London to Hastings

Spontaneous travel on a bank holiday weekend isn’t always a good idea. All the campsites and Air BnBs are booked. The trains are busy. The stations even busier.

It took us three attempts to board the train to Hastings (still bitter) and, sure, we nearly called the whole thing off, but this bank holiday weekend felt like the first real sign of our summer so – tempting as it was to just go perch in a park with a book – we powered through the crowds and set off for the day.

Why Hastings? For the sea fix, and the idea of fish and chips on the beach. And the £20.40 return tickets from Victoria. And any excuse to take the camera out for a whirl. Here’s what I loved:

  1. The fact that, less than two hours after leaving London (and via a pretty scenic route), we were walking along the beach on what felt like the hottest day of the year.
  2. Reaching the pier and looking over the edges – capturing these adventurous Instagrammers…WaterSelfie
  3. Enjoying a cold diet coke in the tiniest bit of shade on the pier’s rooftop café.
  4. Eating fish (and pinching my boyfriend’s chips) at Taylor’s. (Alright, I nicked some mushy peas too.)
  5. Two surprising pieces of awesome architecture. The first: this clever window design which encases the pier’s museum and gift shop.HastingsPierMuseum

    The second: the entirely unexplained, tall wooden huts made with black panels.

  6. Getting the funicular from George Street up to hilltop. Not as high as the cablecar experience in Barcelona but – just as we did there – we rode up and walked the route down. It only takes fifteen minutes or so.
  7. Peering into the famous castle grounds – it might have been an idea to check the opening times beforehand… – and clambering up the rocks nearby to see how far we could see.


So that’s it for bank holidays for the time being. Here’s hoping for a sunny September to stretch out the summer…

For more inspiration on quick and budget-friendly getaways, check out my post on 7 easy day/weekend trips from London.

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