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Get out on the water

1st April 2019

Adrenaline junkies and sporty types need not confine themselves to the land on their next Kent adventure - our stunning coastline is perfect for getting active on the water all year round.

Yes, we've got some of the best beaches in England, with Blue Flags and safe waters. But Kent is also a top destination for people who love to surf, paddle, swim and test their strength against the waves - and soak up some pretty beautiful scenery while they're at it.

Our numerous beaches and coastal towns have excellent clubs, schools and tutors just itching to teach you a new passion or perfect your skills, with great cafes, bars and restaurants to visit after a long day on the foam.

Surfers head for the swell-filled seas around Botany Bay near Broadstairs, where you can learn to ride the waves at Joss Bay Surf School or the Kent Surf School. Both also offer lessons in stand-up-paddle-boarding, for those no-swell days.      

Kent's more exposed coves draw swarms of kite-surfers each year, and both the gently shelving, sandy Minnis Bay and the rugged shoreline off Romney Marsh are great places for seasoned pros to start. If it's your first time, learn with the Kent Kitesurfing School or Aquilo Kiteboarding in Whitstable.

For those who like to keep their sails close, top windsurfing locations include Minnis Bay and Whitstable - conditions are so good that a world speed record was even set there. For lessons try Bewl WaterWhitstable Yacht Club and Leybourne Lakes Watersports Centre.     

Jet ski junkies tend to flock to the wide beaches of Herne Bay to hit the glorious (and surprisingly warm) waves. You can start your own addiction with Jetski World, in Cliftonville near Margate, or on the 22-acre private lake of Action Watersports in Lydd with wakeboarding and water-skiing.      

Sailing Kent's stunning heritage coast is a delight. Two superb marinas make excellent bases for the sailors amongst you: the historic Ramsgate Royal Harbour Marina, and award-winning Dover Marina. To learn, head to Bewl Water at Lamberhurst, Whitstable Yacht Club Elite Sailing on the Medway, or the Hythe and Saltwood Sailing Club. And don't miss out on a trip to The Historic Dockyard Chatham to brush up on the history of sail or for nearby lessons.          

Kent's calmer coastal waters are ideal for kayaking and canoeing. Aficionados paddle the three spectacular routes that set out from both Sandgate and Sandwich Bay, or make for St Margaret's quiet beach to glide below Kent's remarkable White Cliffs. There are plenty of seafront pubs for post paddling refreshment too.

For guaranteed calm, head inland to Canoe Wild in Canterbury, which offers fun days out for individuals, couples, families and groups, and you can stop at charming pubs at Grove Ferry or Forwich to refuel after your efforts on the River Stour. You can also learn to paddle at Bewl WaterLeybourne Lake Watersports Centre, Kent Canoes in Wrotham, or Seapoint Canoe and Kayak Centre.

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