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Rye

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

Event

What's On in Rye?

  • Great Northiam Run

    Sunday 19th September
    Location: Northiam

    Formerly Rother Valley 10k, The Great Northiam Run starts at Northiam Playing Fields and follows a 10km measured route out ... more

  • Pop-up Art Exhibition

    Friday 24th September for 3 days @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    Paintings, Porcelain, Ceramics. ... more

  • Open Studio - Artists at Home

    Saturday 2nd October for 2 days @ 11:00am
    Location: Playden

    Richard Adams and Jane Beecham Open Studio - Artists at Home Please join us once more when we welcome you ... more

  • Open Studio - Artists at Home

    Saturday 9th October for 2 days @ 11:00am
    Location: Playden

    Richard Adams and Jane Beecham Open Studio - Artists at Home Please join us once more when we welcome you ... more

  • Inspired by Nature

    Wednesday 13th October for 12 days @ 10:00am
    Location: Rye

    An exhibition of art and jewellery inspired by the beauty, strength and fragility of nature, by Khoa Mahon and Scarlett ... more

  • Antique and Book Fair

    Wednesday 27th October @ 9:00am
    Location: Rye

    Lots of stalls with books and Antiques looking for Dealers of Books and Antiques to join us for this new ... more

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