Love is in the air

Take the chance to discover even more places to visit in the South East of England; Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex and Surrey.

Stories of friends and lovers can easily be unearthed with a little help from a Blue Badge Guide: you can travel as a group, or have a guide accompany you on a day trip. Whatever you do, wherever you go, that added interest and information from a trained and accredited tourist guide will add an extra, personal dimension to any visit to South East England.

The South East is full of secret hideaways, romantic hotels and gardens. Here we explore just a few places to find romance.

Painshill Park, an 18th century landscape garden in Surrey is “infused with romance”. Here you can explore enchanting follies like the Ruined Abbey or the Temple of Bacchus high on the hill. A stroll beside the serpentine lake followed by sumptuous afternoon tea is sure to make the visit memorable.

In complete contrast, the i360 on Brighton seafront has been host to countless proposals and special occasions since it opened in 2016. Views from the top are spectacular, taking in city, coast and countryside at it’s very best.

Steam railways evoke a real sense of adventure in many and this corner of England is not short of many fine examples. From the miniature railways at Bentley, nr Lewes, Eastbourne and Hove, to the small gauge at Romney Hythe and Dymchurch, and narrow gauge at Amberley Museum in West Sussex. For steam and diesel on a large scale, the region is blessed with many choices:  the Bluebell Railway in the heart of Sussex, Kent & East Sussex along the border, the Lavender Line, the Spa Valley Railway. With volunteers giving their time freely to preserve and run these engines, we see passion in a different form!

The Bloomsbury connections in Sussex and Kent reveal love for art and creativity, and, for the early 20th century, an unusual way of living. Charleston provided a place of solace for artists and their muses in a difficult time before, during and after World War One. Nearby Monks House was the home of Virginia Woolf and is now in the care of the National Trust.

Charleston is now celebrated in the nearby county town of Lewes with a fantastic rolling programme of events and exhibitions. The town is dominated by its castle, dating from Norman times, which offers views across the town and southward towards the coast.

East Sussex and 1066 Country is home to some fairytale moated castles – Bodiam – a stunning classical ruin, provides an idyllic backdrop for a picnic and Herstmonceux is a complete contrast as a comparatively modern red brick 15th century castle. Over in Kent, Leeds Castle, nr Maidstone is hard to beat for a romantic backdrop, stunning parkland, stunning rooms and portraits. A tour will reveal tales of romance and decadence from the castle’s heyday in the 1930s.

The stunning countryside and coast of the South East continues to provide inspiration throughout the year. Here, you will find the perfect backdrop for romance – from special suppers and exclusive menus to cosy log fires, theatre trips and classical music. There’s a chance to make some special memories in every corner of South East England. Just ask our guides for some of their favourite romantic places.