Length: 19.8km (11.8 miles
) to Rye, 17.1km (10.6 miles)
to Winchelsea station, or 15km (9.3 miles)
to Winchelsea New Inn (+ bus) 9.45
train from Charing Cross
(9.48 Waterloo East
, 9.54 London Bridge
) to Hastings, arriving 11.19. T=2.29 If planning to come back by high speed train (see below), you can also go out by it by taking the 9.34 from St Pancras to Ashford, arriving 10.11 and changing there for the 10.24 Marshlink train to Hastings, arriving 11.06. As you can see this offers minimal time advantages over the direct train, however, and the two carriage Marshlink train can be hideously overcrowded in the summer months, though may be less so now we are into September.
Buy a day return to Winchelsea
, unless using the high speed train outward, in which case a day return to Hastings is needed.
Buy a ticket "plus high speed
" if intending to use the high speed train on the way home - see below.
For walk directions
, for GPX
, for a map
of the route click here
One last summery walk by the sea? This walk over the cliffs from Hastings to Pett Level and then across the flatlands of Romney Marsh to the historic towns of Winchelsea and Rye needs no introduction to most of you. If you don't know it, it is one of the SWC's classic coastal walks. I would only observe that the diversionary route around Ecclesbourne Glen
(where there was a landslip some years back) is best followed, even though it is not mentioned in the walk directions: the former path gets more difficult year on year, and is blockaded at either end by increasingly serious fences.
Your lunch stop is the Coastguards Tea Room
: it does a range of meals as interesting and substantial as any pub. The Smugglers Inn in Pett Level is "permanently closed", according to Google.
For sea swimmers
, the best opportunity is at Fairlight Glen
, at the bottom of the next big valley after Ecclesbourne Glen. The unofficial path down to the beach here is your own risk, but is usually well-maintained by the naturists who use it. High tide
is at 12.20
, so there should be a good depth of water over the rocks when we arrive. Water temperatures are edging down a bit - 17.7 degrees is what it is saying at time of writing. A swim at Pett Level
should be OK until about 4pm: after that underwater rocks can be a problem, though walking east along the beach may help.
, the New Inn
usually has some cakes and tea in pots. You can end the walk
here (after 9.3 miles
) by taking the 100 bus
. Or carry on another 1.3 miles to finish the walk at Winchelsea station
(allow 40 minutes to walk it). Or carry on across flat marshes for another 2.5 miles from Winchelsea village to Rye
Transport times for all these options: Bus from Winchelsea, New Inn
- If returning on the high speed train
, get the 49 past
the hour from the stop on the same side of the road as the New Inn to Rye
, then 18.42
These buses all terminate at Rye station but annoyingly just miss the hourly trains:. However, 50 minutes to walk around Rye's pretty streets is no great hardship.
- If returning by normal trains
, it is probably quicker to get 16.55
bus from the other
side of the road outside the New Inn to Hastings
. These take 33 minutes, giving you 22 minutes to connect with 50
past trains from Hastings, which take 1hr 44 minutes to Charing Cross: by this route it is 2hrs 39 minutes from Winchelsea village to London. Trains back from Winchelsea
- High speed option
to Ashford, with a quick (6 minutes) change there for train to St Pancras: total journey time 1hr 12 minutes. - Normal train option: - 16.50
(2hrs 14 minutes journey time)
(arriving Ashford 18.10, changing there to the 18.32 to Charing Cross: 2 hrs 10 minutes journey time)
(2 hrs 44 minutes journey time)
(arriving Ashford 20.10, changing there to the 20.32 to Charing Cross: 2 hrs 10 minutes journey time) Trains back from Rye
the hour to Ashford
until 22.47: do NOT get the identically-timed train to Hastings by mistake: the Ashford trains are across the footbridge
- High speed
: with a six minute change in Ashford you get to St Pancras 1hr 07 minutes after leaving Rye
- Normal train
: a 20 minute change at Ashford to the 32 past
train to Charing Cross (2hrs 05 minutes total journey time from Rye) or 33 past
(2 hrs 19 minutes total journey time: this train is only really useful if you live near Bromley South): The 20.47
is the last train from Rye to offer this connection.