Lewes to Brighton via Rottingdean walk

The less-frequented heart of the South Downs to Rottingdean, with a pleasant walk along the promenade into Brighton to finish

Approaching Rottingdean Lewes to Brighton via Rottingdean walk

Approaching Rottingdean

Lewes to Brighton via Rottingdean walk

19-Jul-15 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Ovingdean beach

Ovingdean beach

15-Jan-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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Brighton from the pier

Brighton from the pier

15-Jan-16 • Saturdaywalker on Flickr

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This is a list of previous times this walk has been done by the club (since Jan 2010). For more recent events (since April 2015), full details are shown.

Updated: Mon, 17-Jan-22

Date # Post
Sun, 22-May-16 4

A South Downs ramble with an ending in bustling Brighton

Free walk 134 Lewes to Brighton via Rottingdean
Length 18.7km (11.8m); toughness 4/10
Trains 09:47 London Victoria arrives Lewes 10.52
There are frequent return trains from Brighton to London – about 5 an hour. You can return to London Victoria or London Bridge so ensure your ticket is valid for either.
Buy a day return to Lewes
This walk takes you across a less-frequented area of the South Down with a couple of climbs and magnificent views across the plains of the River Ouse.
You take lunch in Rottingdean which has a number of places to eat. Brighton is packed with cafes and pubs for tea options and the walk summary here gives some suggestions. Click on the "download walk pdf" button at the top of the walk's page for full walk instructions.
Walk options - alternative ending
You can end the walk in Rottingdean and take a frequent bus to Brighton or walk along the concrete promenade path at the base of the cliffs. If this feels a too “urban” an ending to a walk then there is the option to walk from Rottingdean to Southease which adds just under a mile to the walk . (Southease now has a café at the Youth Hostel just 150m from the station but you will need to get there before 4pm on a Sunday. The walk notes need up-dating here.)
If you want to do the Southease option you will need a return ticket from the small station there. Trains are at xx:09 to Lewes where you pick up a connecting train to London.)
Just n= 4 on this walk which on reflection was perhaps not my finest choice as it probably works best as a summer swimming walk and also because to be frank its not the most interesting section of the South Downs and the last 5 miles is on tarmac or concrete. There were just 2 of us on the platform at Lewes. One SWC regular missed the advertised train, caught another to Brighton and did the walk in reverse. Another got caught up in train problems took a bus to Rottingdean and with my walks companion did I think walk to Southease leaving me to plod on to Brighton where I got caught up in a huge car rally celebrating the British Mini. Weather fine and dry throughout.

Finally I did my bit for nature by saving a lovely slow worm from almost certain crushing by a car in the lane at Kingston just beyond Lewes.
Two more following half an hour behind
I arrived late, managed to miss Rottingdean and walked to Telscombe instead (I was using an older copy of book 2). It was an enjoyable walk, so thanks for the posting it here.
Sun, 28-Jun-15

Sunday Walk – Over the South Downs to Rottingdean

Sunday Walk
Extra Walk 134 – Lewes via Rottingdean to Brighton (or Southease)
Length: 18.7 km (11.6 miles). Toughness: 4/10 (to Brighton)
Length: 20.0 km (12.4 miles). Toughness: 6/10 (to Southease)

09:47 Ore train from Victoria (Clapham Jct 09:53, East Croydon 10:02), arriving Lewes at 10:48. A day return to Southease is no more expensive than Lewes and is valid for return from any of the possible destinations.

If you finish at Brighton there are fast Southern trains to Victoria at 10 & 35 minutes past the hour (fewer after 9pm), and Thameslink ones via Blackfriars at 14 & 44 past. Southease only has an hourly train at 09 minutes past (changing at Lewes); the last one is just after 8pm.

The start of this walk is the as Book 2 Walk 24 (Lewes-Saltdean), but after a short stretch on the familiar South Downs Way it turns off into the remoter parts of the downs and makes its way to the attractive seaside town of Rottingdean. If you haven't stopped en route for a picnic you'll find a choice of pubs and cafés for a late lunch when you arrive there around 1.30-1.45pm.

After a good lunch the lazy option is simply to hop on one of the many buses plying the coastal route; the walk notes offer ideas about where to get on and off. A more respectable continuation is to walk at least part of the way along the seafront to Brighton. If you want a sterner test there are directions for an alternative route back over the downs to Southease station. This last option suffers from a lack of tea places and infrequent trains, but you could divert to the Abergavenny Arms in Rodmell and perhaps even continue all the way back to Lewes if you know the Walk 24 route via Northease Manor (or bring Book 2).

You'll need to print the directions from this pdf document.
There is a very nice cafe near Southease Station. I've ahd tea there before and can recommend it. It's part of the Youth Hostel there and open to visitors http://www.yha.org.uk/hostel/south downs

Appears very nice with the sea views, I'm going...jim
Wed, 28-May-14 Lewes to Brighton, via Rottingdean
Wed, 05-Jun-13 Lewes to Brighton, via Rottingdean
Sun, 24-Mar-13 1 Lewes to Brighton, via Rottingdean
Sat, 03-Dec-11 Lewes to Brighton, via Rottingdean
Sun, 25-Jul-10 Lewes to Rottingdean (short walk)
Sat, 12-Dec-09 Lewes to Brighton via Rottingdean