There’s nothing like the calm of the countryside and vibrant colours of the seaside towns of West Sussex to make me feel alive. I lived in London for 15 years but am always drawn back here for a visit, not least because of the lure of the coast. The West Sussex coastline has everything a visitor could possibly want: from the grand promenade and traditional pastimes in Worthing, to the more modern, architect-designed East Beach café at Littlehampton just along the coast.
Brighton may be the south coast’s party hotspot, but this region has some timeless coastal beauties of its own (minus the crowds). From the laid-back, convivial Shoreham-by-Sea to the classic seaside resorts of Worthing, Littlehampton and Bognor Regis, I challenge anyone not to fall in love with the coastal gems. Great transport links connect the resorts to the rest of the south east, and flat, wide promenades mean there’s easy beach access for people of all ages – from babies in buggies to older people who may have mobility issues.
In the summer, I love going to Shoreham Beach watching the kite surfers. Sunset at low tide in Shoreham looking up the Adur is probably one of my favourite views. Away from the beach, visitors can also explore the Old Town, which is lovely, plus there’s a monthly farmer’s market and Shoreham Art Gallery, showcasing local artists.
The Dome is a stunning Edwardian cinema in Worthing that first opened in 1911. It has been fully restored to its former glory and going there is like stepping back in time. After watching a film, head to The Crabshack, a five-minute walk away – it’s a simple beachside restaurant serving delicious fresh, local fish. Every June Shoreham now hosts the brilliant Wildlife Festival, curated by Disclosure and Rudimental, plus the Worthing Art Trail sees over 50 venues open their doors to the public. It certainly caters for a whole range of eclectic tastes, ages and interests and visitors won’t be disappointed.
Just along the coast is Littlehampton and the East Beach Café, serving lunch right on the beach with spectacular views of the sea. We normally drive there in my vintage 2CV to eat lunch and take a ride on the historic land train – this should be high on your list of things to do while exploring West Sussex’s much-loved seaside resorts.