Knole is a house full of hidden treasures. Built as an archibishop's palace and nestled in Kent's last medieval deer park, the house passed through royal hands to the Sackville family, who have lived there from 1603 to the present. Knole is in the midst of a project to conserve and restore its remarkable showrooms and world-class collection, with the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund. This year, some of the recently restored showrooms will reopen to visitors, while several others will be closed as the specialist restoration work continues. Visitors can marvel at the paintings and furniture in the showrooms, before climbing to the top of the newly restored Gatehouse Tower and exploring the private rooms of former resident, musician and writer Eddy Sackville-West. They can also visit the new conservation studio and watch as conservators care for Knole's collections. Photo credits: Antony Crolla, Ciaran McCrickard and Jo Hatcher.
Facilities – at a glance
Suitable for all child ages
- Parking onsite
- Parking nearby
- Accessible toilets
- Opening Times: Showrooms open 4 Mar-5 Nov, Tue-Sun & BHs, guided tours 11-12 subject to availability; free flow visits 12-4 (last entry 3.30). Closed 25-26 Dec & 1 Jan. Gatehouse Tower, Conservation Studio, Brewhouse cafe & shop open daily 10-5 (closes 4
Also in the area
About the area
The White Cliffs of Dover are an English icon – the epitome of our island heritage and sense of nationhood. They also mark the point where the Kent Downs AONB, that great arc of chalk downland stretching from the Surrey Hills and sometimes known as ‘the Garden of England’, finally reaches the sea. This is a well-ordered and settled landscape, where chalk and greensand escarpments look down into the wooded Weald to the south.
Many historic parklands, including Knole Park and Sir Winston Churchill’s red-brick former home at Chartwell, are also worth visiting. Attractive settlements such as Charing, site of Archbishop Cranmer’s Tudor palace, and Chilham, with its magnificent half-timbered buildings and 17th-century castle built on a Norman site, can be found on the Pilgrim’s Way, the traditional route for Canterbury-bound pilgrims in the Middle Ages.
In the nature reserves, such as the traditionally coppiced woodlands of Denge Wood and Earley Wood, and the ancient fine chalk woodland of Yockletts Bank high on the North Downs near Ashford, it is still possible to experience the atmosphere of wilderness that must have been felt by the earliest travellers along this ancient ridgeway.
Places to Stay
Restaurants and Pubs
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