I'd wanted to visit the south coast (namely Brighton - although that never happened) for some time, and we did so in early July, just a week after the lovely week of sun.... it was good weather (but not beach weather... boo.). If you remember, the week before was the week everyone was on about and was lovely. If only we'd gone then - commitments here in Swansea kept me back.
We visited Eastbourne, Hastings (briefly..) and Rye/Camber... and of these, I feel that Rye is worth writing about the most. I've seen pictures of Rye, and considering it was "en-route", we stayed there, in the Ship Inn. Although it was £90 per night, I felt it was one of the loveliest places I've stayed in - I rank friendliness/cosiness over luxury, and the website portrays it almost as true as it actually is (good job to the web designers!). It was hard to fault. It felt very British, the bed was very comfy, the bathroom comforts (such as the rubber ducks and Burts Bees products), the rustic wooden floor, the [rather cute/girly] decor and the fact that there was a pub downstairs (strangely enough, it was not noisy at night). The guy who served us and showed us round was really nice too. I can't say I particularly enjoyed the local perry, but the breakfast the next morning after our stay was very filling.
We visited the Camber Sands beach in Camber. Camber is a small village, pretty recent in history I guess - to put it into perspective, Rye used to be a port, and once famous for it's smuggling gangs (you can almost imagine pirates running up and down the steep cobbled streets... at least, I could =/ .. ). Camber lies towards the east of the River Rother (and again, to put into perspective, on the other side, the west, Henry II's Camber Castle soon became useless due to the river silting up - Rye was an important part of the Cinque ports, a series of defences). Camber is what you can regard as a proper beach. It's got sand, plenty of it, and is used for wind and water sports.. this didn't dawn on me much, until I realised this use was the reason we found it particularly windy.
A beach as far as the eye can see... with sand dunes too.
I needed a Dan-sized sandcastle project...
...so here is my sandcastle-sized fortress =D
It's very big!
On the brow of the dunes... you can see the village and wind turbines in the distance
I particularly enjoyed Rye for it's cobbled streets and old buildings. A book I read on it, described it as stepping out into the 1950's with a lack of streetlighting... I think that's close! The tea houses, whilst slightly touristy, was where we decided to munch on fish and chips the next day.
Just outside Rye... £1.50 a punnet for locally grown loganberries,
blackberries, raspberries, cherries and strawberries - bargain.
Mermaid Street is one of the well known ones in Rye, it's cobbled and lined with old buildings.
Mermaid Street. Don't I look dashing? *cough*.
This is the Mermaid Inn, built 1420.
I like the bike... it's made with some fibre.... not sure what. very cool.
At one end of West Street is St. Mary's church, which offers a lovely view of the town and surrounding area. You pay £1 to get to the top. It's a bit scary, but you can see the pendulum moving and the bells. The climb up to the top of the tower wasn't made for visitors I reckon, so there's steep staircases and narrow corridors.
The view from St. Mary's church - the tower is the Ypres tower and that's the Rother there.
Cat vs. Japanese tourists
What a lovely florist...
Admitedly, there's a number of things we didn't check out... we totally forgot to visit the windmill in Rye, the customs house, Ypres tower, and there's probably a handful of other things I haven't mentioned here. Hopefully, I can find time to visit them one day.
That's it - for now, until I write up my Lincolnshire trip (this one's taken me 1 hour+).
Take care all.