Flavours of Kent & Bluebells at Ightham Mote

Flavours of Kent & Bluebells at Ightham Mote

Delight your senses with the scent & sight of carpets of Bluebells


Delight your senses with the scent & sight of carpets of Bluebells

Ightam Mote

Built nearly 700 years ago, this romantic moated manor house has seen many changes and been owned by Medieval knights, courtiers to Henry VIII and high society Victorians.

Highlights include the picturesque courtyard, Great Hall, crypt, Tudor painted ceiling, Grade I listed dog kennel and the private apartments of Charles Henry Robinson, who gave Ightham Mote to the National Trust in 1985.

The house is surrounded by peaceful gardens with an orchard, water features, lakes and woodland walks.

Venture onto the Ightham Mote estate which offers unique views across the Kent countryside and stunning displays of flora and fauna. There is the renowned ancient bluebell woodland in spring at Scathes Wood, wildflowers in the summer, autumn colours and the crisp days of winter to come back and enjoy. Discover the hoppers' huts and the source of the water spring that feeds the moat at Ightham Mote.

Royal Tunbridge Wells

Royal Tunbridge Wells lies in the heart of the beautiful High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This historic spa town has welcomed visitors for over 400 years. Browse among the chic independent shops of the colonnaded Pantiles and the High Street, with buzzy cafe's bars, music and one-of-a-kind shops.


Shepherd Neame Brewery

The Faversham Brewery is home to Shepherd Neame, Britain’s Oldest Brewer. Nestled in the medieval market town of Faversham in Kent, brewing has continued on this site for centuries. Using natural ingredients, such as mineral water from the town’s aquifer and local hops, our brewers produce Kentish ales bursting with character and renowned international lagers. Our brewers blend art and science to produce award-winning beer we want you to enjoy time and time again.

The award-winning guided tour takes visitors around the Faversham Brewery site to learn about the ancient art of brewing. See brewing and fermentation vessels; taste natural mineral water from the brewery’s well; try some malted barley and smell locally-grown Kentish hops. The 80 minute tour also includes a visit to the Old Brewery Store, housed in the old wines and spirits store, which features impressive displays of historic delivery vehicles, a recreated coopers’ workshop, bygone pub signs and a collection of hop picking memorabilia. It ends back in the Visitor Centre with a tutored tasting of Shepherd Neame’s Kentish ales and speciality lagers, before visitors have the chance to visit the Brewery Shop and pick up a souvenir, gift or some of their favourite beer.

Canterbury & River Stour Boat Tour

St Augustine was sent by the Pope in 597 AD to re-establish Christianity in southern England and came to Canterbury. Ruins of the monastery built by Augustine still remain and he founded the first cathedral in England where the present magnificent building now stands. Canterbury has been a European pilgrimage site of major importance for over 800 years since the assassination of Archbishop Thomas Becket in 1170. Today it is one of the most beautiful and historic cities in England. The medieval city centre bustles with famous name stores and exclusive boutiques while the picturesque side streets are home to smaller specialist shops, pubs and restaurants.

The multi award winning guided Historic River Tour provides a truly entertaining experience which is perfect for visitors of all ages and nationalities. Guided Historic River Tours have been a favourite pastime for over 80 years and this Canterbury attraction allows you to escape the busy city centre and discover Canterbury from the unique perspective of the River Stour.





Monday 16th Apr

We depart Cumbria for the journey south to Kent, comfort stops will be made en route before we arrive at our hotel - the Mercure Great Danes. Dinner in the hotel this evening.


Tuesday 17th Apr

Following breakfast we head to Ightham Mote, an outstanding 14th-century timber-framed moated manor house in a picture perfect setting, this house has seen many changes and been owned by medieval knights, courtiers to Henry VIII and high-society Victorians. The gardens are as equally diverse as the house - a formal lawn, flower borders, secret glades and a sweetly scented cuttings garden. And then there are walks and views taking in lakes, an orchard, ancient bluebell woodland and Kentish farmland. In the afternoon we visit the delightful Spa town of Royal Tunbridge Wells, with its elegant streets and Georgian buildings plus the famous Pantiles, a colonnaded shopping area in the town centre. Dinner on our return to the hotel.

B, D

Wednesday 18th Apr

Our first stop today is at The Shepherd Neame Brewery, the oldest brewer in Britain, here we take an award-winning tour on which an expert guide will lead you through the heart of this busy, working brewery to see how traditional Kentish ales and contemporary lagers are brewed. The tour culminates with a fascinating tutored tasting before you round off your visit with a delicious, homemade lunch. In the afternoon we head into Canterbury, where we have an included 40 minute boat trip on the River Stour, see the sights of Canterbury and listen to the history tales and humour from your knowledgeable guide. Some time at leisure before we head back to Maidstone and dinner at the hotel.

B, D

Thursday 19th Apr

We leave our hosts at the Mercure Great Danes Hotel and return home to Cumbria.


B=Breakfast Included, D=Dinner Included

Mercure Maidstone Great Danes Hotel

Neighbouring Leeds Castle, the Mercure Maidstone Great Danes Hotel is built around a Georgian country house with 26 acres of private grounds. Offering free parking, it is close to Maidstone at Junction 8 of the M20 motorway, in the heart of Kent. Free high-speed WiFi is available throughout the property.

Classic bedrooms all offer supremely comfortable beds, HD TVs, complimentary high speed WiFi, en suite bathrooms, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities.

The Brasserie Menu offers the freshest ingredients and local produce in a range of dishes which will appeal to every taste. From the Chef’s Signature Dishes to Sharing Plates & Nibbles, you will be spoilt for choice, and sizzling hot 'From the Grill' options are always firm favourites, accompanied by a glass of wine or speciality beer.

With an indoor swimming pool, along with a hot tub, sauna, and gym, guests can exercise or relax at the hotel’s health club. Guests can also enjoy mini golf, tennis, and croquet on-site.

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Name Address Contact Details
Appleby The Sands Appleby
Aspatria Car Park beside Spar Aspatria
Brough Monument Bus Shelter Brough
Carlisle Entrance to Sands Centre Car Park Carlisle
Cockermouth Monument Main Street Cockermouth
Dearham Commercial Corner Dearham
Distington Outside Prospect Works Distington
Egremont Conservative Club Egremont
Flimby Railway Station Flimby
Harrington Galloping Horse bus stop Harrington
High Hesket Palmerstons Furniture Store
Keswick Bell Close Car Park Keswick
Kirkby Stephen Market Square Kirkby Stephen
Maryport Outside Coop Maryport
Penrith Sandgate Bus Station Penrith
Thursby Bus Stop Thursby
Waverton Bus Stop Waverton
Whitehaven Old Bus Station Whitehaven
Wigton Old Bus Station Wigton
Workington Lay By opposite Grahams Travel Jane St. Workington
From Price Call Back Telephone Favourites

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Autumn Spring 2017 2018
Summer Brochure 2018