From the battle of 1066 to smugglers and Elizabethan moated castles, Sussex has a rich and diverse history offering some of the best Sussex historic sites. Ranging from the opulence of the Brighton Pavilion to castle ruins and underground caves, there is bound to be a historic site wherever you are in Sussex so do take a trip and discover more about British history in this fascinating region.
Arundel Castle is the stately home of the Duke of Norfolk offering magnificent views across the South Downs and River Arun. Enjoy exploring the fine furnishings, tapestries and the rare collection of art with guides available to give you interesting facts and answer any questions. The castle, which is one of the most visited and best Sussex historic sites, welcomes visitors from Easter Sunday through to end of October when you can enjoy the tranquil themed gardens.
Chichester Cathedral is a living and working building which has welcomed visitors for over 900 years. Free entry for a donation gives you access to this splendid building all year round. Visitors can join the drop in guided tours or explore the cathedral themselves with self-guided leaflets with access to the Cathedral Close and the Bishop’s Palace Gardens. Families can take the specially designed children trails.
Parham House is one of the finest Elizabethan Houses complete set in a tranquil location in West Sussex, offering a fantastic collection of needlework, paintings and furniture. Open from 1st April through to mid of October, visitors are welcome to explore the stunning gardens with its herbaceous borders with a walk down to the lake. Stop for a tea and cake in the Mower Shed or if you fancy some lunch, then head off to the Big Kitchen restaurant with freshly prepared food.
Charleston was the home and country meeting place for the writers, painters and intellectuals known as the Bloomsbury group. The interior was painted by the artists Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell, and together with their collection forms a unique example of their decorative style. Open all year round, we’d recommend you visit the house with one of the knowledgeable guides and after that you can explore the garden – wild, colourful and full of pretty flowers and striking plants.
Standen house is one of the finest examples of an Arts and Crafts workmanship portraying family life in the 1920s. The 12 acre garden offers an award winning plant collection. Visitors to the gardens can take one of the few walking routes after exploring the gardens and then return to enjoy a lite lunch or tea and cake in the café.
Built as a summer residence for King George IV, The Royal Pavilion is an exotic palace with an interesting history offering its visitors a fascinating tour with visuals of China and India. Enjoy tea and cake in the restored tearoom with a sunny balcony overlooking the Pavilion gardens. The Ryal Pavilion is visited by more than 400,000 people a year so make sure this is at the top of your list when visiting Sussex.
This 14th century moated castle with ruined interiors and splendid gardens is certainly one of the best Sussex historic sites. Take part in the medieval activities, free guided walk of the grounds or the guided castle tour to find more about the history of this place. Climb up to the top of the turret to get the spectacular views over the countryside from one of the best Sussex historic sites.
This old sandstone 17th century house was the former home of the famous author and poet Rudyard Kipling. The house is pretty much the way the author left it- with oriental rugs and artefacts which show his fondness of the East. First class guides will answer any questions and will provide some interesting facts. Take a stroll through the well-maintained grounds and admire the flowers and fruit trees.
A 17th century manor with a fine art and sculpture collection on display- a must visit for those who love art. The grounds are great for a short or long walk or simply picnic by the lake. On selected Mondays and Fridays you can find more about the Percys, founders of Petworth. A ‘Behind the scenes’ guided tour is also available for those who would like to explore the bedrooms through to the Estate Offices.
15th century Tudor house which Anne of Cleves received as a divorce settlement from Henry VIII. You can discover the authentically furnished kitchen and the wide ranging furniture collection. Visitors can explore the gardens which have been planted with traditional plants and stop for a cream tea at the café.