If there’s one thing you can count on when visiting Canterbury, it’s a delicious meal, often accompanied by a breathtaking view.
The neighborhood is brimming with award-winning restaurants, cafés, and hotspots for delectable cuisine, with the majority serving peerless fresh, local produce from the ‘Garden of England‘. In the city, on the coast, and in the countryside of Canterbury, you will find the ideal bite regardless of your preferences.
CITY CENTRE CUISINE
Breakfast and Sunday Brunch
Breakfast and brunch options in Canterbury will set you up for a day of exploring the city.
Breakfast sandwiches, eggs royale, avo-toast, and stacks of crepes make The Refectory Kitchen in St. Dunstan’s one of the most popular brunch destinations in Canterbury.
The Veg Box Cafe Canterbury is a treasure for vegetarian and vegan diners, as it is open seven days a week and serves locally derived, freshly prepared cuisine. Try the brownies infused with beetroot, or warm up with a steaming bowl of fresh broth or stew.
Or, if you want to go full Dickens in a quintessentially English tearoom, Tiny Tim’s Tearoom is your only option. With more than thirty varieties of tea and coffee, an assortment of cereals, afternoon tea platters, and delectable sweets, what more could you ask for? Another espresso?
Let’s Do Lunch
No. 35, a newcomer to the city, is quickly becoming a lunchtime favorite by serving local ingredients with a global spin. Choose your preferred bagel, laden salad, or signature sandwich; the cocktails are also quite good. A lovely walled garden is available for dining on sunny days.
The Goods Shed is a must-visit location if you’re searching for the freshest cuisine in town. The site is a bustling farmers’ market situated in a former railway cargo shed, and its famous hyper-local restaurant has been a favourite of national critics for years.
Cafe St. Pierre, located at the foot of the High Street, embodies the Parisian café culture. Grab a freshly filled baguette, airy confectionary, or flavorful coffee for the road, or linger by the window to observe passersby.
You can even bring your dog to the charming British bistro Oscar & Bentleys, which serves 100% gluten-free cuisine prepared with fresh local ingredients. And if you’re seeking a traditional roast dinner any day of the week, The Old Weavers’ historic riverside location is the place to go.
A Night on the Town
The Foundry on Stour Street is a wonderful venue for large gatherings due to its excellent beer, local liquor, and high-quality pub food. The menu features a variety of English pub mainstays, including steak and Foundry Ale pies and Sunday barbecues. And with an on-site artisanal brewery, the beer will run all night long!
The Cook’s Tale provides a gourmet spin on traditional Indian cuisine that has repeatedly impressed national critics. Just a five-minute stroll from The Marlowe Theatre, you can discuss the latest Asian dishes with French and British influences.
Café Des Amis is an institution in the city, cherished by celebrities and residents for its exceptional Mexican cuisine with a Californian twist. This restaurant fills up quickly, so reserve a table for dinner promptly or take advantage of their exceptional midweek set menu deals. Cafe Du Soleil, located across the street and overlooking the river, serves exquisite wood-fired cuisine for all preferences.
Meat enthusiasts will want to visit Herd, a sumptuous restaurant on the High Street that promises great sirloin, great wine, great cocktails, and great times. The restaurant is also visually appealing.
And for the ultimate dinner with a view, reserve a table at Socialite, the city’s only rooftop bar and restaurant, which offers breathtaking views of the cathedral and medieval rooftops in addition to excellent meals, small dishes, and sparkling cocktails.
If Whitstable had a national cuisine, it would have to be oysters, and The Whitstable Oyster Company would be the ornament of its crown. The restaurant on the shore offers breathtaking views of the oyster beds as you dine on superb seafood.
You’ll also adore Wheelers Oyster Bar on the High Street, an additional seafood purveyor where you can experience delicious seafood inside or take it to the shore for a picnic.
JoJo’s in Tankerton serves the finest Greek-influenced meze dishes on a menu that changes daily, and is adored by locals and critics for its flavor and family-first approach.
And if you’d rather have a calzone, head over to the acclaimed Nomad Pizza for some genuinely delicious dough. We also adore Samphire, a bistro on the High Street that uses only locally sourced ingredients and is committed to sustainability.
HAPPY DINING IN HERNE BAY
Looking for one of the finest pizzas outside of Italy? Then you must contact A Casa Mia, which The Guardian describes as a place where you long for more. As one of the only pizzerias in the United Kingdom to be accredited by the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana, which publishes a set of guidelines for what constitutes the real deal, this establishment has all the proper credentials.
A La Turka on Central Parade serves cuisine from the south-eastern region of Turkey, such as enormous meat platters, delicious meze, and grilled vegetables. With locations in Herne Bay and Canterbury, the waterfront eatery is ideal for family gatherings and special occasions.
A stone’s throw from the water’s edge, Four Fathoms offers excellent cuisine and drinks in a historic setting with contemporary comfort. The sophisticated bar and cosy lounge invite drinkers to unwind with a Shepherd Neame ale and delectable dishes, while in the summer, the sheltered courtyard garden allows you to breathe in the fresh sea air.
Additionally, we adore The Wallflower Café, a local favourite for both vegetarians and vegans that serves excellent coffee and delectable soul cuisine. And Alice And The Hatter is a charming and eccentric delight, serving exquisite afternoon teas that would make Lewis Carroll proud.
HIDDEN GOURMET GEMS
We are fortunate to have an incredible variety of award-winning restaurants in the neighbourhood, including two Michelin-starred establishments.
The Sportsman at Seasalter possesses a Michelin star and is a multiple-time winner of the title of finest gastropub in the United Kingdom. For special occasions, this is a must-visit location that requires advance reservations. Unbeatable cuisine served in a casual pub atmosphere, followed by a bracing stroll along the coastline.
Fordwich, the smallest village in the United Kingdom, is home to The Fordwich Arms, which offers Michelin-starred cuisine from the beach to the river. This oak-paneled restaurant is a culinary sanctuary, with an exceptional seasonal menu and an outstanding wine list, as well as a lovely riverside terrace.
The Bridge Arms is the newest addition to the district’s Michelin Guide, holding one star and serving extraordinary local fare in its Grade II-listed former coaching inn in Bridge’s charming village. The Pig Hotel at Bridge is a rural refuge for those seeking luxury with their meal just around the corner. The building once hosted rowdy parties for rock-and-roll luminaries, but it now serves delicious, freshly prepared food and beverages in breathtaking surroundings. Even an overnight visit is possible!
Additionally, the greater Canterbury region is dotted with exceptional pubs serving delicious cuisine to explorers, gourmets, and even dog enthusiasts. Stop by The Dove in Dargate, The Artichoke in Chartham, and The Dog in Wingham. The Mermaid Inn in Bishopsbourne or The Grove Ferry Inn on the riverfront.