Local Activities / Heritage


Bywaves is located in an area of West Sussex steeped in history and hosting a diverse range of events and activities throughout the year.

This blend of rich heritage, maritime history, cosmopolitan living and diversity of activities, make it an enviable location to live.

Just a 20-minute car journey away is the historic cathedral city of Chichester with its Roman villas, art galleries, Festival Theatre, the South Downs Planetarium, parks and architecture of significance.

There is history to be explored on each and every corner, from the imposing 900-year-old Norman cathedral to the Tudor Market Cross.

Nestled at the foot of the South Downs and home to The Earl and Countess of March, Goodwood House gives its visitors an insight into the grandeur of a stately home.

Petrolheads will also love Goodwood’s Festival of Speed, one of the world’s largest car events and the Goodwood revival which captures the allure of motor racing in a bygone era.

For horse racing fans Glorious Goodwood provides a chic, relaxing and stylish venue to have a flutter or merely people watch.

To the west lies Portsmouth, where you will discover a conspicuous contrast of old and new nestling together. Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard, showcasing 800 years of naval history and home to the Mary Rose, HMS Victory and HMS Warrior, lies within close proximity of a new landmark, the Spinnaker Tower, which at 170m high is currently the highest viewing tower in Britain.

The city also has some fine museums including the Royal Marines Museum and the D-Day Museum. Portsmouth also has a rich literary heritage and several famous authors have spent time in the city, the most notable, perhaps, being Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Charles Dickens.

To the east of Bywaves you will find Arundel Castle, a restored medieval castle which was founded in 1067. From the 11th Century onwards it has served as the hereditary stately home of the Duke of Norfolk and has been in the family for more than 400 years.

There is no time like the present to visit some of West Sussex’s fascinating places from the past.
The region is rich in heritage and there are a host of historic buildings and stately homes from throughout the ages to explore – all situated within a short drive of Bywaves.


Originally a 12th Century manor house, the fortifications and working portcullis disguise the fact that Amberley Castle is now a luxury hotel. Nestling at the foot of the South Downs, its many acres of gardens demand exploring and feature a magical tree house, 18-hole putting green and croquet lawn.


Built at the end of the 11th Century, this magnificent seat of the Duke of Norfolk is set in 40 acres of sweeping grounds and gardens, which include the beautiful Collector’s Earl Garden which was opened by HRH The Prince of Wales in 2008.


Second to the Castle in terms of landmarks dominating the skyline of Arundel, the Cathedral is different to most other buildings of its type – being defined by a somewhat odd shape due to plans for a spire never transpiring.


Towering over Chichester, the Cathedral and its cloisters are one of the leading tourist attractions in West Sussex. Although its spire collapsed and was re-built during Victorian times, the Cathedral was originally built by the Normans and contains a wealth of medieval treasures.


This historic Tudor courtier’s palace in Midhurst once played host to both Queen Elizabeth I and King Henry VIII before being partially destroyed by fire in 1793. The majestic and romantic ruins provide the backdrop to various special events, including outdoor theatre and period re-enactments.


Another fascinating place of interest to visit in the Chichester area, this superbly restored Roman palace is famed for its fabulous mosaics, which can be viewed from a flyover-styled walkway.


Whilst it may not be the region’s prettiest stately home, Goodwood House does display a truly wonderful collection of artwork including the works of Canaletto, van Dyck, Reynolds, Stubbs and Raeburn as well as a sculpture park that contains an impressive array of large-scale modern pieces in a beautiful woodland setting. The venue is also renowned for its horse racing and motor sport links.


Located between Shipley and West Grinstead, the origins of this ruined castle and castellated mansion date back to Norman times and were subsequently confiscated by King John. Its mill pond is one of the largest bodies of water in West Sussex.


Only three families have lived at this stately home since its foundation stone was laid in 1577 and it was opened for the first time to visitors in 1948. Its 875 acres feature an 18th Century walled garden, Veronica’s Maze and a historic deer park, which has been designated a site of Special Scientific Interest.


This late 17th Century mansion is set in a beautiful 700-acre deer park, which was landscaped by ‘Capability’ Brown and immortalised in Turner’s paintings. The house houses an internationally important collection, which includes works by Van Dyck, Reynolds and Blake.


There is not much to see of this earthwork motte and bailey fortification as it is now almost completely over-green but it does provide a pleasant area in which to walk and explore.


Built in 1857, Shoreham is one of only two small forts and gun batteries built along the coast of Southern England to survive in anything like their original form. Was originally armed with six 68-pound guns and was home to two Officers, one Master Gunner and 35 NCOs and privates who were all housed in the barracks.


This National Trust property – with its views down to the Weald, along the Downs and out to sea – is well worth closer inspection on foot, by bike or even on horseback. With an unspoilt Sussex village at its heart, the Estate offers 1,400 hectares of woodland, downland, farmland and parkland to explore.


Many Royal visitors have been welcomed at Stansted Park, which was built as a hunting lodge 800 years ago. The award-winning house and grounds includes state rooms containing a fine collection of paintings, textiles and furnishings, an arboretum and its own light railway.


Sitting high on the South Downs above South Harting, this magnificent 17th Century stately home has been meticulously restored after a major fire in 1989. Highlight features are the complete Victorian servants’ quarters including tunnels, an 18th Century dolls’ house with original contents and a woodland walk.