Sussex glamping is all about peace and quiet.
Sussex is a historic county in southern England divided into West Sussex and East Sussex today. Notable towns and cities in the region include Brighton, Eastbourne, Chichester, and Crawley, all home to incredible Sussex glamping sites. Like much of southern England, Sussex is densely populated, but there are plenty of natural and historic areas. Glampers can enjoy the benefits of glamping spots with good facilities near towns and services, while enjoying a slice of the classic English countryside and coast.
At the upper end of the camping scale is glamping, or glamorous camping, and Sussex has a particularly good range of glamping accommodation catering to those looking to get away and enjoy the pleasures of camping with a few more luxuries thrown in. Even better, London and Brighton escapees can leave work on a Friday night and be settled down at their glamping site within the hour—if the tent has been pitched in advance, so much the better. If you’ve got young kids, glamping is also a gentle introduction to camping life, giving you the chance to test the waters without needing all the gear just yet.
Glamping not only includes pre-pitched tents such as bell tents, yurts, tipis, and safari tents, but now also encompasses gypsy wagons, shepherd’s huts, and vintage caravans. Even more elaborate structures like treehouses, one-of-a-kind cabins, and geodesic domes are additional quirky options. In Sussex, the price and level of luxury varies between sites and the various types of glamping accommodation. Some glamping sites feature just a pre-erected tent to save you the hassle (you’ll perhaps bring your own bedding!), while others come fully furnished, stylishly decorated, and equipped with everything you’ll need for your stay.
A stunning feature of the southern English coast is the white chalk cliffs that drop abruptly into the English Channel. They stretch from Hampshire in the west to Beachy Head in East Sussex, and part of the area sits within the South Downs National Park. The park also encompasses rolling hills, woodland, and river valleys, and is an ideal place for glampers, who will find something to suit them in this part of Sussex.
On the edge of the South Downs, in the Arun Valley of West Sussex, Pulborough Brooks is an RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) site, so is a must-visit for bird enthusiasts. There’s an entry fee to enter the reserve but visitors have the chance of spotting nightingales, barn owls, Peregrine falcons, and wigeon ducks, among other birds. There is no camping in the reserve, but several glampsites dot the nearby countryside and on area farms.
The West Sussex city of Chichester is set on a natural harbour that has been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). Tidal inlets, saltmarsh, and mudflats lie along the undeveloped coastline and provide a home to tens of thousands of birds. It’s a popular place to go boating and visitors can walk, cycle, or take boat tours of Chichester Harbour. Glamping can be found in the AONB, around its edge, and near Chichester city.
In the far northeastern edge of East Sussex and crossing the borders of Kent and Surrey, High Weald AONB is a naturally and culturally important landscape. Wooded, rolling hills are dotted with limestone outcrops, farmsteads, and ancient roads. Glampers can look out for rural yurts, canvas tents, and tiny houses, both in Sussex and in the neighbouring counties of Kent and Surrey, which make good bases for hiking.