Top 10 places to stay in Kent

Days out

Posted by Hannah on 22nd February 2021

10 places to stay in Kent

If you are looking for somewhere different to explore then why don’t you visit the lush green hills and picturesque seaside towns, and discover Kent on the South Coast of England?

This beautiful county has long been a favourite with travellers and holiday-goers and boasts a fantastic heritage so you could delve into the past during your trip. Kent is also home to a few of the UK's top nature reserves, from the important birdlife habitats of the Oare Marshes Nature Reserve to the landscape all around the iconic White Cliffs of Dover. 

Visit Kent's best beaches with a stay in one of its beloved coastal towns, get lost in a historic city, or escape to a rural refuge far from bustling city centres. 

We’ve chosen our top 10 places to visit in Kent. Take a look through our ideas and begin planning your next Kent holiday or read our guide to the best places to stay on the South Coast for even more inspiration.

Cottages in Kent

Royal Tunbridge Wells

Royal Tunbridge Wells: best for gardens and boutiques 

Set in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, this very attractive historic spa town is an intriguing place to go in Kent where old meets the new. Bursting with independent shops, cosy tea rooms and indulgent restaurants, lose yourself for hours as you explore every pretty little corner of the diverse town. 

Nearby you can explore the magical forest and stunning gardens of Groombridge Place and with tree swings, zip wires, baby animals, canal boat rides and so much more. It is the perfect place to keep the kids occupied. Apart from anything else, Groombridge Place Manor and its 17th-century gardens became a location for the renowned 2005 film, Pride and Prejudice.

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Deal Beach

Deal Beach: best for a walk along a pier 

Mentioned in Time Out’s list of Best UK Beaches, Deal is not only home to the stunning vast shingle beach but historians believe it is where Julius Caesar first set foot in the country. The iconic, recently restored pier is also a very important part of Deal’s identity as the only one still used in Kent. 

Take a stroll along the pier and across the beach and, when you get hungry, sample the day’s catch in one of the cosy pubs and restaurants. Deal is a great place to stay in Kent if you're looking to unwind. Explore the winding streets and independent shops and cafes which sit elegantly along the stunning seafront with the quirky maritime clock: Timeball Tower.

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Canterbury: best for literary heritage 

No trip to Kent would be complete without experiencing the sheer beauty of iconic Canterbury. Although boasting much tradition and historical architecture, Canterbury has become a vibrant cosmopolitan city with cobbled winding streets and, of course, many people come to see the famous cathedral - it's an unmissable Kent destination. 

Explore the city on foot with one of the guided tours or take an award-winning river tour, stroll along the banks of the River Stour - one of Kent's most scenic river walks - and take in the beautiful surroundings. When it’s time to relax, you’ll find an array of luxury restaurants, cafes and shops dotted around the quirky and stunning city.

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Isle of Sheppey

Isle of Sheppey: best for solitude 

As Kent’s Treasure Island, the Isle of Sheppey offers the perfect escape with an abundance of things to do and places to explore. A favourite with cyclists, the flat marshland provides a popular 16-mile cycle trail showing off some of the area’s most stunning sites. 

The island is also home to a number of award-winning beaches as named by Keep Britain Tidy: Leysdown, Minster and Sheerness. These beaches have also been recommended by the Marine Conservation Society in the Good Beach Guide. So, if it’s a beach getaway you are searching for, then look no further as the Isle of Sheppey is the perfect Kent place to visit. 


Faversham: best for wildlife walks

If you want to experience some of the county’s tradition in an old-style market town, where the oldest street-market in the county is held, then Faversham is the place to go in Kent. With old cobbled streets, an intriguing market square and impressive 16th-century Guildhall, there is much history to be discovered. Abbey Street, described as ‘Britain’s finest medieval street’ is just one corner of the town that you cannot miss.

This market town also happens to be less than 5 miles away so during your rural retreat you could enjoy a stroll through the Oare Marshes Nature Reserve - an important wetland habitat for birdlife, or head over to Seasalter and Whitstable to make the most of their wonderful beaches with a day by the sea. 

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Whitstable: best for local seafood

This seaside town is renowned as one of the top places to visit on the Kent coast and draws holidaymakers back again and again to its beautiful beaches. Visit Whitstable in Kent for a beach getaway and stroll alongside lapping waves on one of Kent's best coastal walks, shop your way down historic Harbour Street, or head inland to the exquisite Mount Ephraim Gardens.

Besides the beaches, Whitstable is a foodie holiday destination in Kent for its delectable Whitstable oyster. There are lots of locally grown rock oysters to enjoy, while the native oysters are real treasures and have been harvested here since Roman times.

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Tenterden: best for a taste of rural life 

Set on the edge of the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Tenterden is a delightful place to visit in Kent boasting an enchanting rural atmosphere. This town overlooks the valley of the River Rother and the Kent & East Sussex Railway passes through town so you can hop aboard and soak up more of the Kent countryside.

Due to the milder nature of the landscape around the hilly High Weald, there are a couple of vineyards just to the north and south of Tenterden too so you can enjoy a stroll and a wine tasting at your leisure.

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Dover: best for unbeatable views 

Without a doubt, the White Cliffs of Dover are one of the most iconic sights in Kent and one to tick off your bucket list during a holiday to the South Coast, yet Dover has plenty more for you to discover besides these chalk giants.

This ferry port hides a network of secret wartime tunnels, inland find beautiful, landscaped gardens with ornamental ponds to explore, and in the centre there’s the Dover Museum where you can gain insight into this town’s tumultuous past. When you make the walk along the coast, look out for Dover Castle and the South Foreland Lighthouse perched atop the cliffs.

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Margate is one of the best places to visit in Kent

Margate: best for classic days by the sea

One of the best places to visit in Kent for fun by the sea! Margate has a host of beaches, family attractions and seaside restaurants all along its coast for you to explore on a getaway to one of the most exciting towns in Kent. Dreamland is perfect for families with lots of vintage rides offering thrills for kids and nostalgia for the grown-ups in your party.

For a quieter day out, enjoy a relaxing stroll along the seafront and take a dip or paddle in the waves. This town has been a favourite of artists J. M. W. Turner and Tracy Emin and you can even pop into the Turner Contemporary to take in some astonishing artwork.

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Sissinghurst: best for tranquillity and nature 

Just down the road from busy Tenterden, on the border of the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, sits the pretty village of Sissinghurst. This Kent destination has a wonderful community feel with a church, village hall and pub, and is moments from walking routes in the High Weald landscape.

Wander the grounds of the popular National Trust property, Sissinghurst Castle Garden, which was once a prison and later transformed into a picturesque landscape complete with garden rooms, colourful planting and its Tower, which offers 360-degree views of the estate. Venture further afield for fishing, walking, wine tasting, and wildlife watching.

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Stay with us in Kent

Ready to book an unforgettable escape to this beautiful county? There are lots of fantastic places to visit throughout Kent where you could stay; take a look at our holiday cottages and book your break in Kent today.

Cottages in Kent

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.