When I’d booked for us to stay in Kent for a couple of days for Monkey’s birthday, I was looking for places to visit on the Sunday on our way home.I’d watched the Sky Landscape Artist of the Year series on TV recently and fallen for one of the locations. It also reminded me of posts I’d seen previously and I just knew it would be perfect. Monkey loves a castle with a moat as we discovered when we visited Bodiam Castle. So we got to spend a lovely, sunny December morning exploring Scotney Castle. A rather different moated castle, something a little akin to a fairy-tale.
As we looked at the map of the grounds I did explain to Monkey that exploring Scotney Castle, would be a little different from our previous excursion. The estate includes the main house built in 1837 and the old Scotney Castle ruins complete with moat. This castle would be on a slightly smaller scale, but rather lovely all the same. On another visit we would have had a look inside the house, but it was Monkey’s birthday weekend and he was setting the agenda.
After quickly admiring the alternative Christmas Tree, it was time to explore, stick in hand.
We walked around the outside of the newer house and I got to admire the stonework as Monkey ran on ahead.
Although Monkey was clearly more interested in the canons he discovered.
With a quite stop to admire the Kent countryside, it wasn’t long before the boy and his stick were off again.
He’d heard mention of an Ice House dating from 1841 and was off again on an adventure.
As we followed the path winding down through the grounds we soon discovered the moat and the ruined castle beyond. On a crisp, bright December morning, exploring Scotney Castle was in such contrast to the bleak, grey day we’d spent at Bodiam the day before.
I knew what to expect from the tv show I’d watched, but neither Daddy P or Monkey had any idea. We were all rather impressed with the view, ruined or not, exploring Scotney Castle was rather magical.
It really did look like something out of a fairytale in the December sunshine. Just beautiful.
We imagined knights and princesses sailing out from the Boat House to enjoy looking at the reflections from the water’s edge.
Perhaps they might still be found hiding amongst the ruins.
As we spent time exploring Scotney Castle, we could imagine how wonderful the place must look in early summer with flowers in bloom. It would add another dimension to the place I’m sure.
We’d arrived as the grounds opened and Monkey loved the freedom of being somewhere new, and having the place pretty much to himself for a little while.
As we headed back through the gardens up to the main house again, we had a quick detour through the Quarry Garden.
Exploring Scotney Castle for a few hours on a Sunday morning, was a great way to break up our long journey back to Oxfordshire. We’ve saved the Walled Garden and the Wilderness Camp to give us a really good excuse to return again. Hopefully soon. As we headed back to the car, I had one last moat in mind to finish off Monkey’s birthday weekend, but I’ll save that for another day.
If you’re visiting the area around Tunbridge Wells in Kent at all this year, then why not save this for later?