Whitstable’s main claim to fame is its oysters which remain an intrinsic part of this sea town’s character and are celebrated every July at the Oyster Festival. Oysters and other delicacies from the sea can be enjoyed at the local restaurants and pubs.
Whitstable Oyster Festival Running since 1985, it’s a bright, sunny, and energetic revival of an ancient Norman holy festival and has become a core part of the Whitstable cultural tradition. For 10 days every year Whitstable is alive with live music, food-eating, beer-drinking, comedy, beach-side screenings, children’s activities, recitals, oyster eating competitions and spectacular fireworks.
Originally, local fisherman and dredgers would hold annual ceremonies of thanksgiving to celebrate the success of the harvest. Or failing that, they’d celebrate their survival at sea. Silver linings and all that. It was deliberately held during the slack period of Oyster harvesting so their hangovers wouldn’t get in the way of their livelihood and that’s why, to this day, you won’t find too many native Whitstable oysters at the Oyster Festival.
Today, the celebration recreates the ‘Landing of the Oysters’ when the local Sea Scouts would land the oysters, receive a formal blessing and be presented to the Lord Mayor. The oysters (now fully blessed) are then brought to the town’s inns, bars and restaurants. Following that, Whitstable is transformed into a festival town for a week.
Whitstable Castle and Gardens is a stunning venue set in three acres of beautiful landscaped gardens, just 200m from Tankerton beach and a few minutes walk away from the historic Whitstable Harbour.
Whitstable Castle and Gardens or Tankerton Towers as it was first called started life as a residence for the Pearson family in the late 1790s and over its long history, it has been developed and improved by successive owners and a Heritage Lottery Grant. Following a £3m refurbishment the Castle is now managed by the Whitstable Castle Trust.
Note: all photos, with a few exceptions, were taken during our previous trips.
08:45 am meet near Ibis London City Hotel, 5 Commercial Street, E1 6BF (next to Aldgate East station); 09:00 sharp departure; 10:40-17:00 Whitstable Castle & Whitstable Oyster Festival; 17:00 departure; 18:40 London, Aldgate East.
Travel times may vary depending on traffic & weather conditions.
The price does not include:
What to bring:
That’s it, we’ll handle the rest. All you have to do is turn up and have a great weekend!
Get the best price 10 days in advance to the tour (full price is £46)
Please note: By default, most of our group tours are designed for the Russian speaking community, therefore, the audio cd record is played in the Russian language.
This tour, as well as any other Evebus Tours, can be arranged for private groups. Please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org with the email subject “Private tours”.