Everyone knows that a good walk can do you a power of good. There are few places in the south east of England that meet the bill better than the coast at Broadstairs.
For many, deep Winter is the best time to visit the bays and the dunes. The painter Turner’s inspiration will soon become clear. The dramatic skies and sea make great backdrops for selfies and group photos!
As Spring approaches, the winds off the channel soften, the birds are in full flight and the days begin to lengthen. Its the perfect season to explore the changing shoreline.
In the Summer, the delights of beach life are obvious. Don’t miss the ‘Summer Seaside Safaris’ run by Thanet Council. On these, big kids and little kids alike can discover (or re-discover) what the eye doesn’t always see at first. See what you can find in your guided rock-pooling discovery!
Autumn, with the crowds gone, still provides ample opportunity for people-watching and enjoying at leisure the unique lifestyle of Broadstairs people.
The continent is never closer than when walking along the northern beaches. If the wind is in the right direction, you may even see your mobile carrier change to a Belgian one! If the skies are clear, you can see the coast on the other side of the Channel, and, to the south the headlands towards Deal.
where to begin your walk?
Viking Bay is a good place to start. You won’t be the first to pause and marvel at the classic seaside view from the promenade. Its the ideal starting point for your adventure.
To your right is Ramsgate with its marina, the biggest pub in the UK (in the restored Pavilion) and a lively creative arts scene. Allow from forty-five minutes gentle walk along the cliff-top, a little longer along the sand.
Further on lies Pegwell Bay, a fantastic opportunity to explore some industrial archaeology. Walk on the former hoverport aprons, discover flaking car lane markings and the footprints of long-demolished terminal buildings.
Past the Viking ship (a reconstruction) marking the long historical significance of the coast, you will soon be at one of the finest nature reserves in the region. Even if you aren’t a ‘birder’, there’s unrivalled opportunities to connect with nature and sit and have a breather.
Taking a left from Broadstairs, your journey will take you to Margate. Allow at least an hour and a half to reach it, longer if you take the beach. Soon you’ll be in the Old Town, a dynamic and creative place, steeped in history.
If you continue walking, past even more bays and beaches, each with their own character, you’ll soon arrive at Westgate, noted for its wrought-iron balconies and village feel.
If walking along the cliffs or on the beach isn’t your thing, then the finger sign-posted ‘Turner and Dickens trail’ (T&D) takes you through the middle of ‘the island’. You’ll pass through St Peter’s, fields and small villages, arriving at the back of ‘real Margate’ before ending up at the edge of the Main Sands and the Old Town.
The Coastal Path
is well sign-posted, but if you choose the beach routes, pick your times carefully! Check the tide times and allow yourself a good margin of error. The tide doesn’t come in evenly, remember – it may look clear for some distance, but just ahead, there may be no shore uncovered and you might have to retrace your steps!
At low tide, there’s lots of beach combing to be had, including an abundance of sea life. Watch out for countless crab shells you will find at low water – some have been grown out of, others were clearly breakfast for the herring gulls. The seagulls prefer chips, however so don’t be surprised if you hear a cry of surprise when a gull snatches them out of an unsuspecting visitor’s hand.
If the walk back feels like too much, simply grab ‘The Loop’, the bus that connects the three towns.
After your adventure, there’ll be a chance to plan your walk in the other direction tomorrow, but for now, wondering what the view of the sun setting looks like (always lovely) might be enough to tempt you out for an evening stroll…
The perfect holiday home for your adventure
is all you now require. You will find what you need in one of our comfortable and well equipped holiday lets in Broadstairs, check availability for your preferred dates via the form on our home page. All of our houses are suitable for families and groups. See you soon!
Photo credits: TDC/Visit Thanet