Walking Around Chichester & Arundel Castle

Everyday we have walked averaging five to six miles a day, and at our next stop that walk began in Chichester, a county town in West Sussex with a long history of settlements from the Roman and Anglo-Saxon times.

Lucky for us we arrived on market day, so as we walked around town we people watched and checked out what was being sold. The vegetables, olives, and bread looked wonderful and I was inspired to cook. However, as that was not possible we moved on for a quick visit to Chichester Cathedral, which in 1067 had been built on top of an important Roman city. While the exterior of the building is Gothic, inside there was an eclectic mix of in situ Roman mosaic floors, 14th century tombs, and 1960’s tapestries, robing the venue of its historic identity. We continued on to Pallant House Gallery, and enjoyed their modern art exhibits and a lovely lunch in the Pallant Café. I find that the majority of art museums I have visited around the world have a café or restaurant that serves excellent food; this café was no exception.

As we had not walked enough, we headed to Arundel Castle, the restored home of the Dukes of Norfolk. And as with most castles it was way up on a hill—way up. I therefore opted to hop on a shuttle that dropped us off at one of the lovely gardens—and there are many. There is an organic kitchen garden, a white garden, a cut flower garden, the Collector Earl’s Garden, the rose garden, and even more gardens whose names I cannot remember. We walked through them all and they were lovely! We then walked to the castle and walked through the castle, which as mentioned before is the family home of the Duke of Norfolk. I get confused with all the different titles, but from what I read the Duke of Norfolk is in charge of state ceremonies such as coronations and funerals. The restoration of the castle and grounds, as well as the presence of tourists and employees necessary to watch over the tourists negates the sense of history which goes back 1,000 years. But it still was a worthwhile visit because of the wonderful gardens.

I was exhausted and happily drove along the River Arun to the Black Rabbit Pub, where we enjoyed views of the river and okay pub food. We don’t normally eat at pubs, but we were after all in England and whenever we return home someone wants to know if we went to a pub—now we can say we did. We then returned to our hotel, the Hilton Avisford Park, Arundel, which they refer to as a “character property” because the hotel occupies an old Georgian manor house with no elevator—more walking! But it does have a golf course, which I know my husband would like, and as the West Sussex area is very picturesque a return trip might be in the future.

 

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