Campervans are great for exploring and as a result are ideal for a wine tour that investigates small local vineyards. In 2018 the UK produced 5.9m bottles of wine, and some of the best wine is produced in Kent. With several vineyards also providing on-site camping we asked some excited explorers to investigate a Campervan wine tour of Kent.
Why is it good to do in the UK?
English vineyards are now recognised as producing wine to rival any country in the world. With over 500 vineyards throughout the country and new vines being planted each year now is a great time to visit. The South East of England is leading the way and is home to more than 100 vineyards. Kent and Sussex seem to have the ‘terroir’ (a French term for climate and soil) for producing world-class wines. Indeed some sparkling wines have beaten top French Champagne houses in recent competitions. From large scale vineyards supplying the likes of Waitrose to artisans selling directly from the cellar, there is a world of wine waiting to be explored.
Where to go
With so many great vineyards to visit, one sunny weekend in June we went off to explore. Our journey took us around the M25 jumping off on to the A2/M2 towards Maidstone and then on the A229 deep into Kent. Our first stop was at Biddenden Vineyards where we sampled a little of their produce and bought a few bottles to take away. They have a lovely little setup and we liked the flavors they captured in the wines they produce. Our next stop was Chapel Down vineyard in Tenterden. These guys are producing wine on quite a large scale, but you can see why they are doing so well as the reds were world-class.
Places to stay
Our final stop for the day, and overnight camp, was at Far Acre Farm, Campsite & Vineyard in Marden. When we arrived the owner asked if we would like to buy some wine or some eggs, so naturally we bought both. They have bbq facilities as well as a fire pit with views over the vineyard. The facilities are good with flushing toilets and showers.
If you wanted to extend your trip to a long weekend, other vineyards we would recommend stopping at are:
- Hush Heath Vineyards, Five Oak Ln, Staplehurst, Tonbridge TN12 0HT
- Barnsole Vineyard, Fleming Road, Staple, Canterbury CT3 1LG
- Terlingham Vineyard, Terlingham Manor Farm, Terlingham Ln, Hawkinge, Folkestone CT18 7AE
- Chartham Vineyard, Burnt House Farm, Station Rd, Chartham CT4 7HU
- Biddenden Vineyards, Gribble Bridge Ln, Biddenden, Ashford TN27 8DF
- Chapel Down, Tenterden Vineyard Park, Small Hythe Rd, Tenterden TN30 7NG