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A Weekend in Eastbourne – with cliff walks & fresh air

A weekend in Eastbourne

One of my favourite weekend getaways is to go walking along England’s unspoiled coastal paths. Those sea views, wind and fresh air seem to blow away the cobwebs and leave me rejuvenated to tackle the challenges of daily life. My sister lives on the south coast, so I was interested to find that Eastbourne has so much to offer for food, culture and coastal walks.

A weekend in Eastbourne

They have a great series of videos which will inspire you with ideas for your next weekend break, if you’d like to breathe in some of that fresh coastal air. You can explore Eastbourne and watch more videos like the one below.

If you can’t see the video above, watch it on YouTube here

Eastbourne makes the perfect base for an out of season weekend break, with an unspoiled Victorian seafront and 300 metre long pier that was completed in 1872. With colourful beach huts, fish and chip shops, a Victorian tea rooms as well as a wide range of restaurants and cafés, Eastbourne seems to bring back the nostalgia of all those childhood holidays sheltering behind the windbreak, pestering Dad for a 99 ice cream – with flake of course!

The beach at Eastbourne Photo: Visit Eastbourne

The beach at Eastbourne

At the western end of the seafront you’ll find Holywell beach, which is set at the foot of the South Downs, with a popular café and pretty Italian gardens. At low tide the rock pools are revealed, teeming with marine life, so you may want to bring your wellies and fishing nets to catch a few crabs. From the Sovereign Harbour, with its large marina, you can take boat tours along the coastline, for fishing, diving and to see the famous lighthouse at Beachy Head.

Walking the South Downs Way from Eastbourne Photo: Visit Eastbourne

Walking the South Downs Way from Eastbourne

For me, one of the biggest attractions of Eastbourne is its access to the South Downs National Park and the walks up onto the cliffs at the start of the South Downs Way. I’ve walked the Winchester end of this long distance path with my sister but would love to do the whole thing, with breathtaking views over the English Channel. A walk up onto the cliff tops will soon bring you to Beachy Head (it’s also accessible by bike, car or open-top bus tour) with those iconic white cliffs and the striped Beachy Head lighthouse.

Visit Beachy Head from Eastbourne Photo: Visit Eastbourne

Visit Beachy Head from Eastbourne

A little further along the cliffs you’ll reach Birling Gap, an unspoiled pebble beach enclosed by cliffs, where the low tide exposes rock pools and marine life – it’s a marine nature reserve. The beach is managed by the National Trust and there’s a visitor centre, shop and café, so it’s a good place to stop and admire the white chalk cliffs of the Seven Sisters.

Birling Gap Beach close to Eastbourne Photo: Visit Eastbourne

Birling Gap Beach close to Eastbourne

If you have a few days to spare you might continue your walk along the South Downs Way, through an unspoiled English landscape of rolling hills and picturesque villages, ending a hundred miles later in Winchester. For our weekend break we might just continue as far as Alfriston for lunch in a country pub or refreshment of afternoon tea, before we head back to Eastbourne.

Pub lunches close to Eastbourne Photo: Visit Eastbourne

Pub lunches close to Eastbourne

Plan your visit to Eastbourne

If this taste of Eastbourne has inspired you to get out and breathe in some fresh air, check out all the things to do in Eastbourne at Discover Eastbourne.

Walking the South Downs Way Photo: Visit Eastbourne

Walking the South Downs Way

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Plan your weekend in Eastbourne

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379 Comments

  • Reply
    kat lucas
    December 1, 2016 at 6:09 pm

    Love to visit Helen Gardens

  • Reply
    Erica Price
    December 1, 2016 at 6:26 pm

    South Downs Way

  • Reply
    Jamie Millard
    December 1, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    Birling Gap

  • Reply
    Anouska
    December 1, 2016 at 7:37 pm

    Eastbourne Pier

  • Reply
    Ian Campbell
    December 1, 2016 at 8:06 pm

    I’d love to visit Birling Gap. Such a calm, tranquil place, and so, so idyllic. A lovely place to get away from it all! 🙂

  • Reply
    sarah gray
    December 1, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    Helen Gardens would be my pick 🙂

  • Reply
    Jessica Hutton
    December 1, 2016 at 8:39 pm

    I would love to visit berling gap xx

  • Reply
    Sheena Read
    December 1, 2016 at 8:51 pm

    Helen Gardens

  • Reply
    Alice March
    December 1, 2016 at 8:53 pm

    Helen Gardens 🙂 x

  • Reply
    claire little
    December 1, 2016 at 9:13 pm

    Eastbourne Pier

  • Reply
    Tracy Dumper
    December 1, 2016 at 9:29 pm

    Has to be Birling Gap

  • Reply
    Tallat Satti
    December 1, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    It is a treat luxurious treat to spend weekend here and watch the clear night skies

  • Reply
    Angela Young
    December 1, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    I would love to visit the pier , last time I went there I was just a child and my Nan and Grandad took me. Fond memories.

  • Reply
    Patricia Fraser
    December 1, 2016 at 9:46 pm

    This is a part of the world i have never visited and it looks lovely, i would love to take my kids to visit the Eastbourne Pier x

  • Reply
    Trevor Linvell
    December 1, 2016 at 9:46 pm

    Eastbourne Pier looks good

  • Reply
    sharon martin
    December 1, 2016 at 9:57 pm

    Birling Gap

  • Reply
    Yvette D
    December 1, 2016 at 10:04 pm

    Berling gap

  • Reply
    ellie spider
    December 1, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    eastbourne pier 🙂

  • Reply
    Karl Borowy
    December 1, 2016 at 10:27 pm

    Helen Gardens

  • Reply
    Diane searle
    December 1, 2016 at 10:27 pm

    I’d love to go to the pier. You can’t beat chips walking along a pier!

  • Reply
    tracy sinclair
    December 1, 2016 at 11:04 pm

    I would love to visit the Pier, I’ve never been before but it looks like it would be worth a visit x

  • Reply
    lorna wilson
    December 1, 2016 at 11:15 pm

    would love to visit Helen Gardens

  • Reply
    Adrian Bold
    December 1, 2016 at 11:16 pm

    Eastbourne Pier

  • Reply
    Oksana Fitzgerald
    December 1, 2016 at 11:42 pm

    Birling Gap

  • Reply
    Carol Cliffe
    December 1, 2016 at 11:45 pm

    I’d like to visit Birling Gap

  • Reply
    Peter Ck
    December 1, 2016 at 11:46 pm

    Birling Gap – I haven’t skimmed for ages!

  • Reply
    claire toplis
    December 1, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    Eastbourne Pier

  • Reply
    Kay Broomfield
    December 1, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    Helen Gardens look lovely!

  • Reply
    Black
    August 21, 2018 at 2:59 pm

    Beachy Head is so iconic place and very unique spot, i visited in and loved to visit again.

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