The Ultimate Guide To Canterbury, England


Located in the southeast of England, Canterbury is by far one of the quaintest and most beautiful cities you'll find in Great Britain. (Although I may be a little biased after living and studying there for four years at university). The entire city is even a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is well-known for its impressive cathedral, stunning architecture and cobbled high street.

After a friend recently visited the city and asked me for a list of suggestions, I thought it was about time I wrote up my complete guide to Canterbury. So, after almost two years since I graduated university, here's my rundown of the best places to eat, see and things to do:

Things To See and Do:

Canterbury Cathedral - You can't take a trip to Canterbury without visiting the cathedral, as it's one of the most famous churches in England. It's an incredibly impressive building, and the grounds are also beautiful. Adult tickets cost £12.50, and student tickets cost £10.50 (if you study at a local university entry is free).  

Go shopping - Be sure to walk up through the High StreetSt George's Street and Whitefriars for the main shops. However, the real treasures in Canterbury lie on the side streets away from the main street. My favourite places to walk through are Mercery Lane for great views of the cathedral gate, Sun Street (the cobbled side street nearest to the cathedral) and St Margaret's Street where you'll find the best tea rooms and fish & chip shop. 

Westgate Towers and Gardens - At the bottom of the high street you'll find Westgate Towers, a medieval gate that's one of the most well-known landmarks in Canterbury.  You can climb to the top for £4 (£3 for students) but the best thing to do is walk through the gardens next to the gate. The Westgate Gardens River Walk is beautiful, especially when the sun is shining!

Canterbury Historic River Tour - If you luck out and have warm weather during your visit, then a great way to learn about the history of the city is by going on a historic river tour. For around 30 minutes you can go along the River Stour and get a completely different view of the city from the water. To catch a boat head to the King's Bridge on the high street (next to the Old Weavers House restaurant). 

Walk along the city walls - Head to the Cycles UK Shop where you'll find the slope that will take you to the top of the city walls. You can then walk along the wall all the way to the hill in Dane John Gardens, which gives amazing views over the city!

Where to eat:
For the best afternoon tea you'll ever have, head to Tiny Tim's Tearooms on St. Margaret's Street. Instead of sandwiches they serve a poached egg on crumpets, and the scones are fresh, warm, and almost the size of your head!

If you have a sweet tooth, then you'll also love The Chocolate Cafe (near the cathedral). It's a really cosy cafe and is a great place to visit in the afternoon, or in the evening after dinner. I highly recommend the classic original hot chocolate, and the tiffin slice.

Pork & Co is another great cafe (you can dine in or take away) that's perfect for a quick lunch. It's near the cathedral and does the most amazing pulled pork sandwiches, sausage rolls and scotch eggs.

Cafe des Amis, next to Westgate gardens, is an amazing mexican restaurant that also serves up delicious cocktails. Be sure to reserve a table in advance though as it's quite a small restaurant and gets booked up quickly.

If you fancy italian food, Wildwood on the high street is a great option if you don't fancy heading to the typical chain restaurants. My recommendation: the hoi sin duck pizza. The Naughty Egg is also a great option if you want dinner to take away. They do incredible burgers, and loaded chips with plenty of toppings. My favourite: the chilli sweet potato fries covered in chilli con carni, avocado, sour cream and cheese.

If you fancy going out for some drinks after dinner, Canterbury is full of pubs, bars and nightclubs - so there's something to suit everyone. For a place that's a little different head over to The Pound for amazing cocktails. It's a bar and restaurant that's set within an old city gaol. You can even hire out a former police cell for private dining!


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