The Best Hotels to Book Near Canterbury Cathedral, England

The Falstaff Inn offers an intimate lounge where modern furniture melds seamlessly with heritage detail
The Falstaff Inn offers an intimate lounge where modern furniture melds seamlessly with heritage detail | Courtesy of The Falstaff Inn / Expedia
Photo of Jo Fernandez-Corugedo
8 October 2021

The unassuming cathedral city of Canterbury ranks among the most beautiful in England. With centuries of history and culture layered atop Medieval origins, it’s the archetypal chocolate-box fantasy. There are ancient city walls, winding cobbled streets, low-ceilinged pubs and of course that majestically-spired main attraction. Secure somewhere fittingly characterful to stay – all bookable with Culture Trip.

Pilgrims Hotel

Pilgrims Hotel
Courtesy of Pilgrims Hotel / Expedia
Theatre lovers will applaud the location of this historic hotel, opposite the contrastingly contemporary Marlowe Theatre. It’s also just a five-minute walk from the 11th-century splendour of Canterbury Cathedral. Set into the Roman walls of the centre, this family-run hotel has characterful rooms with sloping ceilings and wooden beams set above four posters in flouncy fabrics. There’s a bar with a low-beamed ceiling for a post-sightseeing pint and, come morning, a neverending array of pastries, cheeses, meats, baked goods, muffins, fruits and overnight oats to rev you up for another bash around town.

The Falstaff Inn

The Falstaff Inn
Courtesy of The Falstaff Inn / Expedia
The setting’s great, an eight-minute walk from Canterbury Cathedral. And the atmosphere at this centuries-old inn is especially welcoming. Rooms in the original section have retained heritage features like panelling, beamed ceilings and fireplaces. Choose the contemporary area for modern spaces dressed in pretty fabrics with roll-top baths. Downstairs is an interior-design devotee’s dream, with afternoon tea served to guests perched on velvet chairs in rich, warming shades. There’s a cocktail bar for martinis before pizza in the lovely blue-hued Francesco’s.

Abode Canterbury

Room at Abode Canterbury with modern decor, wooden flooring, a large double bed and a separate seating area
Courtesy of ABode Canterbury / Expedia
On Canterbury High Street, a two-minute walk from the Marlowe Theatre, this good-looking hotel is a quiet riot of ancient beams, mullioned windows and stone carvings, revealing its 12th-century heritage. Rooms – with names like Comfortable, Desirable, Enviable – all soothe with soft natural colours, not to mention satisfying local snacks in the minibar. For Cathedral views, book the Fabulous Suite, which has a decked terrace with loungers. And later? Sip a glass of Kentish fizz in the beamed Champagne bar before enjoying succulent local beef in the light-filled restaurant.

Cathedral Gate

Cathedral Gate
Courtesy of Cathedral Gate /
The Medieval core of Canterbury has plenty to seduce history buffs – not least this homely 15th-century hotel. Full of the quirks you want from a building of this age – expect crooked doors, ancient beams and sloping floors – rooms here are connected by a maze of winding corridors and come furnished with smart four-posters and period-style brass. How to spend a beautiful weekend here? Idle in the peaceful library, or make new best friends in the bijou bar over a local brew. The Cathedral is only a two-minute walk from here.

The Victoria Hotel

The Victoria Hotel
Courtesy of The Victoria Hotel / Expedia
Like your hotels with a little greenery? You’ll love the flower-filled gardens of this red-brick pub-cum-hotel, a stone’s throw from the crumbly ruins (and fascinating museum) of St Augustine’s Abbey. Modern rooms keep things simple and clutter-free – most sport smart, striped wallpaper. This is a hotel to relax into, with perhaps a few volleys on the tennis court before a traditional roast in the timber-lined restaurant.

Hawkslane Lodge

Hawkslane Lodge (nee Peregrine)
courtesy of Hawkslane Lodge / Expedia
A couple of streets away from Canterbury Museum, this handsome cream-stucco-and-brick Georgian townhouse is conveniently placed for the urban action, as well as for the delights of the cobbled Medieval centre. While four-star, the whitewashed rooms are fuss-free. A home-cooked breakfast is served in the sister hotel, a five-minute stroll away, and when your stomach starts demanding dinner, this quiet side street is just off the High Street, a packed and buzzing parade of inviting restaurants and cafes.

The Conningbrook Hotel

The Conningbrook Hotel
Courtesy of The Conningbrook Hotel / Expedia
The serene village location in Kennington is a big draw, close to the rolling Kent Downs and a five-minute drive from Ashford and the Eurostar Terminal. For travellers on their way in or out of the country, that means a night in style at this becoming country house. Pick from singles, doubles, twins and a family room – whichever, you’ll be calmed by the decor of silvery greys, creams and rich reds. Some overlook the generous beer garden, with its pond, patio and children’s play area.

The Wife of Bath

An attic room at Wife of Bath, with beige carpets, gray walls, a black iron bed with white bedding, and various pieces of artwork on the walls
Courtesy of Wife of Bath / Expedia
In an hour from London St Pancras, you can be soaking up the serenity of the village of Wye, a historic resting place for pilgrims on their way to Canterbury. Today’s peace-seeking pilgrims (or, rather, tired city workers) head for chef Mark Sargeant’s Grade-II-listed restaurant with rooms – five in total, named after characters in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales – less than 10 minutes on foot from Wye railway station. Top tip: two spaces are housed in the garden cottage, although all have soft colour schemes livened up by art and furnishings. The star of the show? The Spanish tapas selection, from eye-watering aioli to salt and olive-oil-infused chocolate tart.

For more options, discover our guide to the best boutique hotels in Kent and the best hotels in Kent – as well as the best bed and breakfasts in Canterbury, bookable on Culture Trip.

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