Sunday 30 March 2014

Circular Walk around the Sissinghurst Estate, near Cranbrook, Kent

A clutch of charismatic old red brick buildings sitting in gently rolling Kent countryside, Sissinghurst Castle is a popular National Trust property, renowned for its elegant gardens. At the entry desk next to the car park, you can pick up a map of walks around the estate. The longest of these is a three mile circular walk that takes you past the vegetable garden, several fields and down to Dig Dog Lane, which provides good distant views of Sissinghurt's massive brick barn and its octagonal towers with their conical roofs. From the lane you cut back across the fields towards the castle, before skirting around the small lakes and through the eerie woodland on the south side of the estate. You emerge from the trees to cross a couple of fields before heading back through a newly-planted orchard adjacent to the car park. Involving a couple of minor climbs, this walk is pleasant, rather than spectacular. 7/10