With restrictions easing across England, please continue to follow government guidance and remember to plan ahead and check attraction websites before travelling. Take a look at our top tips on how to escape the everyday responsibly to see how you can make the most out of your day trips and breaks.
Eat breakfast at Judges Bakery
Grab an espresso and your pastry of choice from this famous Hastings bakery. Arrive early so you can nab an enormous Chelsea bun drizzled with icing, or maybe be more adventurous with a lime and sea salt brownie. There’s a tea room at the back if you want to sit and savour - just see if you can resist all the tempting treats displayed en route.
Be inspired at Hastings Contemporary
Get your day off to an inspiring start at Hastings’ celebrated seafront gallery. Championing modern and contemporary art, the gallery's exhibitions are a smorgasbord of works by important Modern British artists as well as internationally celebrated artists and breakthrough practitioners. Previous exhibitions have showcased works by the likes of Sir Quentin Blake and Jake & Dinos Chapman.
Take your camera for a stroll at one of its most photogenic spots: the brightly painted fishing boats juxtapose beautifully with the tall, black net huts. A fishing fleet still launches from the pebble beach, as it has since medieval times.
When it comes to seafood restaurants in Hastings, you’ll sample some of the finest at Rock A Nore Kitchen - fresh off the boats a few yards away. The modern menu takes its lead from the catch of the day, from Dover sole with cockles and capers to an exquisite take on cod and chips.
Explore the town in style on one of Bell’s rather good-looking bikes. Enjoy a gentle spin along the promenade or, if you want to tackle Hastings’ notorious hills, do yourself a favour and go for one of their whizzy electric bikes.
Check out Hastings’ pier - minimalist, sure, but a building of architectural wonder. There’s all sorts going on - gigs, cinema screenings, yarn bomb galleries - but there’s nothing quite like the simple joy of walking out to the end of the pier and just admiring the ever-restless English Channel.
Take a break from all that fresh seaside air with a visit to Hastings Museum & Art Gallery, where you can explore a wealth of art, culture and history from around the world. Go face-to-face with prehistoric creatures in the dinosaur gallery, or learn about the lives of Native North Americans through the museum's collections of colourful artefacts. And be sure to stop by the spectacular Durbar Hall, built all the way back in 1886 for the Indian and Colonial exhibition.
Revive yourself at Hanushka Coffee House
Hanushka Coffee House
Settle into a comfy chair at this atmospheric book cafe and you may never want to leave - especially once you’ve tried one of their special rainbow coffees featuring pretty peacock-esque patterns.
Exploring the Old Town is one of the ultimate things to do in Hastings. Follow the narrow ‘twittens’, or alleyways, to discover charming Tudor homes and hidden antique stores or join the throngs of alternative types shopping, eating al fresco or just hanging out on George Street.
Stepping into this candlelit store feels like travelling back in time, to a very chic version of the past. If you’ve never considered a household broom or feather duster art: think again. Book a table at the Kitchen found at the back of the shop where equal care and attention will go into the food on your plate.
Dragon Bar serves up a creative bistro menu to match its arty seaside location. Take your taste buds on a journey, with Spanish paella or Jamaican curried goat, or keep your feet firmly on these shores with succulent scallops adorned with edible flowers. One of the best restaurants in Hastings.
Brush shoulders with celebrities at the Crown
The Crown pub reigns supreme on every front, from the imaginative interior created by local craftspeople to the cool clientele (Jude Law was snapped here a while back). The food and drink follow suit... think lush local craft beers and seasonal small plates. Oh, and why not pick up a loaf of sourdough on your way out too.
Rest your head at the Old Rectory
The Old Rectory
Each of the eight bright and breezy rooms at this boutique B&B are named after Hastings streets. Luxuriate in All Saints, with its super-sized bed and hand-painted headboard, or tuck up in the cosy Rock A Nore, right at the top of the house.
Good to know
Venture a little further along the seafront to St Leonards for more interesting cafes, shops and pubs. And if the mood takes you, hop on a train to Bexhill (it’s a 10-minute ride) and visit the De La Warr Pavilion for art exhibitions, live music and rooftop pop-ups.