You’ll need more than just one summer to explore all there is to do in 1066 Country.  A day out with family and friends doesn’t have to break the bank and we’ve put together a few summer holiday ideas with one thing in common... they’re all fabulous places to bring your own picnic. So now it’s up to you whether you choose our stunning coastlines, historic grounds, impressive parks or our other top attractions for your al fresco feast.

Hastings Country Park (@li_li_james)

Beaches (free)

You just can’t beat the beach to cool off. With coastline spreading from Pevensey to Camber Sands, via Bexhill, St Leonards, Hastings and Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, there are plenty of spots to choose from. Bring your bikes along to hit the more secluded spots or hire them at Rye Bay E-bikes or Ebike Hire, Camber Sands. Stick with Bexhill, St Leonards, Hastings and Camber if you’re big on swimming as they have RNLI lifeguarded beaches. Just be warned Camber Sands can get VERY busy.

Bexhill Beach with the De La Warr Pavilion (Sam Moore Visual Air)

Historic Sites (free - ££)

1066 Country is famous for its historic sites. There’s plenty of space to play in the free grounds at Pevensey Castle or explore the beautiful, landscaped gardens at Herstmonceux Castle. There's plenty of events and activities taking place at Bodiam Castle and Battle Abbey, just take a look at our event listings. At Michelham Priory you’ll find seven acres of historic grounds with the UK’s longest medieval water-filled moat and medieval gate house. Visit Hastings Castle for a spot on the clifftop, with Hastings Pier in the distance, or just pop up to the West Hill for outstanding views over the town and out to sea. You might even find a 1.5 metre high duck whilst you’re there, as part of the Follow That Duck trail!

Children feeding ducks under a tree at Michelham Priory
Michelham Priory

Attractions (£-££)

If you fancy giant slides and climbing frames then head to Bewl Water or Bedgebury Pinetum. At Bedgebury you’ll find secret openings in the shady pine forest and at Bewl you can picnic on the lawn overlooking the reservoir. Bring the bikes, take a stroll too or join one of their activities. For bigger budgets, head to Drusillas Park or Knockhatch Adventure Park for that extra special day out, or check out our Water sports pages.

four children on a fallen tree at Bewl Water
Bewl Water 

Parks and Open Spaces (free)

For award-winning parks look no further than Alexandra Park in Hastings, Egerton Park in Bexhill and St Leonards Gardens. Attempt the steps or ride the steepest funicular railway in the UK to the East Hill and Hastings Country Park.

Photograph of St Leonards Gardens
St Leoanrds Gardens (@rorytheirishterrier)

Camping (££)

If you really want to make the most of the great outdoors then you can’t beat pitching a tent and camping under the stars. Find your perfect spot to toast your marshmallows at Bluebell Coppice Park, Bodiam Boating Station (follow on Instagram for last minute availability), Senlac Wood or Seven Acre Wood.

family camping in field by woods at Bluebell Coppice Park
Bluebell Coppice Park, near Battle

Tag us in your adventure #visit1066country


Bewl Water
Mountain Biking
Children playing on a log at Bewl Water, Kent

Bewl Water is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, located in the heart of the High Weald. Home to the largest stretch of inland water in the South East, Bewl Water boasts a stunning reservoir, scenic woodland walks, cycle paths as well as many activities for the whole family.

Bodiam Castle
Castle / Fort
Bodiam Castle reflected in moat, East Sussex ©National Trust Images Chris Lacey

Bodiam is one of Britain’s most picturesque castles in the heart of a historic landscape. As was Sir Edward Dallingridge’s vision when he built the castle in 1385, the approach to the castle with towers rising majestically from the moat is awe inspiring. With spiral stairs, battlements, windows for loosing arrows and ruins where knights once roamed, Bodiam is a place where you can let your imagination run free.

Bodiam Boating Station
Boat Hire
Rowing on the River Rother at Bodiam Boating Station, East Sussex

Affordable, fun family days out. Tranquil river cruises, kayaks, rowing boats, canoes and stand-up paddle boards. Eat at the Lime Wharf Café, stay in our small campsite. Play area for kids. Dog friendly.

Bluebell Coppice Park
Camping at Bluebell Coppice Park

Nestled in a valley encircled by ancient woodland, Bluebell Coppice Park is ideally located to explore the best of 1066 Country.

Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest
Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest

A world-class collection of dramatic conifers and a beautiful setting for a country walk in all seasons.

Drusillas Park
Animal Collection / Zoo
Children on a leopard funfair ride at Drusillas Park, Alfriston, East Sussex

Widely regarded as the best small zoo in Europe, the award-winning Drusillas Park in East Sussex offers a fun finding-out day out for all the family.

Knockhatch Adventure Park
Adventure Park / Playground
Knockhatch Adventure Park

Knockhatch Adventure Park, Hailsham, features a Petting Farm, Owl Sanctuary Centre, Meerkat Experiences, Dragon's Castle, Wallaby Walk Through, Wave Rider, Froggies Soft Play, The Lost World Play Barn, Froggie's Soft Play, The Cannon Arena, Chestnut Wood Adventure Play. Pirates Cove, Boating Lake, Picnic Areas and more.

Cliff Railways - East Hill
photograph of the east hill from the lower station. Shows brick building at the bottom of funicular railway cut into cliff.

The United Kingdom's steepest funicular railway is not only a structure of national importance but also a source of immense local pride.

De La Warr Pavilion
De La Warr Pavilion exterior shot by the sunny coast in Bexhill East Sussex

Spectacular modernist Grade 1 listed Pavilion on the promenade in Bexhill, hosting theatre, concerts, comedy, films and contemporary art exhibitions. Beautiful café-bar with views over the sea.

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve
Nature Reserve
a photograph of Rye Harbour visitor centre. Wooden and glass structure against a blue sky.

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve is an important wildlife site set in an exceptional coastal and wetland landscape. It is home to more than 4,355 species of plants and animals including 300 that are rare or endangered.

Ebike Hire, Camber Sands
Cycle/Vehicle Hire
Ebike Hire, Camber Sands

Explore mile after mile of scenic off-road cycle path from the stunning Camber Sands.

Rye Bay E-bikes
Cycle/Vehicle Hire
EBikes, Nike hire, Rye Bicycles, E-bikes

Rye Bay E-bikes is a small, family run electric bike company currently based just south of Rye, towards Rye Harbour. We offer electric bike sales, servicing and our very popular hires. Rye Bay E-bikes specializes in offering a range of e-bikes at entry level prices with a personal service and aftercare. Visit the website to see what’s on offer or head to the showroom, where you can also have a test ride. Limited parking is available on site. Open seven days a week during the summer, winter visits are by appointment only.

Pevensey Castle
Historic Site
Pevensey Castle in East Sussex

Walk the massive outer walls and gatehouse of one of the Romans' Saxon shore forts, within which the Normans built another oval-shaped castle, now ruined. Parts of the towers, keep and chapel remain and Elizabethan catapult balls and cannon can also be seen.

Herstmonceux Castle Estate
Bridge, moat and gardens at Herstmonceux Castle.

The oldest brick building of note still standing in the country, Herstmonceux Castle was also once the largest private home in fifteenth century England. Today, the majestic, moated castle is the centrepiece of a beautiful 300 acre estate.

Michelham Priory
Michelham Priory

Explore England’s longest medieval water-filled moat, the magnificent Tudor mansion, impressive 14th-century gatehouse, working watermill and forge, as well as play areas and café.

Follow That Duckgiant blue painted rubber duck by pond at alexandra park hastings

Hastings and Bexhill seem to have gone absolutely quackers this summer.

Senlac Wood
Camping & Caravan Site
Senlac Wood

Set in the heart of 1066 Country, Senlac is a unique and beautiful site set in twenty acres of woodland. Ideal for relaxing or as a base for visiting many of the local attractions and historical places of interest.

Seven Acre Woods
Seven Acre Glamping, Woods, Accommodation, Cabins Battle, Seven Acre Woods, Camping

Seven Acre Woods offers you time away Cabining in bespoke Woodland Cabins or Camping on a Tent Pitch... either way, a quiet escape to a peaceful setting in the rural country.  Set in woodland of over seven acres, you’ll find wildlife on the doorstep and be surrounded by stunning scenery in a tranquil and idyllic setting