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Gravel Pit Farm

· Marden, Kent, England
2 acres hosted by Annabel ?.
2 glamping pitches
Creature comforts
Enjoy the comforts of home—including flush toilets, showers, and a kitchen.
Luxury safari tent glamping on a rural Kent farm within walking distance of the local vineyards yet speedily reached from London

It’s difficult to believe, when you step off the train at Marden Station in Kent, that a world of campfires, vineyards and late-night star gazing are a mere 18-minute walk away. Whether you’ve come from London or elsewhere, the flicking of the urban everyday outside your carriage window dissolves into the rural greens of Kent as you make your way towards Gravel Pit Farm. It’s a small, secluded and utterly uncrowded place – there are just two luxury safari tents, fully equipped with kitchens, en suite bathrooms and room for up to six people – and, if you like a little privacy, this one-acre glamping site is just the trick.

On the edge of Marden Village, within walking distance of the pubs, post office and characterful 13th-century church that it affords, Gravel Pit Farm is one of the newest glamping sites in Kent and perfectly positioned for exploring the area. It’s a 20-minute walk to Herbert Hall vineyard – the last of the footpaths taking you right past some of the vines – and the same, by car, to National Trust properties like Sissinghurst Gardens and Scotney Castle. Yet at your tent itself, the space feels wonderfully private. From the front deck, the view is across the open paddock beyond (with plenty of space for ball games and larking around) and over the adjacent field, flowering yellow through May or pale with wheat in summer.

Gravel Pit Farm’s safari tents are built to a 21st century spec. They have good showers, proper flushing loos, a sleek wood-burning stove and a kitchen with a fridge, sink and gas hobs. The master bedroom has a four-poster bed, while children will love the quirky ‘cupboard bed’ that’s hidden in the wall and lets you really cocoon yourself away. There’s WiFi, too, and electricity throughout. If you do come by train, you needn’t pack much.

For all of the glamping site’s mod cons, however, Gravel Pit Farm still hasn’t lost touch with the real appeal of being outdoors. Friendly owner Annabel clearly loves the fresh air. “As our children were growing up we had almost daily campfires during the warmer months,'' she tells us. At the other end of the paddock, a big stone hearth is set up for communal fires and a welcome pack is provided when you arrive that, along with essentials like tea and coffee, includes marshmallows and sticks for toasting. There’s also a huge barbecue outside each safari tent and other touches show Annabel’s attention to detail, such as the Victorian-style bathtub, now planted up with fresh herbs that you can pick and use when cooking. “Absolute bliss!” Annabel declares. It’s hard to disagree.

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Marden, Kent, England, United KingdomTraditional, ancestral territory of various First Nations according to To respect the Host's privacy, the precise address of this land will be provided after booking
Hosted by Annabel ?.Joined in April 2019
7 Ratings · 9 reviews
Katy ?.recommends
July 24, 2021
The Hare Lodge
We stayed at Gravel Pit farm with our nearly 2 year old son and our brother and sister in law with their nearly 1 year old daughter. It was perfect for all of us but I can see it would also be just as perfect for couples or groups of friends. The attention to detail in the tent was amazing and everything and more had been thought of. We could easily have stayed longer! The children enjoyed meeting the horses and chickens and especially enjoyed the fresh eggs for breakfast! We were having such a great time on the farm that we didn’t actually leave. We ordered a lovely meal from a local Indian one evening and made good use of the bbq provided on the other. Annabel and Simon are fantastic hosts and made us feel very welcome. Nothing was too much trouble and we’re already planning our next visit! Thanks so much for a really fabulous stay.
Lucy J.recommends
July 18, 2021
The Hare Lodge
I stayed at Gravel Pit Farm with a few friends for a couple of nights and we all thoroughly enjoyed our stay. The glamping site was better than we had imagined, immaculately clean and included absolutely everything we needed. The hosts are lovely people; extremely accommodating and went the extra mile to make sure we were all comfortable. The farm is a short walk from Marden high street, where there isn't masses to do, but this was not a problem as we didn't feel the need to leave the glamping site at all. However, there are a range of nice places to eat around Marden, and some lovely walking routes. I would 100% recommend staying at Gravel Pit Farm. It is suitable for anyone of any age, and I really hope to visit again in the future!
Emma B.recommends
April 16, 2021
The Stag Lodge
We have just spent an utterly magical 4 nights at Gravel Pit Farm. My son, who turned 4 the day we arrived, was in heaven. We didn’t leave for the first 48 hours to go anywhere else - we didn’t feel the need. Lighting the log burner first thing in the morning to warm up was fun and I loved getting that done before my son woke up, in his super king size sleeping cupboard, all toasty and warm with electric blanket, snuggly pillows and duvet. The paddock in front of the lodges gives the sense of freedom and expanse. We had close friends in the other lodge and the kids ran around together making up games for hours. Story time in the cosiness of the tent early evening, after long bbqs and marshmallow toasting around a camp fire, Gator rides with Simon for the kids and dogs, who were sweet and gentle. Feeding Marley the horse with apple pieces, collecting eggs from the chickens in the mornings, with light frost on the grass, dressed in PJs, dressing gowns, coats and hats! I can’t describe enough how amazing this holiday was. I took an iPad with me, and realised when we got home that I hadn’t watched a single thing, and my son only a few minutes here and there, and it was almost on full battery still! The bedlinen was amazing, the kitchen absolutely ample and had everything we needed. Water was hot, towels aplenty, and enough lighting to be practical yet magical, and it was great to have those luxuries whilst also feeling at one with nature. I can’t think of anything I would change. We certainly didn’t scrimp on logs etc as I wanted us to be warm! It got down to -1 a couple of nights and whilst getting up in the morning was a shock, being in the bed itself was amazingly warm. Last - the welcome pack was very well thought out, and Annabel also made us the most delicious sweet treats on a couple of the days. Thank you Annabel & Simon for one of the most memorable trips I have ever made, and we will be back as soon as possible!
Emmabartholomeou B.recommends
October 23, 2020
The Stag Lodge
We had a great weekend after not having any holiday all of 2020. The glamping lodge was really nice and Annabel was really friendly and helpful with recommendations. I'd definitely go again!
Maya ?.
July 31, 2020
This was a lovely trip. Everything was exactly what we expected from the pictures and the safari tents were far enough apart to have privacy. The owners were also very welcoming and even made us some delicious cookies for our stay! Honestly couldn’t recommend this place enough, it was the perfect little escape from the real world.
Jae P.
March 10, 2020
First time glamping and we thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Tent is cozy and has everything you need, location is good, owners are friendly. We recommend Gravel Pit Farm!
From the host
Gravel Pit Farm Glamping evolved from our many outdoor adventures. As our children were growing up we had almost daily campfires during the warmer months, our favourite way to entertain is a BBQ and many camping adventures are in our 'diary of the happiest days'. Here in Darling Buds Of May country we appreciate the great outdoors; big, wide skies burning into spectacular sunsets that in turn bring some of the most spellbinding nights of dramatic skies full of stars. At Gravel Pit Farm Glamping we want you to be able to share this, you can opt to turn of all the lights and quietly enjoy the night darkness with just a crackling campfire, absolute bliss! On those chillier evenings the odd light and a wood burning stove can make all the difference. Also... in this day and age a flushing loo a proper shower and electric blankets on the beds simply make the whole thing a bit more civilised. The safari tents are superbly well equipped, the three bedrooms all have comfortable beds with crisp white sheets, electric under blankets and warm extra blankets. Towels are supplied with a midweek towel change option for stays of a week. The wood burning stove always creates a toasty warm atmosphere. Experience sleeping in the middle of a field in winter but still being snug and cosy! Each tent has its own 30" charcoal BBQ with double layered grill which doubles as a fire pit after you have finished cooking. There is also a gas hob in the kitchen of each tent along with a kettle and toaster – some of life's little luxuries – there if you want them! Each tent has a fully functioning bathroom with loo, shower and basin but there is an extra loo for each tent in an outside cabin, which also has an outdoor wash stand with a victorian butlers sink. The site nestles in over an acre of paddock for the exclusive use of the two tents. Perfect for rounders, football cricket and games. Inside there is a suitcase full of boardgames. If you have a couple of extra people contact us regarding our 5m bell tent which sleeps 3 or more! So, based on our own experience whether you are looking for a romantic break away from it all, or you are a boisterous family looking for a great outdoor adventure, or maybe you are a group wanting a fun, step off the speeding world, celebration or getaway, we can offer you a really comfortable, luxury tent which is very civilised on the inside combined with a little bit of the wild and some outdoor fun on the outside.
Nearby attractions

The South East of England is real castle country and there are plenty nearby. Dramatic Leeds Castle, jutting out over a lake formed in the River Len, is 25 minutes away and both Sissinghurst Castle (01580 710701), perhaps more famous for its gardens than the building itself and National Trust-owned Scotney Castle (01892 893820), whose garden's are a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and a celebrated example of the Picturesque style, are 20 minutes away. If you love the history of these places, the Museum of Kent Life (01622 763936) is half an hour by car. If you're thirsty, you can have tours and tasting at Hush Heath Winery (01622 832794) – if you want to drink too much to drive it's an hours walk – while Herbert Hall vineyards (07956 163519) is closer still (a 15 minute walk), as is the Anno Gin distillery (01622 833278). The historic towns of Royal Tunbridge Wells and Cranbrook are 20 mins away and the ancient city of Canterbury is an hour away. There are ample footpaths and cycling is very popular around Marden as much of the Weald of Kent is flat(ish) – power assisted bikes can be hired nearby. It's also 20 minutes to Bewl Water for watersports.

Food and drink

Food deliveries to your tent with full meals from Life, Fork and Spoon (07900 586060) can be arranged (enquire in advance). It's a 10-minute walk to the first of the village's eateries, the West End Tavern (01622 831956; good pub grub). There are plenty of other places in Marden to eat if you carry on too. The Taj of Kent (01622 833339) is a good curry house with excellent service, The Unicorn (01622 296766) is a popular, traditional pub and the Marden Tandoori (01622 832184) is a second curry house option. The Old Post Office (01622 833374) in the village is now a coffee house with amazing homemade cakes. There's also a kebab shop, fish'n'chip shop and a Chinese. There are a couple of spots to get local groceries in the village, too: Marden Farm Shop (01622 83150) has interesting locally grown farm produce and can deliver, Taywell Farm Shop (01580 211853) has a wide selection of local produce and game, including pre-ordered boxes for BBQ’s. Larger supermarkets are a 20–25-minute drive away.

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