Hunker down for a weekend filled with country-house hotels, yoga classes in converted churches and wild walks on sandy beaches.
Commanding a generous slice of England’s rugged south coast, Sussex is all about the great outdoors. Winters here are some of the mildest in the UK, meaning there’s ample opportunity to explore the region’s chalky cliffs, light-dappled woodlands and dramatic beaches in comfort, before retreating to the nearest country pub or hot tub. Ready to feel restored? Here are some of the best ways to slow down in Sussex.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
This vast luxury hotel sits within 93 acres (38ha) of stroll-worthy gardens and woodland on the border of South Downs National Park. A wellness weekend here could include zumba and spin classes, bamboo-cane massages and a dip in a steamy outdoor hydrotherapy pool, followed by a deep night’s sleep in a four-poster decked out with lavender-scented pillows. There are three noteworthy restaurants, but Botanica is the best for light, feel-good grub: think poached peaches with granola and pistachio falafel salad.
With tennis courts, fitness classes galore and two heated pools, this seaside bolthole in Climping is a dreamy spot to work out and chill out. The place is only 100 years old, but looks positively medieval – many of the characterful rooms have roll-top baths, vaulted ceilings and plump four-poster beds. Don’t miss the Sussex barn-style spa – sleep-inducing massages take place on waterbed treatment tables. If weather allows, blow away the cobwebs on a walk along Climping Beach.
Art lovers are well catered for at this National Trust-owned stately home. English romantic painter JMW Turner was a regular visitor, and a number of his paintings – including some of the estate itself – hang around the house. The 700-acre (280ha) park, open 365 days a year, is home to England’s largest herd of fallow deer. In Petworth town, you’ll find cobblestone streets lined with antique shops and cosy pubs with roaring open fires.
There’s a long list of feel-good activities on offer at this historic sporting estate, from sunset yoga and guided forest walks to adrenaline-pumping flying lessons and vintage-car test drives. If that all sounds too much, you can always stick to the spa. Be sure to book well in advance to secure a room, as well as a table at the sustainable restaurant, Farmer, Butcher, Chef.
There’s something about the hushed tones and self-reflection that come with visiting a church that calms the soul. But St Augustine’s Centre in Brighton goes a step further, having shed its ecclesiastical role to become a welcoming wellbeing centre for all. The spirit-lifting studio within – lit by Himalayan salt lamps – is run by Space Yoga and hosts classes suitable for all abilities, as well as sound baths and breath workshops.
Pull on your wellies and go for a wintry stroll around Swanbourne Lake’s 2.2mi (3.5km) walking trail, found on the forested edge of the South Downs. A sweet reward for your efforts awaits in the Grade II-listed tearooms. Treat yourself to traditional English afternoon tea, including fruit scones and finger sandwiches, or tackle a wedge of lemon and blueberry cake, along with a white hot chocolate topped with marshmallows.
Doing good feels good – so why not do your bit to save the planet from more single-use plastic while you stock up on sweet treats and self-care products? This zero-waste shop in Hove has everything from kitchen cupboard essentials and household cleaning products to artisan candles and organic chocolate. For extra brownie points (and endorphins), you could always do a two-minute beach clean on the shingle beach, a 15-minute walk away.
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I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.