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Blog: The Crab And Winkle Way

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Last Thursday was a most AUSPICIOUS day for LO! it was the BIRTHDAY of The Signs On My Route! We decided to take a day off and go and DO something so we went and did The Crab And Winkle Way, a walk from Canterbury to Whitstable which (mostly) follows the route of an old railway line. We'd heard about it while researching previous trips to Canterbury and it looked like fun, so we thought we'd have a go.

Things got off to a nervous start as we weren't sure where the walk actually BEGAN - the online documentation was a bit hazy about it and, as it turned out, so was a lot of the signage en route. If I'm doing a Named Walking Route I would IDEALLY like it to have signs every ten feet or so, but The Crab And Winkle Way (or "Crab And Winkle Link" as it was sometimes called) had some pretty massive GAPS in it.

Still, we found the start point and set off towards The University Of Kent At Canterbury where we were DELIGHTED to find ourselves walking right through the middle of Freshers' Fayre! It was WONDERFUL - all around us Third Years were trying to cajole Freshers into signing up for their SOCIETIES while nearby signs exorted them to come to the POSTER SALE. All was full of HOPE and POTENTIAL and also FREE PIZZA which we definitely didn't get back in my day, also a BIG WHEEL for some reason, but other than that it was much the same as it ever was.

We strode on, full of joy, and then got lost due to the aforesaid SIGNAGE GAP. After a bit of wandering about we found a route to the actual path of the railway and then spent a couple of hours STOMPING along it, through what turned out to be PRODUCTIVE countryside full of farms, hop plants and poly tunnels, and also BLACKBERRIES. Man alive but there were a lot of blackberries, and they were bloody DELICIOUS. It's a long long time since I last encountered a ripe BRAMBLE and I'd forgotten how BRILLLIANT wild blackberries can be!

Eventually we made it to the edges of Whitstable, which turned out to look like DUDLEY until we reached the sea when it became INDUSTRIAL then more seaside-y as we walked along the seaside towards The Old Neptune pub. Here we sat down for a VERY well deserved pint. Getting UP again was a bit difficult though, as we were KNACKERED.

We staggered into Whitstable Actual, the town centre, which was DEAD chi-chi, full of delightful little shops which, we guessed, were there for the "DFL" (Down From London) set who apparently fill the place. For us two DFL-ers it was time to head home, which we did via Whitstable station where a VERY on the ball young woman at the ticket office sold us the cheapest tickets possible to allow us to go straight home rather than having to go back to Canterbury (a single to Faversham, then we could use the rest of our return to Canterbury Stations: TOP TIP for anyone who's got here via Google!).

It was a BRILLIANT day out but a HECK of a walk which I felt in my legs ALL the next day. This exercise business doesn't half hurt!

posted 28/9/2015 by MJ Hibbett

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