A stretch of the England Coast Path connecting the coastline between Folkestone and Ramsgate has been approved.
The 59km route will include familiar landmarks, the White Cliffs of Dover, Pegwell Bay National Nature Reserve and includes new access to Richborough port.
When officially open, the route will mean walkers will be able to get to previously unreachable foreshore, beaches and cliffs.
James Seymour, Natural England manager for Sussex and Kent, said: “We are delighted this route, which takes in famous and historic landmarks, has been given the green light.
“I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has been involved in the preparations, as their significant knowledge and expertise has been invaluable in helping to shape the route.
“We have worked closely with a wide range of local interests in developing the proposals and we now look forward to working with Kent County Council to put the route in place for everyone to enjoy.”
Work will begin immediately with Kent County Council contacting owners and occupiers to decide on design and location of infrastructure such as signs and gates.
On Wednesday March 25, Natural England will be publishing proposals for the next stretch – a 40km section between Ramsgate and Whitstable.
Upon its completion by 2020, the England Coast Path will be a 4,700km long National Trail, around the whole English Coast. Work is currently underway in more sections around England.
Kent County Council will be working to introduce the first of the coastal path.
The route will make e use of existing coastal paths such as the Saxon Shore Way, Stour Valley Walk, Thanet Coastal Path, and the North Downs Way National Trail – and will improve access around the Stour Estuary.
It will include new access to the historic site of Richborough port, which played a significant role in campaigns during both world wars. It will go through Sandwich town – one the Cinque Ports which supplied the Crown with ships and men in medieval times.