral city of Chichester.
Visit Battle, famous for its Abbey and the war of 1066. Bodiam, a once thriving area for hop growing, has an archetypal 14th Century moated castle whilst Crowborough to the north is the highest inland town in East Sussex and is the one-time home of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes.
Enjoy the fresh air and countryside with a walk in the South Downs National Park, the High Weald AONB or by the coast at Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters chalk cliffs.
Fresh air, coastal resorts, historic houses, gardens, towns and castles…there is plenty to see and do in Kent and Sussex!
Holidays in Kent and Sussex
Check out tours in our selection of touring holidays in the UK
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