The East Sussex coastline, characterized by its white cliffs and sand and pebble beaches, stretches from the small historical town of Rye in the east all the way to the bustling city of Brighton and Hove in the west. Inland, the county’s landscape is defined by the South Downs chalk hills, creating stunning valleys and ridges that run across the countryside. With miles of seaside resorts, countless scenic towns and villages, a wide variety of historical sites, and numerous open farms and country estates, East Sussex offers an incredible array of attractions, activities and pursuits to keep your family entertained during your stay in the county.
Places to go in East Sussex
For a memorable family day out there is no better place to start than at Battle Abbey, set on the site of the 1066 Battle of Hastings, one of the most famous dates in English history. Just along the coast in Eastbourne is the Redoubt Fortress, another must-see historical site. The Redoubt was built in the 19th Century to defend against the threat of an invasion by France’s Napoleon. After a hard day of historical sightseeing, you will definitely want to take a trip to one of East Sussex’s famous seaside resorts, and whether you opt for a smaller town such as Bexhill or the bright lights of Brighton and Hove, you will be guaranteed the quintessential English seaside experience. Paddle in the sea, wander down the promenade and eat an ice-cream on the pier. For a break away from the coast, the many open farms across the county are a great family day out. You should check out Middle Farm, Blackberry Farm and Heaven Farm – they are all working family farms with shops and restaurants.
Our Top Picks in East Sussex
We want you to enjoy the best that East Sussex has to offer and so here's a selection of our favourite things to see and do;
St. Clements Caves
Smuggling is an important part of the rich history of East Sussex and nowhere can you experience the danger and excitement of the smuggler’s life better than at the Smugglers Adventure, a centre for the history of smuggling on the south coast of England. You’ll be guided through the St. Clements Caves by “Hairy Jack” and learn about smuggling with the help of interactive activities, dozens of life-sized figures, dramatic lighting and eerie sounds.
A night out in Brighton and Hove is almost obligatory on a trip to East Sussex. The city is one of the UK’s cultural hubs and there is no better place to sample what’s on offer than at the Brighton Marina. It is more than somewhere simply to moor your boat. The marina is an all-in-one entertainment destination with shops, restaurants, a cinema, bowling, a casino – you name it and you’ll probably find it here.
Ashdown Forest - Winnie the Pooh
No matter how old you are everyone has a special place in their hearts for that lovable little bear and his band of friends. Take the opportunity while you’re in East Sussex to visit Winnie the Pooh’s home in Ashdown Forest, where you can actually find Pooh Corner and the Pooh Sticks bridge. There are mapped walks that will guide you past some of the sites of Pooh’s adventures, and there are some nice picnic spots along the way. Don’t forget to bring some honey!
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