The downside of living in London is that summer in the city is hot and sticky. The recent heatwave has had me dreaming of the seaside and having never explored much of Kent, my boyfriend suggested we take a day trip to the town of Margate, supposedly ‘Shoreditch by the Sea’.
Margate – A Day Trip
After stocking up on snacks and coffee (necessary at this time in the morning on a Saturday) we boarded our 8.40am train from London Victoria and were whizzing out of the capital towards the seaside for the bargain price of £15 each for the return journey. After an hour and a half train ride, we arrived in Margate.
The train station is small and quaint, but it has free public toilets which is always a bonus when you’re used to paying for them in London. Turn right out of the station and head towards the sea – you can’t miss it!
We set off exploring and straight away I was impressed with how clean and sandy the beach is, aptly named “Margate Sands”. It was low tide when we arrived which made the harbour look quite funny, with boats just sat in the sand!
We walked down the beach, ending up at the Turner Contemporary Museum. This is completely free to visit so we had a look at the Animals and Us exhibition which was interesting. The Museum also offered really interesting views out towards the sea where you can see the Anthony Gormley ANOTHER TIME statue, part of 100 cast iron statues across the UK.
By the time we came out it felt like the whole of Margate was on the beach – my boyfriend and I have never seen a British beach so packed (and considering my boyfriend is actually from a seaside town, that’s saying something)!
We wandered about the shops in Old Town next and Margate has some great small independent stores, not to mention tonnes of Vintage shops, before grabbing some lunch at The Cupcake Cafe which was both delicious and hugely popular. The actual high street itself isn’t anything special so I’d suggest avoiding it to be honest.
After lunch we took a long walk down the beach to the seaside cliffs, and continued east of Margate. We actually ended up at Westgate on Sea and then turned round to head back to Margate and passed some lovely beach huts on the way. By this point, the tide was drawing in and the harbour looked better, with boats bobbing up and down in the water, next to the lighthouse.
We avoided Dreamland as we’re not really fussed about rides but this is a huge attraction to Margate with a lot of history.
A trip to the seaside isn’t complete without ice cream and fish and chips so we sat near the beach and enjoyed the glorious weather and the atmosphere by the beach before hopping back on a 7pm train back to the big smoke after a long and busy day.
Margate is one of those seaside towns that feels a bit tired and forgotten about, but when the sun comes out, the magic of the British seaside sparkles.
Have you visited Margate before?