Car-free adventures aroundBrightonEast Sussex

Between the South Downs and the sea, Brighton is beautifully located. Stroll through the characterful narrow shopping lanes or stride through the hills. Winter is a great time to see murmurations of starlings over Brighton's atmospherically skeletal West Pier. You can spend days just wandering happily around Brighton's sights, but for those who have already seen it, done it and bought the patchwork t-shirt, here are some ideas too for trips to take you further afield, using Brighton's first rate public transport.

  1. 3. Visit Stanmer Park

    Brighton’s largest park is northeast of the city, near the universities. It’s a lovely place to wander, with slopes of grazing sheep and cattle and a collective of alternative, organic and low carbon businesses.

    • How to get to Stanmer Park car-free: Catch the train to Falmer from Brighton station. Trains leave very frequently and take six minutes to get there (£3.60 return). Cross under the main road, turn left on the far side and you’ll soon see the park gates on your right (see map below). At weekends, you can also catch bus 78.
    • Keep going through Stanmer Park until you see Proud Country House and the church ahead of you. Beyond them, Stanmer village has a tea room and Fruit Factory (weekend juice and chutney stall). The old walled garden is being restored (due to finish in autumn 2020) and there are bluebells in the nearby woods each spring.
    • From the stop outside the church, you can catch weekend Breezer bus 78 hourly back to the park gates for free or back into Brighton for £2.60.
  1. 4. Breeze up to the Downs

    Brighton has some cool buses that help walkers make the most of the area. The weekend Breezer buses, running all year to Ditchling Beacon and Devils Dyke, are a scenic delight. Sit on the top deck for the half hour ride to enjoy huge views over the rolling downs, out to sea and across the Weald.

    • How to get to Ditchling Beacon car-free: Catch bus 79. Site of a beacon fire to warn of invasions, before that is was once an iron age hill fort. From the top, walkers have a choice of routes.
    • You could follow the well-signed South Downs Way for six miles, past the Jack and Jill Windmills near Clayton, to Devil’s Dyke, favourite haunt of kite-flyers and landscape artists. Then catch bus 77 back again to Brighton.
    • Or walk down roughly three miles of paths and bridleways into Stanmer village for tea and catch bus 78 back into town.
    • Whichever of these you opt for, you can buy a £5 Breezer Return, which lets you choose to come back via a different route.
  1. 5. Along the coast to Eastbourne

    There are miles of undulating white cliffs and colourful modern art galleries along the coast in Eastbourne. To see a bit more of the sea and get even further afield, try a ride buses 12X (not Sunday when you need 13X) from Brighton station, Imperial Arcade, North Street or Sealife Centre.

    • The bus runs every twenty minutes Monday to Saturday and takes just over an hour to get there. On the way, there are beachside and then clifftop views as far as Peacehaven, when the bus turns inland. Later it runs past the end of Cuckmere Haven and along the edge of the Seven Sisters country park. The road is fringed in spring with blackthorn blossom and all year round with yellow gorse.
    • From Eastbourne railway station, where the bus ends, stroll towards the sea to find the free Towner gallery, currently sporing a huge multicoloured, jubilant mural and a lot of interesting art.
    • How to get to the Towner Gallery car-free: follow Good Journey’s directions.
    • Cross the road to the seafront and stroll round the moated Wish Tower, one of the Martello forts built to defend the coast from Napoleon. It’s now the site of a brand new French restaurant, Bistrot Pierre.
    • You can head back to Brighton by bus or train or take the train straight to London or wherever you like – part of the joy of car-free travel!

Look out for the Good Journey Mark – where car-free visitors are welcome and enjoy a discount

Visit car-free in 2019!