United by the Channel

The Cross-Channel Geopark is a cooperation between the Kent Downs National Landscape (England) and the Caps et Marais d’Opale Regional Nature Park (France) in celebration of our shared geodiversity. The ambition is to gain UNESCO status as the world’s first Cross-Border Geopark united by sea.

The Heritage Beneath our Feet

Hundreds of thousands of years ago a catastrophic flood swept away the chalk ridge connecting Dover and Calais, carving out the white cliffs of Dover and starting Britain’s history as an island.

Did you know the Kent and French coasts are actually still connected today by the layer of chalk which runs below the Channel?

Discover the Geopark

The Cross-Channel Geopark is comprised of both terrestrial areas and the marine area connecting the two protected landscapes, recognising, and celebrating the geological connection between us.

The Geopark is centred around the coastal and inland Chalk which is exemplified by the landscapes of white cliffs of both coastlines, the chalk hills of the Kent Downs and the Parc Naturel Regional and, of course, the seascape that connects us.

If the application is successful, it will be the only cross-border UNESCO Global Geopark connected by the sea.


A UNESCO Global Geopark contains ‘Geosites’, special places which tell the story of the Geopark – not just its geological heritage, but also the story of human activity, the plants, animals, and other wildlife of the Geopark.

Geosites of the Cross-Channel Geopark will include a variety of sites that best represent the incredible geology of the region. Including awe-inspiring cliffs and windswept beaches, tranquil ancient woods and walks with sweeping views, lively local Country Parks and meandering chalk streams and waterways.

The full list of Geosites across England and France will be confirmed as part of the application for UNESCO status.

Visit and Explore the Geopark

Discover the Kent Downs National Landscape a nationally protected landscape stretching from the white cliffs of Dover to the Surrey and London border. With ancient bluebell woodlands, rugged chalk coastline, internationally rare chalk grassland, and ragstone villages there is beauty to explore all year round.

Find out about our latest National Lottery Heritage Fund project GeoDiversity 

Discover the Parc Naturel Regional des Caps et Marais d’Opale, France This protected landscape offers a unique palette of breathtaking landscapes of wetlands, chalk grassland, white cliffs, hedgerows and coastline.