The chalk downland that forms the South Downs, stretches 100 miles from Winchester to the stunning white cliffs at Beachy Head in East Sussex. If you are looking for accommodation near Beachy Head click here to take a look at our selection.
It is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty which on 31st March 2009 was confirmed as the latest National Park to be created in England for over 60 years. The new boundary not only includes the beautiful South Downs but also the Western Weald long recognised as well as an area of outstanding natural beauty which means picturesque villages to the north such as Elsted, Northchapel and Lurgashall are also included within the park boundary. The South Downs National Park is the most popular area to find that charming holiday cottage.
The South Downs offer such diversity with open chalk downland in the east and more heavily wooded areas towards the Hampshire borders. The northern slopes have steep escarpments that afford beautiful views across the Sussex Weald while to the south the Downs slope gently towards the Sussex coastal towns and the English Channel.
At their highest the Downs reach 886 feet (270 metres) at Butser Hill, just south of Petersfield. Other vantage points include Harting Down, Chanctonbury Ring, Devil’s Dyke and Ditchling Beacon. Where the Downs meet the sea at Cuckmere Haven the spectacular scenery of the Seven Sisters are formed from the remnants of dry valleys eroded by the sea.
Although the South Downs Way is the recognised national trail, there are over 2,000 miles of footpaths and bridleways to explore that cross the Downs, many of which link downland villages from north to south.
Take in some of the exciting events that take place across the South Downs. ‘Glorious Goodwood’ in August is possibly the most stunning racecourse location in the country. For motorsport enthusiasts there is the now famous Goodwood Festival of Speed and Revival Meeting which offers a magical step back in time. At Glyndebourne there is the opportunity to watch world class opera, while Arundel hosts the renowned festival promoting theatre and music from the grounds of the magnificent Arundel Castle, home to the Duke and Duchess of Norfolk.
Whatever your interest, great views, attractive wildlife, history, fine pubs and pretty downland villages, or a walking challenge - the South Downs awaits you.
Take a look at our self catering holiday accommodation that is within or very close to the South Downs National Park.