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The South Downs National Park was designated as recently as 2010 and covers an area of 627 square miles (1624 square kilometres) parallel with the busy South Coast of England, from St Catherine's Hill near Winchester in Hampshire in the west to Beachy Head, near Eastbourne in East Sussex. Just outside the Park boundaries are the bustling towns and cities of Winchester, Portsmouth, Bognor Regis, Eastbourne and Brighton. London is about an hour to the north.
It is mainly an area of rolling chalk downland, which includes the white cliffs of Sussex (not to be confused with the ones at Dover). This is no wild, remote, national park. It is a rich area of mixed farming, woodland, country estates, gardens, vineyards, pleasant middle-England market towns, pretty villages and good pubs. It may be walking without altitude, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t good walking to be done; and the slopes will still test the muscles. You'll also find significant prehistoric landmarks.
The highest point is Blackdown, where the poet Tennyson once had a home, close to the border with Surrey, at 918 feet (280 metres).
Principal settlements include Arundel, Steyning, Lewes, Midhurst and Petersfield.
This is a growing listings directory – over 900 entries have been listed as of September 2021.
Entries have links for further information, such as opening times and entry fees.
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