Quirky Kent: Top 10 charming, unusual, historic and spooky places to stay
PUBLISHED: 01:18 27 September 2011 | UPDATED: 20:03 20 February 2013
Fancy a night away with a difference? Kent is home to some of the most charming, unusual, historic and downright spooky places to stay – here's our top 10...
6. 13th-century castle
The situation of these slate-grey stone cottages is unique, as literally onyour doorstep is the historic and ancient Lympne Castle. The cottages wereonce the home of the gatekeeper, the gardeners and the drivers who worked up at the main house, but today theyare restored and transformed intoquaint little places to stay.
The most remarkable thing about these cottages is the sheer silence: nocar noise or police cars and even the birds seem to sing in slightly lower tones so not to disturb the peace. Its a place to come if you want to enjoy a few days of tranquility, enjoy some country walks and stare off into the distant views of Romney Marshes or the Castle.
From 200 per night,Lympne Castle Cottages, The Street, Lympne CT21 4LQ 01303 267571
From 90 for a weekday night,Molly Dishwasher, Manor Farm Stud, Frant TN3 9BH 01892 750 288
9. Posh tipis
Two tipis are set at the bottom of the garden in a semi-private area within the grounds of Wallets Court, a beautiful four-star country house near Dover.
As you peep through the canvas flap (your new front door) the space is deceptively large, with warm Siberian goose-down duvets on the proper double bed, plus genuine Lapland reindeer skins and even an electric heated mattress should you require some extra heat.
Staying in a canvas tipi is the most extraordinary experience. You are under canvas, you can hear owls hooting andfoxes foraging outside, but somehow you feel safer and certainly more comfortable than in a traditional tent.
10. Ghostly inn
The doors may creak and the floors may be on a slightly downward slope, butThe Chequers is steeped in history and its one of the oldest places to stay in Kent.
The bedrooms are in keeping with the age and style of the property andits all charmingly old-world rather than trendy. The rooms have lovely views towards the village in the distance and home comforts prevail as this is very much a family run establishment.
Not all the guests are paying ones, however; a resident ghostly Napoleonic soldier often visits. The story goes that upon his return from the wars he spent the night and was plied with drink bya local wench who crept into his bedroom to rob him during the night and he met an untimely death.
From 85 per room B&B, Chequers Inn, Smarden, near Ashford TN27 8QA 01233 770217
Peace and tranquility is includedin this heavenly, rustic retreat thatin every sense of the word is unique. From 90 for a weekday night,Molly Dishwasher, Manor Farm Stud, Frant TN3 9BH 01892 750 2889. Posh tipisTwo tipis are set at the bottom of the garden in a semi-private area within the grounds of Wallets Court, a beautiful four-star country house near Dover. As you peep through the canvas flap (your new front door) the space is deceptively large, with warm Siberian goose-down duvets on the proper double bed, plus genuine Lapland reindeer skins and even an electric heated mattress should you require some extra heat. Staying in a canvas tipi is the most extraordinary experience. You are under canvas, you can hear owls hooting and
Fancy a night away with a difference?
Kent is hometo some of the most charming, unusual, historic and downright spooky places to stay heres our top 10
1. Circular Martello Tower
There are only 25 Martello Towers left on the south coast, just 10 are inhabited and this is the only one thats a holiday let, so its your one opportunity to have a go at living in a round tower.
Inside, theres plenty of space and the accommodation is set out over three floors. You can still see the vaulted brick ceilings, ammunition store and the original door with its tiny hatch to pass cannon balls through just in case of attack.
The tower is set back slightly from the seaside in its own garden. Looking out from the top floor, you get great panoramic views looking towards the White Cliffs of Dover and France.
From 375 for three nights, No. 2 Martello Tower, Wear Bay Road, Folkestone CT19 6PX
2 . Most haunted village
Occasionally you find somewhere so perfect that you dont want to tell too many people about it, for fear it will become too popular. Elvey Farm is one.
Image a sumptuous boutique hotel set in 50 acres of unspoilt Kent countryside, with charming hosts and because its in Pluckley, the countrys most haunted village, Elvey has its very own ghosts.
Theres the poltergeist who plays havoc in the dining room by switching light bulbs around in the dead of night, the ghost of Edward Brett, a farmer who still haunts the Old Dairy, and the tired old man who patrols the staircase.
You can eat in the 16th-century Barn Restaurant then take a short meander back to your bedroom but do watch out for things that go bump in the night
From 105 per room B&B,Elvey Farm, Elvey Lane, PluckleyTN27 0SU 01233 840442
3. Finest oast house
The Cloth Hall Oast House Hotel is an exceptionally well-restored little hotel with beautiful bedrooms (onehas a huge four-poster bed) and offersa really warm welcome. A highlight is breakfast, served in the stunning galleried dining room with revealedoak beams and whitewashed plaster reaching up to the magnificent ceiling.
The setting of Cloth Hall couldntbe more perfect and sipping morning coffee on the deck in the autumn sunshine couldnt be more comfortable, especially as it comes complete with fresh croissants and home-made jam.
From 90 per room B&B,Cloth Hall Oast, Coursehorn Lane, Cranbrook TN17 3NR 01580 712220
4. Haunted Georgian hotel
The Hamlets Hotel, formerly on the site of an old priory, is reputedly haunted. The house today is a rather grand Georgian property but strange goings on are still reported. The story goes that a local maiden is occasionally seen lurking in the grounds. She was Charlotte, a hard-working servant girl who fell in love with the grounds keeper and took her own life when she lost their child
Much of the Georgian charm is retained and its deceptively large with comfortable rooms and a welcoming atmosphere. The bedrooms in the main house boast four-poster beds and one dates back 200 years.
Not sure about the spooky sightings, but I can vouch for the delicious puds served in the hotel restaurant and ghost or no ghost, I will be back for more.
From 60 per room B&B, Hamlets Hotel, London Road, Aylesford, Maidstone ME20 6HJ 01732 846 858
5. Edwardian country house
If you have ever wondered what it might be like to live in an Edwardian country house, then this is your chance. With exceptional views across beautiful gardens, the rolling Kent countryside, great facilities and beautifully appointed bedrooms, this is the place to enjoy the gentle, finer things in life.
Thurnham Keep was built 100 years ago with the bricks from the ruins of Burnham Castle, just down the road. Many of the original features remain, with standalone baths in the en-suite bathrooms and stunning period furniture.
Breakfast is taken in the Morning Room and a choice of smoked salmon, home-made pancakes and syrup, full breakfast is offered complemented by fresh bread and home-made jams and honey made from resident bees.
From 120 per room B&BThurnham Keep, near Leeds Castle, Maidstone ME14 3LE01622 734149