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I travel yearly to Ireland, the last 3 years, I've been to County Donegal and I hop over the border to Northern Ireland. I travel with dogs (hence the ferry travel for Ireland).
I lived in Rye for over 28 years even though I am no longer a Rye resident, but I was brought up knowing about Rye and history.
I visited Dover from there, my favourite place is the Castle, but I never minded the town - my memory of Dover as a child was a shop where there was a very large pair of jeans hanging from a shop, but you don't go to Dover for the town, you go for the history, the Castle, the white cliffs (best seen from the Dover ferry) etc.
I also used to travel 4 times a year day tripping using the ferry to France visiting many places in Northern France, always starting my day at Carrefour.
I generally enjoy nice coastlines, a nice country park, a forest park, ancient sites, etc. I don't mind shopping either. ;)