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English Tourism Week 2022

17th March 2022

An annual celebration of English tourism, English Tourism Week takes place from 18-27th March to highlight the importance, value and vast contribution the sector makes to the UK economy.

You can play your part by getting out and about in Ashford and Tenterden. Find out about events, things to do and places to stay in Ashford and Tenterden – we hope to see you soon!

As part of English Tourism Week 2022 we want to share with you, some of the amazing and unique experiences that are available in the area:

Visit the savannah – right here in Kent at Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve

Explore Kent’s largest wild animal park, home to the county’s only spectacled bears and the UK’s largest herd of black rhinos as well as gorillas, lions, tapirs, monkeys and many more endangered animals. Head out on safari and encounter free roaming herds of giraffes, zebras, wildebeest and more while you enjoy the spectacular views of the coastline.  You can even stay the night, Port Lympne’s award winning short breaks range from luxurious 4* boutique hotel stays to a romantic night under the stars in the 180 degree, panoramic bubble pod.

Cowshed Workshop

Find your creative side with Cowshed Workshop

The Cowshed Workshop offer a great selection of creative courses by working with local artists and makers to bring you years of expertise and experience. The courses are designed for all, whether this is your first time holding a needle or paint brush, right through to learning how to sculpt with willow, design ceramics or weave a basket. 

Chapel Down

Lease your own vines at Chapel Down

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to own a vineyard or enjoy your own custom labelled wine?
The Chapel Down vine lease scheme offers you the chance to do just that. Vines are leased from their Bacchus vineyard and each lease includes a number of exclusive benefits, such as personalised vine certificate, the opportunity to try picking your Bacchus grapes at harvest time, exclusive discounts and so much more.

Natural Pathways

Become a Woodsman or Woman for a day with Natural Pathways

Immerse yourself in the culture, myth and folklore of the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty as you become a woodsman for a day. Discover the influence of the Great Oak trees as you try traditional woodworking skills, enjoy a guided walk of the ancient woods, and even forage a meal to cook later on the campfire.

Wine Tours of Kent

Explore some of Kent’s most beautiful vineyards with Wine Tours of Kent

Wine Tours of Kent will introduce you to award-winning English wines with guided tours, tutored wine tastings and even a country pub lunch.  Be picked up from your chosen location in Kent or East Sussex, then whisked away on a full day’s guided tour and wine tastings around the very best of Kent’s vineyards.  Whether you’d like to learn more about wine, or simply spend your day tasting amongst the vines, Wine Tours of Kent will individually tailor the tour to suit you.

Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway

Driver Experiences on Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway

The Taster Course has been devised to offer the enthusiast a taste of what it’s like to take the controls of one of their world-famous steam locomotives, and also to enjoy the experience of riding the footplate. The first part of the course involves a double run between New Romney Station and the Romney Warren Halt, with the participant driving a light loco, fully supported by one of their highly-experienced drivers. The second part of the course is an exhilarating 28-mile full round trip riding the footplate. Other experiences include the Silver and Gold Course, Signaller's Day and Footplate Ride.

Stevenson Brothers

See bespoke rocking horses being handcrafted at Stevenson Brothers in Bethersden.

They are world renowned for their quality, craftsmanship and attention to detail. All of their rocking horses are lovingly hand-made and can be crafted to your exact wishes. Every rocking horse produced is unique and can be personalised by incorporating a crest into the design, customising the horse in tribute to a much-loved family horse, or tailoring the tack. Each horse is also numbered and dated on a brass, silver or gold plate for authenticity.

Balfour Winery

Experience the Balfour Dining Club

Set in the beautiful tasting room, The View, these intimate four-course dinners, are a wonderful way to spend an evening with friends or family.  Arrive at 7.30pm for a welcome drink, before being seated for a four-course dinner at 8pm. Their Balfour Wines have been chosen to accompany a beautiful menu and highlight the delicious and locally sourced produce.

The Big Cat Sanctuary

Roarsome Experiences at The Big Cat Sanctuary

The Big Cat Sanctuary is set in the heart of the Kent countryside in Smarden, and provides a future for some of the most beautiful and endangered cats in the world.  The sanctuary offers a range of unique experiences - try being a ranger for the day, have a big cat encounter, find a photographic workshop to suit you,  or maybe an overnight stay in their luxurious lodges.  You can even see the stars of BBC's Big Cats About The House, Maya and Willow!

Wider Experience & Old Dairy Brewery

Cycle Tour Package with Old Dairy Brewery & Wider Experience

Combine a trip to Old Dairy Brewery with a cycle tour of the Garden of England. Choose from either a guided tour or a self led tour, you can bring your own bike or hire one, along with your equipment from The Wider Experience. Both Experiences include a Flight of Beer and a pie/scotch egg at the Old Dairy Brewery Taproom, either at the start or end of your cycle ride and for the under 18's a soft drink!

Contact Us
Ashford Visitor Information Service. Tel: 01233 330383 Email: tourism@ashford.gov.uk