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Birchall Travel Inspiration, The South Downs


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The majestic South Downs, sprawl across the wonderful counties of East and West Sussex in southern England. From rolling hills to bustling market towns the area boasts some of Britain’s most wonderful landscapes and breathtaking views. Its wonderfully rich land provides sumptuous food for an area boasting numerous spectacular places to eat and drink. Below we list some of our highlights in the area to inspire your adventure on the South Downs.

Area Of Outstanding Beauty: South Downs National Park

The South Downs National Park’s landscapes cover 1,600km2 of breath-taking views and hidden gems. Discover the white cliffs of Seven Sisters, the majestic views from the top of Devils dyke, rolling farmland and ancient woodlands. Explore the downs at your leisure stopping to refuel in one of the many traditional country pubs.

For more information visit, https://www.southdowns.gov.uk/discover/

Eat and Drink: Earl Of March

The country pub and restaurant is set against the picturesque backdrop of Goodwood and the South Downs, providing a wonderful location to stop as you explore the downs.

The Earl of March produces fabulous food, where the emphasis is on local sourcing of ingredients and freshness of flavor. This is the focus of owner and head chef Giles Thompson. Giles is the former head chef of the Ritz Hotel London and his vast experience of producing dishes that meet the highest customer expectations ensures only food of the highest quality is served here.

Visit: Petworth House

In showcasing the highlights of the South Downs we were drawn to the rich and varied history waiting to be discovered at Petworth House and Park.  Stroll through the state rooms saturated with internationally important paintings by artists such as Van Dyck, Reynolds, Titian and Blake. However, it is the work of JMW Turner that makes Petworth house so special for us.

The magnificent Petworth House and Park played a huge role in the life and career of the artist JMW Turner. As the home of one of his greatest patrons and closest friends – George Wyndham, the 3rd Earl of Egremont – Turner famously had the run of the house when he visited Petworth. The Earl annexed the giant library as his art studio and commissioned twenty paintings from the artist, many of which can still be enjoyed in Petworth’s stunning staterooms today.

For more visit https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/petworth-house-and-park 

Visit: Arundel Castle 

Set high on a hill in West Sussex, this great Castle commands the landscape with magnificent views across the South Downs and the River Arun.

Founded at the end of the 11th Century, it has been the family home of the Dukes of Norfolk and their ancestors for nearly 1000 years.

Many of the original features such as the crenellated Norman keep, gatehouse and barbican and the lower part of Bevis Tower survive. Between the 1870s and 1890s the house was almost completely rebuilt and the magnificent architecture in Gothic style is considered to be one of the great works of Victorian England.

Enjoy the grandeur of the finely preserved interior with its fascinating furniture, tapestries and rare collection of paintings by renowned artists including Van Dyck, Gainsborough and Canaletto.

The wonderful gardens that surround the castle also provide the perfect setting for a leisurely stroll once you have explored the magic of the castle.

For more information http://www.arundelcastle.org

Stay: Ashdown Park

A luxurious country house hotel, offering a magnificent combination of elegance, style, award winning dining and outstanding leisure facilities. Set in a beautiful location, surrounded by the Ashdown Forest, which inspired the Winnie the Pooh stories, there’s wonderful walks to be enjoyed at any time of year.

http://www.ashdownpark.com