18 Great Things To Do In Whitstable
Whitstable harbour lies on the North Kent coast at the mouth of the River Swale.
It remains very much a working harbour – on the West Quay, there is fishing as well as wind farm maintenance operations and on the South Quay there is the retailing of the day’s catch. Whitstable Harbour supports 100 to 150 full time employees.
The Royal National Lifeboat Institute is also based on harbour land.
The harbour’s fish markets are popular with locals and visitors alike. In the summer, visitors can visit stalls selling fresh sea food and the famous Whitstable Oysters. In the winter, why not the the Crab and Winkle Restaurant.
2. Whitstable Harbour Village
Located on the South Quay of the harbour is the Whitstable Harbour Village, which is a community of local producers, designers, artists and independent local retailers.
You can sample local produce and browse around independent local retailers housed in traditional fisherman’s huts.
It is open every weekend from 10 am to 5 pm and also on Bank Holidays.
3. Greta Thames Barge Sailing Trips
Throughout the summer months GRETA Thames Barge Sailing Trips operation from Whitstable Harbour. The crew do the sailing while you sit and relax.
Take a look at their website and book online:
Many of the shops in Whitstable are locally owned and run.
Harbour Street boasts quaint galleries, individual gift shops, florists, a specialist cheese shop and a cup cake shop to mention just a few.
5. Farmers Marketing
A vibrant Farmers Market is held at St Marys Hall every other Saturday.
6. Celebrity Spotting
You never know who you might see strolling around on a summer’s afternoon.
Bob Geldof has a home in nearby Faversham and often pops down and Vic Reeves is also a regular visitor.
Whitstable is a destination for lovers of fine food and is of course world famous for it’s oysters and seafood.
There are many independent restaurants which are well worth trying
Royal Native Oyster Restaurant – 01227 276856
William and Brown Tapas Restaurant – 01227 273373
Crab and Winkle – 01227 799377
Wheelers – 01227 273311
Birdies – 01227 265337
The Sportsman, Seasalter (Michelin Star Holder) – 01227 273370
If you just fancy a snack or a piece of the most delicious homemade cake then try Tea and Times in the high street. Its our favourite cafe in the whole world!
8. Secret Whitstable
Check out the narrow alleys, which connect the high street with Middle Wall and Island Wall, including Squeeze-Gut Alley!!!
Check out Windy Corner Stores where you can pick up local produce and grab a coffee and while you are there book your tickets for the tennis courts.
10. Whitstable Museum And Gallery
Telephone 01227 276 998
The Museum and Gallery is open daily from 10 am to 4 pm (except Sundays, Good Friday and Christmas and is open on Sundays in July and August from 1 pm to 4 pm.
The Museum’s main themes are Whitstable’s unique coastal community and seafaring traditions with special features on oysters, diving and shipping.
There is also a special display which focuses on the rich wildlife of the local shoreline – the plants, fossils, shells and birds to be discovered there.
The art gallery holds special exhibitions (usually 6 per year) featuring both local talent and national touring exhibitions.
11. Whitstable Castle
Whitstable Castle was originally a manor house and dates back to the 1970s. It was bought for the town in 1935.
It is now run by The Whitstable Castle Association for the benefit of the local community.
The gardens are open to the public all year round.
Many events are held at the Castle, including the annual May Day celebrations where many stalls are erected and musicians and local artists put on displays for visitors.
12. Whitstable Oyster Festival
The biggest event in Whitstable by far is the annual Whitstable Oyster Festival which is a weeklong event held in July.
There is a full programme of events held throughout this week. For information on what is going on this year, check out the official website:
13. Cycling Walking – Crab And Winkle Way
The Crab and Winkle Way links the cathedral city of Canterbury with the harbour in Whitstable. It is 7.5 miles long and the route is mainly traffic free. The route takes you through Blean Woods which is one of the largest areas of ancient broadleaved woodlands in Southern England.
For bike hire, contact:
Whitstable Cycle Hire on 01227 263 907
Whtistable and Seasalter Golf Club provides a nine hole public course which runs very close to the Beach.
For rates and to book a round call 01227 272 020
15. Sailing And Windsurfing
Whitstable Yacht Club is one of the oldest and largest sailing clubs in England. It offers sailing inn sheltered waters at all times of the tide for catamarans, dinghies and windsurfters, with yachts in nearby creeks that dry out.
The sailing and windsurfing school runs three hour taster sessions to all full training courses.
For more information call 01227 272 942 or take a look at their website:
Why not give Kitesufing a try with a single day taster course.
There is a private teaching area in the bay sanctioned by the council to ensure safety.
There are also advance courses offered for the more experienced!!!
Transition Kiteboarding 0208 378 2138
17. Whitstable Swimming Pool
There are segmented times throughout the week for serious swimmers to enjoy swimming in Adult Lanes and of course public swimming is regularly available.
For more information call: 01227 772 442
Canterbury is a short journey south from Whitstable. It homes the stunning Canterbury Catherdral.
Why not take a relaxing river punt trip along the River Stour and through this historic city.
The Canterbury River Navigation Company – 078§6 760869
There is also a good selection of restaurants and shops.
The header photos were given by kind permission. To see more of Richard Drew's beautiful photos click here.