WALKS & CYCLE RIDES
With mile upon mile of beautiful coastline, Thanet is made for seaside strolls or coastal cycle rides. It’s a wonderful way to enjoy Ramsgate’s balmy weather and take in some fresh sea air.
Along the way you can stop off at sandy beaches, bustling towns and plenty of historic landmarks.
To avoid the hassle of bringing your own bikes, you may want to hire some from Caitlin’s Beach Cruisers. This family-run business knows the local trails like the back of its hand. They’d be happy to hand out any advice on fun routes to take.
You can collect your bikes from their base in Margate harbour. If you’d prefer, they will drop the bikes at, and collect the bikes from, your apartment.
If you’re after a gentle stroll that doesn’t take you far from your doorstep then Ramsgate’s promenades are a great place to start, especially if you have kids in tow.
Why not get started with a walk along Ramsgate’s West Cliff promenade? Far below, you’ll see the busy ferry port with a vast stretch of the English Channel beyond. Half way along there’s a cafe and a playground if you fancy a pit stop – and even a boating lake if you’re feeling adventurous!
The Viking Coastal Trail is a 27-mile long seaside trail split into six different routes. Each route explores a different part of Thanet’s rich heritage.
Suitable for experienced and novice cyclists alike, you’ll come across old smugglers’ hangouts, cosy bays, ancient churches and some of the area’s stunning architecture.
For more information on The Viking Coastal Trail, visit www.vikingcoastaltrail.co.uk. But allow us to tell you some of our personal favourites.
OUR FAVOURITE WALKS
With its secluded beaches and bays, 18th-century Thanet was a playground for smugglers, who hid their contraband in local caves and underground tunnels.
This 3.5-mile trail takes in a number of places where these crooks hung out. You’ll start in Joss Bay, named after the most notorious of all smugglers, Joss Snelling, before continuing on to Botany Bay. Now gorgeous, Botany Bay was once infamous – in 1769, smugglers shot a Riding Officer on the beach. He staggered into the nearby Captain Digby Inn but died of his injuries.
The Captain Digby was once a favourite haunt of the smugglers. Now it makes a great place to enjoy a meal and take stock on what you have discovered.
Take the opportunity to discover one of our neighbouring towns with this 3.5-mile route. Visiting Broadstairs, you feel like you have stepped back in time to the age of the classic seaside holiday. In the summer, its beach is quite a picture – all donkey rides, sticks of rock, and Punch and Judy Shows.
Broadstairs was Charles Dickens’ favourite holiday destination, and you can stop off at the Dickens House Museum, home to memorabilia belonging to the great author. Continue up the coast from here and you’ll come across North Foreland lighthouse, the last manned lighthouse in the country and, with its bright-white walls, a beautiful sight.
This 5.25-mile trail is a fantastic way to experience a number of the plentiful beaches and bays around here. The trail starts in Margate. Before you set off, you could always kick back on Margate’s golden-sand beach or explore the boutiques and galleries of Margate Old Town.
Carry on up the coastline, the sun on your back, and pass the windsurfers and sailing boats out to sea. You’ll pass a number of secluded bays en route – we recommend any of Epple Bay, Beresford Gap or Grenham Bay as a picnic spot. You may have the beach all to yourself.
The route ends in Minnis Bay. With its paddling pool and children’s play area nearby, it’s a popular, family-friendly beach and also a mecca for windsurfers.
These are just a few of our favourites. Of course, you could map out a route all of your own. One thing’s for sure, comfortable and luxurious accommodation will await your return at the end of the day.