Vinyards are not reserved for romantic couples and wine connoisseurs. You can spend time at a winery by enjoying a wine tasting, going out on a vineyard walk and generally taking in the gorgeous countryside as a family. Here’s our run down of the three best vineyards in Kent to visit as a family.
Hush Heath – Best Vineyards in Kent
Hush Heath is set in the beautiful countryside near the rural village of Staplehurst. Your drive to the winery will take you on a tour of some of Kent’s best countryside. When you arrive you will be greeted by an impressive state-of-the-art winery and a gorgeous two story purpose built visitors centre providing a great vantage point to show off the grounds and showcase their Balfour wines.
Hush Heath offers two self-guided tours of the estate. Both walks will take you through vineyards, apple orchards, wild flower meadows and ancient oak woodlands. Both are just beautiful and enjoyable for adults and children alike!
There is a huge outside seating area in front of the visitor centre where you can treat yourselves, obviously not the kids, to a wine tasting of three Balfour wines. The kids can enjoy being outside and you can enjoy a little tipple whilst looking out through the vines (I can certainly think of worst things to do). Rest assured the space continues inside if the weather isn’t quite good enough, although that might be a little more restrictive for the kids.
If your feeling peckish you can also enjoy a lunch platter. Food served Thursday – Sunday only.
You can find out what else Hush Heath Estate has to offer by visiting their website
Chapel Down is England’s leading wine maker producing sparkling and still wines, gin, vodka, beers and cider! Phew…what a list!
They supply Gordon Ramsey and Jamie Oliver, are the official sparkling wine of the Oxford and Cambridge boat races and also supplies No. 10 Downing Street! Talk about friends in high places!
Chapel Down is located next to the incredibly pretty Kent market town of Tenterden and comprises of 25 acres of vineyards nestled in the Kent countryside.
There are two self-guided tours you can take around the winery and a visit to the herb garden too, which is very picturesque. To ensure you know where you are going you can pick up a map from inside the shop.
The shop is well stocked, and most importantly sells my absolute favourite Chapel Down desert wine, Nectar! You can also ask to sample any of the wines on sale for free.
You can book yourself into a tasting session which takes place in a barn conversion overlooking the vines. To find out more go to their website for more information.
If you are thinking of topping it all off with some food, you can visit The Swan Restaurant, a two AA Rosette and Michelin Bib Gourmand restaurant. In times of Covid, restrictions will apply.
Biddenden – Best Vineyards in Kent
Biddenden Vineyards has the most rustic feel of the three. It isn’t uncommon to see tractors and other machinery zipping around the vines or being used in the production of Biddenden wine.
Biddenden Vineyards has been run by the same family for 50 years. Before 1979 the site was an apple orchard, but now has 23 acres of vines and produces 80,000 bottles of wine a year.
There are several tours you can book such as the Meet the Wine Maker, open tours and the free self-guided tours around the vines. These are mostly open from April to September and in times of COVID restrictions apply. To find out more visit the website.
We really enjoy the vineyard shop at Biddenden Vineyards. That rustic feel of the outside continues into the country kitchenesque shop where you can purchase wines and ciders and also take part in a little tasting if you fancy it.