From historic castles and beautiful gardens to spectacular beaches and bustling city life, there are plenty of things to do in Sussex.
Many of our favourite holiday parks in Sussex are ideally located near these top attractions, making them an excellent base for your adventures.
Whether you’re planning a family trip, a romantic getaway, or a solo experience, you’ll never run out of things to do in Sussex. It’s a place where unforgettable memories are waiting to be made.
1. Seven Sisters Country Park
Seven Sisters Country Park in Sussex is a fantastic spot to spend a day outdoors. It’s named after seven big, white cliffs that look really cool next to the blue sea. You can walk along these cliffs and enjoy amazing views.
Depending on the season, the park is a hotspot for birds flying south or north. But it’s not just birds! You might spot unusual plants and animals like the pretty Chalkhill Blue butterfly or a sneaky fox.
It’s a must-visit for nature lovers wanting a break from the hustle and bustle.
2. South Downs National Park
If you’re looking to breathe some fresh air and enjoy beautiful landscapes, South Downs National Park in Sussex is the place for you. It’s a vast area of stunning, untouched countryside with rolling hills and fields as far as the eye can see.
You’ll also find vineyards dotted around where you can taste local wines. Plus, there are plenty of charming villages to explore. Each one has its own character and history that’s just waiting to be discovered.
Visiting the South Downs is a fantastic way to unwind and feel a real sense of freedom.
3. Eastbourne Pier
Next up, we have Eastbourne Pier. It’s a grand Victorian structure that stands out on Eastbourne’s coastline. Walking along the pier, you’ll find several cute shops to browse in. You could pick up some souvenirs or just window shop.
There’s also a selection of places to eat and drink. You’ll find it here whether you want a full meal or just a cup of tea.
But the best part has to be the views. Looking out from the pier, you’ll see the sea stretching out in front of you. It’s a great spot for a peaceful moment or to snap photos.
4. Beachy Head
At Beachy Head, you can experience the beauty of nature in a way like never before. Stunning white cliffs stretch out into the horizon, creating a dramatic scene against the sea.
Not only are these cliffs beautiful to look at, but they also give you a great view of the English Channel.
You can spot the iconic red and white lighthouse that adds a touch of charm to the scenery.
After taking in the views, why not stop at the Beachy Head pub? Grab a drink and relax, enjoying the surroundings.
It’s the perfect place to unwind and get fresh sea air.
5. Bluebell Railway
The Bluebell Railway is a heritage railway that takes you on an 11-mile journey through Sussex’s beautiful countryside. And you get to do it all on a steam train, just like in the old days!
The railway tells the story of the industrial age, and the staff even wear period uniforms to make the experience more authentic.
While you enjoy a cup of tea, kids can have fun in the play and picnic areas. It’s a wonderful day out for the whole family, full of history and fun. Plus, who doesn’t love a good train ride?
6. Arundel Castle
Arundel Castle is a mix of history and beauty, right in the centre of Arundel in West Sussex. This big, Gothic castle with strong walls and tall towers is impressive to look at.
Once inside, you’ll see an incredible art collection with everything from old to modern. But there’s more to this attraction than the castle itself. There are peaceful gardens filled with beautiful flowers that you can walk through.
Arundel town itself has lots of cool places to visit, like old-fashioned shops, art galleries, and tasty restaurants. A trip here is a journey back in time.
7. Ashdown Forest
Ashdown Forest in Sussex is a lovely place you might recognise from the Winnie-the-Pooh stories. The forest has magical woods, tiny streams, and quiet open spaces.
Bring a picnic and spend a day checking out the Hundred Acre Wood. It’s home to different types of birds and animals, and maybe you’ll find the spot where Pooh and his friends had their meals or the bridge where they played Poohsticks.
Even though you won’t meet Winnie, you’ll see the places that inspired his fun stories.
8. Wakehurst Place
Wakehurst Place is a beautiful retreat of 500 acres filled with gardens and woodlands owned by the National Trust.
Here, you can take a peaceful walk among towering trees, colourful flowers, and lush greenery. There’s so much to explore; you could wander around the whole day.
Each season brings a different look to Wakehurst, making it a treat to visit any time of the year. It’s truly a sanctuary for nature lovers.
9. Drusillas Park
For a fun day out with the family, head to Drusillas Park. This isn’t your typical zoo. You can meet lots of different animals from all around the world.
Plus, there’s a rainforest you can explore! But the fun doesn’t stop there. There are also many exciting rides that kids and adults will love.
You can climb, swing, slide, and spin to your heart’s content. Drusillas Park is a wonderful place to spend quality time with your family and make unforgettable memories.
10. Lewes Castle & Barbican House Museum
Lewes Castle and the Barbican House Museum in Sussex are must-see spots for history buffs. The castle’s been standing for over a thousand years, and you can climb to the top of the Keep to take in stunning views of Sussex.
Take your time to learn about the castle’s rich past and see all the cool stuff at the museum. You’ll find historical treasures that’ll glimpse what life was like hundreds of years ago.
After your visit, relax in the castle’s pretty gardens and grounds. They’re perfect for a nice picnic or to chill out.
11. The Lanes, Brighton
The Lanes in Brighton are a maze of narrow streets filled with unique shops, boutiques, cafes, bars, restaurants and pubs.
Whether you’re looking for vintage clothes, antique furniture, or handmade jewellery, you’ll find something special here.
The Lanes is a fun place to explore, and you might pick up a bargain or two. Plus, the area is super photogenic, so be sure to snap a few pics!
12. British Airways i360, Brighton
Finally, make sure to check out the British Airways i360 in Brighton. This attraction takes you up 450 feet high for a 360-degree view of Sussex.
On a sunny day, the sight is incredible. You can see all the way to the Isle of Wight! The i360 is more than just a ride; it’s an unforgettable experience.
So, if you’re not scared of heights and want to see Sussex like never before, you definitely need to add this to your list.
13. Chichester Cathedral
If you’re into history, architecture, or art, Chichester Cathedral is a place you’ve got to see. This stunning cathedral is over 900 years old and is just as impressive today as it was when it was first built. You’ll notice its unique architecture right away.
Inside, you’ll find amazing medieval art that’s survived for centuries. Looking at these pieces is like going back in time! But it’s not just about the visuals.
When you enter the cathedral, you can feel the history in the air. It has a special, ancient atmosphere you won’t find anywhere else.
Whether you’re a history fan or just looking for a unique experience, Chichester Cathedral is a must-visit.
14. The Observatory Science Centre
The Observatory Science Centre is a spot that’s out of this world! Here, you get the chance to learn about all things space.
The centre is a famous astronomical observatory, so you can use real telescopes to gaze at the stars and planets.
Who knows what you might spot? Whether you’re a space enthusiast or just curious about the universe, visiting The Observatory Science Centre is a fascinating experience you won’t forget.
15. West Wittering Beach
A stay in Sussex wouldn’t be complete without spending a day at the beautiful West Wittering beach. Perfectly positioned along the south coast, this beach is renowned for its golden sandy stretches and tranquil, clear waters.
Although the beach is safe and sheltered, always follow any lifeguard’s advice on safe swimming areas.
You should start your day early to secure a prime spot on the beach. Don’t forget to pack your sunbathing essentials – a good book, beach towel, sunscreen, and perhaps a sun umbrella. Soak up the sun as you watch the gentle waves lapping at the shore.
Stay until the evening if you can, West Wittering Beach is famous for its sunsets. The sky turning shades of pink, orange and purple over the horizon creates a truly magical atmosphere. It’s the perfect way to wrap up your relaxing day at the beach.
16. Battle Abbey
Step back in time at Battle Abbey. This is the very spot where the famous 1066 Battle of Hastings took place. You’ll walk where William the Conqueror once walked, learning all about this major historical event.
But it’s not all about the past. Battle Abbey is also a beautiful place to visit today. You can stroll around the walled gardens, enjoying the beautiful flowers and trees. It’s a mix of history and beauty that’s worth exploring.
17. Cuckmere Haven
Cuckmere Haven is a serene oasis tucked away in the Seven Sisters Country Park in Sussex. As a nature reserve, it’s home to various wildlife and plants, making it a great spot for nature lovers. The reserve sits along the Cuckmere River, which flows through beautiful coastal paths. It’s a peaceful place that invites exploration.
There are several ways to experience Cuckmere Haven. Take a leisurely stroll along the river or the coastal paths, immersing yourself in the tranquil surroundings. If you’re more of a cyclist, bring your bike and ride along the well-kept paths. It’s an excellent way to cover more ground and see more of the reserve.
Alternatively, if you’re up for an adventure, rent a canoe and paddle along the calm waters of the Cuckmere River. This is a unique way to see the reserve and connect with nature.
18. Sheffield Park and Garden
Sheffield Park and Garden is a stunning escape in the heart of the Sussex countryside. The park spans over 300 acres, offering plenty of space to relax and unwind. Scenic landscapes, beautiful lakes, and cascading waterfalls create a breathtaking backdrop for a day out.
At Sheffield Park, there’s something for everyone. If you love nature, take a leisure stroll through the landscaped gardens. Here, you’ll find an array of rare plants and a collection of lakes that reflect the beauty of the surrounding greenery.
For families, there’s a natural woodland play area that children will love. They can climb, swing, and slide in a safe environment, all while surrounded by nature. It’s a fantastic place for them to run around and let off some steam.
19. Fishbourne Roman Palace
Take a journey back to ancient times at the Fishbourne Roman Palace. It’s known as Britain’s largest Roman villa and is an impressive reminder of our historical past.
Once you step inside, you’ll discover a huge collection of striking and intricate mosaics. These stunning artworks have withstood the test of time, offering us a glimpse into the Roman Empire’s aesthetics and craftsmanship. As you walk through the rooms, imagine the grandeur of the villa in its prime.
A visit to the Fishbourne Roman Palace is like opening a time capsule, where you’ll appreciate the intricacies of Roman life and their remarkable artistic skills.
20. Nymans Gardens
Nymans Gardens is a haven for nature lovers. This Grade II listed National Trust garden perfectly blends manicured beauty and natural charm. Take a peaceful stroll through the beautiful gardens, where carefully curated flowers and plants create a soothing environment. Further, you’ll find ancient woodlands and cascades, adding a touch of wild enchantment to your visit.
Near the heart of the gardens, there’s a serene lake, an ideal spot to pause and soak in the beauty around you. For younger visitors, a natural play area promises fun and adventure. They can run, jump and play to their heart’s content amidst nature.
After all the exploration, why not treat yourself to a delightful break in the café? Enjoy a warm cup of tea and a slice of cake, the perfect sweet ending to your garden visit.
21. Amberley Working Museum
A day at the Amberley Working Museum promises an interactive dive into Sussex’s industrial heritage. This museum is unique because it’s not just about looking at exhibits. Instead, you get to see them in action! Watch traditional craftsmen, like potters and blacksmiths, create beautiful works of art right before you.
This is a place where history comes alive. Learn about the tools and techniques used in the past and appreciate the skills that went into crafting everyday items. It’s a fantastic experience for the whole family, combining education with entertainment.
Your day at Amberley Working Museum will give you a deeper understanding and appreciation of Sussex’s rich industrial past.
FAQ: Things To Do In Sussex
What are the top attractions to visit in Sussex?
Sussex is full of attractions to suit everyone’s taste. Some of the top attractions include the Beachy Head, Arundel Castle, Lewes Castle, the Seven Sisters Country Park, West Wittering Beach, Fishbourne Roman Palace, and the British Airways i360 in Brighton.
What are some free things to do in Sussex?
Exploring the natural beauty of Sussex often comes with no cost. You can walk along the South Downs National Park, visit Beachy Head, or spend a day at West Wittering Beach.
What can I do in Sussex with kids?
Sussex offers a range of family-friendly activities. Children will love Drusillas Park, the natural woodland play areas in Sheffield Park and Garden and Nymans Gardens, and the Amberley Working Museum.
Are there good spots for hiking and walking in Sussex?
Absolutely! Sussex is a walker’s paradise with plenty of footpaths, trails, and country parks. Try the Seven Sisters Country Park, South Downs National Park, or Ashdown Forest.