Rye

Rye in East Sussex Town Guide

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.

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Quarter House
Quarter House

Enjoy historic & romantic beamed surroundings in the heart of the Medieval walled Citadel of Rye. This unusual, converted Grade … more

Listed in: Holiday Cottages

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Cmdr Frank Claret, O.B.E. - memorabilia in Rye

I am trying to track down several lots of memorabilia about Commander Frank Claret that were sold at auction in … more

Our name is Rye!

My husband’s family are descended from Hubert de Rie, one of William the Conqueror’s men. Are there any other Ryes … more

Attractions and Activities

Rye Information Point

Rye Town Hall is home to the Rye Information Point, helping visitors make the most of their time in Rye … more

Yoga with JoJo

Move | Breathe | Restore Join JoJo, founder of Yoga Creative, for classes that nourish and transform body mind and … more

St Mary's Church Tower

Climb the Church Tower for amazing views of Rye and the surrounding countryside! View the mechanism of the oldest working … more

Accommodation

Rye Windmill B&B

Rye’s white smock windmill is a grade II listed building and one of its most famous landmarks. Tucked away in … more

Haydens

Haydens is a small, family-run, environmentally friendly B&B right in the heart of the ancient market town of Rye, an … more

Mermaid Cottage

Mermaid Cottage is a cosy, recently refurbished 18th century cottage situated on the historic cobbled Mermaid Street in Rye, perfect … more

Restaurants

The Ship Inn

In the centre of the small, charming town of Rye, the Ship is a modern take on the traditional English … more

The Mermaid Inn

One of England’s oldest and loveliest inns, with Norman cellars dating from 1156, the Mermaid, rebuilt in 1420, offers tradition … more

River Haven Hotel

A Warm welcome awaits you at the River Haven Hotel & Restaurant. This family run comfortable Hotel of 22 en-suite … more

Towns and villages near Rye ...

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