Distance: Various lengths on offer:
Difficulty: 2 out of 10
Train: Take the 9:40 AM Dover train from London Charing Cross (stopping at Waterloo East at 9:42 and London Bridge at 9:48), arriving at Staplehurst at 10:39. Return trains from Headcorn are at 15 and 45 minutes past the hour until 21:45; from Staplehurst (for the Cranbrook or Sissinghurst endings) 20 and 50 minutes past the hour until 21:50 and from Marden (for the Goudhurst ending) 24 and 54 minutes past the hour.
For the Cranbrook or Sissinghurst endings, you will need to catch an Arriva 5 bus back to Staplehurst at 17:10, 18:21 or 18:55 from Cranbrook or 17:18; 18:29 or 19:01 from Sissinghurst. For the Goudhurst ending, you need to catch a bus 27 to Marden at 17:15 -- alternatively, you can catch a bus 297 to Tunbridge Wells at 18:11 or going the opposite way to Cranbrook at 18:31 (where you would then catch the Arriva 5 bus to Staplehurst at 18:55). Buy a day return to Staplehurst unless walking to Headcorn (in which case you should buy a day return to Headcorn). If you find your self in Tunbridge Wells, you may need to buy a supplement to cover part of the journey (Tunbridge Wells to Tonbridge).
After the exertions of the bank holiday, this is a relaxing walk through the Kentish weald of varying lengths to hopefully suit most interests. Although many of the botanical delights will be past their prime, the route still passes through pretty countryside with the option of visiting Sissinghurst Gardens. You can find more information about the walk and the instructions here.
The recommended lunch spot is The Bell and Jorrocks in Frittenden (01580 852 415) about 4.4 miles into the walk. Tea options include: the NT café at Sissinghurst Gardens or in Headcorn, the George and Dragon; in Cranbrook, Ted’s Room or George Hotel; in Sissinghurst village, the Milk House and in Goudhurst, the Star and Eagle Hotel or the Vine Inn.
Enjoy the walk!