Kent is one of the Home Counties that surround London and with extensive orchards and growing hops, it is known as the “Garden of England”. Historically, Kent is also an important area, with the Canterbury Cathedral dating from 1070 and local ports building warships from the 1200’s.
Departing Market Harborough, after the canal boat excursion, we elected Canterbury to be our next destination for 5 days, while we explored the SE of England.
Where possible, we will always try to find a B&B over a hotel chain, or local guest house, and our preference is for a more rural location, rather than being in the city. Canterbury is fairly central, so I checked out a number of local B&B’s, settling on The Willows.
The Willows B&B
Located on a quiet road, about 1/4 mile from the A28, it is less than 3 miles from Canterbury city centre. On arrival, we were met by hosts and owners Tony & Jackie, who welcomed us warmly and provided a tour of the facilities.
We were in the double room, which is a good size, and is supplied with a very comfortable bed, ample cupboard space and a compact, but good en-suite.
Double room with lots of natural light
Double Room Ensuite
The en-suite was compact, but the shower was a good size and everything worked well. For breakfast, Jackie set the table in the conservatory.
Conservatory breakfast room
Conservatory with table set for breakfast & separate table with cereals and fruit
The separate table contains a selection of cold cereals/granola and Jackie also provides a selection of 6 fresh fruits, yogurts and nuts. I especially enjoyed the rhubarb and ginger, with the rhubarb fresh from the garden. Cooked breakfast was both filling and well cooked/presented, with local ingredients and a sprig of fresh parsley, from the garden.
One of the many bird feeders in the garden
During breakfast, you enjoy the views of Tony’s well tended garden, which includes at least a half dozen bird feeders that are in almost continuous use.
Tony & Jackie both worked in the hospitality industry and it certainly shows, as the service they provide is exceptional. Jackie cleans the room daily and restocks the milk and biscuits. We stayed for 5 nights, with a bill of UKP 300. Based on other B&B’s we visited and the service we received, I consider this to be exceptionally good value. This was without a doubt, the best value of all the B&B’s we stayed in during our trip down south.
If you are in the area and looking for accommodation, give them a ring, you won’t be disappointed.
Five nights seems like a longer stay, but in reality, you only have an opportunity to see the local highlights, or a few select areas in greater detail. Over the next few days, we plan to visit:
- Canterbury Cathedral
- Chatham Historic Navy Dockyard
- Isle of Sheppey
- Channel Tunnel Excavation Site
- White Cliffs of Dover
- Coastal Drive
The next few posts will cover our travels around Kent. All photos courtesy of The Willows website.