We wanted to do a 1/2 day
tour to Leeds Castle but Frames Richards didn't have one,
so we checked with Lawrence, (a nice French booking agent in our hotel), and he found
this tour by Evan Evans Tours. So on Tuesday May 9, 2000 at 12:15 p.m. we met Barry,
our guide, outside Victoria Station. As with our other tours, we had a comfy bus with
running commentary throughout the trip. We traveled along the Thames and went
through the Blackwall Tunnel to the south bank. Leeds Castle is about 30 miles nearly
due east of London but there really isn't that much open country along the way.
Once we arrived at the
castle we had a choice of taking a shuttle ride from the parking lot
to the castle or walking through some gardens and a duckery with all manner of water fowl.
The castle itself is on two
islands and is much smaller than Windsor or Hampton Court.
It was only ever meant to be a residence and it feels like it. The rooms are on a more
intimate scale, the furnishings are not at all intimidating and the setting is wonderful.
Leeds Castle is nestled in
the Kent countryside and has several formal gardens,
a wilderness, an aviary that's better than the Zoo and a vineyard which was listed
in the Doomsday Book. There's a restaurant in Fairfax Hall where you can have
afternoon tea, or vendors selling drinks and ice cream. After seeing the Aviary
we went on to the Maze & Grotto.
Then we stopped by the Fortified Mill on our way back to the bus.
The below links will take you to other web sites.
Leeds Castle Web Site
Evan Evans Tours, Leeds Castle
Britannia.com's Leeds Castle