Bluebell the motorhome is on a lovely little Caravan Club certified location on the Romney Marsh Nature Reserve, a stones throw away from the banks of The Royal Military Canal. The sun is shining, and although it’s a bit blustery, we are both rosy cheeked and enjoying the warmth of the sun on our faces!
This morning we left Sandwich Lakes via The White Mill heritage centre on the outskirts of Sandwich. The museum, which is run entirely by volunteers, claims to be one of the only windmill sites that still has its original millers cottages and farm buildings set out in its original form. The volunteers here couldn’t have made us feel any more welcome, they even instisted we take Jazz in, and knew all about the history, which was very interesting. They are doing a fabulous job in restoring all the buildings, and were busy during our visit this morning doing work on the exterior walls, gardening etc.
Jazz even managed a trip up the windmill!
The windmill, which was built in 1760, hasn’t been in use since 1951 and it’s almost about to have a new set of sails, or sweeps as they are known as in Kent, put on- when they are on its going to look fabulous! We were so lucky with the weather, despite it blowing a hooly, the bright blue skies made a perfect backdrop for the the White mill to be photographed!
Next up was the seaside town of Deal, just 10 miles outside of Dover- it’s interesting being so close to the gateway to Europe, having travelled through so many times it’s really nice to be exploring this area- we are sure it must get hugely overlooked.
Whilst Deal isn’t in the same league as Sandwich with its historical listed buildings everywhere, there is still a lot to be seen- it’s a nice example of a Victorian seaside resort. We were sad not to catch the ball dropping at the Time Ball Tower, but enjoyed a good hour wandering around the town.
Horatio Nelson was a visitor to Deal and lodged in a nice looking hotel/bar on the seafront- a perfect excuse for a swift pint in the sunshine, if ever I’ve known one!
Deal Castle is also worth a look- although we couldn’t go in with pooch, so settled for a walk around the perimeter.
By now, time was pushing on, so we said goodbye to Deal and made our way 45 mins drive to our campsite just in time for lunch outside the van- for the first time this year! If that’s not worthy of a selfie stick moment, then I don’t know what is…!
Wednesday arrived and we were to be treated to wonderful blue skies again! We had a light breakfast, made a packed lunch and offloaded the bikes- we were heading to Hythe along the Royal Military Canal. Sadly, we couldn’t join the canal path straight away as hoped, as a local had blocked off his section of the bridle way so we had to take a couple of quiet roads and join the canal a bit further down. Still, once we were on the canal path, we were in for a treat- not only did we cycle past a zoo but also another Roman Fort remains, and a castle!
There wasn’t a massive amount to see in Hythe, which was probably a good – my cold seems to be catching up with me today and I’ve felt a bit fluey- mind you we still managed to stop for a swift medicinal pint of the very tasty Whitstable Lager in the oldest pub in Hythe, the Kings Arms, where there has been a pub there since Tudor times. Later on, soldiers were signed up here for the army during The Neopolian war.
The Whitstable lager was so good we were happy to see a local wine and ale shop, where we were able to stock up on a few bottles, along with some delicious local cider too.
Before heading back to our bikes, we had a little picnic on the banks of the canal.
After a quick look at the 11th century church, we headed back to Bluebell the motorhome for a well earned nap!
Until next time