8 Sussex towns you must visit!
As a Brightonian agency, we love all things Brighton! Not just because it’s home to our fantastic Coapt office along Lewes Road (come and stop by anytime!), but Brighton is a foodie’s paradise, a tourist haven, a sun worshipper’s dream (for half of the year), and has so many attractions and places to explore! That being said, Sussex is so much more than Brighton so if you are looking to escape the familiarity of Brighton & Hove for a day, we have some ideas for you….
Set in the beautiful Arun Valley, with its namesake river running leisurely alongside this stunning old timey town, Arundel (pictured above) is a picturesque medieval masterpiece. With its fairy-tale castle longing to be explored, the cathedral stands dominantly looking out over the valley, and tucked in the old narrow lanes are numerous quirky shops and delicious bakeries that make it impossible not to spoil your diet plans with a cake or 3! Just by the entrance to the town is a lovely lake where it is possible to rent boats and enjoy a wonderful time navigating the waters. Recommended places to stop are The Parlour for off the chain milkshakes, LG Café for some of the biggest and tastiest cakes that you’ll ever have, Pallant of Arundel for a vast array of cheeses (try their chilli sausage roll) and finally The Burger Shop Co for some unbelievable burgers and yummy milkshakes.
Famous for the events in 1066, Hastings was described in 2018 as the ‘best commuter seaside town to move to’ in an article by Metro. The ruins of Hastings Castle overlook 3 miles of seafront, the winding streets of the Old Town, different museums, the pier, the Blue Reef Aquarium, and many more sights enclosed between the East and West hills. Head up the funicular railways on both hills to get the best views of Hastings and beyond! Nearby, visit the town of Battle, named after the renown battle of 1066 and visit Battle Abbey and walk the battlefield from almost 1000 years ago!
The beach that William The Conqueror landed during the Norma invasion of 1066 has since become a beautiful Sussex gem, bundled with boutique shops, tearooms, pubs, and overseen by the magnificent Pevensey Castle. Pevensey actually dates back to the Roman era and is built around a bay looking out to the English Channel; a great place for sailing or to watch the boats go by. It is also the starting point of the 31-mile 1066 Country Walk, which trails through many Sussex gems to the battlefield in Battle.
Now we are more than aware that Chichester (or ‘Chi’ as it is affectionately known) is in fact a city, but Sussex’s county city couldn’t be missed out of this list. One of the most historic places in Sussex, Chichester originated as a Roman cathedral city and has many grade II listed buildings within its boundaries. Take a stroll through the Bishop’s Palace Garden next to the cathedral which is a fantastic place to relax or read a book on a lovely warm, sunny day. Alternatively lay out your shopping itinerary from The Cross, the centre point of the 4 main streets in the city centre, with many different places to shop, drink or eat at your leisure.
Nestled in the West Sussex countryside is this boutique market town which has been voted Best Antiques Town, as well as being home to Petworth House. After walking in the 700 acre grounds of Petworth House with hundreds of deer roaming the area, why not shop in the various unique, bougie boutiques on offer along the high street? Or pop into to one of several bakeries for some fresh, Sussex based products to treat your tastebuds!
Sir Patrick Moore’s former residence, Selsey is an understated coastal paradise. Less than 10 miles South of Chichester, the seaside town boasts a brilliant fishing heritage, with the Selsey Crab being considered as one of the best in the world! Once you’ve explored the town and beach, head East to Pagham Harbour and bask in the nature reserve!
In a very similar style to Arundel, Lewes dates back over a millennia and centres around the historic Lewes Castle. The town is particularly well-known for Anne Of Cleves’ House which, ironically, she never even visited, and the site of the Battle of Lewes in 1264, as well as being the home of Harvey’s Brewery, one of Sussex’s most consumed ales. Every Friday morning, the town plays host to the Lewes Food Market, and on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month, the Lewes Farmers Market. Set either side of the River Ouse, Sussex’s county town really is a lovely place to spend a sunny afternoon!
Filled with cobbled streets, quaint pubs, and steeped with historical secrets and treasures at every turn, Rye is a destination for any adventurer on the East Sussex coast. Visit the Ypres Tower, with stunning views across Romney Marsh or head down Mermaid Street, which has been named as one of the most instagrammed streets in the UK, then head down the road to Camber Sands to relax on the only sand dune system in East Sussex, with miles and miles of beautiful views out to the sea!
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