The old English charm of this university city is evident in its cobblestone streets, glorious cathedrals, fairy tale attractions and many pubs.
Venture to the heart of Kent, between the countryside and the coast, and you’ll find the historical gem that is Canterbury. Explore fascinating traditions and religious landmarks, shop along the King’s Mile, enjoy family attractions or cruise along the river.
Start your day with breakfast at The Goods Shed. This permanent farmers market has an on-site restaurant that uses locally sourced produce.
Head to the three landmarks that preserve the long history of Christianity in England and together form a World Heritage Site. Delight in the soaring spires of the sixth-century Canterbury Cathedral and the humble ruins of St. Augustine’s Abbey. Make the short walk to St. Martin’s Church, England’s oldest operating parish. In the church’s cemetery, visit the grave of famed artist Thomas Sidney Cooper. Then, see his legacy in the Sidney Cooper gallery.
Explore the peaceful Westgate gardens and enjoy the views of the medieval Westgate Towers. Another medieval landmark is the Canterbury Castle, built by William the Conqueror.
Take the kids to The Canterbury Tales, an attraction that recreates medieval life by bringing to life five of Geoffrey Chaucer’s stories.
Nature lovers will like the Howletts Wild Animal Park with its herd of African elephants. Or, drive out to and hike around Ightham Mote, a historic countryside house with restaurant. At the end of the day, join the lively Canterbury pub scene and toast to this charming city.
Canterbury is 1 hour from London by train and about 75 minutes from Gatwick airport by car. The town has a pedestrian-friendly downtown that is also great for cycling. There is a good local bus system, and trains and buses from Canterbury also give easy access to France, due to their connections to the ferry in Dover and the Eurostar high-speed train.
Because it is so easy to visit and explore beautiful Canterbury, you’ll need a good excuse for not coming to see one of England’s favorite destinations!