A 48 Hour Trip – Things to do in Margate, Kent

Fancy a break in Kent but need inspiration? Check out our pocket guide and start planning your 48-hours in this vibrant coastal town.

Below we’ve listed some ideas should you find yourself exploring the lovely town of Margate for the weekend - let us know your thoughts if you decided to visit any!

DAY 1

dreamland
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9:00am

Dreamland

There’s no better welcome to Margate, than with a trip to ‘Dreamland’. Considered to be the oldest-serving amusement park in the country, this “all-you-can-treat’ seaside sensation”. Dreamland underwent a multi-million pound renovation in 2017, which introduced a number of brand new attractions, the restoration of classics rides, and the construction of brand new 15,000 capacity music venue.

With over 25 rides to experience – fan favourites include; Dreamland Drop, Pinball X, and Scenic Railway – thrill-seekers (young & old) are set for one action-packed morning.

Location: 49-51 Marine Terrace, Margate, CT9 1XJ

Download Dreamland Park Map Find Out More
the shell grotto
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12:00pm

The Shell Grotto

A lot of mystery surrounds your next activity – “2000 SQFT of mosaic, made from 4.6 million shells, in 70 FT of underground tunnels.”

The Shell Grotto is one of Margate’s most intriguing and unusual places to visit. Even after being discovered by chance back in 1835, the origin of these seashell studded walls remains unknown. The locals have many theories but none of which can be considered fact.

You’ll hardly be able to believe the beauty of the patterns and symbols on show were created from cockle, mussel, whelk and oyster shells!

Location: Grotto Hill, Margate, Kent, CT9 2BU

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turner contemporary
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3:00pm

Turner Contemporary

From recent history to the current day – here’s one of the best free things to do in Margate!

Since opening their doors in 2011, the gallery has welcomed over 3.5 million visitors and put over £70 million back into the Kent economy. The success has been done to the exhibits. Most of which aren’t just aesthetically pleasing, they touch on contemporary issue, which is very fitting.

Come and see Margate from a whole new perspective.

Fun fact: JMW Turner, Turner Contemporary & Margate’s famous lighthouse are beautifully depicted on the new £20 banknote – check your wallet, see for yourself.

Location: Rendezvous, Margate, Kent, CT9 1HG

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margate main sands
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6:00pm

Margate Main Sands

After a day filled with adrenaline, history, and art & culture, it’s time to build a sand castle and relax.

This stunning sandy beach received the Blue Flag Award & Seaside Award in 2019 for its natural beauty and eco-friendliness [for more blue flag beaches (blog)]. Whether you decide to take a dip in the tidal pool, watch the kids on the rides or visit the amusement arcades, it’ll be a trip to the beach that the whole family will remember.

Don’t forget to pack a towel, you won’t be able to resist a splash in the sea!

Location: Rendezvous, Margate, Kent, CT9 1HG

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DAY 2

botany bay
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9:00am

Botany Bay

With a 200 metres long coastline, a walkable sandy beach on a high-tide, and exposed white chalk stacks and cliffs – this is the perfect location to start day two.

Botany Bay has a beach kiosk that provides tea, coffee and snacks – its 9am, you’ll want pay a visit. Deck chairs and windbreaks are also available for hire.

Being one of Margate’s most scenic beaches, the Bay is very popular with photographers. So if you arrive on an especially sunshine-filled day, expect to see everyone trying their best to capture the moment.

Location: Marine Drive, Cliftonville, Broadstairs, Kent, CT10 3LG

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margate old town
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12:00pm

Margate Old Town

Delicious food and quirky shops, what’s not to love!

Margate’s Old Town is lined with independent shops and cafes. From vintage clothing to contemporary furniture, you’ll be coloured with intrigue. And that’s not even to mention the array of culinary options to choose from.

Stroll the Old Town and see where the afternoon takes you.

Location: Margate Old Town, Margate, Kent, CT9

hornby visitor center
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3:00pm

The Hornby Visitor Centre

Do you remember playing with Corgi die-cast toy cars or Scalextric? Do you recall putting together an Airfix model plane or Meccano set? If so, then this is an activity you won’t want to miss. Discover how Hornby began, and how they become one of Britain’s favourite toy companies, through informative and interactive displays.

Take a journey through the years and re-experience some of the best loved toys from your childhood – let the nostalgia begin!

Location: Westwood Industrial Estate, Westwood, Margate, Kent, CT9 4JX

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umbrella cafe
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6:00pm

Lost Island Adventure Golf

Be transported to a mysterious lost island without leaving Margate – for a game of adventure golf no less!

You’ll have to putt your way through the jungles, secret locations, and even dinosaurs if you to come out on top. This immersive adventure indoor golf experience is one of the best things to do with kids in Margate – one’s the Tiger Woods in your family?

Being located inside The Flamingo Amusements, you can enjoy any number arcade games after a spot of golf.

Location: The Flamingo, 17A Marine Gardens, Margate, Kent, CT9 1XJ

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Kent Holidays & Short Breaks

Choose Kent for your holiday home by the sea. Affectionately known as the 'Garden of England' its many historic towns, villages and scenic countryside give it an unparalleled and beautiful charm.

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