A delight whatever the time of year, Faversham is bursting with history dating back to late prehistoric times. Mentioned in The Domesday Book, it is known as the oldest market town in Kent. Faversham is a fascinating town for a day trip or a short break.
With excellent places to stay and located on a winding creek, Faversham is a unique treat, filled with half- timbered buildings and a full range of independent shops. Abbey Street described as ‘Britain’s finest medieval street’ is well worth a stroll. Today, the town is still home to the oldest and most thriving and growing market in Kent which runs three times a week in the same medieval market place it has done for hundreds of years, surrounded by a wealth of cafes, pubs, and indepentdent shops including a number of antique and vintage traders.
The Shepherd Neame Brewery Tours are a delight for all senses. Smell Kentish hops, see vast tuns and, of course, indulge in a tutored tasting. Set in the heart of Faversham, the brewery is Britain’s oldest and showcases historic delivery vehicles.
Faversham's history is a real blast from the past. By 1800 the town was a major centre of Britain's gunpowder industry and helped keep the guns firing at the battles of Trafalgar and Waterloo. Chart Gunpowder Mills formed part of Faversham's first gunpowder factory and is now one of the very few fully-restored and working gunpowder mills in the country. Nearly 500 listed buildings reflect the town’s long and volatile heritage; explore it at the Fleur de Lis Heritage Centre, where 100lb powder barrels, a Victorian schoolroom and recreated shops bring the past to life. At the Oare Gunpowder Works Country Park woodland trails lead through the 250-year-old works, past an old powder mill, danger houses and narrow canals, while the visitor centre shows just how the explosive is made.
Nearby Brogdale, home to the National Fruit Collection, overflows with different varieties of apples, cherries, pears and plums. The Mount Ephraim Gardens are an oasis of scent and colour; the perfect place to drink in lake views amid rose terraces and woods. In the summer look out for al-fresco jazz concerts and open-air plays.
The focus of Belmont is the magnificent neo-classical house, but the beautiful gardens and the fine private collection of clocks are among the best in Britain.
The South-East's leading food hall Macknade Fine Foods is set on a 170 year history of food. With Food and drink provided by local bsinesses, they also offer a wide array of international foods. Whilst browsing the food hall, visit the cafe at Macknade. With wonderful food, fine teas and coffees and the best part, have a slice of homemade cake.
The countryside around Faversham is prime pub-walk territory. Explore the high ground of the Kent Downs AONB, perhaps at age-old Perry Woods, before heading to the Plough Inn at Stalisfield Green for classy food and expansive views. The area’s walking and cycling trails wind through some of the county’s most delicious countryside and finest orchards, woodlands, marshes and nature reserves.
The Walk on the Wild Side route and Saxon Shore Way meet at the Three Mariners in Oare, where you can dine alfresco in the summer or in front of a crackling log fire. Or take the Earth, Wind and Water trail along the north Kent shore, where saltmarshes and sweeping beaches lead to Michelin-starred The Sportsman.
Creek Creative Studios combines Art Galleries, Studios and Project/Performance/Teaching Spaces for hire, with a highly-commended Gallery Kitchen Café (offering many 'Free From' options) and charming Artisan Shop packed with locally-crafted, affordable silver jewellery, ceramics, prints, paintings and unusual gifts.
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Faversham Town Council and the Faversham Area Tourism Association have produced a very handy guide, which can be downloaded as a pdf file Visit Faversham Area Guide 2017
Discover more at Faversham's Brand New Tourist website: www.visitfaversham.org New and improved website that is user friendly and adaptable for phones!
For more information about the tourism offer across the rest of the Swale area of North Kent go to: www.visit-swale.co.uk