Get us in your inbox

Deal, Kent

11 brilliant things to do in Deal

Looking for the best things to do in Deal? Visit the tiny Kent town for buzzy bars, castles, contemporary crafts and the prettiest pebble beach

Written by
Emma Hughes
,
Ellie Walker-Arnott
&
Joe Minihane
Advertising

Somehow – and very happily for everyone who knows it – Deal still remains overlooked. Smaller than hugely popular Whitstable just along the coast and without the cool edge of Margate, it has a charming vibe all of its own. A thriving creative community has helped make it extra-special, with great galleries, a first-rate record shop and food to die for. Hop on the train and get there sharpish... before everyone else does. Ready? Here are the best things to do in Deal right now.

RECOMMENDED: Check out nearby Sandwich, Ramsgate and Broadstairs

Best things to do in Deal

First up
JONATHAN BAILEY

First up

Kick things off with a stomp around Deal Castle. The fort, built by trigger-happy Henry VIII as part of a chain of coastal defences, is amazingly well preserved. Learn about the historic graffiti hidden on the castle’s soft lead roof.

Get a culture fix

Get a culture fix

Deal’s contemporary art scene is buzzing, largely thanks to Linden Hall Studio. Just 500 yards from the High Street, this airy, two-floor gallery space hosts visiting artists and masterclasses – from etchings to sculptures, there’s something to catch everyone’s eye.

Advertising
Stop for lunch
Photograph: Shutterstock

Stop for lunch

For sparklingly fresh seafood with a great view of the seafront, stop by 81 Beach Street – get the salt and chilli squid with sriracha mayo, or crab on charred sourdough. Or if you’re hankering after proper chips and golden-crisp batter, line up at the Middle Street Fish Bar.

Splash the cash

Splash the cash

You could easily lose an afternoon in Taylor-Jones and Son, a gorgeous gallery-slash-boutique. Shop for everything from handmade leather bags to limited-edition prints – if you bring treats, local celebrity Delilah the sheepdog might show you around. Deal Farmers’ Market is a must on the first Saturday of each month: load up on locally picked fruit and freshly baked cakes.

Smugglers Records is one of the south-east’s best indie record shops. An offshoot of a label of the same name, it has an impressive selection of new vinyl and friendly, knowledgeable staff to help you pick out your next musical obsession.

Advertising
Soak up the vibes

Soak up the vibes

There’s no nicer spot for a stroll than Deal beach itself – it’s quiet, pristine and dotted with wooden fishing boats. Speaking of which, dangle a line off the 1950s concrete pier and you might just luck out. No chance? Grab a snack at Deal Pier Kitchen, perched right at the end with unbeatable sea views. 

If you only do one thing

If you only do one thing

Like a little piece of Bordeaux dropped into Deal, Le Pinardier sells impeccably sourced bottles with a side of joie de vivre. Buy one to take away, or enjoy your tipple of choice at the long table with charcuterie and a baguette – you can always sleep it off on the way home.

Advertising
And if you stay the night, wake up here

The Rose is a moody, romantic hideaway in the heart of Deal, a couple of roads back from the beach. Enter the dark-hued, 200-year-old building to find wood panelling, open fires and verdant palms. Understated mid-century furniture sits alongside brightly painted and antique pieces. Settle down in the restaurant for seasonal comfort food, before slipping past a heavy red curtain and padding up softly lit stairs to one of eight richly decorated rooms. Don’t visit for slick service or reliable wifi – instead steep yourself in The Rose’s vintage flair and warm, welcoming charm. From £100 a night including breakfast.

Want to explore more of England?

Recommended
    You may also like
      Advertising