Wednesday, October 31, 2012

England 1 - English paradise for Walkers in Seaford

View of Seaford Head in the distance as you walk along the coast

Here is what I did

It is beautiful, well-connected, yet remote. It is shy, reserved yet friendly town of Seaford. Get on the train from London Victoria to Eastbourne. Change at Lewes for Seaford and you will be rolling down past the white cliffs, green pastures dotted with horses and sheep, passing through Newhaven harbour, caravan park of Bishopstones to arrive into Seaford.

Looking back at Newhaven town hazy in twilight

I was looking for a beach close to London for a quiet afternoon and the image of a serene white beauty wearing lustrous green scarf facing the frothy sea – Seaford head - glared at me. I could not resist the mysterious charm of the white cliff and I set out with my husband to find this gem.

A lone seagull atop a street lamp in Seaford
I got off at Bishopstone which is described as a hamlet with a population of 200 people. As we got out of the station we landed straight on the doorstep of the mighty, cold calming sea, peaking out of the sheets or rather heaps of little stones around it. Seaford head visible at a distance was about 2 miles and behind me was the gorgeous town of Newhaven.

Row of plush houses by the coast (from Bishopstone to Seaford)
With cold autumn winds and a mild sun shining, the beach was almost abandoned except for a few locals striding down for their walk. As I neared Seaford, there were more people some walking the dog, playing with their kids or just having a good time. But to most of these people Seaford and its towering beauty, views of ocean, the setting sun and villages and towns visible in the distance were clearly nothing new. It was like a routine visit to a local park and looked more like “backyard beach”.

Lone couple walking their dogs on Seaford beach

Walking past a couple of cafes, we reached the Martello Tower which is 74th of the 103 built around the coast to Eastbourne as part of defences from Napoleon threats to cross the English channel in 1803. The tower is now a museum housing the history of the town and its historical importance.

Martello Towers, 74th of the 103 towers built in 1803

Further ahead is the picturesque Seven Sisters country park set beside the town. The Seven Sisters are actually of chalk cliffs which are gradually being eroded by the sea. They form part of the South Downs in East Sussex, between the towns of Seaford and Eastbourne in southern England.

Lonely beach side cafe on an autumn evening in Seaford

Our walk ended here after which we made our way to the station to head back to Croydon. But it will soon be time to return. Chasing the image of the white beauty, I have landed upon an area full of lovely nature walks, remote yet accessible by public transport, isolated yet connected.

Here is what you could do:
A place for walking! Unhindered, undisturbed, with moderate level of effort, this is easy to do high reward hiking/walking area.
The Seaford head is the starting point for walks to Eastbourne (22.8 kms/13.8 miles)
It is also a part of some long distance trails. You could do smaller stretches of these walks.
Vanguard Way – “66 miles from suburbs to sea” a walk that starts from Croydon to Newhaven
South Downs Way – it is a 160 kilometers running from Winchester to Eastbourne passing through seven sister country park

Experience rating:
I would give the location 4 out of 5! However, my personal planning was a small 2!

A couple enjoying a hot cup of coffee in col Seaford

Useful links
There are some great links with photo essays reports from the walks and a few suggestions from smaller walks in the area. Check these out for more information:
Seaford to Eastbourne
For pictures, check out:  
For description, check out:
For description of shorter walks along South downs way:
For more suggested walks around the country:


My Incredible India said...

Wonderful Post. England has many such hidden gems, nature has been kind but played a trick with the weather.

will definitely go here very soon and let you know how the walk is.

Ishwinder Kaur said...

Great! will wiat to hear how you liked the walk

Free Bird said...

gr8 ... amazing clicks and post

Ishwinder Kaur said...

Thanks free bird :) you could follow my blog for more updates...simply go to the right panel and click follow :D