With the summer holidays in full swing, knowing a few new places to go to, that have social distancing in place, is important. For the sanity of your kids and for the sanity of yourselves, right? With the weather that we have been having, there has been no better time to get outdoors, although, with the warm weather being pretty humid, I must admit to looking a little Monica Gellar, pre-hair-braids (it’s the humidity)!
Groombrigde Place is is a beautiful country estate, right on the border between East Sussex and Kent, nestled as you might imagine, in the historic village of Groombridge. It really does go on for miles, which makes it a great spot to run around, walk, have some fun outdoors, but space yourselves away from others.
Some of the main attractions at Groombridge Place are the formal gardens, set near the front / start of the estate, as well as a vineyard, play area, woodlands, and tree swings. You can walk all the way along the canal too; it is a really pretty area. There are large fields, animals, trees, and woodland, as well as a children’s play area.
Normally there is a cafe, as well as a snack bar, but at the moment, only the snack bar is open. You could take a picnic and make a day of it, or just head over for an hour or two; there is plenty to keep you occupied, which is great, so you can choose what to do. It was so hot when we went, so were there for a couple of hours.
Safety Measures in Place
With the way things are right now, it was good to see some of the measures that Groombridge Place has in place. Booking in advance is must, so that you can just use the tickets on your phone, rather than having to deal with paper. You can take a photo of the map on your phone too, rather than giving out paper copies. There were hand sanitising stations dotted around, and with toilets being open, there were a number of places to go to wash your hands.
It is easy to distance yourself, as the grounds are so huge, but there are some one-way markers and spacing markers as you enter the estate and show your phone tickets. The only thing I thought was a little busy was the children’s play area, although I know children are getting better and better at knowing to keep their distance from someone.
Birds of Prey
Another feature at Groombridge Place is that there is plenty of wildlife to see. There is a formal birds of prey show, at 12 noon and at 3.30pm each day – definitely worth remembering. As you walk around the grounds, though, there are other natural wildlife that you can see, like peacocks, which is really fun; they really are beautiful creatures.
There is a small ‘farm’ on the estate too, although the animals aren’t really a big feature as they don’t want you to feed or pet them. However you can still see them and they are really cute, with lambs, teeny Shetland pony, and a zebra.
Naturally, there are some aspects of Groombridge Place that are currently closed. I understand why, but it’s just worth noting if you look online and think you’ll be able to go on the treetop walk or on the boats on the canal. These would have been fun to go on, but completely get why they are closed. As a result I don’t think our trip was too hindered by this. Just something to remember if you’re planning a trip there.
The children and I had a great trip afternoon. It was very hot on the day of our visit, but luckily there are plenty of spaces to get some shade, sit down, and cool off a little.
You need to book in advance and show your tickets on your phone for entry. Entry for adults is £8.95 and for children is £6.95 (a family ticket, which is a group of four people, with at least one child under the age of 12, is £25). For the time that you could spend there, and the facilities that are open, I still think that you get value for money; it is a fun spot to visit.
Have you heard of Groombridge Place before? It would be great to hear what you think.
*our entry tickets were gifted in exchange for review – all opinions remain my own and I would only recommend something that we would be happy to pay for ourselves.