Sunday, April 29, 2012

Two day Trip to Canterbury and Dover in Kent


My friend Marie organized a weekend trip to Dover as a birthday gift for a friend. So on Saturday afternoon, we hired a car and made our way down to Kent. On the way we stopped at Canterbury and Sandwich and here are some of the things we did which I definitely recommend:



1)       See the Canterbury Cathedral

The drive from London to Canterbury was about an hour .The Cathedral is the oldest place of worship in England and is a World Heritage site. It was built in 597 AD as the seat (or ‘Cathedra’) of the Archbishop.  The Cathedral is a beautiful building and is also the reason that quaint little Canterbury has achieved city status.



2)       Eat at the Old Brewery Tavern in Canterbury

Run by Michelin-starred chef Michael Caines, this pub is fantastic cheaper alternative to eating at his restaurant which right next door. They even a 2 course meal offer for 10£ which meant I stuffed myself with a beautifully presented Fish and Chips and scrumptious Banoffee Pie.



3)       See the White Cliffs of Dover

We spent the night at Dover Marina hotel and in the morning made our way down the beach for a Sea Safari tour. I don’t think any of us expected it how much fun the boat ride would be or how wet we would get! On my part, I thought we were going for a sedate boat ride to see some seals but it was much more than that. We were all dressed in what we thought would be adequate gear but we were thankful later that the guides provided us with windproof jackets and pants and even goggles. We sailed across the coastline right in front of the White Cliffs which were spectacular and then made our way to the nature reserve where a seal colony resides in Pegwell Bay.

We learned the cove is where all the young male seals come to chill out…..ok technically they are here to learn skills of surviving but to us, it seemed like they were hanging out on the river bank, shooting the breeze – nonchalantly checking out these strange humans in an orange boat. Finally, their curiosity gave way and they all simultaneously splashed out into the water and then kept bobbing around the boat to take a closer look at us. The way back was like quite a ride as we zipped across the water back to the Marina, getting a second of viewing of the stunning White Cliffs.

4)      Dover Castle
At the top of the White Cliffs, is the beautifully preserved Dover Castle built in the 1160’s. We went up but weren’t able to explore since it takes a good 3 to 4 hours to see the castle which we weren’t able to spend. If you’re interested though, entry is about £16 and they have a little cafĂ© as well and the views are amazing.



5)      Secret Garden in Sandwich

This was last minute addition to the trip and I’m so glad we found the elusive Secret Garden. No one in Sandwich seemed to have heard of it. An old manor house converted to a luxury B&B, has the most beautiful garden I have ever seen. This quaint, whimsical garden was such a delight to wander about in.






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