Holiday Rentals in Broadstairs, UK : Ocean Outlook : Macatsim

Scuba Diving in Kent

Scuba Diver Silhouette

Scuba diving is something the whole family can participate in. Children from the age of eight can begin to learn how to scuba dive with an experienced qualified diver. However, they can only dive in a closed pool. Children are not allowed to learn in open water until they are at least ten years of age. PADI’s  Bubblemaker and Seal Team programs are an excellent way for youngsters over the age of eight to learn safely with a qualified instructor in no more the six feet of water. The SSI also have the “Scuba Ranger” course and this is for children who are twelve years of age and is also held in a pool no deeper than 6 feet. If your children are over ten years old then a fantastic way to have some fun is to introduce them to the open sea with an introductory scuba course. They learn from professionals while the whole family has great fun.

The question that is often asked is “How good a swimmer do you need to be to Scuba Dive”? Well, the answer to that question might surprise you. The PADI requirement is that you are required to have the basic swimming skills. You need to be able to swim 200 metres (or 300 metres in a mask, fins and snorkels) and be able to tread water for ten minutes if you can do that you’re on your way.

Equipment you need for UK Diving

  • Scuba Diving Mask
  • Regulator
  • Buoyancy Control Device (BCD)
  • Fins
  • Dive Computer
  • Gauges
  • Torch
  • Weights
Scuba Diving Gear Equipment

The waters of the UK can be very cold so where you may wear different gear in warmer climates it is better in the UK to wear Dry suites this will give you a warmer and far more enjoyable experience when diving.

Kent Diving Equipment Suppliers and Clubs

To be able to dive you will need a club, a boat and equipment as well as local knowledge of dive sites that suit your abilities. 

Kent Scuba (Margate)

Kent Scuba are there to assist you with anything you want to know or anything you may require and they are based in Margate.

http://www.kentscuba.com/ 

Scuba Class Instruction

Thanet Diving & Water Sports (Ramsgate)

Thanet Diving and Water Sports will offer a first class diving experience whatever your abilities are. Whether you want to join the Seals or wish to become a Master Diver, Thanet Diving and Water Sports will help you achieve your targeted ambitions.

Children over eight years of age can join the Seals course which takes place in a pool no deeper than six feet in a controlled environment to give the children confidence to enjoy their diving experience. For the new adult divers there is the “Discover Scuba” course which is in a controlled environment teaching the basics of diving. If you realise that you like the diving experience then “The Open Water” course is where you really get the feel and enjoyment of diving. There is some theory on this course and some pool work before taking four qualifying dives. At the end of the course, you have one foot on the bottom rung of the ladder becoming a qualified diver. It is possible to move your diving career all the way up to Master Diver level with Thanet Diving and Water Sports.

Charter boats can be hired out of Ramsgate, Margate Folkestone and Dover such the Mutiny Diving and Kent Scuba.      

There is an array of wrecks to be explored off the Kent coast. In fact, you are spoilt for choice. There is a lot to thank Jacques-Yves Cousteau for as his Aqualung allows the diver to dive for much longer and go deeper than ever before. Therefore, wrecks which were not accessible many years ago are now ripe for exploration.

http://www.kentscubadiving.co.uk/diving 

Inland Scuba Diving

Buckland Lake Reserve (near Rochester)

When planning your scuba diving trip you need to get everything right and in perfect condition ready for your eagerly awaited dive. Everything is planned right down to the most minute detail. You then arrive at your dive destination to be told the dive has been cancelled due to the weather conditions or the sea conditions. The anticipation turns to dread as you consider the drive back home. This is where you need a “Plan B”. 

Why not dive one of the many inland lakes and reservoirs on your doorstep? Buckland Lake Reserve is a great dive site. The depth of the lake is up to 50 feet and has many submerged items for you to explore. They have a double decker bus, a Falcon jet aircraft, underwater forest and the White Share to name a few. There is even a cafe and more on-site for a warm drink after your first dive.

http://www.bucklandlake.co/index.php?id=9#.WlSjIahl_IU

Links

List of Shipwrecks in Kent
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_shipwrecks_of_England#Kent

Scuba Diving Facebook Group
https://www.facebook.com/groups/304179562968172/

Other Dive Schools / Businesses

Whitstable Scuba   
http://whitstablescuba.co.uk/

Blue Ocean Diving (Maidstone)
http://www.blueoceandiving.co.uk/

Maidstone Scuba School 
http://www.maidstonescuba.co.uk/

Dive Machine  (Tonbridge)
http://www.divemachine.co.uk/

Cycling in Broadstairs / Thanet

Margate Harboue Couple on Bikes

Broadstairs and the surrounding areas are fantastic cycling destinations, not only because they have superb designated cycling routes, history and architecture they are also easily accessible.

Broadstairs has many places for you to hire a bicycle and cycling gear from one should you wish to do so which makes cycling accessible to all. They hire all types of bikes for all ages so you could make it a family cycling holiday without having to bring all of your bikes and safety gear. In fact, the hire companies will even deliver the bikes to your accommodation and then collect them when you are leaving which reduces the hassle – leaving you more time to have fun.

Cycle routes can be found here: http://www.mapmyride.com/gb/broadstairs-eng/

The Viking Coastal Trail

There is a 32-mile circular route known as “The Viking Coastal Trail” which can be taken at a leisurely pace. On route, you can take in Margate, Ramsgate and the beautiful surrounding inland villages of South East Kent. The route is an easy ride, family friendly, traffic free, safe ride along promenades, broad sea walls and long quiet leisurely lanes.

While on this trail, which encompasses the Isle you can enjoy the wonderful views of the white chalk cliffs, The Turner Contemporary, Pugin’s Grange, The Minster Abbey and the coastal path between Pegwell Bay and Cold Harbour. The route is also known as the Regional Cycle Network 15, which is well signposted throughout with the trail logo.

Viking Coastal Trail Area Map

If you are going to take the 32-mile Viking trail please give yourself around 5 hours 30 mins to complete this is at an easy pace. If you wish to speed up and cycle at a steady pace then the course can be completed in around 4 hours. If you are a strong rider and want to push yourself that little bit more then the 32-mile course can be completed in 2 hours. However going at this pace you may miss all the wonderful scenery, architecture and history that the trail has to offer. The decision is yours of course.

Thirty two miles of cycling in one go is not to everyone’s taste or ability of course, therefore, you have the options of either doing the course in stages or dividing the course into manageable sections and returning to Broadstairs every day. When you set out on the Viking Coastal Trail you do not need to worry about food or drink, as there are many places to stop, take a rest, eat and have a drink.

Viking Coastal Trail Sign

Kent Sea Fishing

Sea Fishing Father Son

People often wonder what sport has the most participants in the UK. It comes as a shock when they find out fishing takes the top prize with over 3,000,000 fishermen and Women taking part in all different types of angling. Solitude, peace and quiet with a touch of patience thrown in and your half way to being a decent angler.

Kent not only has a most beautiful and varied coastline showing off its chalk white cliffs and its wonderful sandy beaches, it can also boast some of the best fishing in Britain. The nutrient rich waters are home to many species of fish most of which are edible.

Kent Coast Fishing Compedium

http://www.hagstone.net/broadstairs.html

Autumn Sea Fishing (Sept - Nov)

Autumn is sometimes thought of as the best time to fish, as anglers can often be lucky enough to get the best of both worlds. This is where the summer and winter species tend to overlap and so it has been known for an angler spinning on a light rod for Mackerel to hook into a large winter Cod using lures.

Autumn Fishing Rods and Fish

So, it is true that this time of year when fishing, you never really know what you are going to catch. It is however, the time for the bigger fish of all species to start moving in. There will be larger Conger eels, Smooth hound and Thornback rays. The time to target these is on a fine early Autumn evening where the same rule can be applied to the larger Bass, Pollock and Wrasse.

As autumn moves towards Winter these species will become less as the large Cod move in from the colder Scandinavian waters to join the smaller Cod who have remained around our shores all year round. The Plaice will start to migrate to be replaced with cold water flat fish such as Dabs and Flounder these can be great sport to fish, then as Autumn gets closer to Winter the Whiting will arrive to give you some good sport as well.

Ramsgate Pier and Pegwell Bay are excellent this time of year, as is the reliable Mennis Bay and its neighbour Margate with its pier. Wherever you choose to fish on the Isle of Thanet you are sure to enjoy the experience whatever your ability is.

There are only two things more important than the catch itself. They are conservation where you should adhere to the catch and release policy, returning any undersized fish safely to the water and take all your plastic bags and rubbish home with you. The most important of all is your safety. Check tides and weather conditions before you go fishing and let someone know where you intend to fish.

Winter Sea Fishing (Dec - Feb)

Kent for many years has been known as one of the best sea fishing areas in the UK. The coastline is perfect for fishing all year round. Different areas offer different species and this is the same all year.  The beaches at Viking Bay Main Beach, Pegwell Bay Ramsgate, Ramsgate Main Sands, Reculver and Minnis Bay all offer great shoreline winter fishing.

Minnis Bay in winter offers species such as Whiting which can be caught on Mackerel strips while you may also come across some codling. Wander between Ramsgate and Margate and you will find Kingsgate Bay, Botany Bay and Joss Bay. All these sandy bays have rocks just a little out to sea, which give you the chance of bagging a nice Sea Bass using peeler crab or ragworm as bait. 

There are other species of fish you can catch such as Dogfish and Flatfish so be ready and aware for a bit of a fight with the best time to fish being low tide. It is also possible to catch Smooth-Hound and Rays at these bays. A little further along the coast is Deal, which has a superb reputation for big fish and many species. In winter from this venue stick with your beachcaster and target the large Cod that frequent the area. 

Cod Fish on a plate with lemon

A large bait is used for a large fish so you can either use a large squid or make up a cocktail using a combination of frozen peeler crab, squid, lugworm and muscles. If there are Cod about they won’t be able to resist. 

All you need to have for a great days fishing is a Beachcaster rod, a reel – either a spinner or a multiplier the preference is your decision with 18-20 pound breaking strain line and your rigs with your bait. Make sure you have the correct clothing and safety gear – remembering that good fishermen always adhere to the conservation code which states a catch and release policy for undersize fish.

If you choose to stay with us and fancy a spot of Sea Fishing and don’t have your equipment don’t panic! There is an angling shop known as “Pleasure Angling” in Deal (Tel. 01304 239191) who hire out the equipment and bait you need for a good fishing session.

Spring Sea Fishing (March - May)

Early spring is probably the quietest time of year in which to fish. The reason why it is quieter is that in early spring the Winter species will have left for colder waters whilst the summer species have yet to arrive in any numbers, however, that does not make it a bad time fish!

In later spring the transitional period begins where the species who migrated to warmer waters in the winter start to return as our water temperatures increase. In Later spring, you will see Plaice and Mackerel arriving along with Sprats and Sand-Eel with the odd Garfish making an appearance.

Ramsgate Harbour Boats Yachts Marina
Ramsgate Harbour & Marina

The ever-present Pollock and Wrasse who move out to deeper water in the winter also start to come into shallow water again where they will come in close enough so that the shore fishermen will be able to once again target them. There are always the usual Conger Eels, Rays and Smooth-Hounds to keep you amused or try a light spinner rod and fish for summer flatfish, Bass and Pollock. This can be great fun.

Ramsgate offers two miles of good sporting shoreline with the harbour piers giving the person fishing plenty of options including what fish to target and from where they think they will catch.

For keen anglers, night fishing is probably the most productive as the beaches tend to get very busy in the daytime with holiday makers. From Ramsgate shore in Spring you can expect to catch bass, soles, flounders, dabs and the odd thornback ray.

Broadstairs can be a fun place to fish in later spring. With the Mackerel coming in to join the Bass and Dogfish. Fishing off the jetty can make life a little easier in later spring when tourist numbers increase. Night fishing can also produce good bass and flounder when there are less visitors around.

Do not forget to try Joss Bay and Botany Bay, which also produce specimen fish. If you’re having no luck take a short walk and try either bay.

Margate and Minnis Bay can be a productive mark if conditions are right where you can catch Bass, Thornback Rays, Smooth-hound, Flounders and Eels. Mennis Bay is a fantastic shore fishing venue and is a must if fishing in the area.

Summer Sea Fishing (June - August)

Summer is a great time to fish. A different target species and better weather make it a lot more enjoyable and a lot more comfortable. The Kent coastline remains a fantastic area to fish with record results repeatedly. 

Reculver Tower Whitstable
Whitstable Reculver Towers

There are productive marks around Whitstable Harbour where there are Dabs, Flounders, Silver Eels, Lesser Spotted-Dogfish and School Bass. If you are a decent caster, the same species can be caught from the pebbled beach. Herne Bay is worth a go as on a good day you can catch Flounder and Silver Eels while the estuary can give you the opportunity to spin (spinning requires a light rod, reel and a lure) for Bass for a bit of fun. 

Dogfish can also be caught from the beach along with Rays and Smooth hounds. Three miles to the East, you will come across Reculver, which is a very productive area with several good marks. Fish around the towers of St Mary’s Church and the sea walls which offer good Flounders and dabs with Dover Sole being caught on worm and crab baits. 

In the summer Ramsgate pier and harbour offer lots of variety of fish such as Dover Sole, Pouting, Flatfish, School Bass and Dogfish. Remember also in the warm summer months the Mackerel come into the harbour so there is plenty of action to be had there.  

PortOfRamsgate Map
Ramsgate Harbour Layout

There is good fishing to be had in Sandwich Bay, Deal, Dover and Folkstone. However, in the Summer months there are holidaymakers to consider while contemplating which venue to fish at. Many of the beaches and bays will be difficult to fish from in the summer months – not impossible but restricted.

Boat Fishing

Boat fishing is a great way to get away from it all and fish. You are almost guaranteed to catch something from a boat plus you get to see the fantastic chalk cliffs along the coastline. The skippers look after you and assist you when you are fortunate to catch something. The price of the fishing trip normally includes the hire of a boat rod and all the fishing gear plus some frozen bait. 

It is advisable if possible to get your own fresh bait for the trip. The chances of catching something big are increased as you will be fishing over wrecks and other such marks like the Goodwin Sands . It really is a fantastic days fishing. Tuition is provided on board if required.

http://www.charterboats-uk.co.uk/port/ramsgate/

http://ramsgatefishingcharters.co.uk/

Tackle / Bait Shops

Outdoor Sports

Joss Bay Surfing Home Page Stretch

The area is great for a variety of outdoor sports including surfing, skate boarding, rock climbing and horse riding, to name a few.

Kent Surf School

Kent Surf School is owned and run by Husband and Wife Andy and Gemma Webb. The school is an award-winning venture and the owners and instructors teach a little more than the usual. Yes they teach you to surf however, they also try to pass on their passion and enthusiasm for the sea stating it should be respected at all times. You will be aware whilst having a lesson how they try to instil into the pupil the fundamentals of beach safety hoping this will promote good lifelong practices. Of course, they ensure at all times you are learning and enjoying the experience, which of course is paramount to the success of their business. Teaching water-sports to people of all abilities is where they come to the fore. Whether you wish to learn how to Surf, Stand up paddle-boarding, Body boarding or Kayaking they will get you on the sea or maybe in the sea very quickly.

If you are on holidays in the area and do not have access to the equipment, Kent Surf School hire out safety checked equipment. They offer many different packages from individual tuition to Hen and Stag parties, however, they prefer smaller classes so they can give a personal learning experience. For friends and relatives who are not partaking in the water-sport tuition there is a cafe and a viewing area for them to admire their friends or loved ones efforts. 

http://www.kentsurfschool.co.uk/

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attraction_Review-g635678-d3342200-Reviews-Kent_Surf_School-Broadstairs_Isle_of_Thanet_Kent_England.html 

Distance – 150 metres

Joss Bay Surf School

The award winning Joss Bay Surf School was founded in 1998 to help promote Joss Bay as a safe and enjoyable way for people to change their lives for the better. People have surfed Joss Bay for over 40 years however, there is now professional tuition available for the next budding Luke Dillon. The staff at the surf school are friendly, approachable and extremely knowledgeable about their sport. The instructors have given thousands of lessons to all sorts of clients young and old, able and disabled, novices and experienced in a fun professional manner. They are also portraying not only their knowledge of surfing but also their love of the sea and their passion in what they are trying to achieve. They take great pride in improving surfers of all abilities.

The Joss Bay Surf school also give professional lessons in stand up paddle boarding so the choice is yours. You can have lessons as a group or individually and they have also, for the last 18 years been able to hire out quality surf equipment, this comes with experienced sea safety advice. The hire equipment is only used under the watchful eyes of Joss Bay Surf School Staff who are trained lifeguards. So remember “The best surfer out there is the one having most fun”.

https://www.jossbay.co.uk/

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attraction_Review-g635678-d2140584-Reviews-Joss_Bay_Surf_School-Broadstairs_Isle_of_Thanet_Kent_England.html

Distance – 2 miles

Revolution Skate Park and Climbing Centre

Revolution Skate Park welcomes people of all ages and abilities. There are professional staff there to assist and direct anyone who needs tuition. Revolution does not only cater for skateboarders but also BMX riders, scooters as well as rollerbladers so why not pad up and give it a go? Revolution is a state of the art indoor facility built in three large warehouses with the skate park split into a Street Course, Bowl room and a Ramp Room. This inspired facility was first opened in 1998 during which time it has become known as not just one of the finest extreme leisure centres in Kent but the finest in the UK.

Alongside the immaculately maintained skate park is another large warehouse, which is home to one of the country’s best indoor climbing facilities. Yet again, this immaculate climbing centre is full of surprises. If interested you can take it a step further and try the Climber Trial Session. When you arrive, you will be given climbing shoes and then be allowed to climb supervised to a height of 9 metres. If this gets the adrenalin pumping and you have Everest in your sights why not give “Bouldering” a go. During the “Bouldering” session you will have to overcome such obstacles as overhangs, cave and natural wall problems and all sent to test your climbing ability. On this wall, you may climb up to 5 metres high. On site there is a cafe, climbing shop, spectators viewing area and toilets plus a lot more.

http://www.revolutionskatepark.co.uk/

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attraction_Review-g635678-d3342272-Reviews-Revolution_Skatepark-Broadstairs_Isle_of_Thanet_Kent_England.html

Distance – 1 mile

Horse With Kid

Manston Riding Centre

Manston Riding Centre is a fully-fledged member of the Association of British Riding Schools. The riding centre is located just outside of Ramsgate. The Equestrian centre has two floodlight schools, one of which has full set of ride on jumps. Manston Riding Centre also have on site, a feed store and a tack shop, these should alleviate any hunger pains for either you or your horse.

In the Summer months they have many  Equine shows for all abilities of rider and horse. There are also available, a full range of horse boarding facilities which can be tailored to your needs. There is a Full Livery service available where there is a professional supervisor to give your horse the care and attention is deserves. The horse is fed, given bedding and haylage, is turned out and groomed -7 days a week. If you prefer a little more hands on then it is possible to have assisted livery where your horse is fed, watered and hayed with bedding provided and it will also turned out. Schooling and exercise can be arranged whenever you require it. Lessons are available for riders of all abilities either on your own horse or on one of theirs.

https://www.manstonridingcentre.co.uk/

https://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Attraction_Review-g3681139-d8507461-Reviews-Manston_Riding_Centre-Manston_Isle_of_Thanet_Kent_England.html 

Distance – 5 miles

True Grip Off Road Driving Experience

Off road driving can be fun for all the family. If you are maybe wanting to improve your driving skills, require professional training or just want to have a blast with family or friends you can do it here. There are a few different vehicles and courses for the off road driving enthusiast. The courses are set in the rolling Kentish Countryside in the 3,000 acre Eastwell Park Estate near Ashford. There you will find numerous difficult surfaces to drive on with chalk, clay, sand, water crossings and mud runs all aimed to test both car and driver to the limits. You will be able to drive the various lanes and tracks laid out in this Kent Estate, however, if you’re feeling brave have a go at the purpose built off road test circuit. This was designed not only to test the vehicles but the drivers skills and concentration also. Here you can take on the steepest banks, ruts and slide slopes plus a lot more.

It’s not just cars that True Grip have to offer there is also off road Quad Biking. They offer 1 person per quad and groups of 4 quads for each instructor. There are courses for people of all abilities ranging from extreme off road obstacles to the safari runs which meander gently through the wooded Kent countryside. The minimum age is 16 years old and all the Instructors are professionally trained to ensure safety is paramount.

http://www.truegrip-offroad.co.uk/

 Distance – 27 miles

Mini Golf / Putt Putt / Crazy Golf

If you’re not up for the traditional golfing experience, then why not try mini golf? There are several locations in the area to have a swing and a giggle.

lillyputt-minigolf

Lillyputt Mini Golf​

Established in 1993 and being a break away from the general golfing experience, mini golf is known for being a unique and enjoyable experience. There’s a cafe too so that you can make a day out for everyone. This is something which the younger holiday goers might enjoy, so it’s well worth checking out, and if you need more details, then you can find them here.
http://www.minigolfbroadstairs.com

Rascal Bay Adventure Golf manston_course

Rascal Bay Adventure Course

Here you’ll encounter dinosaurs, pirates, waterfalls, a volcano, a couple of rafts and a variety of animals. This is part of the Manston Golf Centre.
http://rascalbay.co.uk/manston/

Quex Adventure Golf

If it’s relaxation you enjoy but secretly crave a more competitive pastime why not indulge your family into the world of crazy golf? Quex Adventure Golf in Birchington, Kent is a great destination to fulfil your cravings. It is fun and action packed for all the family regardless of age. The 18 holes have been put together with inventive, artistic endeavour as you have to negotiate old castles, bridges, a garden shed, waterfalls and towers to name a few. There may also be a moving obstacle to manoeuvre around as a family of residential ducks often decide to walk across your putting line.

The idea of Adventure Golf is to get the ball into the hole taking the least amount of shots.  The mission is to get all the family from young children to the elderly grandparent to participate. It really is fun for all the family creating lasting memories of the fun times. During the heat of battle when putters become a blur and balls fly around like cannonballs it may be a good time to take a break. This is the time the ice-cream parlour comes into its own and will cool everyone down in readiness for the last few holes.
http://quexadventuregolf.co.uk/

Storkes Adventure Golf

Strokes Adventure Golf

Strokes Adventure Mini-Golf course consists of 18 holes that are designed to test the skills and patience of everyone who takes up the challenge. The course is situated on Westbrook Promenade overlooking the beautiful sea of Westbrook Bay and has many natural built in hazards such as rockscapes, plants and water features. The course has been designed for children aged from 2 years old right through to the elderly should adventure golf be their thing . Children love to play with grandparents especially if at the end of the day they can gain the bragging rights as to who won!

This mini-golf course really is a challenge for children and adults alike. It is great fun and something that all the family can participate in together. There are not many activities these days where that is possible, especially as all concerned will enjoy it. If you have pushed yourself too hard and need a break, refreshments and a bite to eat can be had at the on-site restaurant. When you are finished and refreshed return to the undulating rolling lush green grass of the mini-golf and enjoy the experience. Strokes Adventure Mini-Golf course is also used for the serious golf fanatic as it is affiliated to the British Mini Golf Association which has enabled the course to host the prestigious British Open five times.
https://www.strokesadventuregolf.com/