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Watch the White Cliffs of Dover drift into the distance as you arrive in Calais. Brits would be mightily miffed if the French described Dover as simply a ferry port and Calais doesn't deserve that title either; it is much more than an industrial gateway into France.
Historic and attractive, hotels in Calais welcome sightseers as well as those passing through and visitors on booze cruises...
Poor Calais; it doesn't have a reputation as more than a ferry port and a place to buy cheap alcohol on the continent. And while both of these things are absolutely true, there are hidden depths to Calais that are worth spending time to discover. See the old town, Calais-Nord, which is on an island enclosed by a network of waterways. It is home to a number of architecturally-interesting buildings, such as the ornate belfry, Notre Dame church, and Tour du Guet, a 13th century watchtower. The Côte d'Opale, or Opal Coast, runs from Calais and down the French coast and offers a number of glorious places in which to spend some time by the sea.
From nabbing the best views to sweet talking your way into an upgrade, improve your chances of getting the best hotel room – without paying through the nose – with these expert tips.Read moreabout Ask the experts: How to bag the best hotel rooms
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