Thanet Tourism
5th July 2024

There is so much more to the Isle of Thanet than 19 miles of spectacular coastline and award-winning beaches and bays. We have amazing birdlife, wildlife and marine life to discover and a variety of fun and interactive ways you can do this, both along the seashore and further inland. So, if you are looking to escape the crowds and get back to nature - read on…

Join one of the Thanet Coast Project’s many summer activities, from seashore safaris where you can discover fascinating rockpool wildlife (be quick they book up fast) to ‘Seaweed & their Secrets’ walks and talks with seaweed expert Ian Tittley.

Bird Wise East Kent aims to ensure people can enjoy the coast without disturbing the birds that fly here from as far as the Arctic. They host a variety of events and free walks and talks, find out more here. Discover the 'Daring Dozen' migratory birds and find out what make a savvy seadog.

If you fancy a full day’s 6-mile wildlife/birding walk, you can join wildlife filmmaker and birdwatcher Keith Ross on a Pegwell Bay Nature Walk from Ramsgate. See cuckoos, peregrines, common seals and much more. Walks can be arranged for any time, and any day to suit - how about that for service. Also available guided Kingfisher Walks in Ramsgate Harbour (September to March).

Sanderlings. Credit Greg Bessant

Sandwich and Pegwell Bay National Nature Reserve, is a complex mosaic of habitats, including Kent’s only ancient dune pasture. It is of international importance for its bird population. In summer, Ringed Plover return to the bay to nest and butterflies flit around the wildflowers and duneland flora. Grazing animals here include Highland cattle and sometimes Konik horses, a Polish breed of pony.

Sandwich and Pegwell Bay National Nature Reserve

For those who like to get out on the water, a boat trip from Ramsgate harbour is another great way to discover our local marine and birdlife. See the birds on the reserve from the sea, but also an active seal colony. There are a few local boat companies who offer this service, find out more here.

Seals near Sandwich

Monkton Nature Reserve is situated in a 16 acre abandoned chalk quarry and is an important habitat for birds. But it’s not just about the birds here. The reserve is also home to great crested newts, smooth newts, dragonfly, common lizards, damselflies, broad-bodied chasers and grass snakes. There are a number of trails laid out and signposted around the reserve to allow visitors to take in all the varied habitats, birds and wildlife. 

Looking at pond life at Monkton Nature Reserve

If you have always been curious about crabs, then a visit to Margate’s quirky attraction, the Crab Museum, is a must. The museum highlights the diversity of the crab species and how it affects all of our lives in ways many of us don’t even realise. It's a fun, interactive and informative way to spend a few hours, with plenty of things to see, hear, touch and smell!!

Crab Museum, Margate. Credit Sheradon Dublin Photography

For those who have children with lots of energy and inquisitive minds, then a Coastal Explorer Pack is just the ticket. They contain all the equipment you need for family rockpooling fun, including a net, magnifying glass and  marine identification sheets so you can name your discoveries. You can also learn essential explorer skills such as how to make a sundial and use a compass. Packs are just £5 plus proof of ID to hire for at least half a day of awesome adventure.

Coastal Explorer Pack

Make sure you pop into our Visitor Information Centre in Margate during your stay. Not only is the team brilliant with suggestions of things to see and do, but they have some great souvenirs to remind you of your trip, which feature some of our local bird and marine life. We’re real fans of these cute little birds!

Browse the range of wildlife and coastal life leaflets and activity booklets available to purchase.

Bird souvenirs at Visitor Information Centre