The 10 Best Things to Do in Dover, United Kingdom (UK)

August 9, 2017 Enedina Augsburger

Dover (/ˈdoʊvər/) is a town and major ferry port in the home county of Kent, in South East England. It faces France across the Strait of Dover, the narrowest part of the English Channel, and lies south-east of Canterbury and east of Maidstone. The town is the administrative centre of the Dover District and home of the Dover Calais ferry through the Port of Dover. The surrounding chalk cliffs are known as the White Cliffs of Dover.
Restaurants in Dover

1. Fan Bay Deep Shelter

Upper Road Langdon Cliffs | Langdon Cliffs, Dover CT16 1HJ, England +44 1304 207326
Excellent
83%
Good
15%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
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Overall Ratings

5 based on 131 reviews

Fan Bay Deep Shelter

The tunnels were constructed in 1940/41 as accommodation for the gun battery above. Today this network of abandoned tunnels is virtually all that remains of these long forgotten defences. You can take a journey into the past on a guided tour of the tunnels with one of our expert volunteers, peering into the darkness and back in time into different world, hidden within the cliffs.

Reviewed By Mary H - Stamford, United Kingdom

While walking on the white cliffs we chanced upon the Fan Bay tunnels and joined a tour about to start. Glen, the National Trust guide, was good humoured and informative in our 70 minute tour of the extensive tunnels 25 metres underground, showing us many interesting features of the places soldiers had resorted to in the Second World War as well as the first. We saw sound mirrors and learned much about the defences of that coastline. As National Trust members we did not have to pay the entrance fee of £10 per head. I cannot recommend this visit highly enough. There are 130 steps to descend and the tour is conducted by head torch light.

2. White Cliffs of Dover

Upper Road Langdon Cliffs, Dover CT16 1HJ, England +44 1304 202756
Excellent
70%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 2 reviews

White Cliffs of Dover

Reviewed By badmintontim - Hastings, United Kingdom

These are symbolistic and iconically British especially from the dark days of the second world war and the wartime songs then from greats such as Dame Vera Lynn
Take a closer look and they are really something and show a white wonder Wall guarding the British Coast and definitely worth a look

3. Dover Castle

Castle Hill Road, Dover CT16 1HU, England +44 370 333 1181
Excellent
72%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 4 reviews

Dover Castle

The most iconic of all English fortresses commanding the gateway to the realm for nine centuries. Climb the Great Tower, meet the characters and immerse yourself in vivid medieval interiors. Then delve deep within Dover's White Cliffs to witness the drama in the Secret Wartime Tunnels. Roam through centuries of history at Dover Castle, from the Romans to the 20th century, in an action-packed day out.

Reviewed By Mark P - Hampshire

Visited the castle mainly to visit the tunnels.
My experience was very mixed. Some of the staff are friendly and helpful, but others are useless and a waste of space. For example, we were on a schedule and had read that the queues for the tunnel tours can be long, so we planned accordingly. The castle opens at 1000, so at 0950 we were in our car in a short queue to enter. At 1000 the barrier opened, and we were in the car park by 1005. Quick visit to the ticket office, which was aided by the fact that we had joined English Heritage. We reached the entrance to the main tunnel at 1015, and then the problems began. The member of staff there told us that the 1020 tour was just for schools so we would have to wait until the 1040 tour. As it was pouring with rain, I asked where we could wait under cover. We were duly sent to the gift shop a few minutes away. About 10 minutes later we came back nice and early for the 1040 tour, only to be told by a new member of staff that it was full and we would have to wait for the 1100 tour. So we could have stood in the rain for 10 minutes and joined the 1040 tour, but thanks to the staff we ended up standing in the rain for 15 minutes to join a later tour. So we spent the first hour queuing and getting wet. Some of the staff seemed to find this funny.
The tunnels - Operation Dynamo and the Hospital Annexe are both good, although my wife and I preferred the less popular Hospital Annexe. Be warned that the temperature in both tunnels was very chilly, so dress warmly.
Went to the NAAFI restaurant for some warming food. Lunch was good although pricey.
Tried to catch the minibus that takes you around the castle. The driver had the uncanny ability not to see us despite a lot of waving. Thankfully another member of staff jumped out in front of the minibus to stop her.
It's a big site that would benefit from some more signage.
Then went on to the older part of the castle. The military museum was good.
Visited the keep. Again freezing cold and few signs to tell you about the numerous rooms.
Overall it's interesting, but you will pay over £20 to get in, and will need to take pot luck with the staff.

4. Dover Transport Museum

Port Zone Willingdon Road, Whitfield, Dover CT16 2JX, England +44 1304 822409
Excellent
71%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 169 reviews

Dover Transport Museum

Reviewed By mumma-green - Kent

This was a wonderful find. An excellent museum plenty to see both for children and adults. It is not only transport but old shop windows which are so well presented. There are railway layouts which you can watch for ages. As extra to your experience...MoreThank you mumma-green for taking the time to write a review for us, it is very much appreciated.

5. Kearsney Abbey Gardens

Alkham Road | Temple Ewell, River, Dover CT16 3DZ, England +44 1304 872458
Excellent
68%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
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Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 178 reviews

Kearsney Abbey Gardens

Reviewed By Alaine S

Both areas of Kearsney Abbey Gardens are beautiful. One side has cafe, toilets and play area, lakes with birds. The other side has beautiful walks, tennis courts, quieter area. Sort of place all ages can go at any time. Free parking, Highly recommend to all.

6. South Foreland Lighthouse

The Front, St Margaret's Bay, Dover CT15 6HP, England +44 1304 852463
Excellent
66%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 386 reviews

South Foreland Lighthouse

A remote, isolated, pristine-white, solid beacon; a place of innovation and scientific firsts, now also a romantic hideaway and big-hearted family haven, the South Foreland lighthouse stands proud atop the White Cliffs of Dover. It surprises and delights with its warmth of welcome and unexpectedly wistful atmosphere, quaint and charming and yet robust and protecting. Like the Knott family of the past, its current keepers, who mostly offer their time for free, are witness to events and show commitment and spirit in manning the light. Inside the Victorian tower, surprising stories unfold of a unique history that has shaped our world and influenced our travel, our trade, and our industrial and maritime heritage. Outside seemingly endless skies roll away across the English Channel and 21 miles away, the coast of France splits the sky from the sea. Serenity is broken when waves steepen, dark clouds tumble in, the wind lashes and the mouth-watering views are swallowed up. The lighthouse stands its ground and is once again protector, until the calm returns as quickly as it left and butterflies come out of hiding. Arrival is on foot across the beautiful and yet challenging cliffs, thus the lighthouse attracts the more adventurous. None the less, children’s laughter is all around, and the nostalgia of Mrs Knott’s tearoom attracts all generations, those who come to reflect and those who want to find out more about the traditions of the past. From its post on top of the gateway to Britain, South Foreland Lighthouse watches over their past, their present and their future.

Reviewed By Plattypuss52 - Sevenoaks

The guide was very well informed and enthusiastic and probably disappointed that we were unable to take a longer tour. Excellent views from the top and on the walk there and back. Cafe had basic refreshments. Worth going to but leave enough time for the longer talk.

7. Dover Museum

Dover Discovery Centre Market Square, Dover CT16 1PH, England +44 1304 201066
Excellent
58%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 187 reviews

Dover Museum

Free entry to 4 galleries over 3 floors, covering archaeology, town history and the Dover Bronze Age Boat - the world's oldest known sea-going vessel - plus gift shop and Visitor Information Centre for Dover, Deal and Sandwich Fully accessible for wheelchair users

Reviewed By Gavin P - Dover, United Kingdom

Great little museum lots of items to view and of course the bronze age which was discovered not so far away from the museum its self the boat exhibition is a must to see magical.

8. St Margaret's Bay Beach

Bay Hill, St Margaret's Bay, Dover CT15 6DX, England
Excellent
56%
Good
37%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 417 reviews

St Margaret's Bay Beach

Reviewed By gilly1000 - Kent, United Kingdom

Start at st margarets, on the beach with a beach hut coffee shop ,Food , toilets available, stunning pub for lunch. Then make your way to amazing nature walk ,wild life ,walking along the cliffs Para manic views of France ,Dover channel. Dover Lighthouse that you can go in with tasty homemade cakes .Up to 4 miles cliff walk viewing the Docks, Pathways made for buggys. A beautiful walk for all the family.

9. Samphire Hoe

Samphire Road, Dover CT17 9FL, England +44 1304 225649
Excellent
50%
Good
38%
Satisfactory
10%
Poor
1%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 290 reviews

Samphire Hoe

Reviewed By hippo432 - north west england

Approached down a narrow one way tunnel this extra piece of England arises from the spoil of the channel tunnel. With information boards giving the history of the site, café and toilets the site has a surprising wildness at the base of the white cliffs. there are some good short walks over the top and a longer walk around the sea wall which give good views into the channel and across to Folkestone and Dover in opposite directions.
Something different to have a look at

10. Western Heights

Military Road, Dover CT17 9BQ, England
Excellent
75%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 78 reviews

Western Heights

Reviewed By cinemajim - Oxted, United Kingdom

A massive construction from the Napolian era I used to go everywhere as a young boy - but now it's all been sanitised! Find out when organised tours are being run by the society who looks after it - You will be thrilled!

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