Thanet is surrounded by gorgeous sandy, family friendly and many award winning beaches, perfect for a free or cheap day out for the family. For a full list of the beaches please go to www.visitthanet.co.uk.
If you plan to spend your holiday on the beach, chalets are available to book from the beginning of May until mid-September each year. To book one just contact Thanet Leisureforce on 01843 296111. The chalets have a gas ring and two deck chairs, and plenty of space to store everything that you might need on the beach. It's great to go down to the beach early for breakfast - a bacon sandwich anywhere else will never taste as good, whatever the weather! Or you could catch some fish and cook them right there on the beach. You can take a picnic and treats and chill while the children have fun in the fresh air making new friends and learning to swim. The kids will love it and the bank manager should certainly approve. And all of the beaches have lovely soft sand - perfect for sandcastles and building strongholds to stop the waves coming up the beach!
The Visit Thanet website is very useful with lots of information on which beaches are most suitable for wheelchair users or those who have limited mobility.
For fresh-air activity, you can cycle along the family-friendly Viking Coastal Trail, and the Thanet Coast Project organises seashore safaris and Rock Doc Walks, revealing the natural wonders of our coast.
The Turner Contemporary gallery in Margate is also free, where changing exhibitions span art from 1750 to the present day. At the front reception for just £1 you can purchase an activity pack for children which also contains binoculars, and should certainly keep them occupied for a while! There are also events on at the weekend - some for the whole family, where only the adult pays £2 to participate, and others for children, where only children over 3 years of age pay £2 to participate. For full details of their activities please go to www.turnercontemporary.org. You can also view exciting displays by artists and makers in the galleries of Margate Harbour Arm and Old Town.
Then each June the streets of Broadstairs come alive with its famous Dickens Week, where colourful characters dress up in costumes of the time to entertain you. Then in August Folk Week entertains all the family with amusements and stalls, street entertainers and music which brings the whole town to life. Then in October the Food Festival comes to town with tempting delights - well worth wearing stretchable trousers for!
Ramsgate Week in July is a wonderful international regatta - the alternative to Cowes - and the Margate Masters is an entertaining weekend with the Volleyball England Beach Tour.
And to finish off the season the amazing spectacle known as the International Kite Festival on Margate Beach is really worth a visit. The number of kites and the size and variety of kites will be difficult to beat. And it's all free.