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South Foreland Lighthouse
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Private Tour: White Cliffs of Dover Guided Tour including South Foreland Walk
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Private Shore Excursion: White Cliffs of Dover Half-Day Tour from Dover
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Private Tour: White Cliffs of Dover Day Tour with Leeds Castle Guided Tour
Ranked #3 of 55 things to do in Dover
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: A remote, isolated, pristine-white, solid beacon; a place of innovation and scientific firsts, now also a romantic hideaway and big-hearted family haven, the South Foreland lighthouse stands proud atop the White Cliffs of Dover. It surprises and delights with its warmth of welcome and unexpectedly wistful atmosphere, quaint and charming and yet robust and protecting. Like the Knott family of the past, its current keepers, who mostly offer their time for free, are witness to events and show commitment and spirit in manning the light. Inside the Victorian tower, surprising stories unfold of a unique history that has shaped our world and influenced our travel, our trade, and our industrial and maritime heritage. Outside seemingly endless skies roll away across the English Channel and 21 miles away, the coast of France splits the sky from the sea. Serenity is broken when waves steepen, dark clouds tumble in, the wind lashes and the mouth-watering views are swallowed up. The lighthouse stands its ground and is once again protector, until the calm returns as quickly as it left and butterflies come out of hiding. Arrival is on foot across the beautiful and yet challenging cliffs, thus the lighthouse attracts the more adventurous. None the less, children’s laughter is all around, and the nostalgia of Mrs Knott’s tearoom attracts all generations, those who come to reflect and those who want to find out more about the traditions of the past. From its post on top of the gateway to Britain, South Foreland Lighthouse watches over their past, their present and their future.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access
Reviewed August 10, 2012

Walked from white cliffs carpark which took about an hour at a fairly slow pace as we were taking in the amazing views. Arrived at the lighthouse and had a well earned drink and ice cream then we were met with a guide who took us around. He was brilliant, so informative, lots of stories and facts which kept me and my daughter interested all the time, we were also handed binoculars at the top so we could get a good look at the views. A big thanks to our guide who is called Chris Davies, he made it a really enjoyable visit.

1  Thank Alison R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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314 - 318 of 378 reviews

Reviewed July 30, 2012

Came to South Foreland Lighthouse while touring in the area.
We walked from the nearby village, took about 1/2 an hour. Lovely countryside.
Stunning views ! really enjoyed the last tour of the lighthouse for that day, interesting and informative and views from the top breathtaking ! We missed the tea shop, as it closed while we were on our tour ! it is supposed to be very good. I love lighthouses and the history surrounding them. Would recommend highly that you come here. Its small and quaint but the lighthouse is a powerful building, bright white and castle like standing watch over the sea !

1  Thank kimca_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2012

I honestly only took the tour because I am a National Trust memeber so it was free, but I was very impressed. The tour is run by local volunteers and they had some interesting facts about the lighthouse and the area. The tour starts outsides, heads down to the equipment room and then all the way up to the top, stopping at each floor, telling fun facts about each of the areas. The guide I had was knowledgable and funny. Recommended.

1  Thank hmk24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 12, 2012

great place to visit - you walk up from the village!! See France - good history lesson about Marconi & about the Goodwin Sands (The "shippe swallower of olde"!)

1  Thank Beddington210
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 8, 2012

I came here as part of a bike ride around the area in late June, although many others came as a part of their cliff walk from the National Trust White Cliffs carpark (2 miles I think). It was a beautiful clear day and I wish I had brought a better camera. You can see France from the lawn around the lighthouse and from the top of the lighthouse you can see several coastal town along the cliffs. The tour lasted about 45 minutes and the guide was very enthusiastic and friendly, as well as knowledgable. She talked about the history of the lighthouse itself, as well as the general area including some neat stories. There are binoculars at the top that you can use if you choose as well - the guide admitted they are not the best so if you really want to make things out far away, bring one with you, it'd be worth it. There is a tea room open in the summer months, just a shame it's on the back side of the lighthouse without any views. There are also picnic table on the lawn over the cliffs.

Thank DanielleH736
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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