Whatever your interest, you’re guaranteed to fall in love with the South Downs National Park.
Where is South Downs National Park?
The South Down National Park stretches from Winchester in the West to Eastbourne in the East through the counties of Hampshire, East Sussex and predominantly West Sussex. The South Downs cover over 1,600 square kilometres.
The South Downs visitor centre is based in the historic market town of Midhurst, the gateway to the National Park, and is where you can pick up a South Downs map, South Downs Way map, other walking and cycling routes, and inspiration for your thrilling visit ahead.
Leisure, lunch, the list goes on…
You could easily be mistaken for thinking that a trip to the South Downs National Park is just about walking and cycling.
While the South Downs does offer some of the very best walking and cycling routes in the UK, including the famous South Downs Way (the only National Trail to lie entirely within a National Park!) there are so many other things to do here too.
From art galleries, theatres, antiques, wildlife tours, Roman ruins, and museums, to gardens and garden centres, light railways, stately homes, planetariums, artisan food, vineyards and breweries, the list goes on.
If you’re looking for something more active, why not try horse-riding, polo lessons, paddle boarding, hunting, rounds of golf, fishing, festivals or undertaking the South Downs Marathon? The choices are endless.
Camping and glamping
If camping or glamping in the South Downs takes your fancy, you’ll probably be interested to know that the South Downs have been granted International Dark Sky Reserve status, making it one of the best places in the country to view the night sky!
Today, the park is one of only 16 such Reserves in the world.
South Downs Way
Of course, we couldn’t not talk about the South Downs Way – the jewel of our National Park.
The 160km South Downs Way is one of 15 National Trails in England and Wales and was the first bridleway National Trail in England.
The route stretches from the ancient cathedral city of Winchester, through to the white chalky cliffs of the Seven Sisters and Beachy Head at Eastbourne. Surrounded in some of the most spectacular scenery in the country and with most if it being off-road, this is a walking and cycling route not to be beaten.
There are entry points all along this National Trail. Simply pick up a map from the South Downs Centre or upload a GPS guide to your bike’s sat nav, download a walking map or details of connecting bus services to your phone, and before you know it you can be out exploring the very best the British countryside has to offer.
Whatever you choose to do on your visit to the South Downs National Park, you’re sure to be astounded.