Folkestone, although not that far away, is a place that I rarely go to. After hearing about its developing Creative Quarter, I decided to spend an afternoon in the town to get to know it a little better.

Naturally, my first stop was for lunch. I've visited the popular Googies Art Café before, which I can definitely recommend. However, I fancied trying somewhere new so I popped into Big Boys Fine Burger Co. Finalists for the National Burger Awards in 2015, unsurprisingly, the burgers were amazing. The perfection that is the Big Boy's banoffee milkshake is enough reason alone to go to Folkestone. This laid-back restaurant was a lot bigger than it looked from the outside, the menu was varied and the service was good. So if you're looking for a tasty but affordable lunch, try it out! 

Next, it was time to explore the Creative Quarter some more. One of the most interesting shops I found in this area was Rennies. Specialising in 20th century British design, I found all sorts of curious objects to lust over. I particularly loved the posters, which included original 1930's adverts from the London Underground. It was refreshing to find a vintage shop like this; the collection had been carefully put together and it was like every object could tell a story. The visit to this little treasure trove was made all the more exciting when I realised Jessica Hynes was in there too.

There are plenty of diverse shops to browse in. Kitty McCall is an ideal place for modern, brightly-coloured interiors and accessories. County Fayre has the best selection of Kentish produce. Hot Salvation is a trendy record shop with new and used vinyl available. There's also room to enjoy a coffee if you fancy it. Another music shop, Vintage & Vinyl, is not only for record collectors, but also those who enjoy local wines and beers. Something I noticed in Folkestone is that its shops frequently have more than one concept, which results in some unexpected discoveries. 

Folkestone has really cool street art around it. Often in surprising locations, details on the town's buildings and businesses make it a very colourful area to walk around. There are galleries and studios to have a look in and I noticed intriguing art installations throughout the Creative Quarter. 

I enjoyed exploring the harbour area. It has lots of independent businesses, especially seafood stalls. Although as us Margatians know, be careful with your chips.

A big reason I love seaside towns is for the pure tackiness you find. Regeneration-led hip café's and retro shops are lovely, but I really enjoy unapologetic signage, cheap and cheerful food outlets and everything that reminds me of being British. The man calling out from the meat van, brazen Las Vegas imitations and cheesy slogans are genuinely great things to me.

There are definitely similarities between Margate and Folkestone. It seems both towns have their development on track and are turning to creative ventures to support this. I enjoyed discovering more about Folkestone and it was great to see the high street and seafront so busy. The vibrant street art makes such a difference to the town. Margate's street art scene is growing and I'm all for it brightening up disused buildings and boarded up shop fronts!

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