One of my favourite weekend pastimes is discovering a new corner of the county we call home, Kent. This past weekend we went to Broadstairs for a wander and a spot of lunch. I’d never been to this quaint seaside town before, but it is so beautifully clustered around a lovely bay framed chalk cliffs, making it a great place for a relaxing walk, a snooze in the sunshine, somewhere to build a sandcastle, or just grab a bit to eat.
It isn’t the biggest place, but it does have a lovely sandy beach, great walks with views over Viking Bay, and an adorable seaside charm. Think amusements, cute gardens, mini-golf, fish and chips, colourful beach huts, and even a retro ice-cream parlour Morelli’s.
Things To Do in Broadstairs
Go for a walk
Broadstairs is on the Viking Coastal Trail that circles the Isle of Thanet linking Margate, Broadstairs, and Ramsgate. I’m not suggesting you tackle it all, be my guest if you want, but try more management chunks. Head towards Margate and you will be able to visit the beautiful Botany Bay and admire the chalky cliffs, as well as great beaches at Joss Bay and Stone Bay. Do be aware that this section does require low tide. Or why not take the shorter cliff top path from Broadstairs to Ramsgate to admire the dramatic coastal scenery.
Culture and flowers
Broadstairs has a literary connection, as Charles Dickens used to holiday here and even wrote parts of Bleak House and David Copperfield while staying here. Love Dickens, you are in luck as there is a museum, and you can even see the real Bleak House.
Also don’t miss the beautiful Victoria Gardens along the clifftop promenade built during the late-19th-century. These gardens were opened in 1892 by Queen Victoria’s daughter, Princess Louise and include a clock tower that commemorates Queen Elizabeth II’s Silver Jubilee and a decorative bandstand.
For me, the first thing I want to do at a quaint seaside town like this is head to the amusements – I love the 2p machines and collecting all the tokens to exchange them for some tat. Next up has to be mini-golf, extra points if it has a windmill hole, which Lillyputt Mini Golf does have. Apparently, Lillyputt, located on Victoria Parade, is a championship-designed mini-golf course based on Arnold Palmer’s original designs – so proper fancy!!!
Where To Eat in Broadstairs
Broadstairs has a lot of options – grab fish and chips to go from Flotsam & Jetsam, or head next door to its restaurant, Wyatt & Jones under The York Gate, with views of Viking Bay, or if you just fancy tea and cake then you need to go to the charming, The Old Bakehouse and try its sticky gypsy tart.
The new kid on the block is Jetty Broadstairs, which has renovated the old cafe at the end of the pier overlooking Viking Bay into a bistro utilising local produce. The restaurant itself inside is quite small, but it also has a great outdoor space, as well as a takeaway window to grab something and eat on the beach.
We sat outside, even with the wind a little stronger than normal, but we felt quite protected inside its outdoor decking area, as it has perspex glass surrounding it and a moveable awning. So sheltered from the elements while still being able to enjoy the beautiful view. What I would say is – best to book – as all through our meal people were being turned away – it is a popular spot.
The menu has everything from nibbles such as bread with olive oil, Padron peppers and hummus to starters like cauliflower popcorn, prawn cocktail, crab toastie, and smoked salmon. With mains ranging from mussels to fishcakes, burgers, pulled pork, salads and curry. They also do delicious sides such as onion rings, coleslaw, and truffle and parmesan fries.
There are also sharing boards – go for a seafood platter with crab, smoked salmon, local whelks, cockles, smoked mackerel pate with charred bread or a charcuterie board with Prosciutto ham, Milano salami, spicy chorizo with marinated olives, pickles and local sourdough.
Also, they do a Sunday roast that looks incredible – you get to choose from options like roasted cauliflower steak to beef, pork belly and chicken, catch of the day or prawn and seafood curry. There are three sittings – 12pm / 2.30pm / 5pm with two courses costing £25.00 or go for three courses for £30.00.
As it was lunch we opted for just oil drizzled slices of bread and olives to nibble while we waited for our mains. I went for the soya and smashed avocado burger, served with spicy tomato salsa in a toasted bun, a lovely side salad and sweet potato fries, while Paulie couldn’t resist the local freshly steamed mussels cooked in garlic, chilli, white wine and parsley, with a side of chips.
My burger was one of the best veggie burgers I’ve had – the patty was firm and moist, not too heavy and tasted amazing with the smashed avocado on top and the spicy salsa was perfect. I also loved the seeded bun – added something extra to the burger. I’m also pleased it came with sweet potato fries as I love them and these were amazing. The only thing I wasn’t fussed with was the salad – if I had known I would have asked for it without the dressing as it was a little overpowering for me.
Paulie loves mussels and he was impressed with Jetty Broadstairs. Not only were they cooked perfectly, but he was also pleased that the sauce wasn’t too creamy, and the amount he received for £13.95. The chips were also delicious, served with the skin on – perfect for dipping into the sauce.
I did say before I had my burger that I wouldn’t need dessert, but I just couldn’t resist the Bombolini – warm mini doughnuts filled with chocolate and hazelnut. I’m so glad I did as they were delicious and such a huge dessert for £5.50. Definitely, one to share, as I had 6 mini doughnuts.
As well as a delicious menu the bistro has a great wine and spritz menu, the Jetty Spritz sounded good – a highly aromatic Chapel Down Gin from distilled Bacchus grapes with intense aromas of citrus peel, juniper and freshly cut grass, served with Fever-Tree elderflower tonic and garnished with orange and rosemary.
I loved our lunch so much I can’t wait to come back in the evening and add a spritz or two, or visit again for Sunday roast.