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Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

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Fremont, California
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Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

Initially, I am planning a day trip from London to both Leeds Castle and Cantebury Cathedral (on the same day) by train during Christmas, but realize that the sunset at 4pm, I probably can pick one. Any advice which one I should pick?

Before that, I should have visited

Salisbury Cathedral, St Paul's Cathedral, Bath Abbey;

Windsor Castle, Warwick Castle


Tenterden, United...
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1. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

There are pros and cons for either but I personally would choose Canterbury..

Leeds Castle is different from the Windsor and Warwick Castles. The original castle dates back to the 13th century and much of it remains but it was updated in the 1920s when it became to home of Lady Baillie and it has more of a lived in feel in some places. The grounds are stunning but maybe not so much during the winter.

The city of Canterbury has much more to offer with a lovely atmosphere in the run up to Christmas plus the Cathedral with its importance as the home of the Anglican Church and a history going back to the first cathedral in 6th century.


There is so much history attached to Canterbury it may be worthwhile booking a blue badge guided tour of the city to understand the relevance of what you are seeing.


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2. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

If you're visiting Warwick and Windsor castle anyway. I would definitely go to Canterbury.

Hope you've got a couple of weeks for all this btw.

Tonbridge, United...
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3. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

I love both.

I suggest you look at the websites for both and make your choice

Leeds Castle: http://www.leeds-castle.com/land.php

Canterbury Cathedral: http://www.canterbury-cathedral.org/

Leeds Castle provides an excellent day out with a walk in its beautiful landscaped grounds, its aviary and of course the moted castle. The castle as said earlier has interiors mostly from the 1920s and 30s.

To get to Leeds Castle, you can get the train from London Victoria to Bearsted. There is a shuttle bus which runs between March and October only which can then transfer you to the castle for an extra fee.

There is much more to Canterbury than the cathedral and I would probably choose this too. You have a choice of departures from London Victoria or London Charing Cross (journey time roughly the same) or the High Speed Train from St Pancras (more expensive)

Should you choose to do both, I'd start at Leeds Castle and then get the train from Bearsted to Canterbury. However, it would be a very busy day and I don't think you would get the best out of either.

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4. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

Canterbury, definitely, Not just the Cathedral, but it's a nice town to stroll around, see the old town walls, and the Roman museum.

Leeds Castle looks wonderful in photos, but there is not actually that much open to the public inside. A lot of time and effort to get there for little reward, in my opinion.

Maidstone, United...
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5. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

You could actually do both if you are visiting between 13 & 23 December as Leeds Castle are doing special evening openings for the Christmas Past event: http://www.leeds-castle.com/christmaspast

England, United...
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6. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

I too would vote for Canterbury, but since you plan to go 'during Christmas' be aware of the opening hours of the Cathedral for visitors. On 23rd, 24th, and 25th of December the Cathedral will be completely closed for visitors.

More info on other dates and partial closures here:


Fremont, California
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7. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

Thanks all for valuable comment. Doing both in the same day is challenging. The first shuttle bus leave Leeds Castle to Bearsted Station at almost 2pm, taking about 1 hour train to Cantebury, arrive at Cantebury around 3pm. Sunset at 4pm, that mean 1 hour in Cantebury and 2 hours back to London.

West London
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8. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

If you can't go inside Leeds Castle is it even worth visiting on a cold day in December when you will be walking around in the rain?

Fremont, California
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9. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

To answer Glyn1's question: No, especially with kids :-)

I probably will pick Cantebury only.

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10. Re: Leeds Castle vs Cantebury Cathedral

There is a castle in Canterbury too, although it's in ruins. My daughter liked seeing it.