Ightham Mote
Ightham Mote
4.5
Historic SitesArchitectural BuildingsGardens
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Ightham Mote is a magical 14th century moated manor house, surrounded by beautiful gardens, lakes and woodland walks. Built nearly 700 years ago, the house has been owned by medieval knights, courtiers to Henry VIII and high-society Victorians. Highlights include the picturesque gardens, courtyard, Great Hall, crypt, Tudor painted ceiling, Grade I listed dog kennel.
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  • Dave2707
    Ramsgate, United Kingdom33 contributions
    Great house and gardens
    Visited on a Monday with my sister who had not been for nearly 50 years . It was nice and quiet and no queues at the cafe . Although not a lot of choice with the menu we both had jacket potato’s which were nice and good value . It was great to see the house which has been maintained well and each room explained by knowledgeable volunteers. The lovely gardens are great for walks and a picnic if you wanted. I was very impressed with the secondhand bookshop which was well stocked and organised there is also a nice gift shop with plants and lots of garden items. It think it is well worth a visit and obviously good to go on a Monday out of school holidays if you want a quiet time.
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled with friends
    Written June 6, 2023
  • Dianne T
    Montgomery, Texas114 contributions
    Lovely NT historic house and gardens
    This National Trust house and gardens is delightful and well worth a visit. There is a lot of history here as well as a second hand book shop, tea room and space for children to run and play. Plan to spend at least a half day here.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written June 17, 2023
  • LordCadwell
    Maidenhead, United Kingdom618 contributions
    Still fabulous
    Fantastic 14th-17th century timbered, moated building which retains all the ancient features apart from a few 1950s decorating choices. Lots of interest in the carving, the insight into life and priorities of owners in times very different to our own. Something new with every visit despite it having been there all along
    Visited June 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written June 22, 2023
  • zuppinp3
    Sawston, United Kingdom191 contributions
    Lovely house and gardens, just needs better signage and one less pointless rope
    We spent a lovely few hours here on a hot, sunny day. I enjoyed it all but there should be better signage or a volunteer advising you to cross the courtyard to the far right hand corner for the optimum tour experience. We made the mistake of turning to the left as we entered and going through the billiard room which after you exited it, led you to an exit or a very low unattended rope. I made the mistake of carefully seeing myself and my two children over the low rope so that we didn't have to leave the house after only seeing one room and could cross the courtyard to see the rest of the house. We were then approached by a very officious volunteer who told us off saying people and broken their legs stepping over a low rope before! It wasn't that we were entering an out of bounds area and at no time were me and my children in any danger. There were also no other members of the public within 20 metres of us. I just felt it was a but much and that better signage or better positioning of volunteers would have made for a much better experience.
    Visited May 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written June 25, 2023
  • Andy B
    Harlow, United Kingdom508 contributions
    Marvellous location, excellent guides, parking mess.
    The house is a marvel, the gardens are lovely. The introductory talk is highly recommended, extremely informative and gives lots of context for a visit to the house. The volunteer guides really know their stuff and are very happy to share their knowledge. The Cafe is very well run and has a good range of refreshments available. Access to the site is not easy for anyone with mobility issues. There is extensive parking and you must have a ticket even if you are a NT member. There are 2 or 3 parking ticket machines around the site but they are poorly signed and located. The day we visited ther was almost a continuous stream of people could be seen making the trudge back from the entrance shop, which could be 200 metres or more, back to the carparks to find a ticket; later the shop was issuing tickets from the till when the problem had got quite serious. Sadly it had taken sometime for staff in the shop to realise there was an issue.
    Visited June 2023
    Written July 2, 2023
  • Steven W
    England, United Kingdom77 contributions
    One house, 700 years of history.
    This medieval moated Manor House & grounds in Kent North Downs is a National Trust jewel. The building is stunning & a wonderful blend of styles from the 13th century up to the early 20th century. Highlights include the Tudor chapel, medieval undercroft, formal drawing rooms & butlers kitchen. There is a little museum in the clock tower & nice grounds to walk or sit down in & formal gardens to explore. On site there are several toilet facilities, the Mote Cafe, ample parking, a gift shop & second hand bookshop. Well worth a visit
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled solo
    Written July 11, 2023
  • Hoppityskip
    Essex, United Kingdom13,870 contributions
    Came for the music event
    We booked yo join the dial band NT event, whilst it started a little late, the band were great. They played a wide selection of music over a number of genres. The ground were very typical of the area, mostly white middle aged/elderly many having bought complex "picnics". A few happy children. The band engaged the crowd and at one point maybe had 40% of the maybe 500 ish dancing. Toilets and facilities well presented and not too far away.
    Visited July 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written July 30, 2023
  • samstone80
    Kent, United Kingdom104 contributions
    Lovely house and garden
    We all had a fantastic wander around the house and garden. Even in the rain the gardens were beautiful. The house was stunning and a lot bigger than I anticipated. There is a lot of steps in the house. Make sure you visit to second hand book shop. Will be returning for a dog walk in the woods.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 2, 2023
  • Becky H
    Hastings, United Kingdom258 contributions
    Lovely NT property
    Visited here for the Tudor Food and Feasting event. The actors were fantastic and very informative. The house and grounds are very lovely, with it taking a couple of hours to visit the whole site. Lovely NT property and would definitely visit again
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written August 11, 2023
  • Mark P
    Croydon, United Kingdom11 contributions
    As I said in my review is worth a visit. The only downfall is the cafeteria
    It’s a very beautiful place to visit not very big but is worth going around. The building is very interesting. Lots of things to look at the gardens are really nice as well. The only downfall was the cafeteria. The food was not that good other than it’s worth a visit.
    Visited August 2023
    Traveled with family
    Written August 17, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
1,371 reviews
Excellent
978
Very good
314
Average
50
Poor
17
Terrible
12

Alison H
1 contribution
Jul 2020 • Business
Rude, unhelpful and argumentative. We booked as we were given the impression that the site was dog friendly. We tried to telephone and double check and sent messages via Facebook neither of which were responded to. When we arrived the dog was refused entry but we were not entitled to a refund. We will not be back.
Written July 9, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear Alison, I am sorry that you feel that you had an unwelcomed reception on arrival. As explained to your party on arrival, it is always recommended that visitors read the full details on our website and booking pages prior to booking and purchasing their tickets for entry, as all National Trust sites operate differently, especially during this re-opening period. Our telephone information line covers many questions you may have had and we always direct visitors to our website which has all the information available. Our telephone answer machine does state that due to limited staff numbers we cannot always respond to calls immediately but will endeavour to do so as soon as possible, as does our Facebook page which states that it is currently not being monitored on a regular basis. I am sure you will appreciate that the National Trust are doing their best to open their properties and facilities to ensure that we are keeping our visitors and staff safe during this unsettling time. Our website and booking page state that dogs are welcome across the wider estate but not within the formal gardens. We hope this will assist you in any future bookings to visit National Trust properties while we are operating pre-booked visits.
Written July 15, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

trevorstravels
Verwood, UK79 contributions
Sep 2020 • Solo
Having seen pictures of Ightham Mote and loving historic buildings, seeing it for the first time was awesome. It is an unbelievably picturesque medieval manor house. It is stunning to look at from every angle. Unfortunately due to Covid-19 the inside of the house wasn't open, but the setting with the moat surrounding the house is wonderful. The cafe with outside seating was open serving drinks and light snacks etc.
I would go so far as to say it ranks very highly among historic buildings I've seen....and I have seen the Taj Mahal and Golden Temple at Amritsar in India !
I would definitely go back when the house is open.
Written September 30, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you for your high praise we are so pleased that you enjoyed your visit and we hope you are able to return when the house re-opens.
Written October 1, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

askmurray
90 contributions
Feb 2020 • Family
Another National Trust property that’s great for a quick stop or for a longer ramble. The House is situated in a small easy to walk garden. There are longer walks in the wider grounds as well. Dogs are welcome on a lead in the Garden in the winter months, but limited to the longer walks at other times.

There is the standard cafe offering, with plenty of cake options, but only a couple for Gluten free packaged cakes: millionaires shortbread and a choc brownie. Dogs have to be outside as is pretty standard for NT.

There are moving/rebuilding the amenities in 2020 so there may be some disruption.
Written February 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brightong
Brighton, UK47 contributions
Apr 2022 • Friends
Wow what a beautiful place, so magical! Amazing house and such lovely and knowledgeable volunteers. Grounds are stunning too. Only downside was food availability, queuing out of the door to the cafe and kiosk only had crisps and had sold out of sandwiches. Fab day out
Written April 16, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

chrisphillips987
Bromley, UK8 contributions
Aug 2020
Igtham Mote is a great National Trust site to visit in Kent. The grounds/gardens around the building itself are nice to walk around; there is a good mixture of gardens and open spaces. The cafe is large (though we couldn't sit in there when we went due to covid) and serves a reasonable range of drinks and light bites. There are pathways around the site for those with mobility problems, and there is a large space to have a picnic. There is also a play area for kids (also closed due to covid).I have a National Trust membership so didn't pay for my visit at the site; I do think it's a bit expensive if you pay-as-you-go with National Trust sites. Plenty of car parking space too.
Written August 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Andy B
Harlow, UK508 contributions
Jun 2023
The house is a marvel, the gardens are lovely. The introductory talk is highly recommended, extremely informative and gives lots of context for a visit to the house. The volunteer guides really know their stuff and are very happy to share their knowledge.

The Cafe is very well run and has a good range of refreshments available.

Access to the site is not easy for anyone with mobility issues.

There is extensive parking and you must have a ticket even if you are a NT member. There are 2 or 3 parking ticket machines around the site but they are poorly signed and located. The day we visited ther was almost a continuous stream of people could be seen making the trudge back from the entrance shop, which could be 200 metres or more, back to the carparks to find a ticket; later the shop was issuing tickets from the till when the problem had got quite serious. Sadly it had taken sometime for staff in the shop to realise there was an issue.
Written July 2, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Marguerite D
London, UK59 contributions
Jan 2020
Went for a countryside walk in the area around Ightham Mote on Sunday. Car par was £3.00. The footpaths were so muddy, boggy and dangerously slippery, it was not a pleasant walk. Anyone with a buggy or small children would not have even made it to the end of the first pathway. A very unpleasant experience and a waste of the opportunity to view the surrounding countryside we were too busy trying not to fall over. Even the dog did not enjoy it. Definite avoid in the winter.
Written January 14, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
As a conservation charity, there is a charge to help maintain our car-parks and the surrounding countryside, but they are free for members. With the recent prolonged rainfall, the water table remains high and the countryside is saturated. Our Rangers are working on improving the paths, and have created temporary diversions where able.
Written January 17, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

L_K1509
London, UK1,332 contributions
Apr 2021 • Couples
Lovely to see National Trust being able to open the houses again, abide only the ground floor on this occasion. Volunteers inside the house were eager to pass on their knowledge about the house and its history.

We particularly liked the walks around the estate. We did the ‘green’ walk which is a 4 km circular walk, easy to follow. However there is steps and some woodland paths which some may have difficultly with. Plenty of benches on the route.

The cafe was ok, paper cups/ boxes which is expected these days. Scone was dry and tasteless and hot chocolate luke warm so wouldn’t recommend.

Overall we are big fans of National trust and will be back again.
Written May 26, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Menchie L
227 contributions
Jul 2020 • Family
Went here with my family. Due to Covid, we had to book in advance (2 days prior) before our visit. We were lucky, it was a warm and sunny day. On arrival, the gate is manned by two ladies who will check your booking and direct you to which car park to park your car. We were an hour advance of our booking but we were let in. On the gate of the Mote, there will be a person who will check your booking details & if you’re a member of the National Trust, they’ll check your membership card. There are toilets outside of the mote that are open for visitors, and social distancing is always maintained. Hand sanitizers are available on entrance. No need to wear face masks as it is open spaces. You can have a picnic on the gardens as long as social distancing is again maintained. Please being your rubbish with you when you go home. There are benches around the garden that you can also sit on and just relax. The cafe outside is open with benches available to sit. The whole area is accessible to disabled people.
Written July 30, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

lady_britts
Bexley, UK1,338 contributions
Oct 2022 • Couples
I absolutely love this stunning estate. It’s one of the few National Trust properties that you can see yourself actually being able to live in. Steeped in history with Royal Tudor connections, the original parts of the 14th century house has a courtyard, great hall, chapel & crypt. As you walk through the house, you can see the more modern rooms, bedrooms & a billiard room which have been added over the centuries. It has a lovely & warm feel to it throughout, even when being told of the many ghosts who walk the corridors. With a lovely shop & stunning gardens, this beautiful place is a must!
Written October 23, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Ightham Mote is open:
  • Sun - Sat 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM


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