We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Review Highlights

it doesnt take long to do but it is a wonderful look into the past.The staff are very freindly and... read more

Reviewed yesterday
Margate, United Kingdom
Hidden gem

I visited here with my young children and in laws. It’s hard to comprehend how there’s something... read more

Reviewed 4 days ago
Amy M
via mobile
Read all 1,089 reviews
All photos (506)
Full view
Certificate of Excellence
Traveller Overview
  • Excellent57%
  • Very good33%
  • Average8%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“million shells”(46 reviews)
“gift shop”(81 reviews)
“sea shells”(24 reviews)
The Shell Grotto is one of the world’s most mysterious places: a series of underground rooms and passageways covered by 2000sqft of exquisite mosaic created with 4.6 million shells. Discovered in 1835, nobody knows who created it, when, or why. “The...more
33 Grotto Hill, Margate CT9 2BU, England
+44 1843 220008
Improve This Listing
Reviews (1,089)
Filter reviews
1,050 results
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
More languages
Show reviews that mention
All reviews million shells gift shop sea shells mysterious place intricate patterns worth a visit hidden treasure hidden away small cafe side street interesting place to visit little gem per adult family ticket rainy day visiting margate for sale
Updating list...
1 - 10 of 1,050 reviews
Reviewed yesterday

it doesnt take long to do but it is a wonderful look into the past.The staff are very freindly and helpful.

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank wellerbigorange
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

I visited here with my young children and in laws. It’s hard to comprehend how there’s something like this that’s been hidden away surrounded by mystery. My mother in law found it a little creepy and actually wouldn’t go down- she’s quite spiritual. Once we...More

Date of experience: February 2018
Thank Amy M
Reviewed 5 days ago

Very interesting and so pretty. Off the beaten track slightly but not difficult to find. Doesn’t take long to explore.

Date of experience: January 2019
Thank denles
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

Was pretty disappointed with my visit here expected a lot more from reading of previous reviews. Reckon it should be free entry with a purchase from the cafe this would be more reasonable

Date of experience: January 2019
Thank staceymariej
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Well what a surprise. You approach the Grotto from a very uninspiring area and suddenly you are transported into a magical place. A really worthwhile place to visit and a totally hidden gem.

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank Gill L
Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

It is what it says on the tin. "A small fascinating grotto decorated with 4,000,000 shells". Interesting but for £4.50 entry I'd hoped for a bit more. However, that's my problem as they promised no more than they gave. It was my expectation of being...More

Date of experience: January 2019
Thank Darkside00
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Not really sure how to describe this and do it justice but it’s something you really should see! Located on a normal looking street the outside gives you no idea what might be inside! No-one seems to know who built it or why which adds...More

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank MarciaBrown
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Wow, this really is a spooky little gem! It does take about two minutes to walk around but I loved having the opportunity. I know of a few towns with tunnels (minus the shells) like this that aren’t open to the public at all. My...More

Date of experience: December 2018
Thank lel1978
Reviewed 5 weeks ago

amazing shells! amazing staff!! this place is just fantastic to visit for all the family. love the activity table and learning about the history of the grotto would absolutely recommend a visit whilst in Margate

Date of experience: December 2018
Thank charlieburrow99
Sarah V, Manager at The Shell Grotto, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Thanks for your lovely review, pleased you enjoyed your visit!

Reviewed 12 December 2018

Very friendly place. You enter into a small coffee souvenir shop, pay your entrance fee at the bar and off you go to explore this rather small but amazing old mysterious place. Complete with atmospheric music. A real thought provoker.

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank BladeRunner1965
View more reviews
Nearby HotelsSee all 12 nearby hotels
Glenwood Hotel
110 reviews
.43 km away
Crescent Victoria Hotel
447 reviews
.46 km away
Sherwood Hotel
96 reviews
.48 km away
Sands Hotel
933 reviews
.68 km away
Nearby RestaurantsSee all 218 nearby restaurants
Joe @ The London Tavern
129 reviews
.35 km away
The Riz
296 reviews
.23 km away
77 reviews
.40 km away
Fort's Cafe
228 reviews
.46 km away
Nearby AttractionsSee all 204 nearby attractions
Margate Tudor House
147 reviews
.42 km away
Theatre Royal
125 reviews
.33 km away
Genting Casino
20 reviews
.43 km away
Questions & Answers
Ask a question
5 September 2018|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from Peter L | Reviewed this property |
Hello. I am disabled and have trouble walking. However, I managed quite easily. Take your time. It is not a "huge" venue and I think you could manage reasonably well. There are no exceptional "ups and downs". It is well... More
10 August 2018|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from Cheryllegg | Reviewed this property |
As you arrive, there is a reception area where you can buy your admission tickets.
31 May 2017|
AnswerShow all 8 answers
Response from Maz S | Reviewed this property |
No. Hope you have a nice time.