Its okay I will explain the name !! Bem Bom is the town's fun park. Rollercoasters and other rides are available. You pay 1 price to get in then you can go on any ride. A great place to go for a couple of hours if youve finished on the beach.
The beach in Margate was just perfect. I have no doubts why it has the proud heritage of being one of Britain’s first seaside resorts. I guess it's one of the best beaches on the East coast of England, as I've been to some places at the seaside and all of them had stones there. Margate has a sandy beach surrounded by high cliffs. The views are just fantastic there with sailing ships at the horizon.
I love rummaging in second hand book shops, especially ones that have a semblance of order and look clean and inviting.
Tiverton Books ticks all those boxes, you can sit and read and rummage to your hearts content, It is down the steps next door to the Smiths Court Hotel in Cliftonville. Its opposite the bandstand. Great place to browse for old books and quality second-hand. Days open Tues, Wed, Thursday, Sunday
The main Theatre in Margate is the Winter Gardens. Built in 1909, the theatre is set in to the cliff and surrounded by attractive gardens. There is always something happening at the Winter Gardens; Variety shows, concerts, musicals and even line dancing classes. Margate Operatic Society (MOS) perform there twice a year, usually the end of May and the end of November. This is an amateur company which has been described by many as 'one of the most professional companies in the area', and 'as good as going to the West end". The ticket prices are much cheaper too!
The Turner Contemporary art gallery, is located on the sea-front next to the visitor and information centre. The building itself would look more at home in an urban setting, but here it is jutting off the harbour wall like a huge modern art mollusc.
Tracey Emin used to live in Margate and is famous for her unmade bed. But the exhibition I saw in August 2012 She lay Down Deep Beneath the Sea focused on her recent work and although not erotic it contains a lot of nude drawings, mostly of Tracey herself. The media she works in includes watercolours, sculptures, drawings, photographs, tapestries and embroidery.
The exhibition is free but for a small charge there is an audio guide to the exhibition with short commentaries by Tracey.
At any time of year, a walk along the sea front is a great thing to do. Once you get away from the main beach area, it is peaceful, refreshing and invigorating (particularly in winter). We have white cliffs too! You can walk quite a few miles along the under cliff if you so wish. At one point you have to go across the sand, but other than that, the whole route is paved.
Stop off for an icecream on your way.
If you get tired, most buses will take you back to the centre - Cecil Square, or to the main seafront.
There are lots of beaches to lay on if you want to sunbathe. Margate main sands are very commercialised, but there are lots of shops and bars close by, trampolines, swings etc for the kids and are close to the main transport hubs. Most of the locals use the beaches further along the coast, Palm Bay being a favourite. These beaches are much quieter and more basic.
All Margate's beaches are sandy. Not a pebble in sight!
Art is on the agenda in Margate: Try these all close to the Turner Contemporary
Pie Factory Artists Studios, 5-9 Broad Street, for cultural activities, exhibitions, workshops and cafe http://piefactorymargate.co.uk
Marine Studios, 17 Albert Terrace overlooking the ocean near the Turner Contemporary. Gallery and meeting space
Margate Modern Art, 9 King Street (road leading down to the Turner Contemporary from the Shell Grotto) to buy watercolours, paintings, sculpture and by local and British artists
Art For All 9-10 Marine Drive, art gallery, art and crafts workshops. Family Pottery, Canvas Painting and Collage. Every Saturday from 11am-2pm. Activity time approx 90 minutes to 2 hours. £7 per activity. www.artforall.eu
Many cafe bars and niche shops around this area near the Turner Contemporary too
First, let me deal with the logistics and the way VT works if you are not aware. I actually walked easily to this place from Broadstairs although subsequent research shows that it is just technically in Margate. Readers of my other pages will know that I am a bit of a stickler (some would say obsessive) about putting my tips in the right places so here it is in Margate, but enough of that. On to the detail.
For men of a certain age, i.e. mine, there are certain names that still stir the heart even after all these years - Meccano, Scalextric, Hornby, Corgi, Airfix etc. For those of you who do not know, and I realise that VT is global, these were the names of makes of toys from my childhood. Meccano was a self-assembly engineering kit, Scalextric a slot car racing system, Hornby the gold standard of model railways, Corgi makers of toy vehicles and Airfix produced plastic model kits of just about anything as well as toy soldiers I seemed to have hundreds of as a child. When I found out that there was a Visitor Centre here, nothing was going to keep me away.
Approaching the place is, frankly, hardly inspiring. Coming from the Broadstairs you are confronted with what looks like, and indeed is, a large drab factory building. Although, like most things in UK now, production has now been moved overseas (China in this case), the building is still a working distribution depot. Walking to the far end of the building I found the fairly unassuming entrance, entered and spoke to the very friendly young lady on the desk, paid my £4 admittance (other prices are on the attached website) and walked into what was effectively a wonderland, losing about 40 years in the process.
The Visitor Centre is part informative and moreover great fun. Starting with the life story of the eponymous Frank Hornby (1863 - 1936) and his making of sheet metal toys for his children it goes, more or less chronologically, through the development of what is now known as Hornby Hobbies Ltd. and their acquisition of various other brands until their present position as one of the pre-eminent toy manufacturers in the world.
There are exhibits of very rare models, examples of how they are actually made, a simply brilliant model railway display and a hands on Scalextric track which I would have loved to have a go on but there were a bunch of youngsters having such a good time on it, albeit doing a lot more crashing than driving.
I had enquired as to the possibility of photography inside and the young lady had told me that was no problem so I went on a bit of a shutter frenzy, taking far more images than fit on a VT tip, so I have created a travelogue.
There is a cafe onsite which I did not try although it looked very pleasant, and also a huge shop of just about everything Hornby you could ever want to buy, although I was a little astounded at the prices. Then again, it has been decades since I bought anything from them.
The Centre is all on one level so would be suitable for mobility impaired visitors and I did notice a disabled toilet facility (at the back of the shop should you need it).
I fully appreciate that this tip will be of little use or interest to many VT readers now that "toys" seem to be centred around things with screens but for us oldies it was a complete and utter joy.
There are 2 bowling alleys in Margate, one quite close to the main sea front - 'AMF', and another - 'Bugseys' further along the coast in Cliftonville. Both of them have good facilities, so take your pick depending on your location.