Situated between Dover and London the town of Maidstone was historically a main route for pilgrimages and a bustling centre for local and national trade. It is located about 30 miles from London and stands on the River Medway at a point where the River Len joins the main stream. This county town of Kent has seen many changes throughout the centuries; Stone Age finds have been made locally and the Romans were the first to extract the sandstone known as Kentish Rag from the area. With its colourful history of battles, witches, industrialists and Victorian benefactors Maidstone offers a wealth of attractions and provides the perfect mix of history, culture, leisure and entertainment. With a busy and thriving town centre and contrasting picturesque villages surrounded by glorious Kentish countryside, this delightful town promises to capture the interest and enthusiasm of all who visit.


[ Maidstone Museum and Bentlif Art Gallery] is housed in a charming Elizabethan manor house. The museum has many fascinating collections; the new Earth Heritage Gallery, with its dinosaurs and fossils, and the Egyptian Mummy are a favourite with the children. The art gallery stages a varied programme of exhibitions as well as 18th and 19th century European and English paintings.

No visit to Maidstone is complete without a walk along the Maidstone Millennium River Park which opened in 2001. The park is unique in that it passes through the town centre and yet maintains its distinctive rural character at both ends. A brand new recreational area, Whatman Park boasts a variety of special features including treetop walks, an adventure playground and a river stage area for outside entertainment.

Leeds Castle in nearby Hollingbourne has been described as being one of the loveliest castles in the world. Built on two islands in the middle of a lake the castle is surrounded by over 500 acres of parkland and beautiful gardens. Attractions here include a duckery, an aviary and a maze and grotto. The Medieval Gate Tower houses the world's largest collection of antique dog collars and the castle itself contains superb furnishings and fine tapestries.


Maidstone offers a wide variety of shops to suit all tastes. Most shops are open Monday - Saturday from 09.00 until 17.30 and Sunday 10.30 until 16.30 or 11.00 until 17.00. Many shops are now also open for Late Night Shopping every Thursday until 20.00. Bank Street is probably the most historically intact street in the town and tucked away among the listed buildings can be found many quality wine bars and speciality shops.

Broadway Shopping Centre on the Tonbridge Road offers a wide variety of clothing outlets together with a large discount supermarket. Fremlin Walk is a brand new shopping centre built on the riverside site of a Victorian brewery. The development houses many well known shops such as House of Fraser, Faith, Oasis and HMV as well as a selection of excellent restaurants and ample car parking. The Mall Chequers also offers excellent shopping facilities under one roof; its shops include Bhs, H.Samuel, Next and Miss Selfridge together with a Shopmobility scheme operating from the 1000 space multi-storey car park.

King Street, dedicated to King George III following his visit to the town in 1799 is home to many major building society branches, and the High Street, site of Maidstone Town Hall is home to a market, the County Magistrates' Court, Council Chambers and a gaol.The Corn Exchange is located in Market Buildings next to the Hazlitt Theatre and has a variety of independent specialist shops from clothing and lingerie to cake decorating and art. Lockmeadow Market is the envy of many market towns, with up to 100 stalls every Tuesday and 30 stalls on Saturday, many under cover. The Market Hall is also the venue for record fairs, antique fairs and other events throughout the year, with Boot Sales almost every Saturday.

Nightlife and Eating Out

When it comes to nightlife Maidstone is the place to go out in Kent; wine bars, theme pubs, live music venues and nightclubs are just a few of the attractions on offer and the town's wide range of venues caters for all music tastes.Chicago Rock Cafe always provides a real party atmosphere with regular live tribute bands and theme nights.

Up The Creek Comedy Club has recently opened a venue in Maidstone and on Friday and Saturday nights top acts from the comedy circuit regularly entertain visitors, followed by a disco until 2am. The club is a popular venue for birthday celebrations, hen and stag nights and corporate functions.[ The Loft] is one of the South East premier dance music clubs and The Basement is the most popular venue in Maidstone for live alternative music.

When it comes to dining out in Maidstone you are sure to find a wide variety of restaurants, pubs and cafes to cater for all tastes. If you are looking for tasty and authentic Indian cuisine you will be spoilt for choice! The Mughal Dynasty on London Road and the Jasmine Tandoori on Sutton Road are highly recommended, or if it's take-away food you are after then the Al-Amin Tandoori on Union Street is home to one of Maidstone's favourite curry houses.

Who'd A Thought It, in the nearby village of Lenham is a sixteenth century Inn, Champagne and Oyster Bar specialising in modern English cuisine. It offers a fine dining restaurant and brasserie and is an award winning establishment.

Tourist Information

Maidstone Tourist Information Centre Town Hall Middle Row, High Street Maidstone KentEngland ME14 1TF

Tel: +44 (0)1622 602 169Alternate Tel: +44 (0)1622 602 048Fax: +44 (0)1622 602 519


The nearest airport to Maidstone is [ London Southend Airport] which is located about 23 miles from Maidstone. The airport is on the brink of a major re-development to turn it into a new, easy to use low cost airport. Currently handling European passenger and cargo services, it is set to increase its flights and extend its range of destinations for both business and leisure passengers. The larger airports of Gatwick and Heathrow have regular flights to and from all other UK airports as well as an extensive range of international destinations. Both airports are easily accessible to Maidstone.

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