The jewel in Thanet’s crown, Broadstairs is a charming coastal resort town, and one of Kent’s most popular holiday destinations. At Stays.co.uk, our roots in Broadstairs run deep, and so with summer approaching we’ve come up with a list of our top 10 things to do in Broadstairs, ranging from the Broadstairs hotels, events, restaurants and bars:
Any proud Kentish town boasts its fair share of great pubs, but if you’re looking for a character-filled local to stop in for a quick tipple, then you’re going to have more luck in Broadstairs than anywhere else.
The Tartare Frigate is a fantastic pub and seafood restaurant housed in one of the only surviving 18th century flint buildings in Kent, whilst The Chapel is an equally charming historic conversion serving locally-sourced real ales and gourmet pub food.
The newest and hottest place to enjoy a wide arrange of craft beers, ciders and ales, is at The Royston Micropub. A family run coffee and alehouse with a twist. Serving well kept, locally sourced Kent cask ales & real ciders from a state of the art showpiece chiller cabinet. A wide range of wines and spirits and amazing espresso using a unique house blend of coffee beans freshly roasted by Coffee Bean Shop in Ashford, Kent.
Last but not least, there’s The Charles Dickens, which is one of Broadstairs largest pubs and offers a warm welcome and stunning views of Viking Bay.
Open 364 days a year, this charming grade II listed building is a haven for film-lovers.
Built in 1911 as The York Gate Hall (a museum of armour), the cinema served as a puppet theatre for many years, before being converted into a cartoon cinema in 1965. Today the cinema hosts the Thanet Film Society, who meet every Tuesday to present a regular programme of independent and art house cinema. The cinema also retains a classic cinema organ, installed by co-owner Colin Jay, who sometimes treats audiences to a performance before a showing.
In Broadstairs you’re never too far from the golden sands and deep blue sea of the rugged Kentish coastline. With so many fantastic beaches, you won’t go wrong wherever you go, but if you’re looking to get away from the crowds then you may find that the slightly more secluded Dumpton Gap is the place for you. Completely submerged at high-tide, Dumpton Gap may not be Broadstairs’ best-known beach, but when the waters recede they reveal a fantastic beach offering breath-taking views of the sea and surrounding coastline; a great spot for surfing, swimming and sunbathing. Unlike some of Kent’s other beaches, Dumpton Gap is pet-friendly throughout the summer months, meaning that your four-legged friends can get in on the fun too!
No Great British seaside holiday would be complete without stopping to enjoy our most famous national food.
And Broadstairs offers plenty of opportunities to sample some beer-battered goodness this summer.
‘Star of the Sea’ offers some of Broadstairs’ freshest fish and chips, and is great value for money, whilst The Fish Inn serves up generous portions right next to Pierremont Park.
6. Westwood Cross
Westwood Cross is a shopping centre at Westwood in Thanet, Kent. Located in Broadstairs, it is easy to find and in between both Margate and Ramsgate. The shopping centre has it all, with a cinema, casino, bingo and over 30 different retailers.
Broadstairs’ famous firework displays are a local institution, and this year there are plenty of chances to get involved, with five displays scheduled throughout the year. All displays take place at Viking Bay, including one to Broadstairs’ Water Gala, so grab a blanket and head on down to the beach.
Broadstairs has been a popular holiday destination for many years, and has enjoyed its fair share of famous visitors. But the holidaymaker most associated with the town is beloved Victorian author Charles Dickens, who spent much of his life in Broadstairs.
The town famously provided inspiration for his novels ‘David Copperfield’ and ‘Bleak House’. The museum itself is housed in No.2 Victoria Parade, which may be familiar to ardent dickensians as the inspiration for the home of Betsey Trotwood in ‘David Copperfield’. Dickens and his son Charley regularly had tea there.
Today the museum houses a permanent collection of Dickens’ personal effects, including his writing box and several letters mentioning Broadstairs, alongside displays of Dickensian memorabilia and Victorian clothing. The museum features a gift shop and is suitable for families with children of all ages.
From the stunning white stacks to the rugged cliff face which frames the beach, the gorgeous landscape of Botany Bay is one of Broadstairs’ most recognisable beaches, and the golden sands of this picturesque spot simply ooze classic British seaside charm.
The best time to visit is when the tide is out, and you can explore the bay’s fossils and rock pools. That said, there is still plenty of sand to enjoy even when the tide is in, and Botany Bay is a not-to-be-missed destination for any holiday-goers seeking a traditional seaside holiday.
The beach is just a short drive from our holiday rentals, and there is both a pub and a cafe near by so you can extend your visit to Botany Bay into a whole family day out.
Housed in the eponymous flint tower, and easily accessible by train, the Crampton Tower Museum is one of Broadstairs’ most iconic landmarks, and serves as a testament to the celebrated engineer Thomas Russell Crampton.
Designer of some of the earliest steam locomotives, Crampton was a visionary engineer, and a colleague of Brunel. The museum collection houses Crampton’s working drawings, models and graphics, alongside his personal affects and records of the development of local railways.
The pride of the museum’s collection is an original 1860 stage coach and an extensive range of model railways, including one which young children can ride.
What else? Viking Bay is the heart of Broadstairs, and with good reason. This beach is a picture-perfect vision of the Great British seaside holiday. With traditional seaside games and amusements throughout the summer months, Viking Bay is the ideal destination for any family looking to soak up the sun. And its appeal is just as strong in the winter months, providing the perfect destination for a bracing stroll, with plenty of places nearby to nip in for a restoring cuppa.
Distinctive for its famous horseshoe shape, and named after the ancient invaders who used the peninsula as a landing point, Viking Bay possesses a long and fascinating history. But perhaps just as importantly, there’s no better place to sit down, relax and take it all in this summer.
So what did you guys think of our top 10 list? What are your favourite places to visit and things to do in Broadstairs? Be sure to let us know.
Also, have a look at our list of the best restaurants in Broadstairs.