With a few days off for half term the family and I headed to the south for a grandparent visit in Kent. And what better way to spend one of those days than with a nice walk through some interesting country and coast. We decided a take a Sandwich to Deal Walk.
The great thing about visiting family is that they can drop us off someplace and pick us up a few hours later from a totally different location, no need for working out public transport routes, and bus stops, no need for a circular walk, to make sure we get back to the same point, just some good honest family walking.
Sandwich to Deal Walk
Our walk started out at the Quay at Sandwich, a stunning town located on the river Stour in Kent, a small pay and display car park, looking over the river. We headed off down the river path and were soon leaving the town, fields and the river stretched off before us, blue skies above us and a light wind at our backs.
After a while of wandering the path, towards the sea, we soon reached the end of the concrete paths, and across a rough road lay the green, sandy grass of the Royal St George’s Golf Course.
|Bend in the River Stour|
|Path through the Trees|
One thing Sandwich is famous for is the golf courses, and the Royal St George’s looks like a stunning place for a round, if that is your thing (it is NOT mine), personally I’d prefer the walk to be through the un-touched dunes, but instead we began following the grassy path through the middle of the course, signs everywhere reminding us to be careful of flying balls or to stick only to the marked path etc.
As lovely as some areas looked, hilly and sandy, and with the beautiful blue skies over head, and as wonderful as the sounds of Skylarks, serenading us with their amazing flight songs, all around us was, I couldn’t help but be depressed that the only reason such wonder exists is through elitism (members only golf) and the manicuring of nature.
|Royal St George’s Golf Course|
|A Reminder to Stay on Grass|
Once through the course, the pebble beach spread out before us, the blue skies, and grey, green sea giving us uninterrupted, if hazy, views back across to Ramsgate, and it’s white cliffs. Along the beach edge Turnstone, Dunlin and Sanderling raced the waves, and avoided the dogs and people, while gulls swooped above us.
The children took the opportunity to throw stones at the crashing waves, while Zoe searched the tide lines for interesting shells and stones. We had a short rest here to enjoy the lapping sounds of the sea on the shore, and rest up before our long walk along the coast to deal, the white buildings of the sea front distantly visible, gleaming through the suns haze.
|Ramsgate over the sea|
|Tubs Throwing Stones|
|Bubs offering up a New Stone|
|Zoe Searching for Shells|
|Final Views of Ramsgate|
|Hardy Beach Plants|
Long Walk To Deal
Food was soon on our minds, the time was pushing beyond lunch time, and we still had miles to walk, so with the hunger pangs setting in we stepped up our pace and using the private, concrete road as an easy to walk surface we set to cutting those miles down quickly.
Passing more golf courses, and the wonderful fields that make up an area of Sandwich Bay Bird Observatories reserve, we were soon eating up the miles, but that elusive food was still some way off. Meadow Pipits flew overhead calling as they entered the golf course, more, and more Skylark flew up from the scrubby grasses and began their beautiful flight songs. Gulls and Crows fought over food morsels washed up by the changing tides, and we were soon reaching the car park that marked the end of our walk.
|View over Sandwich Golf Course|
|Path to Deal|
Even though the official track was finished we carried on into Deal for a spot of food at a local cafe (well cafe come chip shop, where friendly staff filled us with stacks of less than health food). After feeding up we had a wander down the pier, an interesting landmark that is heavily used by people for fishing, in fact I’ve never seen so many people fishing one place.
|Distant Views of the Pier|
|Views along the Coast from Deal|
|White Houses at Deal|
|Sweets and a Derp|
|Kent Coast Line at Deal|
|Kent Coast Line at Deal 2|
|Pier View at the end of the Sandwich to Deal Walk|
Final Distance walked was 4.76 miles over 2.41 hours (this is the mapped route and does not include carrying on into Deal), not bad for the little ones, although possibly a little slower than Zoe and I should be doing.
ViewRanger Download – Sandwich to Deal Walk
Before finally heading home, after being picked up, we stopped near the Bird Obs to watch a little sunset.
|Sunset at Sandwich|
|Sunset at Sandwich 2|
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