The South Downs of East Sussex offer the opportunity for superb downland walking in what has been, for many years, one of England's best known and best loved areas, recently - and deservedly - designated as a National Park. The sense of space is truly exhilarating, with far-reaching views over both the English Channel and the Sussex Weald. The underfoot conditions are excellent, even during wet weather, and the chalk grassland supports a marvellous variety of flora and butterflies as well as numerous birds of prey.
The chalk outcrop which forms the South Downs rises dramatically from the Sussex Weald to form a high north-facing escarpment. To the south the Downs roll gently down to the coast before ending abruptly in a line of massive and startlingly white cliffs. The short cropped grass drapes over the folds of the hills like velvet, Iron Age remains top the hills, and one of Britain's best known National Trails, the South Downs Way, runs along the ridge of the Downs.
Our walks will take us along the clifftop path above Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters, through the Birling Gap and along the Cuckmere Valley, up to the exhilarating summit of Firle Beacon and further inland to visit the Wilmington Long Man. We will also walk the excellent stretch of the South Downs Way from the distinctive 'Jack and Jill' windmills at Clayton to the wonderful viewpoint of Ditchling Beacon, and drop down from Plumpton Plain to visit the historic town of Lewes. The holiday will be based in the delightful village of Alfriston where the steep hills dip down to the River Cuckmere.
Our guided holidays on the South Downs will be based at Deans Place Country Hotel [AA***] in Alfriston. Deans Place is a beautiful 14th century building surrounded by four acres of lawns and gardens. The hotel, which is privately owned, offers a warm welcome, excellent service and beautifully-appointed ensuite bedrooms. Harcourts Restaurant, which prides itself on the use of the finest local produce, holds two AA Rosettes for the excellence of its food and service. All bedrooms have ensuite bathroom facilities.
- All of the above prices are per person, and based upon two guests sharing a double or twin-bedded room.
- Single traveller? We shall have a limited number of single rooms available at no extra cost. Alternatively, pay an additional £30 per night and enjoy sole occupancy of a double room. (More about single supplement)
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Rail: Berwick (Sussex)
Onward travel: Taxi