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Itinerary

Discovering the Past

For incomparable heritage explore the medieval city of Canterbury. Discover the excellent range of shops, restaurants, museums and other attractions, including the spectacular Cathedral forming part of the city's UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Morning

Start your day by discovering where it all began. The birthplace of Christianity in southern England is a World Heritage Site consisting of St Augustine's Abbey, St Martin's Church and Canterbury Cathedral. Now the Mother Church of the Anglican Communion the Cathedral is central to the historic city and the Christian Church.
St Augustine's Abbey
St Martin's Church
Canterbury Cathedral
 

Afternoon

Once you've explored the extraordianary religious heritage of the city why not step back in time and explore one of the Canterbury Museums. Whether you chose to visit the superb Canterbury Heritage Museum or the underground Roman Museum.
Canterbury Heritage Museum
Canterbury Roman Museum

 

Morning: St Augustine's Abbey

Address

Longport
Canterbury
CT1 1PF

Contact Details

Tel: 01227 767345
This great Abbey, marking the rebirth of Christianity in southern England, was founded shortly after AD 597 by St Augustine. Originally created as a burial place for the Anglo-Saxon kings of Kent, it is part of the Canterbury World Heritage Site, along with the Cathedral and St Martin's Church.

The impressive St Augustine's Abbey is situated outside the city walls and is sometimes missed by visitors. At the Abbey, you can also enjoy the museum and interactive audio tour.

Pre booked tours can be accommodated, during opening hours. For times and details please contact the Abbey.

For educational visits please telephone 01483 252 013

For coach parking facilities please contact the Visitor Operations Site Supervisor on 01227 767345. There is no parking on site, but there is a pay & display car park directly opposite the site entrance.

Disabled access (all site can be viewed, but some steps). A public pay car park is nearby. For further information visit: http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/staugustinesabbey

Directions

St Augustine's Abbey is a short walk over the road from Canterbury city centre.

Prices and opening

Adults £5.80
Child (5-15yrs) £3.40
Concession (Student and 60+) £5.20
Family ticket ( 2 adults and 3 children 5-15yrs) £15.00
English Heritage Members FREE

15% discount for groups of 11 or more visitors paying together. Free entry for coach driver and tour leader.

Opening details

Season DatesOpening Hours
Fri 25 Mar 2016 - Fri 30 Sep 2016Mon - Sun 10:00 to 18:00
Sat 1 - Mon 31 Oct 2016Mon - Sun 10:00 to 17:00
Tue 1 Nov 2016 - Fri 31 Mar 2017Sat - Sun 10:00 to 16:00
NotesClosed 24th, 25th and 26 December 2016 and 1st January 2017.
 

Morning: St Martin's Church

Address

North Holmes Road
Canterbury
Kent
CT1 1PW

Contact Details

Tel: 01227 768072
St Martin's Church is the oldest in England still in use as a parish church and is part of the Canterbury World Heritage Site. This church was the first base of St Augustine when he came to Canterbury in 597.

England's oldest Parish Church is still regularly used for Christian worship as it has been for over 1,400 years. It was here that St Augustine worshipped in 597AD with his 40 companions until King Ethelbert granted him the land for the abbey and the cathedral which, with St Martin's, now form the Canterbury World Heritage Site.

St Martin's Church was the private chapel of Queen Bertha of Kent in the 6th century before Augustine arrived from Rome.

Shortly before 1844, a hoard of gold coins which may date from the late 6th century was found in the churchyard, one of which is the Liudhard medalet, which bears an image of a diademed figure with a legend referring to Liudhard.

The churchyard contains the graves of many notable local families and well known people including Thomas Sidney Cooper, RA (artist) and Mary Tourtel, the creator of Rupert Bear. For further information visit: http://www.martinpaul.org

Directions

On foot from Longport, take the main A257 past Christ Church University and take the first left. The Lychgate is straight in front of you on the corner of North Holmes Road.

Prices and opening

Free entry

Opening details

Season DatesOpening Hours
NotesThe church is open for visiting at the following times:
Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays: 11am to 3pm
Sundays 9.50am to (approximately) 10.20am.
The churchyard is always open.
Please check times before visiting. Groups may book to visit by prior arrangement at other times.
 

Morning: Canterbury Cathedral

Address

The Precincts
Canterbury
CT1 2EH

Contact Details

Tel: 01227 762862
Canterbury Cathedral has a tradition of visitor welcome that reaches back to the days of medieval pilgrimage. To all visitors we extend a warm welcome and hope that they too will enjoy sharing with us the beauty of one of the great holy places of Christendom.

Canterbury Cathedral, together with St Augustine's Abbey and St Martin's Church make up Canterbury's World Heritage Site.

Canterbury Cathedral and its history:

St Augustine, sent by Pope Gregory the Great, arrived in 597AD as a missionary and became the first Archbishop, establishing his seat (or 'Cathedra') in Canterbury. In 1170 Archbishop Thomas Becket was murdered in the Cathedral and ever since, Canterbury Cathedral has attracted thousands of pilgrims, as told most famously in Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.

Canterbury Cathedral houses a Romanesque Crypt, dating back to the 11th century, a 12th century early Gothic Quire and a 14th Century Perpendicular Nave. Beautiful medieval stained glass windows illustrate miracles and stories associated with St Thomas.

Visitor facilities range from guided tours and audio tours to private evening tours and 'behind the scenes' tours to the Stained Glass Studio, Archives and/or Library. For further information visit: http://www.canterbury-cathedral.org/

Directions

Canterbury Cathedral is located in the centre of Canterbury, within walking distance of both Canterbury East and West stations. Canterbury is only 30 minutes drive from Dover (continental ferries) and Folkestone (Eurotunnel), making it an ideal stop-over en route to London. Fast speed trains bring passengers from Canterbury to London within 56 minutes.

Prices and opening

There is a charge to enter the precincts and the Cathedral unless you are attending a Service. This charge contributes towards the upkeep of the Cathedral and its activities.

Adults £12.00
Concessions £10.50
Children (under 18) £8.00
Pre-booked groups (Adults and Concessions) £10.50
Family ticket (2 adults, up to 3 children) £32.00
Family ticket (1 adult, 2 children) £22.50

Opening details

Season DatesOpening Hours
NotesWeekdays and Saturdays:
Summer 09:00 - 17:30*
Winter 09:00 - 17:00*
The Crypt 10:00 - 17:00/17.30*

Sundays:
Throughout the year including The Crypt 12.30 - 2.30pm

*Last entry half an hour before closing time.

Canterbury Cathedral is very much part of the local community. It is used regularly for local, regional and/or national services and events. Some or all of it may, therefore, at times be closed for general visiting. Please contact the Cathedral Visits Office before visiting to check up-to-date opening times and possible closures.

Please note that the east end of the Cathedral, including the Quire, will close every day in preparation for Evensong from 16.30 (Monday-Friday) and from 14.30 (Saturday & Sunday).

For information on Canterbury Cathedral closures please visit the website or view the pdf.
 

Afternoon: Canterbury Heritage Museum

Address

Stour Street
Canterbury
CT1 2NR

Contact Details

Tel: 01227 475202
Displays at the Canterbury Heritage Museum includes Anglo-Saxon treasures, Oliver Postgate's Thomas Becket story, the Tudors, Joseph Conrad's study, the Blitz gallery, Stephenson's original Invicta railway engine, Rupert Bear and the real Bagpuss.

Around Canterbury Heritage Museum there are over 30 exciting hands-on activities for families - you can write your name in Viking runes, sniff medieval poo, investigate finds like an archaeologist, try on Elizabethan costume and listen to wartime memories.

Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin created their much loved children's programme just outside Canterbury. See the real Bagpuss in Emily's shop window, original Clangers, Ivor the Engine and Noggin the Nog. And discover some Bagpuss secrets!

Rupert Bear was created by Canterbury-born Mary Tourtel. Discover his fascinating story, join in his adventures, see inside his house, and enjoy lots of fun activities including a giant snakes and ladders game.

Built in 1373, the Canterbury Heritage Museum was originally a medieval hospital for poor, sick and retired priests. Explore this magnificent timber-framed building to discover fascinating stories of former uses from medieval hospital, to workhouse and World War Two ambulance station, and marvel at its magnificent crown post roofs blackened by centuries of smoke.

Spend some time relaxing or picnicking in the medieval herb garden.

Free Digiguide Tour - see and listen to animated stories about famous Canterbury characters, key artefacts and aspects of the building's history on the museums hand-help computer guide. A highlights tour in English, French, German and Japanese. For further information visit: http://canterburymuseums.co.uk/heritagemuseum/

Directions

Entrance through Stour Street, which is 5 minutes walk from the City Centre. 10 minutes walk from Canterbury West or 15 minutes walk from Canterbury East train station. 10 minutes from the City's Park and Ride terminal and bus station.

Prices and opening

Adults - £8.00
Concessions (senior citizens/students) - £6.00
Children - free to a maximum of 2 per paying adult, £1.50 per child thereafter
Members- free

Joint ticket for Canterbury Heritage Museum and Canterbury Roman Museum
Adults £12.00
Concessions £10.00

Admission free to MyTownMyCity users, except for some special events.

Opening details

Season DatesOpening Hours
Mon 6 Jun 2016 - Sun 25 Sep 2016Wed - Sun 11:00 to 17:00
Sat 22 - Sun 30 Oct 2016Mon - Sun 11:00 to 17:00
Sat 17 - Fri 23 Dec 2016Mon - Sun 11:00 to 17:00
Tue 27 - Fri 30 Dec 2016Mon - Sun 11:00 to 17:00
NotesClosed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day. Circumstances may cause changes in opening times, please ring to check before making a special trip.
 

Afternoon: Canterbury Roman Museum

Address

Longmarket
Butchery Lane
Canterbury
CT1 2JR

Contact Details

Tel: 01227 785575
Descend 100 years with each step or by lift to the Roman street level at Canterbury Roman Museum. Stroll through the marketplace, look inside recreated Roman rooms, and discover amazing finds including a hoard of hidden treasure.

See how little has changed since Roman times when viewing rare tools, or how much could be made of simple items like bones. Be amazed by collections of intricate Roman glass flasks and bottles, jewellery and a silver spoon hoard.

Handle, sort and classify real Roman pottery fragments and other objects relating to Roman:
- everyday life
- building materials
- rubbish
- mosaics

Canterbury Roman Museum highlights include Roman:
- mosaic floors preserved where excavated
- hypocaust (underfloor heating system) preserved where excavated
- digital reconstruction of a Roman town house
- rare cavalry horse-harness fittings, one of only two sets in the world
- rare tools - Roman spade, carpenter's square and mason's trowel
- gateway hinge, part of Canterbury's Riding Gate on Watling Street to Dover
- building materials including roof tiles with Roman dog-paw prints
- painted plaster fragments with flowers, patterns and dancers' feet
- finds from Canterbury's Roman baths, including gaming counters, toiletry items and bath lining
- figurines of gods including horse goddess and Gaulish male
- metal vessels, ewers and dishes used in religious ceremonies
- pottery, imported fine Samian ware and locally-made pots

The impressive pillared entrance to Canterbury Roman Museum is in Butchery Lane and very close to Canterbury Cathedral. For further information visit: http://canterburymuseums.co.uk/romanmuseum/

Directions

The Canterbury Roman Museum is located off the High Street and very near the Cathedral.
5 minutes walk from the City Centre
10 minutes walk from Canterbury West
15 minutes walk from Canterbury East
10 minutes walk from the City's Park & Ride terminal and bus station.

Prices and opening

Adults - £8.00
Concessions (senior citizens/students) - £6.00
Children - free to a maximum of 2 per paying adult, £1.50 per child thereafter
Members - free

Joint ticket for Canterbury Heritage Museum and Canterbury Roman Museum
Adults £12.00
Concessions £10.00

Admission free to MyTownMyCity users, except for some special events.

Opening details

Season DatesOpening Hours
NotesMonday to Sunday 10am to 5pm.

Closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day. Circumstances may cause changes in opening times - please ring to check before making a special trip.