In talking with Laura before making my way to London, she expressed an interest in seeing the outskirts of town, not just the busy hubbub of the city. With no particular spot in mind, I pulled up Google maps to see what looked intriguing. Nearby Dover with its White Cliffs and Castle looked like a winner!
On the way, we started at King’s Cross Station, and of course had to find the famous Platform 9 ¾ of Harry Potter fame! The line for an official picture was far too long, but we snagged a few from the side. Not more than 30 minutes later we were on a train speeding through the English countryside at 135 MPH! On the ride was I listening to a random playlist when Dime Store Cowgirl by Kacey Musgraves came on. I had to do a double take when I heard her mention the White Cliffs of Dover in the song – wild life coincidence.
We arrived and after a little walk through town, arrived at the cutest most quintessential English B&B I’ve ever seen (granted my sample size is 1, but this place was great!) The old lady who owned and ran the place took our “Classic English Breakfast” order. Our double room looked out over the Dover Port – one of the world’s busiest given its proximity to France and the rest of mainland Europe. The English Channel tunnel is right by Dover, given that it’s the shortest distance to mainland Europe from the UK.
Right behind the hotel under the castle were some of the amazing White Cliffs, and the cliff walk was all of ½ mile down the road. At first chance to feel the cliffs we did – and quickly learned that they were indeed made of chalk. Naturally the rock was very soft, and you could use pieces that had fallen off much like a teacher might use chalk on a chalkboard.
For the next 3+ hours we followed a path towards and past the Dover lighthouse, stopping often for pictures and cliff exploring. There are no barriers and the cliffs are very steep… but what a beautiful area. Because of the softness of the white cliffs, they’re constantly receding. In fact apparently tens of thousands of years ago, France and England were connected, but after an ice age glaciers formed the English Channel, which keeps expanding as the cliffs keep deteriorating and collapsing. We were really lucky from a weather and light standpoint – it would have been almost impossible to dial it in much better.
For dinner we ended up at Cullin’s Yard where I got the classic English Fish and Chips only to be surprised to see that I was basically given half of an entire fish! It was great stuff and super filling.
Another very long big day on tap for tomorrow! Should be a fun one!