Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Winter Weekend in London, Part 3 | Brighton & Seven Sisters Cliffs

There was one last thing on our bucket list for our little London getaway, and it included an escape from the city altogether.

After a bit of plotting and planning, we kicked off our morning with a walk to Victoria station where we hopped on a train destined for Brighton.

Our first destination was to the Breakfast Club for a bite to eat, and then we made a beeline for the beach.

A stroll down the rocky stretch led us up to the pier, where we took our time people watching and exploring.

The sun had come out, and we shed our coats in the newfound warmth.

Seagulls basked alongside strangers as everyone found their own patch of sun.

The day was perfect, the sun bright, and we waved at the few swimmers who braved the cold water.

We took our time exploring until it turned into late morning, and then we found our way back to the train station.

Our trip was quick, and we found ourselves pulling in to the tiny Seaford station before long. We were on a mission to see the Seven Sisters cliffs, an alternative we had discovered to the White Cliffs of Dover.

Seaford was quite a bit colder than Brighton - because of the wind more than anything, so we took off on the path along the ocean and climbed towards the cliffs.

One little stop to peer at the adorable beach huts later...

And we were back on our way.

I'd spent my fair share of time exploring the parks of London when I was a student there, and often went on hikes back in northern Florida, but nothing compared to the air I was breathing in that park overlooking the ocean.

The long grass swayed with every gust of wind, and the sheep grazed quietly just a hundred steps away from me. The ocean, in it's vast, sparkling expanse, shone beneath the clouds straining to cover the evening glow of the sun. Rocky cliffs rolled out underneath me, and only a few strangers crossed our path on the hike.

It left me breathless.

One phone call to my best friend later (I had to tell her how unbelievable it all was, while E & S snapped photos farther down the path), and we turned back.

We had a final date with Meg that evening in London, and a few trains to catch in between.

If you ever get the chance to romp through the park and see the cliffs, take it.

We chose to forego a car rental or a guided tour, and found the trip to be relatively easy (provided you're willing to take quite the little hike). Trains from London to Brighton and on to Seaford are fairly frequent, and the walk from the train to the park is only about 25 minutes - most of it along the beach.

Seaford is a lovely little town. While we spent little time actually wandering around there, I felt comfortable and welcomed almost immediately. Locals were friendly and the pace of life felt perfect. It took just a few minutes for me to start house shopping, pointing out which beachfront cottage I'd like and where I'd walk the dogs each day.

The cliffs of Dover are beautiful, and no doubt worth a visit, but the ability to stroll through such a beautiful stretch of grassy clifftop park and be greeted with a stunning view of the Seven Sisters Cliffs is one of a kind.

I urge you to go. If not to these cliffs, than to any natural wonder you can find near you. Submerging in nature gives such a genuine experience of recharging your mind and resetting your priorities.

And with that, we went home.

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