Our trip to Hever Castle in Kent was gifted to Well Travelled Munchkins. All words, photos and opinions are our own.
Hever Castle is the picturesque childhood home of Anne Boleyn positioned in the beautiful Kent countryside. A visit to Hever Castle in Kent comes complete with a 38 acre lake, daily jousting tournaments, an array of stunning gardens and the hugely entertaining Water Maze!
History of Hever Castle in Kent
Hever Castle has been in existence ever since the thirteenth century when it was originally built as a defensive castle. It then became the lavish home of the Bolelyn family from the fifteenth century thus becoming the childhood home of Anne Bolelyn – Henry VIIIs second wife.
After being owned by various other families through the years, Hever Castle eventually fell into disrepair. This was until it was bought and restored by wealthy American William Waldorf Astor.
Astor devoted his time to rebuilding Hever Castle. This included reimagining the gardens, the lake and the living quarters of the castle itself.
Things to do at Hever Castle in Kent
The freedom to wander around the gardens and grounds of Hever Castle in Kent was, for us, one of the best parts of the day.
We started the day by having a lovely picnic on the lawns facing the castle. We then spent hours roaming the formal gardens including the Italian Garden, the incredibly beautiful Rose Garden, Diana’s Walk and Faith Garden.
Visiting so many places with small children, we have quickly learnt that beauty is something that appeals and encapsulates the imagination of the old and young. The gardens of Hever Castle are no exception.
If you want to visit the castle you can upgrade your ticket to include entry at the gate.
Tour rooms such as the Inner Hall and Anne Boleyn’s Bedroom and enjoy looking at the intricate wooden carvings all over the castle. These were recreated using the exact same techniques used by the carpenters of the time.
The Lake Walk takes about an hour to complete and is weather dependant. On your way around experience a myriad of wildlife, WWII pill boxes, fountains and in the summer a very pretty wildflower meadow.
You can also hire a row boat or pedalo to explore the Japanese Tea House Folly from the water. Or use it as a special way to see some of the best bits of the grounds at Hever Castle.
The Water Maze was without a doubt the best part of the day for our water loving munchkins!
They were soaked to the core after 20 minutes in the maze. They had the best time running head first into all manner of water that sprayed, fountained and squirted from the floor!
Jousting tournaments take place every summer holiday where you can watch Knights of Royal England battle it out and proclaim glory! Take a picnic blanket, decide which team you want to cheer for and enjoy the stunts and tumbles of the competing knights.
Our Top Tips for Visiting Hever Castle in Kent
Our advice would be to figure out what you want to do the most, and do that first!
To ensure Hever Castle is Covid safe, attractions, such as the castle and the Water Maze only allow a limited number of people in at a time. This means that wait times can be longer than expected.
For ticket prices and the latest information on opening times and upcoming events visit the Hever Castle website.