Rye is quintessential England, it feels like stepping back in time. Before I moved to London, Rye wasn’t on my travel radar. But, after finding a few London bloggers to follow, I quickly realized Rye was the picture perfect English seaside town.
Perched on a hillside overlooking the sea, Rye is one of England’s prettiest towns. Centuries ago, Rye played an important role in defense of England’s coast.
Today, it’s an adorable town to wander for a day or weekend. Located south of London in East Sussex, it takes about an hour and a half to get to Rye from St. Pancras station if you take the high-speed trains. I only went to Rye for a day, but if you go for the weekend, there are a few cute adorable places to stay in town.
5 Reasons to Visit Charming Rye
Wander the prettiest streets
Tudor architecture. Narrow cobblestone streets. If you’re ready to be charmed, head to Mermaid Street, one of the most photographed streets in the UK.
Is it any surprise visitors ooh and ahh over this darling cobblestone street? Seriously adorable. Hard to believe these cobbled streets were once wandered by smugglers.
Hunt for unusual house names
Rye is full of the cutest nooks and crannies. Case in point: The House with Two Front Doors and The House with the Seat (both located on Mermaid Street). Keep an eye out for quirky door markers as well.
Meander quirky, adorable shops
Rye is full of the cutest shops with everything from antiques to homewares. There weren’t any specific ones I liked more than others- you’ll see all, if not most of them, just by wandering town.
Take afternoon cream tea in a garden
The Cobbles Tea Room opened in 1952, although the building dates back to 1826. I had traditional English sponge with Earl grey tea, and my friend ordered cream tea and biscuits- both were delish. Lovely way to relax for a bit before continuing to wander.
Step back in time
More than picturesque streets, Rye has a few notable places to visit if you’re after a bit of history.
Climb St. Mary’s Church for a bird’s eye view of town, and head into the Ypres Tower, a small castle, which used to house prisoners. Around the back of the tower, you can see the Women’s Tour, thought to be the first women’s prison in England.
If you have time, pop into Lamb House on West Street. Lamb House is an early eighteenth-century house where Henry James lived and wrote for many years. The garden in back of the house was lovely.
Have you ever been to Rye? What was your favorite part of this charming town?
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