If you plan to visit Rye, we recommend the following days out, accomodation, and eating options:
Places to visit in/near Rye
An archetypal 14th century moated castle with ruined interior - a glimpse of medieval splendour!
Set in the heart of an historic landscape, with spiral staircases, battlements and a portcullis, Bodiam Castle is one of Britain's most picturesque and romantic ancient monuments. Bodiam Castle is a National Trust property, 13 miles from Rye.
The town of Winchelsea
Winchelsea is a small, beautiful Sussex town, founded in 1288 by Edward I to replace Old Winchelsea town destroyed by storms, and built on the 'bones' of the old town. Many buildings in the town are Grade I or Grade II listed.
The town was laid out in a grid pattern of streets, as is clearly still visible to the present day. A large number of cellars were constructed at the time, and guided tours of these famous Medieval Cellars can taken between April and September. See Winchelsea Cellars for more details. Winchelsea is 3 miles from Rye.
Rye Harbour Nature Reserve
Discover the wildlife here in a mosaic of coastal habitats - shingle, saltmarsh, saline lagoons, coastal grazing marsh, freshwater gravel pits and reedbeds. Explore its changing coastline and military history, or simply enjoy a walk beside the sea.
One of the most important conservation sites on the Sussex coast, Rye Harbour Nature Reserve has been recognised as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, and a Special Protection Area for birds. It is an internationally important wetland for birds.
Rye Harbour Nature Reserve is managed by The Wildlife Trusts.
Great Dixter House & Gardens
Nine miles from Rye, Great Dixter was the family home of gardener and gardening writer Christopher Lloyd – it was the focus of his energy and enthusiasm and fuelled over 40 years of books and articles. Now it is managed as an historic house, a garden, a centre of education, and a place of pilgrimage for horticulturists from across the world.
Romney Hythe and Dymchurch Miniature Railway At New Romney
A 15-inch gauge working railway with a fine fleet of one-third scale steam and diesel locomotives.
Since 1927 these locomotives have powered their way along the 13½ miles of track between the Cinque Port town of Hythe, terminating in Dungeness. Four stations lie in between, all within walking distance of a beach, and the station at New Romney (one of the Cinque Ports) houses a Model Railway Exhibition, 1940s Museum and Play Park, and other facilities. New Romney is 12 miles from Rye.
Accommodation in Rye
The Mermaid Inn, Mermaid St. (3-star)
This 15th century Tudor-style inn with B&B lodging is a 2-minute walk from Rye Heritage Centre and a 3-minute walk from Rye Castle Museum.
The old-world inspired rooms (some with hand-carved 4-poster beds) retain period features (including beamed ceilings and mullioned windows) and have en suite bathrooms, free WiFi, flat-screen TVs, and tea and coffeemaking facilities. Filled with secret passages, priest-holes and sliding wall panels, the inn has a strong connection with the notorious Hawkhurst Gang of smugglers who used it in the 1730s-40s as one of their strongholds. Some of the smugglers and other characters are said to haunt the inn.
The Mermaid Inn has been hailed as one of the most haunted inns in the UK. View a short video about the hauntings here.
The George Hotel, High St. (4-star)
Dating from the 16th century, this refined boutique hotel is a minute's walk from Rye Art Gallery and a 2-minutes walk from Rye Castle Museum.
The chic rooms and suites feature an eclectic mix of antique and colourful contemporary furnishings, plus handmade beds with Italian linens, en suite bathrooms (some with marble-top or in-room free-standing baths), free WiFi and flat-screen TVs. Some have private terraces or patios.
Jeakes House B&B, Mermaid St. (AA Gold Star Award)
Occupying an ivy-covered 16th century building, this upscale B&B is a 4-minute walk from both Rye Art Gallery and Rye Castle Museum.
The refined, traditionally decorated rooms and suites (some named after literary figures associated with the hotel) feature plush furnishings and private bathrooms (all but one are en suite), as well as tea and coffeemaking facilities.
The Windmill B&B, Ferry Rd (AA 4-star)
Rye's white smock windmill is a grade II listed building and one of the town's most famous landmarks. Standing on the banks of the river Tillingham, this welcoming Bed and Breakfast is ideally located with the town and Strand Quay just a two minute walk away. Two spectacular rooms are situated within the windmill itself.
Restaurants & Tea Houses in Rye
The Landgate Bistro, Landgate
British food with a classic or modern slant, sourcing ingredients from the local fields, woodlands and waters, and using free range eggs, milk and cream from farms up the road.
The Fish Cafe, Tower St.
Ground-floor brasserie with an open kitchen and a lively vibe, serving local fish & seafood.
The Mahdi Lounge, Cinque Ports St.
Delicious dishes at this Indian restaurant and takeaway.
Tuscan Rye, Lion St.
Authentic Tuscan regional dishes served in an informal and unobtrusive atmosphere.
Fletcher's House (tearooms and lunches), Lion St.
Tudor house and 1579 birthplace of dramatist John Fletcher with terraced garden, offering good home cooking & afternoon teas.