Planning a Staycation? – Visit Maidstone

The recent Covid-19 legislation imposing restrictions on international travel, such as a fine of £5,000 for anyone travelling abroad on holiday or leaving the country without a reasonable excuse, has caused most of us to reconsider our vacation plans for the summer. Faced with growing uncertainty around the prospect of spending the summer vacation in popular European destinations, most Brits are making plans for a summer staycation instead – leading to a mad rush to book stays at some of the UK’s popular holiday destinations.

Popular destinations! According to recent data released by Airbnb, the top local destination for most Britons booking UK-centric holidays is the tiny Welsh town of Saint Clears. The rest of the top 10 was comprised of destinations in Devon, Gloucestershire, West Sussex, Yorkshire, and Cornwall. The one thing that caught our attention was the glaring absence of any destinations in Kent – the Garden of England!

Whilst we’re in full support of people considering a staycation and contributing towards boosting the UK economy; we feel compelled to make one minor amendment to the Airbnb list and include our very own special town of Maidstone. Did you just say, “why Maidstone?” well below is some information about the town along with a list of places to visit and things to do when you visit.

One of the larger towns in Kent, Maidstone is the county town of Kent, England, lying 32 miles east-south-east of London. The River Medway runs through the centre of the town, linking it with Rochester and the Thames Estuary. Historically, the river carried much of the town's trade as the centre of the agricultural county of Kent. There is even evidence of people here, dating back to before the Stone Age!

Situated in the heart of orchard country Maidstone remains a major agricultural market centre - manufacturing agricultural implements - but the chief modern manufacture is paper. Brewing and malting are also prominent industries in the town as a result of being in the largest hops-growing area in England.

That’s enough about Maidstone, below are a few of the awesome places to see when you visit this summer.

Leeds Castle 

One of the most visited places in Kent, with history dating back over 1,000 years, Leeds Castle is situated about 5 miles away from Maidstone and houses a treasure trove of things to do and attractions to see.

Visitors can enjoy a tour of the castle and its state rooms, which sits on 500 acres of gardens and parkland or lose themselves in the impressive yew tree maze. With an abundance of wildlife to see throughout the estate, visitors can either take in the falconry displays at the Bird of Prey Centre or simply watch the various wildlife in their natural habitats.

For the young visitors, children can climb the turrets in the Squires’ Court Playground, try their hand at miniature golf in the Leeds Castle Adventure Golf, play in the Knights’ Stronghold Playground, play in the sandpits, take a ride on Elsie the Castle Train – the possibilities are endless. Don’t just take our word for it – see for yourselves – buy tickets here.

Mote Park

The iconic award-winning Mote Park is a huge 450acre Parkland/Woodland garden in Maidstone, Kent. This multi-use public park which has been in existence since the 13th Century is rich with natural features – grassland, woodland, rivers and even a lake – and has a lot to offer. From dino golf, a climbing wall, water sports, the walled garden and even a waterfall! The great thing about Mote Park is that all the activities are open to both adults and children.

Outside of the year-round activities, there are also a number of organised events that take place throughout the year. This summer, Spirit of Rock’s Ramblin’ Man Fair the annual Race for Life to raise money for Cancer Research UK, Rock the Mote, the retro 80’s festival that is Let’s Rock Kent and the inaugural Glitterbomb In the Park event, are scheduled to hold at Mote park. Sign-up for a Mote Park membership or go to Visit Maidstone to find out more.

Maidstone Museum 

This local authority-run museum located in Maidstone, Kent, England, features internationally important collections including fine art, natural history, and human history. The museum is one of three operated by Maidstone Borough Council.

The museum, which is counted among the best in the South East of England, boasts an impressive collection of over 600,000 items of international significance – one of the largest collections in Kent – spanning several areas of interest, including archaeology, costumes, ancient Egypt, ethnography, biology, fine art, geology, local history, and even Japanese decorative arts and prints. Definitely an interesting place for visitors of all ages.

So that’s our list for now. Maidstone aside, Kent really is a great place to visit, with lots of family friendly attractions and activities. The county is also home to a number of blue flag beaches be sure to check out Visit Kent for a host of other things to experience in Kent.  

Now that self-contained accommodation, for holiday lets and other hospitality venues, including restaurants and pubs can now re-open per the government’s roadmap out of lockdown  we thought we’ll also include a list of our top places to eat in Maidstone.

If you do decide to visit Kent and are looking for some comfortable self-catering Serviced Accommodation in Kent, Click Here for more information. During your visit, please remember to stay safe, play responsibly and follow the social distancing rules in place. 

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