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Take a Trip to Rochester

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by Dave Walsh (subscribe)
I enjoy writing about Adelaide and its many attractions. If you think Adelaide is boring, the problem is not with Adelaide. adelaideunearthed.blogspot.com.au/
Published July 4th 2012
Take a Trip to Rochester

There are few places near London where a quick one hour train trip can take you to two castles, a 500 year old fort, a Norman cathedral, a manor house, and an attractive town.

rochester castle, rochester cathedral, rochester, strood, kent, london, fort amherst, upnor castle, chatham docks, temple manor
Rochester, Seen from Fort Amherst


A day trip to Rochester by train costs less than 20 pounds return, and takes you away from the noise and smells of London to the tranquility of the Medway towns. All of the attractions mentioned above are easily reachable by walking from Rochester, but if you are unable to walk far then public transport options are available.

If you have the time it really is well worth spending a couple of days to explore this area steeped in over a thousand years of history. Just exploring Rochester Castle alone will take a morning, so trying to squeeze all the places into one day isn't really a good option.

Budget accommodation is available in the area, but book ahead if you plan to stay to avoid disappointment.

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The Rochester High Street


Rochester Town

Upon reaching Rochester, there is an attractive colourful town to explore, with good eating and shopping facilities. In the shadow of imposing Rochester Castle you will find plenty of interesting sights to see.

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The Six Poor Travellers House (Established 1579)


The Six Poor Travellers House is a 16th-century charity house established by Sir Richard Watts to provide free lodgings for poor travellers.

On the High Street you can also see the The Corn Exchange built in 1706. The present frontage was a gift of Sir Cloudesly Shovel.

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The Corn Exchange in Rochester High Street


Take your time and stroll about the town to soak up the atmosphere. You'll be glad you did.

Rochester Castle

Rochester Castle is easily visited, as it towers over the town. It's also a pleasant place to picnic, or let the kids play on the large grassed area around the castle.

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Thousand Year Old Rochester Castle


Rochester Cathedral

The Cathedral is also easily found from the town, being only a couple of minutes walk away.

Take some time out to explore this ancient church - it is free to visit although a donation is requested.

rochester castle, rochester cathedral, rochester, strood, kent, london, fort amherst, upnor castle, chatham docks, temple manor
Rochester Cathedral


Upnor Castle

You can walk to Upnor Castle (about 3 miles) in around an hour and absorb some of the local atmosphere and sights of the river. Or if you would prefer to save your energy, you can take a 197 bus from Monday to Saturday. Be sure to check the timetable before you set out though.

This great example of an Elizabethan fort is fascinating if you have an interest in military or maritime matters.

rochester castle, rochester cathedral, rochester, strood, kent, london, fort amherst, upnor castle, chatham docks, temple manor
Spiral Staircase in Upnor Castle



Temple Manor

Temple Manor is another 25 minute walk (1 mile) from Rochester, but this time back over the River Medway to Strood. You could take the train back to Strood, but it's hardly worthwhile to do so.

This building has fascinating links to the Knights Templar, and is well preserved. You can see more about the Knights Templar while walking in London too.

Fort Amherst

Fort Amherst is an easy 25 minutes walk from Rochester towards Chatham. To get there by public transport, take the train from Rochester to Chatham and walk the remaining distance.

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Ruins at Fort Amherst



Chatham Historic Dockyard

Chatham Historic Dockyard is probably best combined with a visit to Fort Amherst as they are quite close to each other. If not, it will take around 30 minutes to walk there from Rochester.

The Dockyards were home to a major Royal Navy base for hundreds of years prior to its closure in 1984.

It is now home to historic warships, museums, and several unusual heritage listed buildings - a must to see if you are in the area

rochester castle, rochester cathedral, rochester, strood, kent, london, fort amherst, upnor castle, chatham docks, temple manor
Chatham Dockyards (Courtesy alh1 on Flickr)
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Why? Rochester is home to a great variety of tourist attractions in Kent.
Where: Rochester, Kent, England
Cost: Varies between attractions
Your Comment
Enjoyed your article and thank you for the tips on photo placement. Most helpful.
by Nadine Cresswell-Myatt (score: 3|4594) 1903 days ago
Why, thank you.
Your article on the secret gardens melbourne was a delicious blend of images, personal knowledge, and narrative :)
by Dave Walsh (score: 4|10372) 1903 days ago
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