Home » How to walk from Faversham to Whitstable – Kent

How to walk from Faversham to Whitstable – Kent

by zoe tehrani

This 10ish mile walk from Faversham to Whitstable is part of both the Saxon Shore Way and the England Coast Path. Seeing as I am trying to complete both of these trails, it’s a win win. Two for the price of one. Jokes aside, I really enjoyed this walk. On this day, I had actually planned to do a more hilly walk, however, I flared up my hip the previous day (in case you are not aware, I had hip surgery last year), so I chose this one instead as it was rated as easy. However, as far as easy walks go, this one, on this day, from Faversham to Whitstable was anything but….

Yes, it seems like it would normally be pretty easy. The whole route is flat and it’s easy to navigate. But mother nature had other plans. It was crazy windy and I had to fight my way through lots of plants and weeds. I have the cuts to prove it. 

What will you see on the Faversham to Whitstable walk?

Historic towns, a nature reseve, a creek, a boatyard, mudflats, fields and marshland. Lots of cute beach huts, and maybe some bulls.

At just over an hour by train from London (because I’m from London and assume the world starts from London), this walk would make a perfect day trip. I give it my stamp of approval. 

Logistics for the walk from Faversham to Whitstable

  • Start: Faversham 
  • Finish: Whitstable
  • How to get there: There are direct trains from both London St Pancras (73 min) and London Victoria (1h 28m). Both towns are on the same train line, onestop apart. So buy a return ticket to Whitstable, which will cover both journeys out and in. Just a note, if you get a return ticket from Victoria, it will only allow you to return on the Victoria train. If you buy the fast ticket from St Pancreas you can return to any major London station. Also, be aware that there are other much slower trains so check the train times so you don’t accidentally get on the slow one.
  • Distance: 9.5 miles
  • Time: 3 hours
  • Elevation gain: 430 ft. You don’t really notice it though. 
  • Difficulty: Mostly easy, but a bit challenging if walking through the flower weeds on steroids.
  • Terrain: Asphalt, dirt trails, shingle.
  • Tips: Take leg protection. 

Map – Faversham to Whitstable Walk

Click on the little box in the corner to follow the trail.

If you would like some other walking ideas in Kent, I have listed them at the end. Happy walking 🙂

How to walk from Faversham to Whitstable 

Once out of the station, head to the town centre. You should be walking along Preston street. Once you reach Market Square, take a right. 

An empty market square in Faversham.
Market square
Quirky shopfronts in Faversham.
As you can see, it’s crazy busy on a weekend
A side road lined with old buildings and a church at the end in Faversham.

Continue along this road passing lots of cute houses, and Saxon Shore Way signage. Once you reach the end, the road will bear left taking you to the river. From now on, this will be to your left for the whole route to the ocean. 

Boats and barges on the river bed at low tide.

There are a number of interesting antique stores along this part and places for you to stop for a coffee if you so wish……Or oysters. This part of England is famous for them.

Oyster Bay house, behind a boat and a barge sitting on the sea bed during low tide.

Iron Wharf Boat Yard

As you reach the boatyard the road will curve to the right. Don’t go right. Instead, walk straight ahead through the boatyard. 

You will now walk through the land of boats. So many boats at different states of repair in this DIY boatyard. 

A couple of boats which look to need some TLC.
A boat resting on the river bed whilst the tide is out, on a cloudy day.
A mini bridge leading to the boat yard with boats on land needing repair.

Once out the other side and over the mini bridge, continuing along the trail, you will pass the forgotten boat, before reaching the open fields.

The skeleton of a boat laying on the river bed on one of the trail walks from Faversham.
poor boat
Lots of greenery of the grass and trees and bushes on one of the trail walks from Faversham.
Very English countryside
A bush tunnel on one of the trail walks from Faversham.
The walking trail through a grassy field and the creek to the left on a cloudy day.

At the end, there will be a signpost which isn’t much help because half of it was missing….the half in the direction I wanted to go. So, do I go left or right? Well, through my master navigation skills I decided left was the correct way. 

Two houses in a large field on the walk from Faversham to Whitstable.

After this, there are a couple more turns to make, but they are well signposted. Just keep following the direction of the Saxon Shore Way (SSW).

A white and brown horse in a small field with brown and yellow coloured crops in the background when walking from Faversham to Whitstable.
A green grass path sorounded by brown coloured crops on the walk from Faversham to Whitstable.
Zoe wearing a red dress with hair blowing in the wind walking along the trail from Faversham to Whitstable.
Obligatory photo of me 🙂

Up until this point things were fairly easy. Then the wind happened. Oh the wind. But this was just the start….

The weeds

So I don’t know if this is just a seasonal thing, or an all year round thing. I hadn’t read about it when reading up about this walk. I’m pretty sure someone would have mentioned it. 

I also don’t know plants/foliage so I don’t know if they are actually weeds, so someone correct me if I’m wrong. Until I’m told otherwise, I will call them flower weeds.

So, either side of the path the weeds were so overgrown that they engulfed the trail and entangle with each other. I question if this is the correct way. The sign says it is, so I’m gonna go with that. 

Flower weeds covering the trail from Faversham to Whitstable. The creek is visible to the left and the sky is blue with white fluffy clouds.
Yes. This is what I had to walk through.
Flower weeds covering the trail on the Faversham to Whitstable walk.
It doesn’t look like it, but there is a trail under there. You can just about see a bit of it at the bottom of this photo.

As I fight my way through, being scratched by all the scratchy parts, I tell myself it will only be for a short distance. But no. It just goes on and on and on. At some point, I wonder if I should turn back….but I’ve come this far, I might as well keep going.

Every so often there is an opening. But only for a small part, then the weeds take over again. By now my legs are covered in rashes and scratches. Note to self: Always bring trousers on a hike or walk….just in case.

Oh, and don’t let this put you off. It was quite beautiful and made me wonder how many (or few) people come this way.

A farm house on the side of the muddy creek.
A field of long grass and hay blowing in the wind.
A view of the haystacks in a field with electricity pylons overhead on the Faversham to Whitstable walk.
All the haystacks and electricity
Boat wrecks laying on the muddy river back on the route from Faversham to Whitstable.

The Swale

You will then reach the sea wall with a view over The Swale. That’s the bit of water separating the Isle of Sheppey from the mainland. Although, with the tide being out, it was mostly mud. 

The sea wall with the Swale to the left and fields to the right on the walk from Faversham to Whitstable.

Up until this point, apart from a few people at the beginning, I had not passed a single soul…they probably turned around when they saw what they would have to walk through. Now that the path clears up,  there are a few people wandering the trail. But its not only people I find….

The bulls

After my bull encounter the previous week when walking from Ramsgate to Sandwich, I thought that was it. The chances of me finding myself in a field with another bull are quite low, seeing as it has never before happened in my life. Well, my friends, it happened again. Maybe they don’t look so scary in the photo but I’m telling you, this one bull, with those horns, looked like the devil.

Black bulls and cows sitting in the green and yellow grassy field.

I wondered whether they would be able to smell my fear, so I stayed calm and walked slowly by. Keeping my eye on them, I had a plan. If one charged at me I would jump over the sea wall. 

Things happen in three’s right? Well, by that logic I should encounter a bull on my next walk. That should be the last time. I will let you know how it goes…

With the people on the trail and the view of a white building up ahead (turns out to be a pub), I feel like I’m entering civilisation again. Oh, and that pub, I discovered, has a Michelin star restaurant. It’s called The Sportsman.  I didn’t get a picture of the pub, but here are some cute beach huts and homes near it.

Colourful beach huts by the sea of the walk from Faversham to Whitstable.
Colourful cabins in grassy land.

Seasalter

This next section is alongside a road, still walking with the sea wall to your left. The path will soon end (temporarily) and you need to walk on the road through the village. 

Seasalter village shop next to mobile homes and a black telephone box.
A residential road in Seasalter with blue and white cabins.

I mean that literally. There is no pavement. Hmmm, maybe there was a path somewhere. I just couldn’t see it.

Anyways, there will soon be an opening where you can walk on a path next to the beach.

Fun fact: Seasalter was a centre for salt production in the Iron Age, and as such was raided by Vikings.

Whitstable 

As you approach the seaside town of Whitstable, you will be greeted by more beach hut cuteness.

A row of colourful beach huts behind a sea wall, approaching Whitstable.
A blue and white stripped beach hut next to a plain wooden beach hut.
Back and white wooden houses and small colourful beach huts next to an open overgrown bushy field.
The harbour at Whitstable with its red fishing boats.

This picture perfect fishing and harbour town is famous for oysters…..Too bad I don’t like oysters.

Other walks in South East England

If you fancy another walk in Kent, you can continue along this trail to walk from Whitstable to Herne Bay (4.8 miles). Or just a few stops along, a really great one is Margate to Ramsgate (8 miles) with its long stretches of sandy beach and white cliffs. Or if you want mega white cliffs (the white cliffs of Dover), then head further south in Kent to walk from Dover to Deal (11 miles), or even Folkestone to Dover (7 miles).

If you would like to do another section of the Saxon Shore way, then I highly recommend the hike from Hastings to Rye (13 miles). Bear in mind that it is more challenging.

The Thorney Island walk (9 miles), over near Portsmouth is quite an interesting one. The area is owned by the MOD so you need to buzz at the gate to be let in. It’s strict in that you need to stick to the coast path, but you will enjoy views out to see, or inland to nature reserve.

If you would like to know more about the Saxon Shore Way then you can check out the visit Kent website.

Pin it for later – A guide to walking from Faversham to Whitstable

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