The Garden of England makes for the perfect weekend break, says Acting Lifestyle Editor Emma Ledger.
Askham in Kent provides for a fun-filled glamping staycation for all the family.
THE PAD: Nestled in the heart of Kent’s picture-perfect village of Alkham, you’ll find Greenhill Glamping.
Surrounded by tree-filled hills, it’s home to two luxury shepherd’s huts, each including an en-suite, kitchen, table and chairs, a wood-burning stove with plenty of free logs and a bespoke king-size bed.
This is a no-kids zone, meaning you can de-stress and sip wine around the fire pit as sheep and horses graze nearby – at dusk you can even spot badgers and hear owls.
The welcome pack includes tea, coffee, hot chocolate, homemade cake and marshmallows for fire pit toasting, as well as maps with recommendations of places to visit.
The breakfast hamper full of local goodies makes Deliveroo look amateur. Two-night stays cost £300 (Greenhillglamping.co.uk).
OUT & ABOUT: Hidden beneath Dover’s iconic white cliffs is a tunnel complex built during WW2. Don a hard hat for a 45-minute guided tour, exploring the abandoned labyrinthine routes of Fan Bay Deep Shelter, to get an incredible history lesson.
This is not one for claustrophobes! Tickets cost £10 (Nationaltrust.org.uk).
If you’d rather explore above ground level, hire electric bikes from Tides Leisure Centre, £40 per day (Tidesleisurecentre.co.uk), and head to the smooth, traffic-free tracks of Betteshanger Country Park.
Formerly a Kent coalfield, it’s now a hub for cycling, running, archery and fossiling. On-site cafe The Lamp Room is a treasure, with a special house burger, £13, and tasty paninis, £7 (Betteshanger-park.co.uk).
Don’t miss safari park Port Lympne, famed for its conservation work and rewilding. Getting up close and personal with the gorillas and giraffes is an unforgettable experience. Entry costs £27 (Aspinallfoundation.org).
EAT UP: While at Port Lympne, plot a route that takes you to Babydoll’s restaurant for lunch. Named after the zoo’s much-loved gorilla, this wooden ski-chalet-esque spot serves up brilliant pizzas and pastas, such as beef ragu tagliatelle, £15.
From Greenhill Glamping, it’s a 20-minute walk to the award-winning Marquis of Granby, a 200-year-old pub that delivers the warmest country welcome.
Boasting original beams and roaring fires on cool days, it’s a dreamy place to settle in for an ale or glass of wine before tucking into a dinner of dreams.
In fact, it’s so good that the starter of salt and pepper squid with padrón peppers, £12, followed by loin of cod with chorizo, £22, is a new contender for our death-row meal.
Finish with the salted caramel doughnut, £8, then waddle back up the hill to sleep it off (Marquisofgranby.co.uk).
PACK IT: Manifest sunny days with this woven hat, £26, Oliver Bonas.
Planning on barbecuing? Don’t forget to stock up on game-raising dips and condiments, from £2, Leon.
These aren’t so much slippers as your new best friends while glamping, £12, Next.