Margate named in Rough Guide's top 10 destinations in the world

Ruth Doherty


It's been a seaside destination for Brits for 250 years and now, it seems, the rest of the world may sit up and take notice of Margate.

Why? Because it has just placed at seventh in the top 10 destinations in the world in the Rough Guide Travel Hot List for 2013.

Margate, in Kent, rubbed shoulders with stunning hotspots like Dubrovnik and Stockholm, even coming in higher than Puerto Rico.

According to the Daily Mail, a spokesman for Rough Guides said: "From the Turner Contemporary gallery to the proliferation of other indie art spaces, vintage shops and cute cafes in the Old Town, Margate now offers much more than its golden sands and dilapidated seaside charm.

"The gem on the Isle of Thanet constitutes one of the highlights of the forthcoming Rough Guide to Kent, Sussex and Surrey for many good reasons."

And the deputy director at Turner Contemporary, Richard Morsley, echoed the statement, saying: "Visitors come for our exhibitions but also to experience the town, the beach, the boutique shops, cafes, Margate's amazing history and of course our Turner sunsets.

"There is a fantastic feeling of change and momentum in Margate at the moment and we are all expecting another great year for the town."

However, some locals dismissed it as rubbish, and said tourists would be "very, very disappointed" if they made the effort to visit from afar.

Richard Spires told the Daily Mail: "Margate is run down, half of the shops are closed or in the process of closing down, there are yobs on every corner and amusement arcades all over the place.

"It is not the kind of place you really want to live in, let alone go on holiday to."

The Turner Contemporary Art Gallery has, however, certainly had a big part in turning the town's fortunes around. According to the BBC, since the Queen opened it last year, it has received 750,000 visitors, a third of them making an overnight break of it,

The gallery's director, Victoria Pomerey, told the BBC: "A lot has happened generally around regeneration, but culture has been the real driver for what's happened here."

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