Easter egg hunts and activities in Kent

PUBLISHED: 10:34 27 March 2018 | UPDATED: 10:34 27 March 2018

Easter fun at Leeds Castle (photo: Matthew Walker Photography)

Easter fun at Leeds Castle (photo: Matthew Walker Photography)

www.matthewwalkerphotography.com

The clocks have gone forward and spring is well on its way, which makes Easter a great time to get out and about in Kent

EASTER EGG HUNTS

Everyone loves a chocolate egg and you’ll find plenty hidden all over Kent, including the following popular attractions:

Knole, Sevenoaks

Children aged three to 12 can follow clues throughout the park, learning about its wildlife as they go and picking up a well-earned Cadbury prize at the end. In cold weather youngsters aged two to seven may prefer to hunt cuddly animals hidden in the house.

Dates: 30 Mar-6 Apr, 11am-3pm (outdoor egg trail); 30 March-15 April (indoor animal hunt)

Price: The animal hunt is free while the outdoor egg trail costs £3, plus everyone pays for Knole Park entry; £1.80 (child) and £3.15 for an adult ticket

Contact: 01732 462100, www.nationaltrust.org.uk/knole

~~~

Chartwell, Westerham

In the beautiful gardens of wartime Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s former home, young visitors can hunt for Randolph the Rabbit’s giant leaves and (hopefully) spot the elusive rabbit himself before collecting their chocolate prize.

Dates: 30 Mar-15 Apr, 11am-4pm

Price: £2.50 per trail plus normal admission. Non members pay from £3.60 (child) and £7.20 (adult) for garden and studio access, plus £3 parking

Contact: 01732 868381, www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chartwell

~~~

Down House, nr Orpington

The family home and garden of world-renowned 19th-century scientist Charles Darwin is the venue for a dragon egg hunt, with chocolate (naturally!) as the prize. The intriguing gardens were Darwin’s ‘outdoor laboratory’ and he spent many hours there pondering his ground-breaking theory of evolution

Dates: 30 Mar-2 Apr, 11am-5pm

Price: £1 per child plus venue entry, costing from £10 (child) and £15 (adult)

Contact: 01689 859119, www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/home-of-charles-darwin-down-house

~~

Walmer Castle, Deal

Young adventurers who hunt for dragon eggs in the castle grounds are rewarded with a yummy chocolate treat at the end.

Dates: 30 Mar-2 Apr, 10am-5pm

Price: £1 per child plus entry; from £6.40 (child aged five to 15) and £10.70 per adult.

Contact: 01304 364288, www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/walmer-castle-and-gardens

~~

Emmetts Garden, Sevenoaks

Children can search this colourful hillside garden for the elusive Lubbock the Lamb and his flock and collect a chocolate gift. Well-behaved dogs on leads are also welcome

Dates: 30 Mar-15 Apr, 11am-4pm

Price: £2.50 per trail plus normal admission fees, from £5.15 (child) and £10.30 per adult

Contact: 01732 868381 www.nationaltrust.org.uk/emmetts-garden

~~

Scotney Castle, Lamberhurst

Check out this egg hunt with a difference. Inspired by the childhood diaries of Edward Hussey, the castle’s final owner, carefully placed wooden bird boxes in the garden reveal which type of egg belongs to which birds on the estate – and there’s a chocolate treat at the end of the trail

Dates: 30 Mar-4 Apr, 10am-5pm

Price: Egg hunt costs £3 plus normal admission (from £6.75/child and £13.50 for an adult), plus £3 car parking

Contact: 01892 893820, www.nationaltrust.org.uk/scotney-castle

• Other Easter Egg hunts will take place at Leeds Castle, Penshurst Place, Ightham Mote and many other attractions. Check individual websites for details.

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EASTER ACTIVITIES

Gusbourne, Appledore

The award-winning wine estate has introduced a self-guided walking tour in time for the Easter holidays. Stop in at Gusbourne’s tasting room, the Nest, to collect a map and take the dog (and the kids) for a walk around the beautiful vineyards, learning about the flora and fauna that you pass. Then return to the Nest to reward yourself with a glass of wine overlooking the vines.

Date: from 29 March, 10am-5pm

Price: The tour is free, but donations in support of local charities are welcome

Contact: 01233 884680, www.gusbourne.com/visit

~~

Penshurst Place, nr Tonbridge

Aardvark Productions’ April Fools Easter Storytelling about a silly, easily tricked Easter Rabbit will delight younger children, while adults will revel in the peaceful and picturesque location

Date: 1 Apr at 1pm, 1.45pm and 2.30pm

Price: The Easter Storytelling is included in the price of a standard gardens entry ticket; child £6 and adult £9.50

Contact: 01892 870307, www.penshurstplace.com

~~~

South Foreland Lighthouse, Dover

The notorious Goodwin Sands, a treacherous 10-mile long sandbank in the English Channel between Dover and Ramsgate, lured many mariners to a watery grave. In 1367 Brother Nicholas de Legh hung a lantern on the cliff as a warning and by 1858, South Foreland became the world’s first lighthouse to use an electric light, thanks to the Knott family’s collaboration with scientists Faraday and Holmes and their electrical experiments.

There’s plenty for visitors to do – take a lighthouse tour, enjoy the dramatic views, fly a kite or enjoy a traditional cream tea at Mrs Knott’s tea room.

Price: Lighthouse tours start at £3 for a child and £6 for an adult

Contact: 01304 852463, www.nationaltrust.org.uk/south-foreland-lighthouse

~~~

Spa Valley Railway, Tunbridge Wells

Steam and heritage diesel trains will run daily over Easter between Tunbridge Wells, High Rocks, Groombridge and Eridge stations. There’s also a ‘Spot the Easter Bunny Competition’ and children can win a family ticket to a Day Out with Thomas later in the year. Check out the website for other activities at the stations, including face painting, crafts and woodland walks.

Dates: 30 Mar-2 Apr

Price: A day’s unlimited family travel is £30 with individual tickets costing £6 for children and £12 for adults

Contact: 01892 537715, www.spavalleyrailway.co.uk

~~~

Leeds Castle, nr Maidstone

The aerial theatre show Tarzanna will provide plenty of thrills as performers climb, jump and swing through the air with breath-taking athleticism. There’s also an opportunity for young viewers to learn some circus skills

Dates: 30 Mar-2 Apr

Price: The show is included in the price of admission; from £16.90 (child) and £24.90 for an adult

Contact: 01622 765400, www.leeds-castle.com

~~~

Historic Dockyard, Chatham

The entertainment on offer at the Dockyard this Easter weekend includes a free steam funfair, walkabout performers and street acts, farm animals, vintage vehicles and Call the Midwife location taster tours

Dates: 30 Mar-2 Apr, 10am-6pm

Price: A family ticket is £40, children (five to 15) pay £9.50 and adults £14.50, parking is free

Contact: 01634 823800, thedockyard.co.uk/whats-on/festival-steam-transport-2018

~~~

Ightham Mote, nr Sevenoaks

This atmospheric 14th-century moated manor house and gardens is the venue for a plethora of exciting events, including an Easter egg hunt and a seasonal activity pack for things to see and do in the National Trust-owned garden this spring. Special craft activities take place each Thursday, so check the website for details

Dates: 3-15 Apr, 10am-4.30pm

Price: £2.50 per child for the trail plus an entry fee of £6 per child and £13.50 per adult

Contact: 01732 810378, www.nationaltrust.org.uk/ightham-mote

~~~

Dover Castle, Dover

Step back into the 14th century and watch St George’s life-and-death battle with the dragon, spot the knights and fair princesses and marvel at the fire-eating jesters. Little ones will listen open-mouthed to the tales of long-ago chivalry during the storytelling sessions at this Medieval Easter Weekend

Dates: 30 March-2 Apr, 10am-5pm

Price: from £12 per child, £20 per adult and £50 for a family ticket

Contact: 0370 333 1183, www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/dover-castle

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KENT’S CATHEDRALS

Canterbury

Services: These are scheduled for Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday (1 Apr), plus there will be Passiontide talks on 26-28 Mar.

Visit: www.canterbury-cathedral.org for details.

Visitors can build their own Easter garden and tomb (24 Mar, 11am-3pm) to take away, using genuine Canterbury Cathedral stone. This activity is run by The Family Friends of Canterbury Cathedral and entry is free, although donations are welcome.

Normal precinct charges apply: (£8 per child, £12.50 per adult)

There will also be a special three-course Easter Sunday Lunch for all the family at Canterbury Cathedral Lodge, followed by an Easter Egg hunt in the Campanile garden.

Date: 1 April, 12.30–3pm.

Price: £23.95 per adult, £11.95 per child under 14 years, with children under four going free. Booking is required.

Contact: 01227 865350, www.canterburycathedrallodge.org

~~~

Rochester

Services: These will take place on Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday, with Holy Week services on 26-28 Mar.

Contact: 01634 843366,

www.rochestercathedral.org/news

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