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Under a blanket of blue – discover the best places to spot bluebells this year with the National Trust in Kent

Spring has arrived and what better way to delight your senses than with the sight and scent of a sea of bluebells. The National Trust has revealed the best places to enjoy bluebells in Kent this season.

With over half the global population of bluebells blossoming on UK shores, Britain’s beautiful blue spring is a quintessential part of our native landscape. The National Trust is one of the most important organisations in the UK for bluebell conservation – a quarter of the Trust’s woodland is ancient or semi-natural; the ideal habitats for bluebells to flourish.

credit: National Trust David Sellman

credit: National Trust David Sellman

The blooming date for bluebells varies depending on the weather, but you can usually expect to see them in April and May. The top National Trust places in Kent where you can enjoy bluebells in all their glory include: 

Emmetts Garden, Kent

Emmetts is renowned for its marvellous spring colour each year. The team has planted 3,500 daffodil bulbs in preparation for the new season.

From approximately mid-April to mid-May, the floors of the woodland will be turned into a carpet of blue as the bluebells come into bloom. The woods are an SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) due to the English native bluebells that grow in them, giving the bluebells a special protected status.

Pop into our discovery cabin to uncover bluebell themed activities including colouring in and making your own bluebell. You can hang your bluebells up for others to enjoy or take them home with you.

Adult £11 / Child £5.50 / Family £27.50. National Trust members receive free entry.

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/emmetts-garden

 

Ightham Mote, Kent

Swathes of bluebells can be found in Scathes Wood, running alongside the driveway. The ancient woodland is home to around 15 acres carpeted in the distinctive blue colour of spring.

Scathes Wood is well-known location locally for the best bluebell walk due to the sheer scale of the flowers and their amazing scent. Pick up an estate walks leaflet for suggested self-guided routes along the springtime trails. 

  • Spring walk

Sunday 9 April, 10.30am-12.30pm

Join a free spring walk around the estate of Ightham Mote, spotting bluebells as you go. The walk sets off from the visitor reception.

Free event, normal admission charges apply

Booking essential on 01732 810378, extension 100

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/ightham-mote

credit: National Trust Jerry Harpur

credit: National Trust Jerry Harpur

Sissinghurst Castle Garden, Kent

Venture into the woodland and be rewarded with around 126million individual bluebell flowers. Spot them extending outwards from the earth beneath the trees, also bursting with other wild flowers from Wood Anemones to Cuckoo Flower, Red Campion and Greater Stitchwort – all trying to establish themselves before the tree canopy closes.

In the garden, made world famous by its creators Vita Sackville-West and Harold Nicolson, the wall flowers, tulips and narcissus are ablaze in the cottage garden and along lime walk (garden entry not included in ticket price). 

  • Bluebell and wildflower walks

Monday 24 and Saturday 29 April, 2pm

Take a guided tour of the estate with our ranger team and enjoy the sight and high scent of this colourful season. Cream tea included.

£15 per person, booking essential on 08442491895

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/sissinghurst-castle-garden

 

Knole, Kent

Knole is the perfect place from which to set off to One Tree Hill, where the heady scent of English Bluebells fills the woodland. One Tree Hill consists of a varied mosaic of habitats, with woodland and open glades, providing homes for some rare wildlife species too.

Most of the area lies within an SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), and it is also within the Kent’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This means the beautiful woodland protects the precious flora and fauna – including the bluebells – for all to enjoy.

  • Spring and bluebells family walk

Saturday 6 May and Sunday 7 May, 2pm to 5pm

This six-mile guided walk will take you along a pre-historic riverbed through Knole’s 1,000 acre ancient deer park to One Tree Hill, with its profusion of bluebells. Weather permitting, there will be some great views over the Weald. You will then return through bluebell woods and rural communities to Knole Park.

Free event, suggested donation £2

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/knole

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