Responsible travel: Kent Downs bed and breakfast farmstay
Elmsted lies deep in the North Downs of East Kent, surrounded by beautiful countryside. We do not have a village centre, but within Elmsted are the hamlets of Bodsham, hosting the Timber Batts pub and a village school, Northleigh and Evington, there are also various streets, Maxted, Misling, Whatsole and Hill Street.
Opposite Elmsted Court Farm is the parish church dedicated to St James the Great, standing about 160 metres above sea level. The church evolved from modest beginnings and is mentioned in the Domesday Monachorum c . 1100, no evidence above ground remains. There is evidence of a simple Norman Church presumably erected on the site with additions, rebuilding and alterations added in the succeeding centuries. The church has an unusual wooden belfry built in the 14th century. In the large churchyard there are some ancient yews, perhaps dating back to the time of the Norman building.
A five minute walk from Elmsted Court takes you to Spong Wood, 18 hectares of ancient woodland managed by the Kent Wildlife Trust, in the spring you are welcomed by a carpet of bluebells and wood anenomes.
Within a five mile radius we have an abundance of rural countryside to explore, so if you like the fresh air, beautiful views, this is definitely the place to visit.
Yorkletts Bank, ancient woodland and one of the best sites for the lady orchid, colonies of twayblade, common spotted, early purple, fly and other orchids, many species of spring flowers are also prolific.
Stelling Minnis is an ancient common close to the old Roman Road of Stone Street. Explore the common, see the Highland cattle grazing, have a picnic, visit the windmill, open at weekends , and refresh yourself at the village pub or shop.
Park Gate Down is ancient chalk grassland and is a key site for cowslips, common spotted, fragrant, monkey, man, lady, bee, greater butterfly, late spider and musk orchids.
The beautiful Elham Valley which connects Hythe to Canterbury, a 22.5 mile (40 km) walk is a chalk valley carved by the river Nailbourne and named after the ancient settlement of Elham. The village of Elham once a small market town is both historic and picturesque and worth a visit, it has a Farmers Market on the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month. There is also the Elham Valley vineyard, or you can learn bushcraft skills, throw a pot, learn how to spin and weave, play golf, or simply walk and take in the beautiful surroundings.
Wye National Nature Reserve has a beautiful and varied landscape of chalk downland, woodland and scrub on the steep slopes of the North Downs with spectacular views. See rare species of butterfly and orchids, the White Park cattle grazing, fly a kite, have a picnic, or simply relax and take in the view.
The Wye Crown a famous hill figure cut into the North Downs by Students of Wye College in 1902 to commemorate the coronation of Edward VII.
For the more energetic there is a scenic walk from Wye to Chilham a historic village located in the valley of the Great River Stour and used as a location for films and television dramas, return by train from Chilham Station to Wye.