We’ve been having fun at the weekends recently, but it’s all been pretty much indoors, so for this week’s #CountryKids post I’m going back to our Dover trip from last October. You may recall that we visited the Louis Blériot Memorial next to Dover Castle. We’d had a brief visit there before walking to South Foreland Lighthouse.
The Lighthouse is managed by the National Trust and can be walked to from either St Margarets Bay (pay and display car park) – approx 1 mile walk, or from the NT White Cliffs of Dover visitor centre, with a 2 mile cliff top walk. Although we were staying in St Margarets Bay, as we were already in Dover it made sense to take in the stunning White Cliffs as part of our adventure.
If you are not a National Trust member it costs £3.00 to park in the car park. The cliff top walk is open all year round. The paths are not totally buggy friendly, but there are baby carriers available on loan at the visitor centre, along with toilets and a coffee shop.
Monkey was eager to set off across the cliff tops. He’s seen a lighthouse from the distance before, but South Foreland Lighthouse would be the first one he’d been inside. My intrepid explorer was off.
We couldn’t have asked for better weather. It was the end of October, the sun was shining and considering we were on top of the cliffs it really wasn’t windy. But we could see that that wasn’t always the case!
Monkey was amazed that the wind could ‘bend’ trees or shrubs permanently. He was also fascinated with the ‘white earth’. Mummy why is is white? It’s chalk Monkey just like you use on your blackboard at home. Wow!
The views were stunning, we could look back to the castle (post WILL be coming up shortly on Dover Castle) and over to the Ferry Terminal – heaven for Monkey. We were all staggered by just how busy Dover is – ferry’s in and out all day long in a constant stream. It was quite fascinating to watch really.
We continued on our walk and Monkey was amazed by the sheer size of the cliffs. Mummy tried not to have kittens when he and Daddy wanted to get closer to the edge!
It really was breathtaking and quite awe-inspiring. You might have seen this photograph in my #Alphabetphoto post in the week. What a sight – the White Cliffs of Dover at their best.
Whilst we were walking to South Foreland Lighthouse we noticed some work was being carried out on the cliff tops – Diggers Mummy!!! Cue one very excited boy.
We didn’t realise at the time what the project was – but it sounds so exciting! In May 2015 Fan Bay Deep Shelter will open to the public – tunnels and sound mirrors are in the process of being restored. Looks like we will need to return to Dover this year.
We continued on our walk, we could see the South Foreland Lighthouse ahead.
We were nearly at the end of our 2 mile cliff top walk and Monkey had done really well. It was late afternoon and we’d been on our feet all day since arriving at Dover Castle first thing in the morning. I was really proud of him. No moaning, just lots of chatting as we continued on our way.
South Foreland Lighthouse was certainly worth the walk. The Lighthouse and the quaint Mrs Knott’s Tea-Room open again at weekends from next month, and then daily again from April.
Time was getting on, and I was conscious that we still needed to walk back along the cliff paths to the car. We headed straight inside the lighthouse – first one to the top gets to pick which cake to eat!
He was fascinated by the working of the lighthouse and the light effects of the lens – lots of information for a little boy to take in. Mummy, a rainbow!
It was worth the climb!
Although Monkey was really more interested in the prospect of cake by this time!
Can I have chocolate cake please Mummy? Yes, I think you’ve deserved it Monkey!
It was good to see that visibility would remain good.
After a quick refreshment stop it was time to head back to the car. We’d had a wonderful day exploring the sights in Dover. Monkey was getting tired and the sun was getting lower in the sky. It took a little longer to walk back than on our journey out, but we’d all enjoyed being in the fresh air.