Camber Sands is a lovely place to experience a typical day at the beach. Just half an hour from Barnfield House, this miles-long beach of golden sand is gorgeous in all seasons; the first photo was taken on Boxing Day. In winter we take bracing walks along the promenade, or on the beach at low tide when huge swathes of sand are uncovered, stretching up to a mile out to sea. In warmer weather, kids love building sandcastles, paddling in the shallow water, and exploring the sand dunes. And of course in summer the place is buzzing with families enjoying at typical English day at the beadh! And there’s excellent kite surfing for the water sports enthusiast year-long too.
Kent and East Sussex offer many more beaches, but Camber Sands is our favourite. During your day at the beach, do visit Rye and explore the maze of cobbled lanes lined with medieval, Tudor and Georgian buildings (many now pubs and tearooms). We also recommend that you take a short detour to Winchelsea, one of the Cinque Ports built in the 13th Century, and today the smallest town in England to have its own mayor. In medieval times it was a hub for the wine trade; you can book a fascinating tour of the medieval cellars in the summer.
English Wine Week might now be over, but who needs an excuse to celebrate the excellent wines of Kent and East Sussex?
70 years after the first commercial vineyard was planted in Hampshire in 1952, there are well over 500 vineyards across the UK, of which over 150 — some 75% of the total acreage under vines – are in South East England. According to WinesGB, the official website for the wines of Great Britain, a record 3 million vines were planted in England and Wales this past year, equating to an additional 690 hectares of vineyards and a 24% increase in the overall land now under vine… much of it in Kent and Sussex. Amazingly, this makes the UK one of the world’s fastest growing wine regions.; last year’s hot summer and bumper harvest yielded some 15.6m bottles, making 2018 the UK’s most successful vintage to date.
With Barnfield House Kent so well placed within a short drive of some of England’s finest vineyards, we can think of no better way to spend a summer day than touring the Kent wineries, sampling award-wining sparking wines, and wending your way through glorious countryside dotted with the country’s distinctive white-cowled oast houses, medieval villages and market towns. Biddenden, Lamberhurst, Hush Heath, Chapel Down… the very names evoke a sense of the timelessness of the Kent landscape and its rich heritage.
For example, England’s leading wine producer Chapel Down near Tenterden offers guided tours (from March to November) that include a visit to the vineyards and winery followed by a tutored tasting of their award-winning range of sparkling and still wines. Hush Heath in Staplehurst offers tutored tastings in a brand new visitors centre. The family-run Biddenden Vineyard offers both private and charity tours. And just across the country line into Sussex, England’s oldest organic wine estate Seddlescomb Organic Vineyard offers guided and self-guided tours as well as a woodland walk.
Visit Kent photo of Chapel Down
To make the most of a wine-oriented day out, and enjoy the freedom to imbibe a glass or three, we suggest you leave the car behind and book a bespoke tour organised by experts. With Vine and Country Tours, you can look forward to a mouth-wateringly memorable day out in the company of delightfully well-informed guides…and they will pick you up from the front door!.