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Rye in East Sussex

Travelling westward across Romney Marsh, the distinctive outline of Rye can be seen in the distance. It rises above the level green pastures, stretching from the sea to the far hills which formed the shoreline before the marsh was drained.

Once surrounded by sea, this fortified hilltop town played an important role in the defence of the south coast of England. These days, the river no longer harbours warships and is home to the local fishing fleet.

Meandering for over one and a half miles from Rye to the coast, the river forms part of the picturesque scenery visible from several vantage points in and around the citadel of Rye.

St Mary's church tower (usually open to the public) offers the best viewpoint to show the terracotta roofs of the many timbered houses. These ancient buildings, cobbled streets and secret passages, once the haunt of smugglers and highwaymen, regularly attract film crews in search of historical settings for period productions.

Many authors, musicians, artists and celebrities have made Rye their home, a medieval haven periodically visited by Royalty. In 1573 the title "Rye Royale" was bestowed upon the town by Queen Elizabeth I after a three day stay.

The sheer concentration of living history packed into this vibrant market town makes it the ideal base for a holiday of discovery, or a relaxing short break. There are many comfortable, welcoming hotels and guest houses and plenty of charming inns and restaurants.

Other Towns and Villages Near Rye


What's On in Rye?

  • Wild Woodland Weekend Club

    Saturday 28th November @ 10:00am
    Location: Beckley

    Wild Woodland Club is a fantastic outdoor club for kids aged 6-11 years. Sessions cost £10 per child.Booking is essential ... more

  • St Mary's Christmas Fair

    Saturday 28th November @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    Refreshments, Christmas Raffle, Cakes, Books, Bottle Tombola,. Among the charity stalls are - Rye Bonfire Society, Mothers’ Union, Rye Playgroup, ... more

  • Camera 1066 Club

    Tuesday 1st December @ 1:00pm
    Location: Rye

    This is Rye’s informal photographic group, which meets twice a month. The aim of the group is to learn how ... more

  • Rye General Market

    Thursday 3rd December @ 8:00am
    Location: Rye

    Rye Thursday Market runs "every" Thursday Winter and Summer - for all your Home Goods, Groceries, Fruit and Veg, Malpass ... more

  • Rye Country Market

    Friday 4th December @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    Rye Country Market sells local produce which includes: Cakes, Preserves, Savouries, Free Range Eggs, Seasonal Vegetables and Fruit, Unusual Plants, ... more

  • Rye Creative Stitchers Christmas meeting

    Friday 4th December @ 7:15pm
    Location: Rye

    A fun Christmassy stitchery project at Rye Baptist Church Hall, Cinque Ports Street, Rye TN31 7AN. Materials provided, please bring ... more

  • Festive Beach Clean

    Saturday 5th December @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye Harbour

    A clean-up of rubbish washed up along the beach by autumn storms, plus the chance to see many wintering birds. ... more

  • Craft Fayre

    Saturday 5th December @ 10:00am
    Location: Northiam

    Northiam Bonfire Society’s Christmas Craft Fayre has attracted over 30 varied stalls of quality local crafts, and has been fully ... more

  • Christmas Food & Music through the Ages

    Saturday 5th December @ 7:00pm
    Location: Rye

    Come and enjoy a three-course meal & glass of wine, accompanied by all your favourite carols to sing along with, ... more

  • Introduction to Shamanism, Way of the Wildflower

    Sunday 6th December @ 10:30am
    Location: Pett

    Way of the Wildflower - A one-day introduction to Shamanism workshop with Natasha Saltzer (Rainbow Walker). " Your diamonds are ... more


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