As the lockdown lifts slightly and we are able to travel a little more, we’ve made it our mission to get to as many UK based locations as we can to make the most of the wonderful country we live in. We’ve always been fans of the staycation, but now is even more of a chance to get away, support local businesses and learn more about what’s around you!
We decided to take a little weekend trip to Eastbourne as it’s been on Mike’s list for a while and I’ve not been in about 7 years. We also took his brother along as he moves to live in Australia at the end of the month so we wanted to spend some time with him before he leaves us!
Here is a very simple itinerary that I put together for our time in Eastbourne:
For us, Eastbourne is only an hour and a half away by driving so we hopped in the car, but it’s also super easy to get to by train as the main station is in the centre of town. In fact, the train station is a Grade II Listed building if you’re architecture nerds like we are!
By train, you can leave from London Victoria with a return for less than £20 without a Railcard and also be to Eastbourne within 90mins.
After a little traffic, we headed straight to the B&B where we were staying, more on that later, and dropped our car off at their private parking which was super handy. We were able to leave the car anytime from 1pm onwards.
If you are driving and don’t happen to be staying over, or have parking with your accommodation, then you can park along the seafront for less than £8 for 24hrs. Parking on the street is free of a Sunday so that’s super handy too. If you wish to park your car in an NCP car park there is one called Eastbourne Trinity Place (postcode BN21 3BZ) that you can pre-book online for £5.50 saving yourself 50p if you pay on the day.
We booked quite late as we had a few hold ups but we eventually booked The Sheldon B&B via Booking.com as we needed to have the option of cancelling too.
They went above and beyond with the COVID guidelines which made us feel super safe. There was no lift sharing, masks were to be worn in the hallways, check-in was done online prior to arrival and none of the eating spaces were open.
This meant our breakfast was delivered to our room at 8am prompt after ordering online the night before. We had a great selection and almost all of the packaging was sustainable, biodegradable or compostable. They even gave me soya milk as I requested as I no longer drink dairy milk.
12pm – Left home after a slow morning with fitness classes, a hair wash and packing!
2pm – Arrive at B&B, drop the car off and have a quick loo stop so we could get out and adventure!
2.30pm – We grabbed a sandwich meal deal from Tesco, not that adventurous I know, but we wanted quick, light and easy. Plus all the beach cafe’s were super busy as we did want to support local. We did also want to walk down the pier but it was closed, which wasn’t stated anywhere online which was disappointing!
3pm – We took our sandwiches down to the beach and ate there! We wanted to be down by the sea and with the beach having plenty of space it was the perfect spot to chill out. In fact, we loved sitting there so much and catching up that we sat there for a couple of hours as the sun was out. The beach has that calming effect too which we all felt we needed!
5pm – We wandered back to our hotel to get changed for dinner as we had an early booking. We took our time, cooled down and made the most of having a really nice sized room to chill out in.
6pm – Dinner was booked at The Belgium Cafe, which had it’s own brewery called Beer Me Brewery on site, so very much up our street. We had a few half pints of the wonder mango infused beers they had on offer and dined on some wonderful food.
We had to preorder our meal when we booked our table so there was minimal contact with the staff. Between us, for starters, we ordered 6 Oysters with Shallots, Lemon and Vinegar, Crab and Giant Prawns Chowder with Saffron Potatoes and Focaccia Garlic Bread with Shallot Confit Dip Rosemarie and Rock Salt. For mains, we had the Vegetarian Cold Aioli Platter, Overnight Cooked Medallion of Lamb Caramelised in Honey Gravy and Crispy Seabass Filet Served with Mango and Tomato Salsa with plenty of sides. The boys both had Strawberry Panacotta for dessert. The food was really high quality and we really enjoyed our meal!
8.30pm – We then moved onto The Crown and Anchor pub just a 5-minute stroll down the road. Booking a table is needed as this is quite a busy spot! We had a few rounds of drinks and finished up with some whisky on the rocks which was a lush way to end the evening!
11.30pm – Our B&B was just a stroll down the seafront so naturally, we took this as a chance to walk down the beach at night. We took photos, watched the waves, stood in the wake and took in that lush sea air that we don’t have back at home! We then headed home to bed as we wanted to get up early for breakfast.
8.30am – Our pre-ordered breakfast arrived promptly at 8am, but we waited for a little before we ate it as we were still quite sleepy! As mentioned, we were so impressed with the little breakfast bags we received. We also had flapjacks but I had popped them into my bag for snacks during the day! My bag was vegan friendly (minus the Nutella) which was a really nice thing to see at such a small B&B!
10am – After getting showered, dressed and packed up, it was time to check out of the hotel. As per arrival, you’re able to leave your car in the car park until 1pm.
10.30am – We grabbed a coffee on the beach and became proper tourists by jumping aboard The Eastbourne Sightseeing Hop On Hop Off Bus! Getting to the top of Beachy Head and seeing Birling Gap was a must on our list and with Steven having an injured foot the walk was just a little too far.
We spent a few hours wandering along the top of Beachy Head, taking in the sites, stopping to look at Belle Tout Lighthouse that is now a hotel *adds to list to stay in*, and just really enjoying the surroundings we were in. We stopped for some photos at Birling Gap before heading down towards the bus stop to hop back on the bus to finish the sightseeing tour.
Tickets are £10 an adult and last 24 hours.
1.30pm – As we were on our way to grab the car the rain came down so heavy that we were so drenched we had to change shirts in the car! We dried off and made our way to our lunch.
2pm – Lunch was booked at The Pilot Inn which has made its way into my favourite pub’s list already! The decor was so quirky with exposed brickwork, all sorts of artwork on the walls and plenty of plants. Oh, and a pub dog called Bentley who loved having his tummy tickled! There were also TWO vegan options for Sunday lunch which made me very happy! The boys had beef roast dinners and I picked the vegan sausage option, then for dessert, I had the salted caramel chocolate torte and the boys had cheesecake. We had such good service and I’d highly recommend booking a meal of some kind here!
4pm – We jumped back in the car and headed home to beat the traffic!
As you can tell we took is super easy on our trip as we wanted to use the time to wind down and see Steven, but there are so many more things you can do in Eastbourne including:
So plenty to fill your weekend should you wish to be a little more fast paced than us!