Saturday, 1 February 2014

Hastings - the fishing town


It was time for a romantic break, the coast was the destination and heading in the Southerly direction was the intention. Storms had been battering Britain for weeks, we new whichever coastal town we were heading to that it would be cold, wet and potentially bleak.

We chose Hastings, I had last visited in 1993 and my only memories were the ruins of the castle and the pebble beach. We booked bed and breakfast at Alexander's Guest House with a sea view for a respectable £70 just 10 days prior - so we expected Hastimgs to be reasonably quiet.

On the drive down we stopped at Bodium Castle, we were aware it would be closed between the Christmas and New Year break and I was concerned that this detour would be a waste of time. Fortunately the parking gates were wide open and the skies cleared long enough for us to enjoy a walk around the mote marvelling this historic building, the beauty of the surrounding landscape was accentuated by the flooded plains and burst banks of the river. Families hopped across muddy pastures and dog walkers enjoyed the relative peace. The cold soon bit at our cheeks so we headed for the 30 minute remaining drive to Hastings.

Hastings old town is small but perfectly formed. Historic small buildings line the narrow street as you pass trinket stores, vintage shops, fish restaurants, quaint caf├ęs, old pubs and antique hordes. Climb to the East Hill for the castle ruins (closed over Christmas) and enjoy the roof top views overlooking the sea and fisherman's quarter, the roofs covered in vibrant green moss. 

We spent our time dipping in and out of pubs and enjoying fish and steak, the quiet weekend between Christmas and New Year was a perfect time to visit, a romantic time - the cold, the wet, the wind all added to the magic in this historic town as dusk set in at 4pm and the town was lit by amber lighting. 

After another stroll along the promenade, a coffee stop we then headed back home, stopping at Ashford Designer Outlet along the way. We will return to Hastings in the summer to enjoy some Lobster!