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Folkestone Harbour Welcomes the Return of its Folkestone Festive Marketplace for a full ‘Christmas-on-Sea’ experience 

Folkestone Harbour, on the Kent coast, is gearing up for the return of the Folkestone Festive Marketplace, promising to be its biggest and most magical year yet, including the addition of a new Harbour Grotto festive experience, putting a maritime twist on the festive classic.  

Set against the backdrop of Folkestone Harbour’s beautiful seafront promenade with a world class-view of the English Channel, the 2023 Festive Marketplace will showcase over 50 local, independent businesses, offering a vibrant Fisherman hut-style shopping experience over a 6-week period.  

The Folkestone Festive Marketplace will run from November 17th to December 24th, every Friday from 4pm to 8pm, as well as on Saturdays and Sundays from 11am to 6pm. 

Explore a wintery wonderland filled with snow blizzards and festive lights across the site and an impressive Christmas tree at its centre. Visitors can also look forward to a wide range of free events and cinema screenings, diverse outdoor & indoor dining options, the addition of a unique Harbour Grotto experience and a beautiful, illuminated carousel. 

Now in its third year, this year’s Folkestone Festive Marketplace promises an even greater spectacle. Visitors can expect to be immersed in a winter wonderland of stunning decorations, a selection of free festive films, an exciting lineup of entertainment, extended opening hours, and even a chance to meet the big man himself. 

One of the standout features of this year’s event is the abundance of indoor dining options, the opening of six new indoor restaurants this year means visitors will be able to shelter from the weather and warm up over a roast at Sailbox, a hearty, seasonal small plate at Brewing Brothers or even a fish curry at Little Rock. 

New for 2023, is the introduction of The Harbour Grotto, developed in partnership with local set designer Sally Hogarth, will provide a unique seaside-themed experience at The Customs House, celebrating the Harbour’s heritage as a bustling port. Online booking for the Grotto will be available soon. 

James Davies, Operations Manager at Folkestone Harbour, comments, “We’re gearing up for a Festive Season at Folkestone Harbour quite unlike anything we’ve held before. By building on the success of the previous two years and with the substantial developments we’ve made into building more indoor options to help visitors extend their stay, 2023 promises to cement our reputation as a destination whose winter offer is just as strong as its summer period and further our mission of reinventing the English seaside experience.” 

Just under an hour’s train ride from London, Folkestone Harbour has undergone a remarkable transformation from a former ferry port into a year-round destination for food, drink, retail therapy, and culture. Its mile-long promenade offers world-class views, and with a selection of street food kiosks, bars, and restaurants, there’s always something to tantalize your taste buds. Activities such as Putters! Adventure Golf and a calendar of regular events add to the appeal, making it a must-visit spot for a day trip or a weekend getaway. 

Plan your visit to Folkestone Harbour by visiting the website and following @folkestoneharbour on Instagram. Please note, individual business opening hours may vary, check the website for timings.  


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