Whitstable is one of those places that I wish I’d visited sooner.
A British Seaside town with miles of beautiful tranquil coastline, hotel rooms that overlook the ocean, fish and chip shops a-plenty, but minus the crowds of the more well known coastal towns within reach of London. It took us just over an hour to reach Whitstable, aboard one of the regular Southeastern Railway leaving St. Pancras International. The scenic and easy journey allowed us time to catch up with a few emails and edits and then we walked from the station to our hotel; The Marine, where the four of us (yes, Dickens and Dexter came along too!) had a quick turnaround before we headed out to explore.
It didn’t take me long to really fall in love with Whitstable. I’m not a regular visitor of seaside towns in the UK; I’ve been to West Wittering once, Brighton once, and a couple of places I don’t remember very much of when I was very young – but this was our first UK beach break, and what a perfect couple of days we chose for it! With temperatures reaching 27 degrees, we enjoyed long walks in the warm sea breeze, hours of relaxing on the pebble beach, and long afternoons enjoying Pimms in one of the many coastal establishments. Our trip reminded us that we really need to make the most of what we have (almost) on our doorstep, and that there are some real hidden gems just a short journey away from London.
Here are my 5 reasons to visit Whitstable!
1 – The Food!
We’d barely been in Whitstable for an hour before seeking out a local chippie. I feel like you really can’t visit the British Seaside without beelining for some fresh fish and chips, and ‘Ossies’ chip shop on Tankerton highstreet didn’t disappoint. We took our treats to the beach and for the first time in a long while, truly just switched off and let our minds wonder – away from the bustle and mayhem of the busy city we’d left behind. Feeling invigorated and satisfied from our lunch, our minds soon wondered to what we’d have for dinner, but, as it’s often nice to do, we decided to just see what we fancied later on we made no plans, and just wondered through the quaint town of Whitstable to take our pick. Charlie is writing more about the food we enjoyed on his blog post here, so check that out for more Whitstable food recommendations!
2 – The Accommodation
There are plenty of places to stay for every budget in Whitstable. We chose The Marine hotel as our base, it’s dog friendly, affordable and spacious modern rooms of which many overlook the sea, and the most perfect location. As well as this, you could opt to stay in a converted fishermans hut (Charlie and I are eyeing this up for our next visit) or even a local B&B. Due to it’s proximity to London, you could most certainly visit Whitstable in just a day, but if you fancy making a weekend out of it, you’ll be spoilt for choice with the options in Whitstable and nearby Tankerton.
3 – The Accessibility!
Following from my point above, it really took me by surprise just how easy it is to get to Whitstable from London. A Southeastern Railway train takes just 1.12hr when you choose the fast train option from St Pancras, and you can also travel to and from London Victoria too. The speedy journey is quicker than a lot of people’s daily commutes, so a fabulous place to visit even if just for the day.
4 -The Beach Huts!
How adorable are these candy coloured beach huts?! I hadn’t realised how many there are in Whitstable – but the rows of them along the promenade looked simply adorable against the coastal backdrop. They made for fun outfit shot locations but you can also rent some of them out for the day, or to stay!
This one was my favourite, with colours reminiscent of Sweeties by Swizzles & Matlow, it got us thinking – how would we paint ours if we ever became the proud owners of a beach hut?!
6 – The Tranquility
The last time Charlie and I had felt this peaceful was on the beach in the Maldives, and Whitstable is *somewhat* closer and more affordable! Leaving the city behind even if just for a few hours, and enjoying the peacefulness of the beach – absorbing the tranquility and the calm aura was just what we needed after a busy week.
As well as the above, there’s also the adorable town of Whitstable to enjoy; complete with Oyster bars, seafood restaurants, gift shops and all the classics you’d expect from a British Seaside town! We couldn’t resist trying a local ice cream and picking up some trinkets from the high street, before walking back to our hotel via the harbour where you can either pick up something to snack on from the market stall huts, or the rustic ‘beach shacks’ selling fish and chips or freshly caught seafood.
In the peak summer months you could also canoe or paddle board in the calm waters, or if sticking to dry land is more your thing, discover the Castle in Whitstable; we paid a visit and enjoyed a stroll in the beautiful rose gardens, and then watched the locals enjoying a game of boules in the park – what a blissful life!
Discover more of what we got up to on our trip in my latest vlog here.
So, have I persuaded you?!
Whitstable remains somewhat of a hidden gem and yet it’s proximity to London makes it the perfect place for a getaway – I am already thinking about our next trip! If you fancy booking a trip to Whitstable or somewhere else in East Sussex or Kent, click here to see the advance purchase offers from Southeastern Railway this Summer; from as little as £10!
Thank you to Southeastern Railway for collaborating on today’s post!