Summer day trips
Updated: Tue Aug 12 2008
From Charing Cross
Rye, East Sussex
RyeSEASIDERye is a quaint little town: a jumble of Norman, Tudor and Georgian architecture sitting atop one of the Romney Marsh area’s rare hills. On Mermaid Street, a typically pretty cobbled lane, you’ll find houses with names such as ‘The House Opposite’, ‘The House with the Seat’ and ‘The House with Two Front Doors’. The town was once a port, but the coast has since retreated a couple of miles; still, it doesn’t take long to venture out to Rye Harbour, where there are walks through a bird sanctuary and past Henry VIII’s Camber Castle. Travelling along the coastal road, you’ll wind up in Camber Sands, a vast and glittering sandy beach that wins over despite the holiday resorts and wind. The Sustrans national cycle route (number two) from Rye station will also guide you to the dunes.
Further information East Sussex tourist information (01273 482645/www.visiteastsussex.com; Rye Tourist Information (01797 226696/www.visitrye.co.uk); Sustrans (0845 113 0065/ www.sustrans.org.uk).Getting thereBy rail: Rye is served by Southeastern (0845 000 2222/www.southeasternrailway.co.uk) from Charing Cross via Ashford International. From the rail station, bus 711 goes to Camber Sands.
By road: Leave London via the A20, take M20, exit at J20 then take A2070 then A259 to Rye.
CyclingACTION & ADVENTUREThere are times when a walk just isn’t enough. On a bike, you can take it as easy or as hard as you like, cover some distance and get a real sense of your surroundings. The cycling charity Sustrans has done a wondrous job of building a nationwide network of clearly signed routes. Number 18 runs between Ashford and Tunbridge Wells, along the country lanes of Kent and through High Weald. It’s 42 miles in total, which is just about manageable in a day. However, you could simply use parts of it to plan a shorter jaunt with the help of Ordnance Survey Explorer maps 125, 136 and 137. To up the adrenalin stakes, hit the trails at Penshurst Off-Road Cycling centre, near Tunbridge Wells.Further information Ordnance Survey (0845 200 2712/www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk); Penshurst Off-Road Cycling, Grove Rd, Penshurst, Kent TN11 8DU (01892 870 136/www.porc-online.co.uk); Sustrans (0845 113 0065/www.sustrans.org.uk).
Getting thereBy rail: Ashford International and Tunbridge Wells are served by Southeastern (0845 000 2222/www.southeasternrailway.co.uk) from Charing Cross.
By road: Exit M25 at J3, take M20 to Ashford; or, exit M25 at J5, take A21, then A26 to Tunbridge Wells.
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