Idyllic manor houses and a postcard-pretty castle sit in an ancient landscape where woods and fields undulate towards villages and hop farms.

Just 29 miles outside London, but with the charm of a traditional market town, Tonbridge offers much for the commuter and plenty more for families.

Tonbridge is a market town since the Middle Ages that still buzzes today. Tucked in beside the River Medway, is 11th century Tonbridge Castle. This is Kent's best example of a motte-and-bailey gatehouse, where audio tours and interactive exhibits bring history to life.

From the castle, take the cycle route 5 miles west through tranquil woodland and countryside to Penshurst Place, a fortified manor house that’s rich with medieval and Tudor charm. The gardens overflow with fragrance and blooms, while neighbouring Penshurst village is quintessential, historic Kent.

A combination of good schools, great properties and a vibrant town centre mean people who move to Tonbridge tend to stay.