Southeast England Planning Guide

Old Apr 8th, 2013, 07:49 AM
  #21  
 
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>>Has anyone been to a jousting event at Hever Castle? Or seen a falconry exhibit there? Having never been to either but having read about them both, Hever sounds a bit like Warwick Castle but without the Madame Tussauds part? Is that right?
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Old Apr 8th, 2013, 08:17 AM
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>>I hate to disagree with jj, but IMO trying to fit Penshurst, Hever and Chartwell into one day would be to undersell each of them. Hever > is about a 20 minute drive, and Hever > Penshurst about the same. As long as one is organized and get to Chartwell at opening time it isn't even a rushed day. We got there abit before opening and had tea/cakes in the cafe ahead of time.

Ideal - maybe not - and if I lived locally I could spend all day at every single property. But on a week-long visit w/ soooooo many places to see one needs to make a few compromises. 2 hrs at Chartwell, 3 hrs @ Hever and 1.5 hrs @ Penshurst isn't terribly rushed.

I surely would avoid Hever on a 'jousting day' if possible.
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Old Apr 8th, 2013, 09:37 AM
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gosh, Hever's changed a bit then since we lived nearby - shame. The gardens were lovely; i remember going to the outdoor theatre they used to have in the summer and it was always fun to stroll round the grounds beforehand.

you're right of course, JJ that it's different if you live nearby and you've got all the time in the world. it would be a shame to rush around without the time to enjoy the countryside though.
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Old Apr 8th, 2013, 10:21 AM
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Would some of these places be good day trips from London? How far to Canterbury and is car the only means of transport?
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Old Apr 8th, 2013, 11:42 AM
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Canterbury is am easy day trip from London. For other ideas check out the London walks explorer days...they are all done by public transport (well mostly) so you can get some ideas!
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Old Apr 8th, 2013, 11:55 AM
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Www.walks.com
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Old Apr 8th, 2013, 05:15 PM
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Annhig- Evensong--It makes the experience that much more special when singing is involved. Both when we visited York Minster and at St Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh we happened to be touring during the day when there was no service going on but the choir was practicing. Both of those choirs were marvelous.

Havana128--Got it--the place is called Battle near Hastings. Map shows south of Bodiam Castle and west of Rye.

Gordon and Janisj--Okay so don't try to go to Hever during jousting days--too crowded. Will have to plan accordingly. We have seen jousting tournaments before so that is fine to skip it here.

Janisj--Okay--I'll try not to add things beyond East Sussex and Kent. Will have to wait for another trip to tack on West Sussex etc. Let's get through this one first

Thanks to Annhig and Janisj regarding how much time to allow for each place and which should be on the "A" list. That is exactly what I find very helpful while planning. This way I try not to pack in too many things in one day that we can't possibly get to do, but at the same time want to maximize those days to their fullest.

And sometimes the spontaneous things are fun too. Like when we visited the National Portrait Gallery and my son found the sign for an art class which we all joined. He had a blast doing that. We didn't get to see a lot of the museum that day but he had a lot of fun in that one room. I also didn't have the Imperial War Museum on my original agenda during the first trip, but it was raining and instead of going to Greenwich which was on my agenda, we went to the IWM instead. We all loved the IWM and spent many hours there. Another reason to go back to London so we can see Greenwich.

Back to Southeast England--any suggestions for B&B's or hotels that you like?
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Old Apr 9th, 2013, 02:47 AM
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I'm afraid that's one area that i can't really help with as living there, we didn't use B&Bs or hotels much!

but I may be able to help as to location once you've found ones that you like the look of.
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Old Apr 9th, 2013, 06:24 AM
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I'm traveling around the SE (Kent) area in the first week of June doing exactly the same thing that you're planning - stately homes, gardens, castles, Canterbury, etc. I'll post a trip report when I get back, so keep an eye out for that!

In addition to all the helpful advice from Fodorites, here are two tidbits you may find interesting:

As a non-UK resident, you can buy a National Trust touring pass for 1 person, 2 people or family in 1 or 2 week increments which provides free access to hundreds of their sites. I bought a one week pass for 1 person, at 24 pounds which will pay for itself amazingly quickly since many of the places I'll visit (Chartwell, Knole, Sissinghurst, Ightham Mote, etc) are NT properties.

http://shop.nationaltrust.org.uk/nat...uring-pass/c56

The other thought is that some of the NT locations have rooms for rent - I'm staying at the Sissinghurst Castle Farm House (www.sissinghurstcastlefarmhouse.com) I also considered the Canterbury Cathedral Lodge but they had no space.

I'm working on my day by day itinerary and will post it once it's ready for comments!
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