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Things to do in
Canterbury

Our most recommended things to do in Canterbury

From London: White Cliffs of Dover and Canterbury Day-Trip

1. From London: White Cliffs of Dover and Canterbury Day-Trip

Discover the beauty of Kent on this day trip from London. Travel aboard a comfortable and airconditioned coach to admire the White Cliffs of Dover. Follow your guide on a walking tour of Canterbury to uncover the city's fascinating history. Depart London on a full-day tour to explore the southern county of Kent, known as the garden of England.  Continue to the White Cliffs of Dover, with time to enjoy a coastal breathtaking walk or simply take in the coastal views. On a clear day, see magnificent views of the English Channel and even France. Enjoy an hour of free-time to marvel at the beauty of the White Cliffs. The visitor center offers an opportunity to get refreshments and souvenirs. Then choose to spend longer at the Cliffs, or visit Dover Castle, one of the most impressive castles in England. Continue to the historic city of Canterbury, where your guide will introduce you to the city with an informative walking tour. Wander among the ancient buildings and charming streets of this picturesque city.  Take some free time to visit Canterbury Cathedral if you wish, or spend longer exploring this magnificent historic city. Spend 2.5 hours in Canterbury, with time for lunch, a walking tour, a cathedral visit, and time to explore. Arrive back in London in the early evening

London: Canterbury Cathedral, Dover Castle, and White Cliffs

2. London: Canterbury Cathedral, Dover Castle, and White Cliffs

Explore the beautiful cathedral city of Canterbury, the White Cliffs of Dover, and Dover Castle on a day tour from London. Soak in the views of the countryside of Britain while learning about the history from your guide. Make your first stop at the historic cathedral city of Canterbury. There’s plenty to see in Canterbury, including the Cathedral, St. Martin’s Church, and St. Augustine’s Abbey. Learn about the pilgrims who have made their way to Canterbury Cathedral since the Middle Ages, and it remains popular today with visitors from around the world. Travel on to the coast to see the White Cliffs of Dover, one of the country’s most spectacular natural features. An icon of Britain, the White Cliffs have been a sign of hope and freedom for centuries. Take a walk along the clifftops and look out over the busy English Channel. On a clear day, you will be able to see across France. Take a short drive up the road from the White Cliffs of Dover to Dover Castle, one of the largest castles in the country, strategically placed at the shortest crossing point to continental Europe. See the castle that has played a prominent role in Britain’s history and dates back to the Iron Age. A Roman lighthouse and Anglo-Saxon church still stand within the grounds. Admission to the castle is included in the tour and you’ll also have some free time to explore the grounds.

From London: Leeds Castle, Canterbury Cathedral & Dover

3. From London: Leeds Castle, Canterbury Cathedral & Dover

Escape the bustle of London on a full-day sightseeing tour of the English countryside. You will head to the Garden of England, with visits to Kent’s Leeds Castle, the White Cliffs of Dover, and Canterbury Cathedral. The journey takes you over the Greenwich Meridian and past the London district that is home to the famous Cutty Sark tea clipper, and the Royal Observatory. Then see Leeds Castle, described by Lord Conway as “the loveliest castle in the world.” Set in the middle of a lake, and surrounded by 500 acres of parkland and gardens, enter the castle before the doors open to the public, and experience its magic in an atmosphere of still tranquility. Have time to explore the castle grounds and find the Lady Baillie Garden, with views over the lake. Next, make your way to Canterbury and visit the historic Canterbury Cathedral. The most important Anglican church in the world, the central Bell Harry Tower dates back to 1498, and the crypt is from the 11th-Century. Your guide will tell the story of the shocking murder of Archbishop Thomas Beckett in 1170, and there will also be time to explore the narrow streets of Canterbury, with an opportunity to stop for lunch. Continue your tour through the picturesque landscape of Kent, dotted with unusual buildings and quaint villages. Arrive at Dover, to see the famous White Cliffs, standing 400 feet above sea level. Brooding above the cliffs is the sprawling Dover Castle, still watching over the town after 800 years.

Canterbury: Official Guided Walking Tour

4. Canterbury: Official Guided Walking Tour

From medieval lanes and pilgrim inns to the majestic Cathedral's Precincts, travel back in time as your guide regales you with stories and reveals how the city has evolved over the years on this 90-minute guided walking tour. Meet your Guide in the historic Buttermarket in central Canterbury and begin to explore this historic place. Walk through the narrow cobbled lanes with their timber-framed buildings and see magnificent views toward the Cathedral. Admire the Crooked House, the Old Weavers' House and infamous ducking stool, and Eastbridge Hospital, a place of hospitality for Pilgrims since 1190. You’ll also see more modern architecture such as the Marlowe Theatre and its very own moving statue. You will also journey around the outside of the Cathedral, and where possible see the ruins of the old monastery, the cloisters, and the grounds of the historic King's School.

From London: Canterbury & White Cliffs of Dover Tour

5. From London: Canterbury & White Cliffs of Dover Tour

Travel from London and spend a day exploring the highlights of Kent, a region known as the "Garden of England." Enjoy a tour at a relaxed pace that allows lots of time to discover Kent's two most iconic locations: the city of Canterbury and the White Cliffs of Dover. After departing London, make the first stop of the day in the historic city of Canterbury. There, discover one of the oldest churches in England, Canterbury Cathedral, which dates from the 6th century and is where the Roman monk Augustine established Christianity in Britain. While in Canterbury, enjoy plenty of time to visit the cathedral and explore the heart of the city center, the ancient walls, and all the city's key landmarks. A self-guided walking tour is also provided. Next, continue through the charming Kent countryside toward the coast for the next stop in the pretty seaside town of Deal, where the first Roman invasion into Britain landed over 2,000 years ago. There, soak up the seafront atmosphere, explore the quaint high street, and have some lunch. Perhaps even try some fish and chips by the sea. In the afternoon, follow the coast toward the world-famous White Cliffs of Dover, one of Britain's most iconic coastal landmarks. On the way, pass Dover Castle, one of the largest and most important fortresses in Britain. Whilst at the White Cliffs of Dover, there’ll be ample time to walk along the clifftops and admire the spectacular views before returning to London in the evening.

Canterbury Cathedral: Entry Ticket with Audio Guide

6. Canterbury Cathedral: Entry Ticket with Audio Guide

Canterbury Cathedral sits at the heart of England's story with 1,400 years of history to explore within. Secure your entry ticket to explore the mother church of the worldwide Anglican Communion and the seat of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Enjoy a handset and audio guide to enrich your visit. As you explore the cathedral, discover architecture that’s been crafted through hundreds of years of building and rebuilding, altering with each change of style within the medieval period, but its roots reach even further. Admire colorful stained-glass windows, some of which are among the oldest in the world. Plug in your headphones and listen to your own personal audio guide to hear stories of royals, monks, and martyrs as you walk under the cathedral’s high ceilings. Your entry ticket also gives you access to the historic Chapter House with its incredibly detailed ceiling, the atmospheric Great Cloister which was walked by monks for centuries, three public gardens including a reimagining of a medieval Herbarium, and up to three exhibitions around the site. In 597 A.D., Pope Gregory the Great sent a monk, Augustine, to England as a missionary to spread Christianity across England. Augustine established his seat (or cathedra) and monastery in Canterbury and became England’s first Archbishop. When miracles were said to have taken place around the site, the cathedral became one of Europe’s most important pilgrimage centers, as most famously told in Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Following a fire in 1174, parts of the cathedral were rebuilt in the new Perpendicular Gothic style.

Leeds Castle, Canterbury Cathedral, Dover, and Greenwich

7. Leeds Castle, Canterbury Cathedral, Dover, and Greenwich

Embark on a day trip from London to discover some of England's most important attractions. Explore Leeds Castle, see the historic Canterbury Cathedral, stop at the Battle of Britain Memorial, and marvel at the White Cliffs of Dover. Described as 'the loveliest castle in the world' by Lord Conway, Leeds Castle sits on 500 acres of landscaped parkland across two idyllic islands, deep in the heart of the magnificent Kent countryside. Arrive early to visit Leeds Castle, where Henry VIII retreated to escape the plague that was raging in London during his reign. Upon arrival at Leeds Castle, you will be greeted by your guide. Discover the history behind this magical castle and experience life how Henry VIII would have. Next up, embark on a visit to Canterbury Cathedral, the scene of Archbishop Thomas Becket’s gruesome murder in 1170. Learn the intriguing history behind this captivating masterpiece of medieval architecture. Marvel at the cathedral’s spectacular stained glass windows, many of which have survived from the late 12th and early 13th centuries. Admire the famous White Cliffs of Dover as you drive past Then, head to Greenwich to see the Old Royal Naval College, designed by Sir Christopher Wren, as well as the Royal Observatory and the world-famous Cutty Sark, a fascinating 19th-century clipper ship. Stop at the Battle of Britain Memorial where you’ll find mesmerizing views of the White Cliffs of Dover. Get a fresh perspective on London’s attractions with a boat ride on the River Thames, from Greenwich to Embankment Pier. You'll pass Tower Bridge and stunning St. Paul’s Cathedral along the way.

From London: Leeds Castle, Canterbury, Dover and Greenwich

8. From London: Leeds Castle, Canterbury, Dover and Greenwich

Depart from London in the morning on a drive to Leeds Castle, the former royal residence of 6 of England's medieval queens. The palace was transformed by Henry VIII, and became a retreat for the rich and powerful. Begin with a private viewing prior to the castle opening to the public. Explore the chapel, galleries, courtyards, and the banqueting hall. Afterwards, you’ll see the grounds that are home to wildfowl, black swans, and birds in the aviary. Next on your full-day tour is a scenic drive along the old coastal road to the famous white cliffs of Dover. Admire the historic port and its magnificent 12th-century castle. On a clear day there are views of France across the English Channel. Experience the ancient city of Canterbury and its greatest treasure, the Canterbury Cathedral, probably best known as the site of the brutal murder of Thomas Becket in 1170. Have free time to explore Canterbury on your own. Take a walking tour through Greenwich, which boasts exquisite parks and gardens. See the famous Cutty Sark which was the fastest sailing ship of its time. As evening approaches, you’ll enjoy an exclusive Thames River cruise. Cruise back to the center of London, sailing past historic sites, including the Tower of London, Big Ben, and the Houses of Parliament.

Dover to London & Heathrow via Canterbury and Leeds Castle

9. Dover to London & Heathrow via Canterbury and Leeds Castle

After meeting your friendly guide at Dover Cruise Terminal, board a luxury coach and combine your transfer to London with a wonderful tour of the Garden of England, with visits to historic Canterbury and Leeds Castle. Firstly, come face-to-face with the White Cliffs of Dover, and the magnificent Dover Castle. The fortress dates back to Roman times, and is one of the largest and most impressive castle keeps in Britain. Continuing through this chalk landscape, discover the history of the country, from Celtic Settlers and Roman invaders to the Saxon migration and the Norman conquest. Stop at the city of Canterbury and glimpse into its world famous cathedral on a guided walking tour. Formerly the Roman town of Durovernum Canticorum, the city boasts a wealth of history. After the walking tour, have some free time to walk the narrow streets and admire the historic buildings. In the cathedral, you can see the tomb of King Henry IV, the resting place of The Black Prince and learn of the death in 1170 of Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury. It is then on past the Oast Houses, hop fields, orchards and vineyards to Leeds Castle, described by Lord Conway as the loveliest castle in the world. Dating back to 880AD, Leeds Castle has been home to many English Queens, from the end of the 12th century to the Tudor reign. Beautiful landscaped gardens are a main feature of the grounds, as is the stunning lake. Explore the castle's historic interior, admire the delightful rooms and get lost in the famous maze. After some free time, the tour departs for central London to begin drop offs, followed by Heathrow drop offs. The drive from Leeds Castle to London takes you through Royal Greenwich, and past Tower Bridge, with a view of the Tower of London. 

Canterbury: Treasure Hunt Puzzle Game Pack with Pub Discount

10. Canterbury: Treasure Hunt Puzzle Game Pack with Pub Discount

Start by request a pack to be sent to your postal address or receive a digital PDF version of the activity. Opt for the posted version of the tour and receive a a clues sheet, treasure map, clipboard, compass, and an envelope containing historical information, an activity pack, and a pub discount. Choose the digital option and get a PDF with all the information you need to partake in the activity. Embark on an exhilarating adventure as you delve into the heart of the local landscape, weaving through iconic landmarks and uncovering hidden gems. Immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of history and captivating stories that enliven the very fabric of the area. Triumph in this thrilling treasure hunt, decoding clues, solving puzzles, and mastering trivia about the vibrant surroundings. Finally, arrive at the X on the treasure map, a fantastic pub where you can relish not only in the excitement of the hunt but also enjoy exclusive discounts and an activity pack. Get ready for a journey that combines the thrill of exploration with the joy of discovery.

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Frequently asked questions about Canterbury

What top attractions are a must-see in Canterbury?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Canterbury?

The best day trips and excursions from Canterbury are:

Dover

Other Sightseeing Options in Canterbury

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What people are saying about Canterbury

Overall rating

4.4
(1,108 reviews)

Great tour, Alex our guide was fun interesting and entertaining and engaged well with the whole group. I did feel sorry for her that people tried tag along without paying which was difficult for her to police. If they guides had small stickers for wash paying participant it would be better.

Tour guide and the driver were super friendly and fun. There were sufficient stops and breaks during the road trip. Good escape from the city noise. Overall, happy customers!

Amazing castle and amazing history and staff around the castle where great. Highly recommended, We spent 6 hours there. Fascinating place to visit and beautiful grounds.

Beautiful sights. Coach didn’t have air con which made it really uncomfortable and hot and thats in March

Everything was great, but we were unlucky with the weather. The guide Lucy was fantastic.