Well, our holiday at Camber has finished, and we both survived. We had a nice routine, with me working (inefficiently) for the morning, then meeting for lunch. We then ‘did our own thing’ until 4pm, when we went to the beach, followed by tea, then Netflix until bedtime. All very civilised and relaxing. It was also nice to spend time with just Mum, to properly listen to her stories about the past, without having to rush off to do things. Camber Sands, out of season, is ideal for this.
We stayed in a holiday cottage on the White Sands estate, and this was ideal. Mum called it ‘Toy Town’ and with all the little houses, I know what she meant. We walked around, guessing which ones were rental homes and which ones were lived in. I’m assuming that most people don’t, by choice, have ornaments of sea-gulls and anchors in their normal homes. Many of the gardens were full of lavender, and it’s all very pretty.
There are a few places to eat in Camber, even out of season, though some were closed until July or working limited hours. So the fish and chip shop was only open in the evenings (though you can get very good fish and chips from the friendly man with a ponytail, in the cafe on the grass carpark, near beach C). We ate a couple of times in Dunes Bar (5* hygiene rating and friendly staff) and sometimes drove to The King’s Head in Playden (which has the above plus the best food, I think).
We had very good weather. It was always windy, but it was dry, and warm in the sand dunes. On Friday, the main road was quite busy, which gave a taste of how it must be in high season, when I imagine it would be fairly difficult to cross the road if you’re a slow walker (which one of us was).
The beach is flat and sandy – so great for kids wanting to build sandcastles or old ladies who like to paddle, or dogs who want to dig and bounce through waves. The east end of the beach is where all the water sports enthusiasts are allowed, and when the wind is right, you can see lots of coloured kites with mad people attached. (I did offer to pay for Mum to rent one, but she made lots of excuses.) The carparks all seem to have toilets, and there are plenty of bins to put your bags of dog mess (so no excuses for cleaning up after them people!)
However, the tide comes in unevenly, so you have to watch out so you don’t get cut-off. This can be dangerous for non-swimmers. And there are rip tides, which are dangerous for swimmers. They now have life-guards on duty (which I’ve never seen before) and signs telling you the tide times and where is safe to swim. One day there were jellyfish in the water, but I have come to Camber many times, and never seen them before, so perhaps we were just unlucky. Another hazard is towards the Rye end of the beach, where at low tide some of the sand is oily. It is the wet sand, and your feet sink into the sand and then come out black, which is very unpleasant, and bit of a worry with the dog, who was most unhelpful about being taken into the sea to be washed. I still maintain that wellies are the best footwear for a beach (see last week’s post).
The marshes around Camber are beautiful, and there are paths and cycle routes through them. You can hire bikes in Rye and Camber (ebike-hire.com 07960 587482). While we were there, the fields were full of poppies and chubby lambs and water birds.
So that’s it, a quick review of Camber Sands. If you would like to also borrow my mother to take for company, I’m sure that can be arranged.
Have a good week.
Love, Anne x