From rare art to aristocratic splendour, we have some truly spectacular historic places of interest in West Sussex. With unique properties and idyllic grounds to explore, here are five unforgettable places to visit, whether you fancy a romantic picnic spot or simply a day out in distinguished surroundings:
1. Petworth House and Park: Just a short journey from Park House, this fabulous country house property is a must visit attraction in the area. Huge and distinguished grounds, styled by none other than Capability Brown, are ideal for a stroll or al fresco lunch on a sunny day. The building itself contains probably the greatest collection of rare art of any National Trust Property in England, including works by Turner and Blake among a distinguished list. More details HERE.
2. Amberley Museum & Heritage Centre: With traditional crafts, vintage transport and much more, Amberley is a taste of South East England as it used to be. Any lovers of steam engines, classic trains, cars and nostalgic England in general will be enchanted by the collection here: www.amberleymuseum.co.uk
3. Bodiam Castle: Outside the pages of fantasy books you would be hard pressed to find a more awe-inspiring castle than this, from the battlements right down to the giant moat. Originally built to repel the French, these days the most common invaders are day trippers seduced by this mighty heritage property. Nor is it just the stonework that is endless and weighty; a suitably bloody, intriguing and in places downright unexpected history lies in wait: it has Britain’s oldest surviving portcullis, for example, and also featured in the cult comedy movie Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Lively events feature everything from archery to history for kids. Full details here:www.nationaltrust.org.uk/bodiam-castle
4. Uppark House and Garden: For anyone who ever dreamt of living the life of a character in a costume drama, this elegant period building is one of the best National Trust properties in West Sussex. Faithfully maintained to give visitors a glimpse into the past, you’re free to marvel at the decadence of Georgian interiors, or indeed spare a thought for the spit and sawdust world of the servants’ quarters. Toy collectors will also be charmed by curiosities including a superbly preserved 17th Century doll’s house. More details: www.nationaltrust.org.uk/uppark
5. Weald & Downland Open Air Museum: If ever there was a visitor attraction to suit those heady days of summer when it seems plain wrong to be indoors, it is this heritage attraction. From historic crafts and buildings to woodland walks and hands-on activities for children, there is so much to see and do. Great for family days out in West Sussex and all just ten minutes from Park House:www.wealddown.co.uk
We are the ideal base for exploring the best attractions of West Sussex: Situated in beautiful rural West Sussex, Park House Hotel is perfect for a summer escape. Keep an eye on the blog for more regional highlights and events, as well as our current offers page for some excellent deals on luxury short breaks.
*For those interested in literature and famous Sussex residents through the ages, you might also enjoy our blog about famous authors and poets from the area.