We are thrilled to offer this walking holiday which includes so much of what is magical about Kent. You will amble along wonderful sea shores with sandy beaches, cliffs and remote marshes, taking in 6 very varied and remarkable castles with an overnight stay in the grandest of all - Leeds Castle.

Your route through the 'Garden of England', as this area is known, leads across rare chalk down land and through ancient woods and a plethora of orchards to a string of small, fascinating towns packed with local gems - medieval buildings, arty shops and oyster shacks. And the historic city of Canterbury with its stunning cathedral and ancient buildings is a remarkable place in its own right. We have chosen overnight stays in these locations so that you can discover all they have to offer. And with easy distances and walking, you will have time to enjoy the abundance of local produce, from vineyards and fruit farms to seafood restaurants and local beers and ciders.



Holiday details

Price

Classic

from £1,140 per person

Luxury

from £1,540 per person

Based on two people sharing a room

What’s included?

Entry to Leeds Castle and grounds on days 1 and 2.  See what’s included as standard

Duration

7 nights

Start & Finish

Starts Sundays at Leeds Castle finishes Sandwich. Leeds Castle is close to Maidstone and not far from Ashford stations. Sandwich has its own station.

Hotels

Classic

3 small hotels, two inns and a stay within Leeds Castle grounds

Luxury

A 4 star and a 3 star hotel, a boutique hotel, a restaurant with rooms and a stay within Leeds Castle grounds

Holiday type

Self-guided

This tour is priced without a guide and you are free to explore on your own.  If you would like a guide for part or all of your trip, we are happy to provide a knowledgeable, local guide

Activity level

Gentle walking (2) More info...

Mileage

5 days of walking 8- 11 miles per day (13 - 18 km) and 1 optional day of walking

Terrain

Mostly flattish or gently undulating

Options

  • Add an extra day with a driver guide to Hever Castle and Sissinghurst Castle gardens
  • Stay an additional night at the end of the trip to visit Dover Castle


Itinerary day-by-day


Classic

  1. 1. Day one

    Arrive Leeds Castle

    This walking tour has a wow start with a full on castle experience at Leeds Castle. Arrive here on Sunday in your own time to discover this magnificent 900 year old moated castle. Wander the grounds too - in peace in the evening, when only residents remain. You stay the night in the stable courtyard and dinner is available too.

  2. 2. Day two

    Enjoy Leeds Castle and Canterbury

    Enjoy a knight's breakfast and spend the morning discovering more about the 6 queens who lived at Leeds and their life here. Punt on the moat and swan around the beautiful gardens and lakes of this 500 acre estate. After lunch we will transfer you to historic Canterbury where there is much to explore. Our city centre walking tour leads you to the Norman castle, the famous cathedral and a host of other quite remarkable ancient buildings. Your host will meet you early evening to brief you on your walking itinerary.

    Optional 3 miles (5 km)

  3. 3. Day three

    Canterbury to Faversham

    This glorious first day of walking takes you up into the rural and gently rolling Kent downs. These chalk downs house many rare habitats and much of the landscape is protected. Enjoy marvellous views, apple orchards and extensive ancient woodlands. Although you pass a few hamlets we suggest you take a picnic lunch with you today. This unique scene that only today reveals, leads you to your overnight stay in the market town of Faversham with its colourful creek, medieval and historic buildings and notable brewery.

    11 miles (18 km)

  4. 4. Day four

    Faversham to Whitstable

    In complete contrast, your walking route today follows the old Saxon shore line from the the wonderful creek in Faversham, lined with old boats and quirky shops in former fish sheds through remote marshes and on to the beach and marram grass backed dunes of Seasalter. Here you can pause for a great lunch at a renowned inn before heading on along the pebble and groyne beach into trendy Whitstable where you stay the night. Oysters are big here, poke around the working harbour and enjoy arty and offbeat shops.

    10 miles (16 km)

  5. 5. Day five

    Whitstable to Upstreet

    Today's walk is literally adjacent to the beach and waves as you follow the sea wall for much of the time, there to protect the low cliffs along the coast. Take in big views, beach huts, cafes and working harbours, dog walkers and cliff top hide-outs until you reach the Roman fort at Reculver, standing proud and weather eroded. We meet you here, unless you fancy the longer distance and transfer you to Upstreet where you stay the night in the riverside inn. It's a buzzy little place with boats galore vying for moorings on the narrow River Stour.

    8 or 13 miles (13 or 21 km)

  6. 6. Day six

    Upstreet to Sandwich

    Walking inland, this once marshy and now reclaimed landscape is a hive of farming activity, with numerous orchards and often large fields. Your walk starts along the Great Stour river bank and then weaves though rural hamlets with the occasional inn and cafe. The castle of the day is at Richborough - a fort built by the Romans with vast walls and an amphitheatre that although ruined, is worth a visit. Nor far beyond lies the gem of Sandwich, one of the best preserved medieval towns in Britain. It's a Cinque port, that's no longer on the sea but on a river. You stay overnight here for the last two nights of the tour.

    8.5 miles (14 km)

  7. 7. Day seven

    Sandwich to Deal and Walmer

    Head off to the sea, a couple of miles away, to wander idyllic paths along the coast which has long sandy beaches most of the way. As if this wasn't enough for a walk, there are two remarkable castles enroute both built by Henry VIII and both Cinque ports. First up is Deal, one of the finest Tudor castles in Britain. The town is also a favourite of ours with an authentic high street, a pier and a pebble beach. Continuing along the coast you reach Walmer Castle which also has superb gardens and evolved into a stately home, lived in by no less than the Queen Mother amongst others. It's a majestic finale to a wonderful tour of Kent's coast and castles. We meet you at Walmer and transfer you back to Sandwich for your final overnight stay.

    Optional 7.6 miles (12 km)

  8. 8. Day eight

    Depart Sandwich

    Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before departing. Sandwich is on the rail network for onward connections to Dover, Canterbury, Ashford for Eurostar or London.

Luxury

  1. 1. Day one

    Arrive Leeds Castle

    This walking tour has a wow start with a full on castle experience at Leeds Castle. Arrive here on Sunday in your own time to discover this magnificent 900 year old moated castle. Wander the grounds too - in peace in the evening, when only residents remain. You stay the night in the stable courtyard and dinner is available too.

  2. 2. Day two

    Enjoy Leeds Castle and Canterbury

    Enjoy a knight's breakfast and spend the morning discovering more about the 6 queens who lived at Leeds and their life here. Punt on the moat and swan around the beautiful gardens and lakes of this 500 acre estate. After lunch we will transfer you to historic Canterbury where there is much to explore. Our city centre walking tour leads you to the Norman castle, the famous cathedral and a host of other quite remarkable ancient buildings. Your host will meet you early evening to brief you on your walking itinerary.

    Optional 3 miles (5 km)

  3. 3. Day three

    Canterbury to Faversham

    This glorious first day of walking takes you up into the rural and gently rolling Kent downs. These chalk downs house many rare habitats and much of the landscape is protected. Enjoy marvellous views, apple orchards and extensive ancient woodlands. Although you pass a few hamlets we suggest you take a picnic lunch with you today. This unique scene that only today reveals, leads you to your overnight stay in the market town of Faversham with its colourful creek, medieval and historic buildings and notable brewery.

    11 miles (18 km)

  4. 4. Day four

    Faversham to Whitstable

    In complete contrast, your walking route today follows the old Saxon shore line from the the wonderful creek in Faversham, lined with old boats and quirky shops in former fish sheds through remote marshes and on to the beach and marram grass backed dunes of Seasalter. Here you can pause for a great lunch at a renowned inn before heading on along the pebble and groyne beach into trendy Whitstable where you stay the night. Oysters are big here, poke around the working harbour and enjoy arty and offbeat shops.

    10 miles (16 km)

  5. 5. Day five

    Whitstable to Reculver

    Today's walk is literally adjacent to the beach and waves as you follow the sea wall for much of the time, there to protect the low cliffs along the coast. Take in big views, beach huts, cafes and working harbours, dog walkers and cliff top hide-outs until you reach the Roman fort at Reculver, standing proud and weather eroded. We meet you here and transfer you back to Whitstable for a second night there.

    Optional 8 miles (13 km)

  6. 6. Day six

    Upstreet to Sandwich

    We transfer you after breakfast to Upstreet, a buzzy little place on the river. From here you walk inland, this once marshy and now reclaimed landscape being a hive of farming activity, with numerous orchards and often large fields. You amble along the Great Stour river bank first and then weave through rural hamlets with the occasional inn and cafe. The castle of the day is at Richborough - a fort built by the Romans with vast walls and an amphitheatre that although ruined, is worth a visit. Nor far beyond lies the gem of Sandwich, one of the best preserved medieval towns in Britain. It's a Cinque port, that's no longer on the sea but on a river. You stay overnight here for the last two nights of the tour.

    8.5 miles (14 km)

  7. 7. Day seven

    Sandwich to Deal and Walmer

    Head off to the sea, a couple of miles away, to wander idyllic paths along the coast which has long sandy beaches most of the way. As if this wasn't enough for a walk, there are two remarkable castles enroute both built by Henry VIII and both Cinque ports. First up is Deal, one of the finest Tudor castles in Britain. The town is also a favourite of ours with an authentic high street, a pier and a pebble beach. Continuing along the coast you reach Walmer Castle which also has superb gardens and evolved into a stately home, lived in by no less than the Queen Mother amongst others. It's a majestic finale to a wonderful tour of Kent's coast and castles. We meet you at Walmer and transfer you back to Sandwich for your final overnight stay.

    Optional 7.6 miles (12 km)

  8. 8. Day eight

    Depart Sandwich

    Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before departing. Sandwich is on the rail network for onward connections to Dover, Canterbury, Ashford for Eurostar or London.