As a Californian, there are certain things I do year-round. Barbecue, for example. Or wear far too few layers in the winter. And let’s not forget going to the beach. When I moved to London, I took those traditions with me. Which is how I found myself at the East Sussex beaches in February.

East Sussex Beaches

East Sussex Beaches

It’s not as bad as you think. The weather was as warm as it gets in the cold dead of winter, and there was a bright yellow thing in the sky that I used to know the name of before I moved to England.

Pett Beach in East Sussex

Cliff End Beach in East Sussex

I started out at Cliff End, which was part of Pett Beach in East Sussex. My friends and I walked up in the late afternoon, strolling over the seashell-studded stones as the waves sighed at the shore.

Cliff End Beach in East Sussex

All along the beach and out into the water, low wooden posts punctuated the view.

Shell on a Twig at Pett Beach

In the distance, seagulls nested in the sandstone cliffs, occasionally circling the sky to look for food.

Stone on a Log on Pett Beach

On the way back to Rye, where we were staying for the weekend, we stumbled upon Suttons Fish Shop, a little farm stand on Sea Road in Winchelsea.

Suttons Fish Shop in Winchelsea

It was brimming with beautiful produce and fresh seafood and game. We picked up a feast to barbecue for dinner, and continued on our way.

Sign at Suttons Fish Shop in Winchelsea

Camber Sands in East Sussex

The next day we were back at the East Sussex beaches. But this time it was Camber Sands, one of the best places on the seaside near London.

Like Cliff End beach, it was pebbly, but beautiful dunes backed the shore. In fact, Camber Sands has the only sand dune system in the area.

Dunes at Camber Sands Beach, East Sussex

Best of all, there were dogs everywhere. First we spotted a giant Newfoundland that sat down at the water’s edge and let the waves give him a salty bath.

Then came a 16-week-old black lab puppy that insisted on examining everything in smelling distance. We were in a canine paradise.

Camber Sands Beach in East Sussex

Best Beaches in East Sussex

But our golden afternoon at the East Sussex beaches couldn’t last a lifetime. The wind picked up, reminding us that it was, in fact, February, and my under-clothed Californian skin got goosebumps.

It was time to go back to Rye for another barbecue, completing my winter trifecta and getting me even more excited for my trip to San Francisco next week.

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East Sussex Beaches

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