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Rye (East Sussex) - My Thoughts
Member Name: michael126
Advantages: History, walking, places to eat & drink
Disadvantages: None whatsoever in my experience.
My wife and I went to Rye a couple of weeks ago (early November) for a two day break and had a fantastic time. We stayed at a beautiful period hotel called Jeakes House on Mermaid Street, which we learned during our stay is one of the most historic (and steep!) roads in the town.
The place is full of history and there are a number of listed buildings that date back to the 13th century. Rye really makes you feel like you've stepped back in time a few hundred years and thankfully development in the town is restricted so the High Street is not dominated by chain stores and the skyline is free of modern, high-rise buildings.
For those who fancy doing a bit of walking I can highly recommend the Camber Castle trail, which takes in the Castle itself, built during Henry VIII's reign, and the very scenic Rye Harbour Nature Reserve. You can make the walk a fairly short one if you prefer, or take in the full lap which covers about 6 or 7 miles and ends at the Inkerman Arms pub, where you can dine on fantastic fish and chips in refreshingly unfussy surroundings. The Inkerman couldn't be less gastro-pub if it tried, which is surprising given the number of tourists that must visit, and in my opinion it's all the better for it.
Sticking with food and drink, Rye has some fantastic restaurants. We ate at Webbe's Seafood Cafe, which was very reasonably priced with a varied menu of local seafood, and the George, which is a hotel/restaurant with a pleasant dining room from where you can see through into the kitchen area. Personally I always find it reassuring to have a view of the kitchen and to see your food being prepared.
In terms of pubs, the Mermaid and Ye Olde Bell are two of the most traditional and oldest in the town, and they are backed up by numerous other cosy watering holes such as the Ypres Castle Inn.
Just a quick word on Jeakes House before I finish - this is a fantastic hotel with individually designed rooms full of intricate detail and ornate furnishings. The honesty bar is a nice touch, the breakfast is splendid and the owners - Jenny and Richard - are pleasant, welcoming and informative on the local area.
I would thoroughly recommend Rye for a relaxing break full of history, scenery and with plenty of things to see and do.
Summary: Rye - a perfect place for a weekend away.