The Beauty of Kent
When it comes to the UK, few places can match the beauty of Kent. Why you ask?
The strength of this South-Eastern county lies in it's diversity. Whether you hanker for historic castles, modern transport and suburbs, or, gateways to Europe, Kent has it all.
Of course, I have a vested interest in Kent. My mother was born there, and still resides there. As such, I have visited the county many times.
Despite my vested interest, I believe that Kent has much to offer. I would like to share some of those reasons with you, and I am confident that you will see the 'magic' that this county has to offer...and the lifelong memories that will be formed when you visit.
In my job as editor of a London business directory, I have had the opportunity to visit Folkestone a few times in recent years, here is what I discovered:
Pictured below is a traditional Folkestone street. The average house is a standard 2 up, 2 down style, which means that generally have a couple of bedrooms(plus bathroom) upstairs, plus a kitchen and 'lounge' room downstairs.
This type of accomodation may not appear to be generous, however it is the kind of house that most people in Folkestone, or the UK for that matter, have become used to living in.
The advantages of this are that the houses are more affordable, require less grounds maintenance, and are usually located near main transport options. The disadvantages are that parking can be a nightmare, there is little room for a growing family, and, privacy is at a premium.
Things To See
Recently, I had the opportunity to visit Folkestone in both summer and winter. The images below were taken in summer, however I found that the beaches were magnificent in both extremes of the year. In addition to beauty, the Kent coastline offers a rich history. It's role in transporting 'allied' soldiers to France in World War 2 is both awe inspiring and tragic.
There is a word of caution though. The beaches are generally, not absolutely, made up of shingle or pebbles. Sandy stretches do exist, but will require a significant hunt to locate. And, when it comes to ocean temperatures, a wetsuit will be a worthy investment since the sea temperatures range from around 5 to 15 degress celcius.
Weather-wise, the air temperature here is cooler in summer, and milder in winter than in London, where my London business directory office is focused. In terms of numbers, winters can be around 5-9 degrees, and summers from around 17-23, although those numbers can vary wildly as I found out on a February winter's day, when the temperature rose to near 20 degrees!
Folkestone is a smallish city, or a big town. With a population just under fifty thousand, at time of writing, it is a welcome break from the masses that line most London streets.
This doesn't mean however, that shopping options are limited. Pictured below is Bouverie Place in Folkestone. This shopping precinct, located in the town centre itself, boasts many useful features. What are they?
The first thing you'll notice is that the pedestrian areas surrounding the precinct are charming, cobbled thoroughfares that are lined with a rich assortment of cafe's, boutique shops, and street entertainment.
The second great aspect of Bouverie Square is it's occasional markets. If you are a bargain hunter, or an avid browser, then you'll love the markets! Weather permitting, they are a great way to take your mind off of the hum drum and stresses of the day.
But, what about the shopping itself? Bouverie Square, as shown in the picture, features Asda Supermarket, TK Max, and an EE store, plus many others. Parking for the supermarket is located to the rear, however, it can be challenging to find a spot at certain times. If this is the case when you visit, I recommend putting your navigation to Sainsburys, and parking in their ample car park, which is just a few minutes walk away.
The final advantage that I should mention about Bouverie Place is that it is a short stroll to the coat line. This means that if you want to walk off a heavy lunch, on a sunny day, then just walk a couple of blocks and you can. Alternatively, the well manicured gardens overlooking the ocean, offer a great place to have a seat, admire the view, and let the hours slip by.
For more information on Folkestone, have a look at this 'Homes under the hammer' episode on BBC.
Well, this is the first post I've done on London and it's surrounds. Please stay tuned for further amazing places to visit in the UK!