29 fun things to do in Kent

Fancy a trip to Kent and not sure where to start? As a county steeped in history, boasting miles of stunning sandy beaches, and areas of outstanding natural beauty there’s so much to see and do here. Check out these fun activities to make the most out of your trip. It’s called ‘The Garden of England’ for a reason!

Voted by Lonely Planet as one of the best places to visit in Europe, Kent is full of stunning sights and attractions. Take a trip to the mysterious Shell Grotto to explore a unique side of the county or go underground to explore the Chislehurt caves.

For those looking for an adventure, there are lots of exhilarating adventure activities to try. Take to the skies in the country’s longest zip wire. Or if, you’d rather stay on the ground, take a trip on the Spa Valley Railway.

Kent is the perfect place to take the family with plenty of fun-filled family-friendly activities to keep the kids occupied all day long. Whether you are looking for an outdoor adventure or taking part in a creative workshop, there’s something for everyone.

Rochester on the River Medway is well worth a visit and is home to  Rochester Castle,  the tallest castle in the UK. A spectacular Norman keep that has stood for over a thousand years. Rochester is also home to England’s second oldest cathedral –  a guided tour of Rochester Cathedral takes in 1,400 years of history!

Leeds Castle - in Kent

Kent is steeped in history and has loads of well-maintained and beautiful castles! So you’re not short of choice. The confusingly named Leeds Castle is stunning, set on two islands in a magnificent lake and surrounded by lush countryside. Listed in the Domesday Book, this castle has been a Norman stronghold, a royal residence and a royal palace. Perfect for a day out with the family.

On the South England coastline, don’t forget Dover Castle which is a true fortress and was used as recently as World War 2 so has many interesting exhibitions that talk about the castle’s use through its long and illustrious past.

If your looking for some history, art and heritage to dig your teeth into then Kent is the perfect place to start and we are sure you will not be left disappointed!

Fun facts about Kent

  • The world’s oldest horse fossil was estimated to be 54 million years old and was found at Studd Hill, Herne Bay in 1838, giving Herne Bay the special privilege of being considered the official birthplace of the horse.
  • Henry VIII allegedly once sampled a bowl of cherries produced in Kent and was so delighted with the flavour that the county became known as the Garden of England. The county was chosen for its fertile soil, perfect for fruit and hops.
  • Canterbury, located in Kent, is the birthplace of English Christianity and home to the Archbishop of Canterbury, the leader of the Church of England.
  • The Resolute Desk, the desk that currently resides in the Oval Office and has served all but three US Presidents since 1880, was made in Kent. The desk was made from timbers from HMS Resolute and crafted at the Joiner’s Shop at the Royal Naval Dockyard in Chatham as a gift from Queen Victoria herself
  • Thanks to a combination of geography and sandy subsoil – which heats up faster than other soil types – Gravesend is often declared the hottest place in the UK.

Exploring England’s garden county: fun things to do in Kent

Kent is a beautiful county in southeast England, known for its stunning countryside, coastal towns, and historic sites. Here are some fun things to do in Kent.

  • Visit Canterbury Cathedral – this is one of the most famous attractions in Kent, with a rich history dating back to the 6th century. The cathedral is home to stunning architecture, beautiful stained glass windows, and the tomb of Thomas Becket.
  • Explore the White Cliffs of Dover – the iconic white cliffs of Dover are a must-see when visiting Kent. You can take a cliff-top walk, or explore the tunnels and wartime history at Dover Castle.
  • Go to the beach – Kent has some beautiful coastal towns, including Broadstairs, Margate, and Whitstable. Enjoy a day at the beach, stroll along the promenade, or enjoy some fresh seafood.
  • Visit Leeds Castle – this beautiful castle dates back to the 12th century and is surrounded by stunning gardens and a lake. There are also falconry displays, a maze, and a playground for children.
  • Go on a vineyard tour – Kent is home to some fantastic vineyards, producing award-winning wines. Take a tour and enjoy a tasting session, or even stay overnight in a vineyard hotel.
  • Take a boat trip – Kent has many rivers and canals to explore, with boat trips available in towns like Canterbury, Maidstone, and Tonbridge.
  • Explore the Kent Downs – this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty covers 878 square kilometres of rolling hills, valleys, and chalk grassland. You can hike, cycle or horse ride along the many trails, or simply enjoy a picnic in the beautiful countryside.
  • Visit a wildlife park – Kent has several wildlife parks, including Port Lympne Reserve and Howletts Wild Animal Park. See exotic animals, learn about conservation efforts, and enjoy a fun day out with the family.
  • Go on a ghost tour – Kent has a rich history of ghosts and haunted sites, and many towns offer ghost tours. Hear spooky tales and explore haunted buildings, cemeteries, and castles.
  • Visit a historic town – Kent has many historic towns to explore, including Rochester, Sandwich, and Tenterden. Wander the cobbled streets, explore the historic buildings, and enjoy some local food and drink.

Adventures in Kent: fun things for children to do in Kent

If you looking to entertain the kids in Kent there are lots of indoor and outdoor activities to keep them entertained.  Popular activities for children to enjoy include:

  • Visit the Howletts Wild Animal Park in Canterbury, which is home to over 400 animals, including gorillas, elephants, tigers, and leopards.
  • Explore the historic town of Rochester and visit the castle, where children can learn about medieval life and participate in activities such as archery and jousting.
  • Take a trip to the award-winning Blue Reef Aquarium in Hastings and see a variety of marine life, including sharks, rays, and tropical fish.
  • Visit the Kent Life Heritage Farm Park in Maidstone, where children can learn about farming and interact with animals such as pigs, goats, and rabbits.
  • Take a ride on the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, a narrow gauge railway that runs along the coast of Kent and is popular with children and families.
  • Have a fun day out at the Dreamland amusement park in Margate, with its vintage fairground rides and attractions.
  • Visit the legendary castle of Leeds, which is said to be haunted and is a great place for children to explore and learn about history.
  • Head to the Bucks Shack in Folkestone, an indoor play area with a variety of activities, including climbing, crawling, and slides.

Fun activities in Kent for adults: a guide to breweries, and wineries in Kent

Kent has a thriving food and drink scene, with many clubs, breweries, and wineries to explore. Here is a guide to some of the best:

  • Shepherd Neame Brewery – this brewery in Faversham is one of the oldest in the UK, and offers tours and tastings of their traditional ales.
  • Canterbury Brewers and Distillers – this microbrewery in Canterbury offer a range of craft beers and spirits, as well as brewery tours and tastings.
  • Hop Fuzz Brewery – based in Hythe, Hop Fuzz is a family-run brewery that produces a range of hand-crafted ales, including IPAs and stouts.
  • Chapel Down Winery – located in Tenterden, Chapel Down is one of England’s leading wineries, producing a range of award-winning wines and sparkling wines.
  • Biddenden Vineyards – this family-owned winery in Biddenden has been producing wine for over 50 years and offers tours, tastings, and a shop selling their wines and ciders.
  • Kent Wine School – for those looking to learn more about wine, the Kent Wine School in Tunbridge Wells offers a range of courses and tastings, from beginners’ classes to more advanced tastings.
  • The Ginstitute – this gin distillery in Folkestone offers gin-making courses, where you can learn to make your own gin, as well as tastings and a gin bar.
  • The Wine Room at Sissinghurst Castle – this atmospheric wine bar on the grounds of Sissinghurst Castle offers a selection of wines and snacks, as well as regular events such as wine tastings and live music.
  • The Penny Theatre – this pub in Canterbury hosts regular live music events, as well as stand-up comedy, quiz nights, and more.
  • The Forum – this music venue in Tunbridge Wells hosts a range of events, from live music to comedy and theatre, as well as club nights and parties.

Whether you’re a beer lover, wine connoisseur, or just looking for a fun night out, Kent has something to offer for everyone.

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