20 Jan 2014

The garden of England

We have visited Kent many times over the last few years since our close friends moved there. There is something about living in the Midlands which makes the thought of a coastline very exciting and a special treat.

The latest trip was influenced by a Premier Inn special offer (family room for £25, thank you very much) and the draw of a new (well 4 month old) baby.

We set off earlier than we have managed before with a lighter car than we had ever had before. There is something about a toddler who is now potty trained that makes going away for the weekend with no nappies or special equipment much easier! Arriving in Whitstable for lunchtime we met our friends and managed to spend the next 3 hours in various coffee shops and pubs (would definitely recommend The Duke of Cumberland for a great lunch). I could hide it no longer though, the thought that the sea was only just around the corner became too much and off we headed to the beach. We have been to Whitstable a couple of times now but still haven't managed to explore it properly, there seems to be many independent shops which one day I might manage to venture in to.

The beach was lovely. The power of looking out to sea will continue to surprise me. The pure excitement of E running around like crazy shouting 'we're at the seaside' was absolutely priceless.

The sun setting finally beat us so we retreated back to a coffee shop, followed swiftly by a Indian takeaway, followed not so swiftly by getting little one to sleep.

The next day, after a quick trip to buy new wellies we went to Leeds Castle, surprisingly not in Leeds. Billed as the 'loveliest castle in the world' I was expecting a lot and it didn't disappoint. Arriving through the landscaped path, past the ducks and black swans the view of the castle is kept as a treat. I took so many photos, every view was worthy.

After some lunch in the very nice Fairfax restaurant (wait until after 2pm on a Sunday to find a table though!) we headed in to the castle. The interesting thing for me about the castle is that it was actually lived in up until the 1960s and 70s. In fact it's latest resident Lady Baillie hosted many a party in the 1930s for visitors such as the Prince of Wales and Mrs Simpson, Charlie Chaplin and the author Ian Fleming. This was all reflected in the interior being very homely and stately home-esque.

Unfortunately time was ticking on and we still had a 4 hour journey north to make so we headed back to the car on the little train (or Grandpa Pigs Minature Locomotive as we decided to call it!). This was perfect for tired little legs and we even saw a peacock, the perfect end to a castle visit.

I'm linking up again with...
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

1 comment :

  1. I remember you saying you were going to Leeds Castle, I have only ever seen the signs for it from the road before but wow it is really impressive, especially on the beautiful day that you visited. Sounds like a wonderful weekend with a bargain night and a chance to run around on those all important beaches. A delightful read, thank you for linking up to Country Kids.


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