Exploring the South Downs, England’s Beauty

England is a land of great beauty, from its amazing, historic sites, to natural wonders such as the White Cliffs of Dover, the plains of Salisbury around Stonehenge, and the rolling hills dotting quaint countryside as far as the eye can see. South Downs is a best-kept secret, a gem of a destination for visitors from near and far.

Exploring the South Downs

Travel to South Downs and experience a marvel beyond compare with an expanse of chalk cliffs that rise above the sea for a stretch of seventy miles. Beginning in the region of Winchester, New Hampshire, they extend to Eastbourne in East Essex. Walk to the edge of a cliff to gaze upon the waves crashing far below or view the breathtaking, white mountains soaring up to the sky while standing on the shore. Be sure to include the South Downs National Park in the itinerary when touring this prime example of one of England’s National Character Areas.

Encompassing 628 square miles, the park preserves and restores the Downs, ensuring this precious treasure will not be wasted. Visitors can admire whimsical vales, the woods, and clay hills while ambling along the South Downs Way, a National Trail.

The Seven Sisters Cliffs can be viewed from Seaford Head and are one of the favorite sites for locals and tourists alike. This is definitely a picturesque landmark that should be captured on film. Regardless of where travelers are headed in South Downs, they should plan on enjoying the many gifts offered by the great outdoors. There are countless opportunities to take everything in on foot, strolling down quiet, country roads. Touring by bicycle is a true adventure as well. Talk to residents and those who have had the opportunity to pass a pleasant stay in this tranquil corner of the world and there is one consensus: South Downs is best enjoyed first hand, on one’s own feet.

In addition to all of the natural attractions that draw people to the region, the area is dotted with pubs, shops, and tea shops as well. A visit to England would not be complete without a spot of tea while sitting by the sea. Find local wares and mingle with residents, soaking in the culture and atmosphere along the way.

The trip to South Downs would not be complete without fine accommodations in a reputable hotel. The region boasts of many delightful locations, including the Spread Eagle Hotel in Sussex. This inviting hotel was originally a Coach Inn, providing travelers with a stop along the coach routes that used to span the country. Established in 1430, this hotel is one of the oldest Coaching Inns in the nation to still be in active use.

Holding five centuries of history within its walls, it is well worth paying this establishment a visit. In includes many features that will make visitors feel like they are walking back in time as they sit by the open fire, gaze at the oak beams overhead, or stare out of leaded-light windows. The hotel is the perfect spot to relax and refresh for the next adventure in South Downs. Guests can dine in house at the restaurant and catch a glimpse of the Queen’s Suite. Legend has it that Queen Elizabeth I, one of England’s most powerful monarchs, spent the night in the room in question.

Whether South Downs is the final destination for an extended stay or only a stop along the way, it should be at the top of any visitor’s travel itinerary. Experience one of England’s favorites and encounter the white cliffs firsthand. South Downs welcomes all visitors.

Tim Capper

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