The garden of England is being pedestaled alongside Rome in Italy, Cairo in Egypt, and Victoria in Australia, among others, as the county’s reputation as a top travel destination reaches international heights.
National Geographic has named its best travel destinations for 2022, with picturesque Kent selected alongside 34 other must-see locations as part of its annual ‘best in the world’ list.
Destinations were nominated and researched by National Geographic’s international teams and ranked based on culture, nature, sustainability, family, and adventure.
Pat Riddell, editor for National Geographic Traveller (UK) – “Whether it’s closer to home, exploring the UK and Europe, or focusing on journeys further afield to destinations that highlight sustainable, environmental and community initiatives, this year’s list gives us an opportunity to celebrate the world as we begin to emerge from the pandemic.”
Kent made this year’s nature category, which includes four other stunning locations from across the globe, including the Belize rainforest, the grasslands and plains of Namibia and the beautifully remote Lake Baikal in Russia.
National Geographic was impressed with Kent’s recent rewilding successes and its plans to reintroduce Bison to the region. The Kent Wildlife Trust and Wildwood Trust project will be helping to reintroduce four European Bison into Blean Woods in Kent for spring 2022.
Bison is native to the UK and Europe, and charities behind the project have received more than 1,000 applications for Bison rangers after a job listing was posted in early 2021.
Kent’s heritage coast also recently received international praise and was named one of the world’s ‘best in travel’ locations by Lonely Planet for 2022, ranking higher than locations such as Burgundy in France, Puerto Rico, and Vancouver Island in Canada.
The county also has a stunning coastline and is home to ten Blue Flag international beaches, awarded for high-quality environmental management and water quality, as well as environmental education and safety.
Five of these award-winning beaches, Minnis Bay, West Bay, St Mildred’s Bay, Margate Main Sands and Stone Bay, are all located in Kent’s Isle of Thanet, which has also been confirmed by Met Office Data as the sunshine coastal capital of the UK, averaging the most sunlight out of any seaside destination countrywide.
Thanet’s seaside towns of Ramsgate, Margate, and Broadstairs were also named in the Property Market Index Report as the top three areas out of 20 coastal towns most desired by people moving out of London.
The report considered cleanliness and beaches, house price growth, value for money, schools, culture, ease of getting into the capital, and the dramatic impact of the pandemic and people’s desire for more open space and less crowding.
Ramsgate scored highest in the study, followed closely by Broadstairs in second and Margate in third, and all three came ahead of typically popular relocation spots such as Brighton, Paignton in Devon, and Newquay and St Ives in Cornwall