Here’s our short guide to some free things to do in Ashford, Kent.
When it come to free things to do in Ashford, choice is limited. There seems to a charge to most forms of leisure based entertainment these days, which if you have a family can be pretty expensive at times.
However, whether you have a family or are just seeking some ‘me’ time, there are still some things to do and places to go that are still free, so here’s a few ideas to get out and about and avoid the boredom in and around Ashford.
Victoria Park, Ashford.
Sometimes we don’t appreciate what’s on our doorstep and covering 17 acres in the heart of Ashford, lies Victoria Park. Featuring the Hubert Fountain (see our ‘History of Ashford’ page to learn more), riverside walks, a memorial garden and more. It makes the ideal destination for picnics, dog walks, play games and cycling (see our cycling guide for info on other routes). It’s also home to the annual free ‘Create Festival’ which attracts thousands of visitors.
Conningbrook Lakes Country Park: (TN24 9AX)
Sitting on the edge of the town, the park was created from a disused quarry. It’s now a nature reserve covering over 34 hectares. Great for picnics and children to runabout. There’s free parking and picnic benches available and lots of nature to explore.
Full details here
Hamstreet Woods: (TN26 2HH)
A biological Site of Special Scientific Interest covering 175 hectares (that’s 433 acres to most people). and once part of the great Weald forest that stretched across the Weald. It’s great for bikes, walks, dogs and children to discover the great outdoors.
You can find more details and info here
Biddenden Vineyards: (TN27 8DF)
Celebrating its 50th year this year, the vineyard is the oldest in Ashford borough, kickstarting what is now the home region of Britains global award winnning wine industry. Open throughout the year, there is a self guided tour route around the vineyard. There is also an onsite cafe for teas, coffee and locally made cakes, with a shop selling local produce as well as their own wines. Dogs welcome on a lead.
Brockhill Country Park: (CT21 4HL)
Further out from Ashford lies the wonderful Brockhill Park. With lakside walks,trails and a childrens play park area it’s a great place for picnics. There is an excellent vegetarian cafe with both indoor and outdoor seating. Accessable via both bus and train – Sandling station is between 5 and 10 minutes walk from the park. There is a car park onsite which charges £1.50 all day (weekdays) and £2.50 all day (weekends).
You can download a guide here
Canterbury Norman Castle: (CT1 2PR)
A bit further out but not too far to go is the Canterbury Norman Castle. Built back in 1066 by William the Conqueror, although now just castle ruins, the grounds are open from dawn til dusk and makes the ideal picnic spot. Full details, including map and directions can be found by visiting this link
You can also view our things to do in Ashford page if you do have a few pennies to spend.