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Fortress of the Black Swans

Highlights of this walk include sweeping views across the hills of the North Downs, two charming old pubs, and a tour of the fairytale moated palace of Leeds Castle. Originally built in the 12th century, Leeds (not to be confused with the northern city of the same name) was lavishly renovated by Henry VIII for his first wife, Catherine of Aragon.

The palace is known for its bevy of rare black swans, a postwar present to Sir Winston Churchill from the Australian government. Not having anywhere to keep the birds, Churchill had them forwarded on to Leeds Castle, where their descendants now provide an exotic addition to the grounds.

Walk schedule

Fortress of the Black Swans walk

See a selection of photos from this walk.

This walk starts in London. We meet at 9:00am by the meeting point in front of the main ticket office at London Victoria rail station and return here later the same evening. Pre-booking required.

See the calendar for walk dates.

What's included

This full day out includes all roundtrip transportation from the starting point in London, a guided walk from Harrietsham to Hollingbourne, and a tour of Leeds Castle grounds. It also a traditional pub lunch with a drink, at The Pepper Box Inn in Ulcombe.


Group size 1-2: 150 per person
Group size 3: 120 per person
Group size 4+: 105 per person

For groups of four or more, we also offer a half-day version of this trip for 60 per person. Please note that this price does not include lunch.

Our walk leaders accept payment in cash at the start of the walk.

Book it!

For reservations and information call 07932 953 174 or email david@englishcountrywalks.com

Please be sure to mention:

(a) which walk you're interested in
(b) your desired dates and options
(c) the number of people in your party, and
(d) the best way to contact you

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