We were given tickets free of charge but all photos and opinions are my own
Hever Castle in Kent at Christmas is a traditionalists dream come true but with a modern twist
Castles at Christmas are magical. I think most people’s idea of a traditional Christmas is Victorian style and that is what you get here. Pair that with some fabulous, twinkly lights, a traditional funfair and a themed Christmas trail you are on to a winner.
We arrived early afternoon. Little L is 3 and doesn’t use a pushchair any more so we didn’t want to tire him out but I wanted him to last until dark. From past experience Hever Castle at Christmas is best experienced after dark, it’s magical during the day but it truly comes into its own once the sun has set and the Christmas lights come on.
On arrival everyone was moaning they were hungry so we popped to the cafe for sandwiches and drinks. They aren’t unreasonable prices, however there are plenty of places to eat a picnic outside if you prefer.
When we went the Husky Rescue were there, they took a lot of time to talk to us about the work they do and the different types of husky. They are beautiful, patient dogs and oh so soft! Both boys loved hearing about them and stroking them.
We then headed through Hever Castle grounds to the funfair, situated directly outside the castle
The funfair has a large (loud) carousel, a hall of mirrors, ring toss, roasted chestnuts and so on. It was good value at £1 a go and you could pay cash or buy token from the information desk which was handy if you didn’t take cash.
We went on the carousel and they aren’t stingy with the length of time, which is nice. Little L loves a carousel! We also headed to the hall of mirrors (which is free) but it was very busy so we went into the castle
In the courtyard of Hever Castle there are three large, beautifully decorated Christmas trees
This was the first time (that I can remember) I have been round the whole castle. It was absolutely stunning. Each room had been decorated, some with trees, others with festive flower displays. The banquet hall table was laid up ready for a Christmas feast and all in keeping with the Alice in Wonderland theme from the Christmas Trail.
After Hever Castle itself we started on the Alice in Wonderland Christmas Trail
It was a good time to begin as it was starting to get dark, but not too dark. It really added to the atmosphere and the lights really made it.
Along the trail you go down the rabbit hole and meet the white rabbit, pass Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum hanging in a tree, see the Cheshire Cat, have tea with the Mad Hatter give the Queen a playing card and play croquet with the King.
The trail takes about 45 minutes and at the end it was dark. The castle looked fabulous lit up with the carousel just outside. All the tree and bush lights were on – a real festive treat. It is accessible and not too muddy – but don’t wear your best sandles…
We popped to the lavender loos and were greeted by the little shop surrounded by Christmas trees, it looked like the scene from a chocolate box.
We weren’t able to do Santa’s Grotto as they had no drop ins the weekend we went however there are some this coming weekend – but I’m making no promises.
All in all I would throughly recommend a day out to Hever at Christmas. It is throughly charming and won’t fail to leave you feeling festive.
Check out the Hever Castle website for full details and to check timings here www.hevercastle.co.uk
If this tickles your festive fancy I have put together a list of Christmas events and days out which you can read here Festive Experiences in and around Sevenoaks including Spa Valley Santa Special, Bedgebury Pinetum Christmas Trail, National Trust Christmas Events in Kent and East Sussex and MORE!
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