Posted 3 May 2016 by Andrew Gardner
Heading to Rye last weekend I was reacquainted with a lovely gentle walk around Camber Castle. If you're staying in one of our holiday cottages in Rye (click here to view the selection) it couldn't be easier, as the circular route starts from Rye station - which means you can easily access it from other parts of Sussex too. It's about 4.5 miles and fairly flat and there are no stiles to climb.
From the station, head for the Winchelsea Road then Rye Harbour Rd, and after you cross the lock look for the footpath on your right, which follows the old industrial railway line that used to served Rye Harbour. You'll find yourself among reed beds, where you cross a footbridge and before long Castle Water opens up on your left, then the path takes you along the edge of a field and you'll soon spot a waymarker and the castle itself. For keen birders there's a hide you can divert to just before the castle - I wouldn't call myself a real birder, but it's lovely to spend a few tranquil minutes in a hide, quietly taking in the surroundings, even if I'm not always sure what I'm supposed to be spotting!
The next stretch of path follows the River Brede for a while before you rejoin Rye Harbour Rd by the Brede Sluice, then you just retrace the first part back to Rye station. My directions aren't very accurate so I'd strongly recommend downloading the walk leaflet, but even if you got slightly lost there's still potential for a lovely stroll - and it's easy to spot the castle. You're right in the Rye Harbour Nature Reserve so it's well worth checking out local information and finding out about the flora and fauna you're likely to spot, especially when it comes to birds.
Camber Castle itself - which for some reason has had its name changed from Winchelsea Castle - is a mighty fort built by Henry VIII to protect the Sussex coast from French attacks. Even if it's not open it's still pretty impressive and you can peer in through the gates and grates. Happy strolling!