Undercliff Walk

Undercliff Walk

Brighton

Outdoor Spaces in South East England

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South East England offers a diverse range of outdoor spaces to enjoy whatever the time of year.  From beautiful woodlands to glorious beaches, stunning cliff tops and riversides, pretty parks and grand gardens, these fantastic outdoor spaces offer the chance to escape the four walls, exercise and breathe in the fresh air. 

We encouage you to enjoy the countryside at every opportunity, it is so good for your well being. Please remember, whilst you are out and about to follow the Countryside Code.  RESPECT - PROTECT - ENJOY. This code contains advice for the public and landowners, making it easier for visitors to help respect, protect and enjoy the outdoors. 

During the current pandemic the South East is operating under all three tier levels.  Please check here to find out the current tier level and restrictions that apply in area you are visiting.  Maintaining your social distance and following the restrictions, will help keep the virus in check. 

Why not enjoy one of the many walks or places to cycle in South East England, they offer the chance to get fit and explore some beautiful places that cars just can't get to. We are blessed with not only two national parks, eight areas of outstanding natural beauty plus our very own island to discover, also plenty of trails and tracks and outdoor spaces by the sea, in the countryside and around our urban towns and cities. 

Here are some of the fantastic places to explore throughout the region:-

Brighton, East Sussex

  • Stanmer Park - Beautiful woodland walks and extensive open lands.
  • Brighton beach - Vast peddled beach with the 200 year old Brighton Palace Pier as a backdrop, take a look at the live webcam to find out more.
  • Preston Park  - Whether you want to take part in sports or sit and enjoy a picnic then Preston Park is the perfect place to go

Dover, Kent

  • White Cliffs of Dover - One of the country’s most spectacular natural features, offering miles of cliff top paths, fresh air and breath-taking views across the English Channel. The car park and countryside remain open and free to enter during hours of daylight.
  • Samphire Hoe A unique nature reserve between the sea and the cliffs, created from the spoil from the Channel Tunnel. Home to many species of wildlife and grazing animals, with a network of paths for visitors to explore. There is a small charge for parking.
  • Betteshanger Country Park - A stunning 250-acre park filled with walking and cycling paths, including dedicated mountain-biking trails. Bicycle hire is available from 09:30-15:00 with an hour free for all visitors.
  • Goodnestone Park Gardens - Open daily 11:00-17:00, Goodnestone has 14 acres of beautiful historic gardens in the heart of the Kent countryside and a café open for hot drinks and light refreshments.

Sussex by the Sea, West Sussex

  • Hotham Park - Just 5 minutes from Bognor town centre, this green flag awarded park has both tropical and Mediterranean gardens to explore.
  • Littlehampton East Beach - Award winning sandy beach with unique long bench to rest on during your exploration.

Isle of Wight

  • Ventnor Botanic Gardens - Escape it all and enjoy the peace and quiet in the tranquil Ventnor Botanic Gardens, a 22-acre paradise with an impressive collection of rare, subtropical and exotic plants from around the world.   Walk down from the gardens to one of the Island’s hidden gems Steephill Cove.  Or take a stroll to the east along the sea wall to Bonchurch with its pretty cottages, village pond and Old St Boniface Church, which dates back to the 11th century. 
  • Quarr Abbey - Quarr Abbey is a Grade I listed building surrounded by beautiful grounds, walled gardens and woodland walks and a farm, which are kept and maintained by the Benedictine monks who live in Quarr. The grounds are free to enter and are perfect for blowing away the cobwebs and taking a gentle walk.
  • St Catherine’s Oratory - St Catherine’s Oratory, known locally at The Pepperpot, is a medieval lighthouse on St. Catherine’s Down overlooking the dramatic coastline of Chale Bay across the south of the Island.  The spot is a wonderful place for a peaceful walk or meditation, as the downs offer some of the most beautiful views on the Island.

Worthing, West Sussex

Windsor & Maidenhead, Berkshire

  • Cliveden - The National Trust Cliveden Estate comprises glorious gardens and woodlands overlooking the River Thames.       Pre-booking is required when visiting the gardens and woods to ensure social distancing measures can be maintained.
  • Runnymede - The National Trust site at Runnymede is open for visitors to enjoy although the tea room remains closed.  Not only is this the historic setting where the Magna Carta was sealed in 1215.  You can also explore several memorials and two major artworks by renowned artists!
  • Windsor Great Park - For a great escape, Windsor Great Park is second to none with almost 4,800 acres of sweeping parkland, ancient woodland, forest trails, historic monuments and of course stunning seasonal displays.  Perfect for dog walking, maintaining your daily steps target, horse riding and cycling.  Whilst The Savill Garden and The Savill Building are closed until the 3rd December, all car parks and the rest of Windsor Great Park remain open and all are welcome to enjoy the open areas of the park.  
  • Dorney Lake - Dorney Lake was the setting for the London 2012 Olympic rowing events.  It is privately owned by Eton College and set in 400 acres of beautiful parkland and an arboretum.  Public access is welcome and it is the perfect place for a much-needed breath of fresh air.  
  • The River Thames - There is something particularly appealing about the River Thames on the stretch from Hurley to Runnymede as it is perhaps the most historic, offering easy strolls along the Thames Path.  

Gosport, Hampshire

  • Alver Valley – Nestling between Gosport and Lee-on-the-Solent this 200 hundred hectare green space offers a home for a variety of wildlife.
  • Lee-on-the-Solent & Stokes Bay Beaches - Offering panoramic views of the Solent and safe swimming these two shingle beaches offer a great outdoor space to stroll, skim stones and escape the urban hustle and bustle

South Downs National Park

  • England's newest of the 15 national parks in the UK, covering 1, 627 km squared. Woolmer Forest situated within the South Downs National Park, a lowland heath site, is the only place in the country to have all 12 of the UK’s native amphibian and reptile species. 

1066 Country, East Sussex 

  • Bedgebury National Pinetum and Forest - The National Pinetum is home to a world-leading collection of conifers, open all year and is the perfect place for healthy outdoor activity
  • Camber beach - Home to a stunning stretch of white sandy beach, complete with undulating dunes and unspoilt views stretching for miles
  • Hasting Beach - The three-mile seafront stretches from the fishing fleet at the eastern end through to the peaceful Grosvenor Gardens at the other end.

Portsmouth, Hampshire

  • Southsea Common - 50 acre open space right on the seafront overs an ideal space for games, picnics and time outside.
  • Portsdown Hill - This chalk ridge provides panoramic views over the City of Portsmouth and beyond.

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