About Samphire Hoe
The chalk cliffs at Dover form a vital element of the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, a nationally important and protected landscape. Samphire Hoe is one of the few places where one can truly appreciate the drama of the White Cliffs. Great care has been taken to make the landscape of Samphire Hoe fit in this dramatic setting.
Samphire Hoe is owned by Eurotunnel for the Getlink group and the everyday management of this protected place is entrusted to the White Cliffs Countryside Partnership (WCCP).
Samphire Hoe is an amazing place. There is something for everyone who enjoys the outdoors and wildlife: a stunning location and outstanding scenery, peace and quiet, walks, wildflowers, birds and picnics. And the further you go from the car park, the wilder the site becomes. This tranquil setting never fails to impress, with many visitors coming back time and time again. The site office provides a tea kiosk and facilities for all and is open every weekend of the year and most days from Easter to September. Most of the Hoe is accessible for wheelchairs and pushchairs and there is a recommended route sign posted “Front path” and “West shore”.
Since the end of 2014, there is an education shelter at Samphire Hoe, which is for hire. The shelter is equipped with a 60m2 classroom and a 40m2 exhibition area that can comfortably accomodate large numbers of school children or tourists visiting the nature reserve at the foot of Shakespeare Cliff. The building’s design incorporates eco-construction criteria. Educational activities are organised there all year round as well as with schools. A beautiful ecoresponsible dipping pond has also been built next to the education shelter.
Half of the Hoe was sown with wildflower seeds. This consisted of five mixes totalling 31 species, designed to suit the different conditions on the site. The rest of the site was planted with annual rye grass. This has since died out allowing plants from the surrounding areas to colonise. This newly vegetation has since grew to total more than 200 species of plants, including around 7,000 orchids of which the rare early spider orchids.
Samphire Hoe is a great place for wildlife. It is home to between 30 to 80 livestock (sheep and cows) depending on seasons and years, 220 species birds, 30 species of butterflies and 380 moths, 3 species of reptiles and other insects.