Dover is a nice town in South East England. It's a major ferry port and faces France across the strait of Dover, the narrowest part of the English Channel. The town has been inhabited since the Stone Age according to archaeological finds, and Dover is one of only a few places in Britain to have a corresponding name in the French language, Douvres. The White Cliffs of Dover are cliffs that form part of the English coastline and it reaches up to 350 feet. In World War II, thousands of allied troops on the little ships in the Dunkirk evacuation saw the welcoming sight of the cliffs.
There is no doubt that the White Cliffs of Dover are one of this country's most spectacular natural features. They are an official icon of Britain and have been a sign of hope and freedom for centuries. The white cliff is symbol of home and war time defence, but they have so much more to offer such as stunning views, a serene walk, a wealth of wildlife, an abundance of history.
The weather was really perfect and it was a wonderful day to hike. There is port you can see when you hike up. People and vehicles wait for the ferry which will take them across to France. On a clear day, France itself is visible! The views from the White Cliffs of Dover are constantly changing. When it is sunny, the sea is calm and smooth as glass you can wander across the cliffs and take in the breath-taking views across the channel.
It was very quiet and surprisingly the only people me and my friend met were an elderly couple. After walking the trail we rested facing France. Where once soldiers fought for control of the English Channel from within a labyrinth of tunnels buried several meters below beneath the cliff and with the world’s busiest passenger port some 500 metres below, the calmness was surreal.
The battering of the sea means the cliffs stay white, otherwise they would be covered in green vegetation. Flora and Fauna flourish in this region. Unfortunately I am not a wildlife enthusiast, or else I could have spent hours taking pictures of butterflies, birds and wild flowers.
Although the cliffs are well known for their views and famous chalk face, they hold a surprising abundance of history; you just have to know where to look. For example two wrecks can be seen at the base of the cliffs. The first is visible from the first viewpoint on the beach in Langdon Hole and is all that remains of the iron-screw steamer The SS Falcon, owned by the General Steam Navigation Company. This vessel was carrying a cargo of hemp and matches which unsurprisingly caught fire and ran her aground in 1926. You can still see the thick steel hull and ribs today.
The Dover castle was closed for viewing, but that did not deter plans to explore. The hike itself was very nice and rejuvenating, soaking in the sun (rarity in the UK) and laying on grass listening to music while thinking of nothing was pure bliss.
After the hike, we visited Dover beach and collected some pebbles. The place was just beautiful. Again, there was not a soul here and the only noise was the sound of waves and the howling wind. Dover is a hidden gem. The town has some nice cafes and tea houses too. If you fancy scones and cakes, make sure you stop by then.