We love London’s museums.
But we do like to combine them with some outdoor fun.
So Lullingstone Roman Villa was a big hit.
The villa really gives you an idea of day to day life in Roman Britain.
But is set in a lovely valley just a short journey from London, which is fab for a walk and riverside pub lunch but also offers a ruined castle, eagles, owls and a great garden of mysterious plants …
We got the train. And walked the short distance across the Darent Valley to Lullingstone Villa.
The villa belonged to some fairly fancy pants Roman Brits.
And shows that if you’d got the money, life in Roman Britain was pretty cushdy.
They had some serious under floor heating going on. And their bathooms – note the plural! – certainly put ours to shame with their fancy plunge pools.
A galleried museum has been built around the remains of the villa, so you can look down over it. And there’s a short film and light show that takes you through the rooms.
In the surrounding gallery there are lots of simple Roman artefacts.
It’s not grand stuff like the British Museum – more the domestic bits and bobs you find in the Museum of London. And which in my experience, kids really love as they can relate to them.
There are costumes to dress up in. Always a winner with us!
And some nice come and go table activities like making magnetic mosaic pavements.
Lullingstone’s Villa not enormous. We were probably only there an hourish.
But most times I find shorter is sweeter for kids and museum trips, don’t you?
And after eating our picnic in the villa grounds we strolled back to Eynsford.
We were totally entranced by the ford, very cool! And nipped into the ruined Eynsford Castle, which – can I say this? – is the perfect place for a quick game of Forty Forty.
We didn’t have time for the nearby eagles and owls or the weird plants but enjoyed ourselves so much we’ll definitely be back on a sunny day in spring.
Not forgetting a towel, so we can paddle properly in the ford.
I try to review as many free museums as I can on sloely – you’ll find lots here – but Lullingstone Villa is about £20 for a family of four unless, like us, you have English Heritage membership.
We have definitely had our money’s worth out of our membership with a whole host of great trips in and around London plus some fab visits when on holiday in the UK.
I hope you have a great time if you make it out to Lullingstone. Let me know how you get on.
And do check out my other ideas for fun days out, in and around London.
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Getting There :
Lullingstone Villa is a 10-15 minute walk from Eynsford station. Eynsford is on the Thameslink line to Sevenoaks via Blackfriars, Elephant & Castle and Bromley. Direct trains from Blackfriars take about 45 minutes. If you don’t mind changing, it’s even quicker to go from Victoria and change at Bromley.
Other Attractions :
Within a mile of Lullingstone Villa you can also take your pick from the ruined Eynsford Castle, Eagle Heights Birds of Prey Centre, Lullingstone Country Park and the world garden at Lullingstone Castle.
We took a picnic as usual and there’s only a small tea bar at the Villa. But there are three pubs in Eynsford Village.