Over the last 12 months, the team at SE has bumped and bumbled our way around the county in search of interesting things to see, do or eat! In the course of our travels, we’ve encountered some pretty weird and wonderful Sussex attractions, and here are our top 11!
Brighton beach sculpture
Hiding in plain sight, on the beach at Brighton in between the Palace Pier and the Marina is an extraordinary little enclosure. This is the work of local fisherman and dry stone waller, Rory McCormack, and includes a number of unusual stone and pebble figures and sculptures. They are strangely thought-provoking.
In the Warninglid woods
William’s Wood is just outside Warninglid (in between Horsham and Haywards Heath) and the footpath takes you all the way to Lower Beeding. As you set off, those with a keen eye may spot a strange little clearing just off the footpath in which you’ll find dozens of strange wooded sculptures, masks, and figurines!
Lake Wood near Uckfield
Early one autumn morning, we set off in search of adventure and found ourselves at Lake Wood near Uckfield. It’s a small wood and not that easy to access, but once there, there’s an unusual selection of rock formations and caves! Definitely one for Instagrammers.
We’ve found all sorts of amazing trees on our travels, with the most notable being: on the footpath from the car park to Chanctonbury Ring, in Slaugham churchyard, in Stamner Park near Brighton and on the walk from Mayfield up to Argos Hill. We know you love trees so we’ll keep looking!
The tulips of Arundel
Every year in April, Arundel Castle hosts a tulip festival and it’s quite simply magnificent. There are over 1.2 million tulip bulbs and over 130 varieties of tulip all against the magnificent backdrop of the castle and cathedral. On a clear, sunny day, they are spellbinding!
Pixie house in Bury
On a walk along the River Arun at Bury, you pass Dorset House and the old ferry crossing point. Head-on towards Arundel and you come to a rather substantial and extraordinary pixie house! It’s sadly abandoned due to Covid but still just wonderfully weird!
Mad Jack and his follies
You can’t mention weird and Sussex in the same sentence without mentioning Mad Jack’s follies. Mad Jack Fuller wore many hats including a philanthropist, an MP High Sheriff of Sussex, and a captain in the Volunteer Sussex Yeomanry Cavalry. He built a number of follies in East Sussex which have attracted all sorts of rumours over the years. Some you can see, and some you can’t but they include a sugar loaf, a pyramid, an observatory, a needle and a tower.
The Wakehurst dinosaur
Wakehurst is always worth a visit and there are lots of things to discover like their Gruffalo walk, sculptures, and lakes. But I certainly wasn’t to expect to find a dinosaur on my last visit!
Cheese house in Hastings
Hastings has lots of really interesting little corners but when wandering around the old fishing quarter and old town, I was chuffed to bits to discover this giant slice of cheese!
Bexhill’s bottles and street art
When I went to visit the wreck of the Amerstand near Bexhill on Sea, I wasn’t expecting much more than a trip down to the beach but my walk along the seafront first to St Leonards and then back to Bexhill was an absolute treasure trove of discovery. Marine Court Court really does look like an ocean liner, Goat Ledge café is funky, Bottle Alley is unusual, the old swimming baths are a great haunt and I loved the street art on the seafront which added a great splash of both colour and character!
Leonardslee Dolls House exhibition
I know, for the eagle-eyed, you’ll have spotted that this is number 11 but I just couldn’t not mention the extraordinary dolls house exhibition at Leonardslee. Even if you have no interest in dolls, you can’t help but admire this incredible miniature world.
These 11 weird and wonderful Sussex attractions are in fact, just the start. We found so many wonderful if slightly unusual things out and about around Sussex, I think we’ll have to post another 10 soon. Watch this space!