Sunninglye Farm (Feather Down Farm)
Sunninglye Farm, Dundale Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN3 9AG
As part of its natural evolution, this family-run farm on the Kent/Sussex borders is quietly adapting in a way that protects and enchances its wildlife, while still being home to sheep, horses, pigs, cats, dogs, a miniature horse, a gypsy cob and a donkey. Surrounded by woodland on all but one side, the owners have brought seven Feather Down tents to a shady hilltop copse, where each tent enjoys extensive farmland views.
It's a fantastic place for young campers. The farm's fields are all grass and campers are free to explore every nook and cranny. Children can play in the tractor-wheel sandpit, miniature treehouse and various swings, which are all dotted between trees. Owners Jo and Gill have even devised the 'Sunninglye Challenge' – a fun but educational farm trail which will occupy the kids for a couple of hours. It'll take them round the farm and teach them about it as they go, with a certificate for those able to complete it.
Each tent has its own camp fire, where you can cook if the wood-burning stove proves too tricky to master. The owners are happy to provide guests with logs, but it's much more fun to go and collect your own from Rushet Wood, the small area of open woodland near the tents.
Nearby Rocky Field is home to the farm's naturewatch hideout, where badgers, foxes and deer can be spotted. Further on, you’ll find a pond for net-fishing. For more of a challenge, request a raft-building experience and spend the afternoon trying your best not to sink into the mud. If you're a fan of organised fun, it's an enjoyable experience, and Jo can even make you a brunch box to keep your energy levels up.
After a day spent exploring, sustenance will be a priority and there are plenty of options onsite, from home-cooked meals, to home-baked cakes and ingredients for pizzas to be cooked in the bread oven.