I spent a lovely weekend in Lewes during the summer visiting friends. I always love going down there, it’s brilliant to hang out with my friends first and foremost, but Lewes is also a gorgeous little historic town. I feel like I’ve had a proper little mini-break when I return from there.
Lewes sits in East Sussex surrounded by the South Downs. It’s a lovely oldy-worldy (is that even a proper word?!) town, with medieval streets and alleyways (known as ‘twittens’ in that part of the world!) and has its own castle sitting proudly in the centre of the town. Its location is also an ideal hopping off point for the south coast, with Brighton only a twenty-minute train journey away.
My weekend there was filled with walks, chats, tea and laughter….can’t get much better than that!
On the Saturday my friend and I took ourselves off on the 30 minute walk into town from the outskirts and first stop was for breakfast. Well it was actually more like lunch!
We had planned on getting up bright and early and starting the day as we meant to go on… however, what actually happened was, we got up, made cups of tea and settled down in our pjs and got chatting. A few hours later we realised we were still there!! Still, that’s what these weekend are all about aren’t they?
So, it was a later start than planned, but hey, that’s fine. We went for a lovely slap up breakfast and then it was out for a bit of wandering through the streets of Lewes.
We couldn’t help ourselves and of course spent quite a bit of time milling around a few of the antique stores that line the high street. Floor upon floor of old and unusual items – we could have been there for hours!
A box of old photographs caught our eye and we spent a fair amount of time looking through them. I am always fascinated by old photos, I wonder who the people are, what their stories were. There were a lot of photos in this box, ranging from the early 20th century up to the seventies. A lot of them were wedding photos, that we realised were all of the same people. It’s sad to think that someone’s wedding photos have ended up in a box in an antique store. Who were the people in the photos? Were any of them still alive?
With of course no way of answering those questions, we tore ourselves away from the photos and continued to browse. Once we’d had enough we ambled up the high street.
Honestly it’s such a pretty town!
It’s also an interesting town for the shops and businesses it houses.
Not only are there the historic sites to see, such as the castle and Anne of Cleves House, there seems to be a great entrepreneurial spirit in this part of the world and it’s lovely to see so many independent businesses in one place.
It certainly does seem to have a very creative and artistic feel to it and a lot of the shops that you can browse are not your average high street stores. It makes a very refreshing change!
Having a wander through the Needlemakers is also fun and a must if you ever visit. This old building houses a cafe and lots of interesting shops – it’s possible to while away time browsing there with ease!
One activity that we had decided that we would tackle whilst in town was Lewes Castle.
So we paid a very windswept (phew, was it windy that day!!) visit to the old ruin and took in the amazing views from the top of it…which were a surprise to both of us!
We spent a while scampering around the castle and taking in those breathtaking views until we could stand the wind no longer. But we were so glad that we had finally visited it!
We wandered home, windswept and in need of a cup of tea! We gladly took some time out once at home before heading out onto the Downs. As my friend has a dog (I liked her and she liked me – this never happens with me and dogs!!) we headed out to take her for a walk.
Oh wow! How lucky are they to live in the midst of this magnificent park. Incidentally the South Downs National Park covers approximately 1600 square kilometres and has a trail called the South Downs Way which runs its entire length (about 160km). With views, towns and villages like this to discover, how tempting is it to explore?
Beautiful! And the views from this particular spot in the park…well, I was blown away (haha literally and figuratively – it was still so windy)!
We walked up and down the hills whilst watching our little canine friend scamper around. Her pure joy was evident as she bounded past us, her long ears flapping in the wind. It was so funny and a complete delight to witness! She was one happy dog!
It is a really an absolutely beautiful part of the world and I just couldn’t get enough of those vistas. As the sun started to set the colours of the fields changed and it became even more beautiful…if that was possible!
I had a fabulous weekend catching up with my friends and exploring the area a bit more – we even managed to squeeze in fish and chips by the sea that evening (though not quite as we had planned, as explained here!).
I’ll be back soon I hope!!