Overview

Dating back to the 13th century, Hever Castle was once the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, second wife of Henry VIII and Mother of Elizabeth I.

It formed the unlikely backdrop to a sequence of tumultuous events that changed the course of Britain’s history, monarchy and religion.

Its panelled rooms house fine furniture, tapestries, antiques and what is regarded as ‘one of the best collections of Tudor portraits after the National Portrait Gallery’ by David Starkey.

The Book of Hours Room beautifully illuminates two prayer books which belonged to Anne Boleyn and bear her inscriptions and signature.

Today, much of what you see is the result of the remarkable efforts of William Waldorf Astor, who used his fortune to restore and extend the Castle in the early 20th century.

The Astor Suite is dedicated to its more recent history, showcasing pictures and memorabilia relating to the Astor family and the Edwardian period.


Opening
Opening

2020

See below dates and times in which Historic Houses members can visit for free. Note: Historic Houses members are no longer restricted to one free visit per year.

Castle: Monday to Friday excluding Bank Holidays.

  • 10 to 14 February
  • 24 February to 1 April
  • 16 April to 22 May
  • 1 June to 22 July
  • 1 September to 23 October
  • 2 November to 20 November

Garden from 10.30am. Castle from 12pm. Last entry 3pm (4.30pm from 30 March to 23 October).

Find Us
Find us

The main visitor entrance is at ///wedge.secret.lovesWhat does this mean?

Hever Castle is located 30 miles from central London, 3 miles southeast of Edenbridge off the B2026 between Sevenoaks and East Grinstead in the village of Hever.

Trains run from London Victoria and London Bridge (via Oxted or East Croydon) to Edenbridge Town Station, and then take a taxi for three miles to the castle.

  • Offers bike storage
Parking

Car park on site

  • Free

Taxi

Relyon Taxis 01732 863800

Admission
Admission

Historic Houses members visit free during off-peak times during the year.

Other entry prices vary.

More admission details

Accessibility
Accessibility
  • Accessible toilets
  • Accessible parking
  • Hearing loops
  • Large font signs and leaflets
  • Wheelchair ramps/routes
  • Access statement available
Group Visits
Group Visits

Whether you are a group travel organiser, a teacher, or member of the travel trade planning trips and tours in Kent, Hever Castle & Gardens has a selection of experiences and packages to suit the interests and needs of groups and schools alike.

We have a dedicated member of staff who will assist you with your planning and will guide you every step of the way to ensure that your group visit is a memorable one.

Whatever type of group visit you are planning, large or small we look forward to helping you plan your perfect day out.

Find out more.

Please check the website for further information, admission times and details for our special events

Visit website

Invitation to Stay

Surrounded by glorious Kent countryside, Hever Castle in Kent offers 28 beautifully appointed bedrooms in the Astor Wing and the Anne Boleyn Wing, both Edwardian Wings created by William Waldorf Astor, designed in Tudor style.

Once the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, the luxury accommodation at Hever Castle has been graded a rating of ‘five-star gold’ guest accommodation.

Across the portfolio of rooms, you will find an abundance of rich fabrics, crisp linens and panelled walls, with perhaps a golden chaise longue or a glimpse of the Castle through leaded windows.

The bedrooms

All bedrooms are en-suite and individually styled, with some offering four poster beds, roll top baths or walk in showers. All rooms blend modern day comforts with antique furnishings and original features. The fine collection of bedrooms offers a selection of double rooms, twin rooms, single rooms and some rooms that are suitable for families with young children.

The Astor Wing

The Astor Wing offers a beautiful panelled lounge with deep sofas and a selection of books and magazines for guests to relax with during their stay. There’s also a rather splendid Billiards Room to be discovered. Guests who book an Anne Boleyn Wing bedroom will have access to the Astor Wing Lounge and Billiards Room on dates when there are no private events booked into the Astor Wing.

The Anne Boleyn Wing

The Anne Boleyn Wing enjoys its own exquisite Breakfast Room which is flooded with natural daylight and offers window seats looking out across the orchard to the castle. Bookings in the Anne Boleyn Wing can be up to six months in advance of the date you wish to stay, with bookings in the Astor Wing taken eight weeks in advance. A ‘Full English’ breakfast is included, complemented by a healthy ‘Continental’ buffet. 

There are opportunities to play golf on the Hever Castle championship course or book a treatment at the Health and wellbeing centre.

All bookings receive complimentary access to the Castle and grounds during opening hours on the day of arrival, the day of departure and all days in between. Outside of opening hours guests can enjoy access to some parts of the gardens. And should you choose to visit on days when the Castle and gardens are closed to the visiting public, a Private Guided Tour of the Castle is offered. 

Medley Court

In addition to the Bed and Breakfast, Hever Castle also offers a self-catering holiday cottage, Medley Court, a four-bedroom cottage forming part of the Astor Wing. Surrounded by formal lawns and offering Castle views, the cottage sleeps up to eight guests. Its appearance is that of a Tudor house, there is a spacious kitchen, a panelled dining room and a lounge that opens up onto a outdoor covered terrace.

Weddings

Your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life.

With this in mind, Hever Castle is proud to offer a selection of award winning venues.

Whether it’s the stately grandeur of the castle itself, the classic, country house atmosphere of the Astor Wing or the stunning lakeside location of the Italian Garden, Hever Castle offers a wedding venue to suit all your wedding day dreams.

OUR OFFER

  • Suppliers list
  • Overnight guest accommodation
  • Wedding planner
  • Bridal suite
  • Guest parking
  • Accessible parking
  • In-house catering

Accommodation

Within the grounds of the Hever Castle estate there are two opportunities for you to spend the night with us.

One is as a guest in our ‘five star’ Luxury Bed and Breakfast, located in the Astor Wing and the Anne Boleyn Wing, an Edwardian Wing attached to Hever Castle.

The other is in our ‘five star gold’ rated holiday cottage, Medley Court, which is attached to the Astor Wing.


Corporate Hire

Corporate events

Hever Castle, the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, offers two unique venues for corporate hospitality, the Astor Wing and the Guthrie Pavilion.

The Astor Wing, sympathetically built onto the castle by William Waldorf Astor in 1904, the Astor Wing boasts an impressive Tudor style meeting space, newly refurbished with state of the art audio visual facilities, suitable for up to 60 delegates.  Dine in the castle in the evening and stay overnight in one of the 28 luxury, 5 star bedrooms.

The Guthrie Pavilion, located in the award winning Italian Garden, this versatile, contemporary space accommodates up to 200 delegates. Offering the flexibility of being used for either a conference or a dinner, the Guthrie Pavilion is popular with clients requiring somewhere to meet in a peaceful location with space to spread out and brainstorm.

Combine either venue with team building activities in the grounds. Hever Castle also offers a championship golf course, an activities field for outdoor pursuits, an outdoor heated swimming pool and a tennis court. Whether it’s an off-site meeting you are organising, a team building activity day, perhaps a company celebration, a summer or Christmas party, or quite simply an opportunity to get away from the office, Hever Castle opens its doors to you and offers its beautiful facilities as a first class venue.

Find out more.

Facilities

  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Plentiful parking
  • Team building activities
  • Refreshments
  • Lunch
  • Accessible toilets
  • Dinner
  • Projector and screen
  • Overnight accommodation
  • Breakfast

Opening
Opening

2020

See below dates and times in which Historic Houses members can visit for free. Note: Historic Houses members are no longer restricted to one free visit per year.

Castle: Monday to Friday excluding Bank Holidays.

  • 10 to 14 February
  • 24 February to 1 April
  • 16 April to 22 May
  • 1 June to 22 July
  • 1 September to 23 October
  • 2 November to 20 November

Garden from 10.30am. Castle from 12pm. Last entry 3pm (4.30pm from 30 March to 23 October).

Find Us
Find us

The main visitor entrance is at ///wedge.secret.lovesWhat does this mean?

Hever Castle is located 30 miles from central London, 3 miles southeast of Edenbridge off the B2026 between Sevenoaks and East Grinstead in the village of Hever.

Trains run from London Victoria and London Bridge (via Oxted or East Croydon) to Edenbridge Town Station, and then take a taxi for three miles to the castle.

  • Offers bike storage
Parking

Car park on site

  • Free

Taxi

Relyon Taxis 01732 863800

Admission
Admission

Historic Houses members visit free during off-peak times during the year.

Other entry prices vary.

More admission details

Accessibility
Accessibility
  • Accessible toilets
  • Accessible parking
  • Hearing loops
  • Large font signs and leaflets
  • Wheelchair ramps/routes
  • Access statement available
Group Visits
Group Visits

Whether you are a group travel organiser, a teacher, or member of the travel trade planning trips and tours in Kent, Hever Castle & Gardens has a selection of experiences and packages to suit the interests and needs of groups and schools alike.

We have a dedicated member of staff who will assist you with your planning and will guide you every step of the way to ensure that your group visit is a memorable one.

Whatever type of group visit you are planning, large or small we look forward to helping you plan your perfect day out.

Find out more.

Other opening

General Opening Times

2020 – Castle & Gardens – closed until 8 February. When open the grounds open at 10:30 am – Castle opens at 12:00 noon.

On arrival you will receive a leaflet with opening times for all attractions and amenities. 

Date Last entry Final Exit
Early Spring Season 2020

8 Feb – 29 Mar

(Daily)

15:00 16:30

Main Season 2020

30 Mar – 24 Oct

(Daily)

16:30 18:00

Winter Season 2020

25 Oct – 1 Nov

(Daily)

15:00 16:30

2 Nov – 20 Nov

(Wed – Sun)

15:00 16:30

Christmas Season 2020

21 Nov – 8 Dec

(Wed – Sun)

16:30

18:00

9 Dec – 23 Dec

(Daily)

16:30

18:00

24 Dec

15:00

16:30

Winter Walks 2020/21

27 Dec – 3 Jan

(Daily)

15:00

16:30

EAT AT HEVER

From freshly made cakes and ice cream to light bites and fine dining, there’s something for everyone, whatever your appetite.

Discover a choice of restaurants, a cafe, and kiosks dotted around the grounds*. Or bring your own and picnic at one of the many areas in the grounds.*

Make your visit unforgettable with Afternoon Tea served in the Anne Boleyn Wing overlooking the orchard with views of the Castle.

For special events, please see the appropriate ‘What’s on‘ page.

If you are planning a group visit to Hever Castle, discover the various group lunch offers here

Only one mile from the Castle’s main entrance is The Waterside Bar, Restaurant & Terrace at the Golf Club.

*Some catering facilities are seasonal, please check at the Information Centre on arrival.

HEVER SHOP

The Hever Shop offers a wonderful selection of carefully chosen items for you and your home including unique mementoes and gifts inspired by Hever Castle, the collection and gardens.

There’s a fabulous selection of homeware including tableware and gorgeous cushions to doorstops, scented candles, glassware and china. You’ll find cards and wrapping paper for all occasions, while foodies will be spoilt for choice with local Kent produce ranging from preserves, chutneys and chocolates to alcoholic beverages.

Why not purchase an Annual Membership. Click here to contact us.

Opening Times

The Hever Shop is open on the same days as the Castle and Grounds – final exit from the shop is 15 minutes before the grounds close. View our opening times.

Online Shop

For those that can’t make it to the Hever Shop, a selection of items can be found on our new online shop.

ACCESSIBILITY AT HEVER CASTLE & GARDENS

This access statement does not contain personal opinions as to our suitability for those with access needs, but aims to accurately describe the facilities and services that we offer all our visitors.

Situated in the heart of the Kent countryside, Hever Castle & Gardens is a Grade 1 listed building and garden, once the childhood home of Anne Boleyn.

At Hever Castle & Gardens we strive to ensure that all visitors have an enjoyable experience. Visitors with disabilities will be charged at the appropriate individual rate for ‘Castle & Gardens’ or ‘Gardens Only’. Their carer will be admitted free of charge.

If you are unsure that access to the Castle building is suitable for you, we recommend that you purchase a ‘Gardens Only’ ticket and have a look at the Castle gatehouse to make your own assessment. Should you decide to visit the Castle you are able to upgrade your ticket at the Castle Entrance.

For your own safety, we advise wheelchair and mobility scooters keep to the hard surfaced and shingle paths.

Visit their website for more information about access arrangements.


School Visits

EDUCATIONAL HISTORY TRIP

A visit to Hever Castle & Gardens offers an informative educational history trip for UK and overseas groups and provides a stimulating opportunity for learning outside the classroom. A visit falls into two categories in the primary national history curriculum. School and student groups must book their visits in advance. A Group Visits Coordinator will be happy to talk through the best type of visit to suit your class learning objectives. Teachers can choose to book a private guided tour of the Castle, a free-flow visit where you can lead your class around the Castle and Gardens at your own pace, or include a workshop or pre-booked multimedia guide for children.


Walks

Discover magnificent award-winning gardens set in 125 acres of glorious grounds at Hever Castle. Marvel at the Pompeiian Wall and classical statuary in the Italian Garden; admire the giant topiary chess set and inhale the fragrance of over 4,000 rose bushes in the quintessential English Rose Garden.

The Loggia, overlooking the 38-acre lake, is the perfect spot to relax before exploring the many cascades, grottoes and fountains. A stroll through the Tudor Garden, Blue Corner or Rhododendron Walk, provide colour and interest throughout the year.

Wander further afield and enjoy Sunday Walk and Church Gill Walk that follow the course of a stream through peaceful woodland or Anne Boleyn’s Walk, with its impressive collection of trees planted more than 100 years ago.

Enjoy Astor’s Garden Legacy, our interactive garden exhibition which traces the restoration and development of the stunning gardens from Tudor times to the present day.

We recommend that you allow 1.5 hours to explore the gardens.



Hever Castle's history and features

Spanning more than 700 years, the history of Hever Castle is rich and varied. The original medieval defensive castle, with its gatehouse and walled bailey, was built in 1270. In the 15th and 16th centuries it was the home of one of the most powerful families in the country, the Boleyns, who added the Tudor dwelling within the walls. 

The Castle was to become the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, King Henry VIII’s second wife, who became Queen of England for just 1,000 days. It was Henry’s love for Anne and her insistence that she became his wife rather than his mistress that led to the King renouncing Catholicism and creating the Church of England. 

Hever later passed into the ownership of another of Henry VIII’s wives, Anne of Cleves, and from 1557 onwards it was owned by a number of families including the Waldegraves, the Humphreys and the Meade Waldos.

Gradually it fell into decline before William Waldorf Astor invested time, money and imagination in restoring the Castle. He commissioned the ’Tudor Village’, now called the ‘Astor Wing’ and the construction of the magnificent gardens and lake. At Hever, his wealth and vision enabled him to create a lavish family home that also indulged his passion for history.

Find out more about their history here


Fun Facts

Much of what you see today is thanks to William Waldorf Astor, who was once the richest man in America and who purchased Hever Castle in 1903.

Upon the death of his father in early 1890, Astor inherited a personal fortune that made him the richest man in America. He grew increasingly disenchanted with America announcing that it was ‘no longer a fit place for a gentleman to live’ and in 1891 moved to England with a reputed $100 million.

Between 1903 and 1908 Astor set about the restoration of the Castle, construction of the Astor Wing and creation of the lake and gardens.