An outstanding variety of exciting and festive events, Christmas craft and food markets, Christmas shopping, winter country crafts, twinkling lights, chilly walks in frosty landscapes, warming up in the cosy hostelries of our coastal areas, countryside, villages and character towns – a visit to White Cliffs Country in winter time combines magical nostalgia with the thrill of making new discoveries and finding amazing ways to escape the everyday at the coast and in the countryside.
Lights, Camera, Insta!
It may not be a White Christmas this year, but you can look forward to a White Cliffsmas!
White Cliffs Country will be sparkling with festivity this season with events to celebrate the Christmassy illumination of Deal, Dover and Sandwich. Grab your photos and selfies and share happy memories in celebration of the festive lights season – the countdown to Christmas is on!
Visit the Christmas craft fairs of White Cliffs Country
Dover’s Heritage Quarter transforms into a winter’s wonderland on Saturday 4th December with Dover’s Winter Light Up. Starting from midday, the event will combine a Christmas Market with live entertainment, exciting Christmassy activities and an interactive evening of festive illumination, with a lantern procession parading through the town centre to accompany Dover’s Christmas lights.
A full day of Christmassy events is planned in Sandwich for 4th December, beginning with a party in King Street in Sandwich from 10am through to the Christmas lights switch on, with music, Father Christmas, mulled wine - and a Christmas Jumper Parade! Open to everyone to take part, the festive sweater parade takes place at lunchtime, while a funfair in the Guildhall car park together with stalls in St Peter’s Church and Market Street will add to the festivities. The lights switch-on will be at 7.00pm in Market Street.
Christmas Gifts Galore
Across our character towns and historical villages, there’s something special about the Christmas shopping experience in White Cliffs Country. Visit our magical craft markets at Crabble Corn Mill in Dover, Betteshanger Park near Deal and many other locations around Deal, Dover and Sandwich and find unique and handmade gifts as you enjoy the atmosphere of these traditional White Cliffs Country Christmas events.
Head to Sandwich and weave your way around the medieval streets, pausing the enjoy the beautiful tableaus of Sandwich Advent Windows and the magic of the Christmas lights. Find bespoke gifts from independent retailers and reward yourself with a warm drink and bite to eat in one of the many cosy coffee shops or traditional inns in the beautifully preserved historical centre of this original Cinque Port.
South Foreland Lighthouse (©National Trust)
Don’t miss Deal for its award-winning high street and the chance to find something special for your Christmas shopping list from the independent shops of this quaint and quirky coastal town. When it’s time for a break, if you’ve shopped til you’re ready to drop, turn down the tempo and enjoy a relaxing visit to Deal’s art galleries, or stroll along the promenade and Deal Pier, enjoying the panorama of an unspoiled historic seafront and the warm welcome from its many bars and bistros.
In historic Dover, you’ll find favourite brands for Christmas functions and office parties under one roof at De Bradelei Wharf outlet shopping, while St James Retail Park and the town centre shops offer you the convenience of collecting all your essentials to help the festive season run smoothly. Pop into the Dover Museum shop at the White Cliffs Country Visitor Information Centre to browse and choose from a wonderful selection of locally-inspired gifts and pick up a copy of the NEW White Cliffs Country Calendar 2022. When it’s time to relax, make sure you visit the eclectic selection of restaurants in Dover from Mexican to Caribbean to tapas and more - why not grab some friends and book a pre-Christmas meal for a well-deserved catch-up?
Country Crafts at Winter time
Enjoy a taster of countryside traditions by the coast this winter season with a series of winter craft workshops run by the White Cliffs Countryside Partnership. Learn to make a beautiful willow basket from an expert willow weaver in the stunning surrounds of Samphire Hoe on the Heritage Coast of White Cliffs Country. Winter workshops, which also include medieval calligraphy and traditional wheat weaving, take place throughout December and January. Visit our What's On and Events page for more details.
Hunt for reindeer along Rudolph’s trail at Betteshanger Park, enjoy the tradition of a family pantomime or two, meet Santa at Crabble Corn Mill or even have breakfast with Santa at the mill – there are so many fantastic Christmas events for the whole family taking place across White Cliffs Country that you’ll be hard-pushed to fit them all in. Best get planning then! Check out our What's On and Events calendar for full listings of festive family fun across Deal, Dover and Sandwich.
St Peter's Church, Sandwich (©Val Mercer)
More Festive Celebrations
From medieval wassailing to Christmas tree festivals, Christmas carol singing to pantomimes for grown-ups and a screening of the Nutcracker ballet – our festive events in White Cliffs Country won’t be beaten for whistles and sleighbells. Visit our What’s On and Events listings for a full guide to what’s happening and when – plus find out how you can book tickets, of course!
The Beauty of Coast and Countryside in Winter
Enjoy stunning winterscapes from frosty meadows to afternoon sunsets… at this busy time of year, it’s important to pause and take a breath as you rest from rushing around, and it’s always a pleasure in White Cliffs Country. Let the peace and beauty of nature calm and relax you ahead of the festivities of late December.
Visit the coast and countryside of this unique destination and explore our stunning walking routes with breathtaking views, our many wonderful cycling routes that weave through our character towns and historical villages - then warm up somewhere quaint, cosy and welcoming with delicious locally produced food and drink.
And when January arrives – with New Year's resolutions and new plans to get fit and active, there’s no better environment than White Cliffs Country to boost health and wellbeing with our coastline and countryside offering the perfect place to enjoy outdoor exercise with stunning views and fresh air.
Visit White Cliffs Country in winter time and adventure with us here in Deal, Dover, Sandwich and beyond.
Find out all you need to know about visiting White Cliffs Country – from how to get here to where to stay - here.