Outdoor activities in West Sussex
The South Downs, the Seaside, the WealdThere are plenty of ways to get out and enjoy the marvels of the great Sussex outdoors - here are some suggestions, in no particular order, to help you make the most of the West Sussex countryside and the Sussex seaside.
Bird watchingWest Sussex boasts several important bird sanctuaries, including the RSPB run Pulborough Wild Brooks reserve and the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust at Arundel and Amberley Wildbrooks. Learn more about what birdlife you can expect to see in the Sussex countryside and find out more about Sussex birdwatching and bird protection groups.
Nature ReservesFrom downland to heathland, and woodland to shoreline, West Sussex has a huge number of nature reserves and a real diversity of insect, bird, plant and reptilian species. Find out more about the many Nature Reserves in West Sussex.
Chichester HarbourAs well as being a yachting mecca, the mudflats of Chichester Harbour are an important bird habitat, looked after by the Chichester Harbour Conservancy and other bodies. Learn more about Chichester Harbour Nature Reserve here.
Preserving the countrysideWith all the competing demands on the West Sussex countryside there are plenty of folk who are passionate about preserving or enhancing the environment - many of them with great websites packed with information about the changes that are taking place in the countryside and what you can do to help protect the environment in Sussex.
Visit a farmTaking the kids to a farm attraction or working farms is a great way to get out in the countryside. We have plenty in West Sussex, including the Coombes Farm Experience, Fishers Farm Park, Washbrooks Family Farm and Farmworld.
Bonfire nightOK, its only once a year, but firework displays are a big thing in Sussex, especially in Lewes, and a good way to get some winter fresh air.
A balloon flightWhat better way to see the expanse of the Sussex Weald laid out before you than from a hot air balloon. You can find details of companies who offer balloon trips here.
On the beachFind out more about the beaches along the Sussex coast including the ever changing West Wittering beach and East Head spit and Pagham Harbour.
Take to the skiesThere are stacks of flying clubs operating from Goodwood and Shoreham Airports, plus gliding and hang gliding galore around the scarp slope of the South Downs. See our section on flying, gliding and hang gliding clubs to find out how to get airborne in Sussex.
Gardening at homeEnjoy the outdoors without leaving home - see our directory of Sussex gardening and horticultural societies if you are interested in organised gardening.
DivingWith all that coastline, West Sussex has plenty of diving clubs and businesses who will take you out diving in the English Channel.
Dog walkingMan's best friend provides a great excuse to get out and about. There a whole litter of dog training groups in West Sussex. Our dogs page will tell you who they are and gives details of dog rescue sanctuaries, where you might find a furry friend who'll walk with you for life.
Gardens to visitOr maybe it's easier seeing how the experts do it. There are some stupendous gardens you can visit in Sussex such as Nymans Gardens, High Beeches, Leonardslee, Highdown, Wakehurst Place and many more.
The Sussex landscapeIf you're interested in understanding more about how the Sussex landscape was shaped, you can start to learn how the different rock layers of the South Downs and the Weald were formed by looking at our geology section.
On horsebackAn ancient and truly civilised way to view the Sussex countryside is on horseback. We've plenty of horsey information to help you find people who well help enjoy Sussex from the saddle in our riding clubs section and horse training and equine health pages.
MotorbikingOr if you prefer a few more horsepower and the country wind in your face, try our selection of Sussex motorcycle and scooter clubs.
Au naturelIf that's not enough wind in your hair and you really feel the need for fresh air all over, you could try naturism.
RailwaysWe have several restored and unusual railways in West Sussex run by Railway enthusiasts including the Bluebell steam railway, and the South Downs Light Railway Society's splendid railway near Pulborough.
A good walkWith the credit crunch, few hobbies are cheaper or better for you than walking. If you're the sort who likes these things to be organised, take a look at our ramblers and walking groups page which will tell you who walks where and with whom.
If you prefer to make your own arrangements, you might find our walking routes and walking information section helpful.
We can also tell you more about West Sussex's long distance footpath network if you fancy an epic trek across the Sussex countryside.
River fishingThe Rivers Arun and Adur offer plenty of good fishing and there is plenty of still water in West Sussex too. Find out where to fish in Sussex here.
Sea fishingOr if sea fishing and the ocean breeze is more your thing, we'll help you find out more about sea fishing and boat charters on the Sussex coast here.
Vineyard tripsWith our mild climate here in Sussex, we have a several good quality vineyards and wineries in Sussex. Some of these operate tours or have interesting shops which allow you to buy their wines and a whole load of delicious and unusual foods besides.
BeekeepingWhy take up beekeeping? For the buzz, of course. Find out more about Sussex beekeeping societies here.
What's the weather like in Sussex?For more weather information than anyone could ever need in a lifetime, try these Sussex weather and meteorological sites.
Sussex wildlifeDespite our best efforts to concrete over the whole of the United Kingdom, there is still plenty of wildlife, including rare flowers, insects, birds and even rare mammals in Sussex. Here's our selection of the best Sussex wildlife information.
Into the woodsFive hundred years ago Sussex was covered with thick woodland. There's still plenty of woodland left to enjoy, although much of it is off limits to the likes of you and me. There are however several woodlands open to the public in Sussex which are well cared for by the Woodlands Trust and other woodland loving creatures, many of them human.
- Bognor Regis
- Burgess Hill
- East Grinstead
- Haywards Heath
- Horse riding
- Mountain bike
- Table tennis
- More Sussex sports
- Sports equipment