How to spend a day in Worthing
We don’t know about you but we’re hearing A LOT about Worthing at the moment. Brighton and Hove’s once sleepy neighbour has become a-buzz with an impressive art, indie and foodie scene – with many businesses (including local faves Hisbe, PizzaFace, To Be Worn Again, The Flour Pot and Boho Gelato) and Brightonians, making the few-mile move over. One writer who’s done just that is Shelley Welti – so who better to tell us how to spend a day out in her new hometown…
I may be biased (now I’m living here) but Worthing’s a fantastic place to visit – and there’s so much to see, eat and do, all within a walkable distance of the train station or main bus stop, making it the perfect place for a relaxed day trip or just a few hours out of the city. It was actually a day trip exploring the seaside town that had me hooked and encouraged my move – so I’m excited to share just a snippet of what makes Worthing so wonderful. Although I do really think you need to visit yourself, to experience it… are you ready?
If you’re coming for the day, start relatively early to make the most of it. Although Worthing is only 10 miles away – and approximately 25 mins on a direct train from Brighton or an hour on the 700 bus – so there’s no mad rush. Especially as there are so many brunch spots that serve tasty breakfast options all day too – don’t miss Malt on Montague Street (their sweet potato rosti with homemade kale pesto, slow-cooked tomatoes, wilted spinach and juicy portobello mushrooms is the stuff of dreams), or if French toast, Turkish eggs and breakfast tacos (accompanied by a Bloody Mary) tickles your taste buds, Finch on Warwick Street is a must. If you’re after pancakes, The Orchard on High Street and Spilt Milk Coffee Club on Chapel Road, are the places to head – both also have gluten-free and vegan options.
Whilst brunching, check out the tide to plan your day. This may seem like a strange thing to add to your plans, but if a dip or hiring a paddleboard or kayak (from K66, to the left of the pier) is high on your must-do list, it’s a good idea to take a note of the best time to get in the sea. Unlike in Brighton, when a sandy low-tide day sees what feels like the whole of the city take to the expanded beach to marvel in the magic, this happens in Worthing most days – with the sea going out as far as the pier!
If you’re not dipping or taking to the sea, mooch around Worthing’s charity and antique shops. It’s a bargain-hunter’s delight and a path much less trodden than in Brighton. Worthing’s West End is best for a mix of charity, second-hand and antique stores: Reginald Ballum on Rowlands Road is a definite highlight – the antique shop used to be a wine store, and has a cool basement of treasures to be explored. To Be Worn Again’s Worthing shop is also nearby for a vintage stock-up (their warehouse is in Worthing), while Chapel Road and Warwick Street are home to multiple charity shops for preloved finds.
Feeling peckish from all that snooping? Head to the seafront and get a light bite from Coast (sitting underneath their disco ball on the beach on a summer’s day, with some cheesy chips and a G&T in hand, feels like being on holiday), Beach House or Level 1 – a former car park floor now transformed into a space to meet and eat from local businesses including Skewered (Greek-inspired gyros), Pickles (juicy smash burgers) and Bao Haus (bao buns).
If you skipped breakfast or need a decent lunch, the family-owned seafood restaurant Crabshack with its fishy feasts overlooking the seafront should be on your lunch list. Or if you’re still full but fancy a little sweet treat to keep those energy levels up, Baked on Rowlands Road is your go-to for brownies and blondies, while Boho Gelato on Montague Street and Italian-owned G-Lite are your top picks for ice-cream.
For a post-lunch activity, take a stroll around Worthing’s independent stores. We have such a vibrant community of indie businesses here – special mentions go to Inspired Worthing, a collection of over 40 local artists and makers who sell their wares in this seafront hub, and Eclectic Home and First & Last, homeware stores conveniently next door to each other on The Broadway. Or if exploring the thriving arts scene is on your hit list, head on over to catch the latest exhibition at Colonnade House or Worthing Museum and Gallery.
Of course, no trip to a seaside town is complete without a sprinkle of nostalgia, so if you’re shopped and cultured out, grab your (mini) golf club and while away an hour or two putting on Splashpoint’s mini golf course, located in a peaceful garden right next to the beach.
Surely you’re hungry again after all that? It would be rude not to eat – Worthing’s quite the foodie town, after all. To end your day on a high, treat yourself to dinner at one of the town’s relaxed, yet stylish establishments.
MasterChef Champion Kenny Tutt’s Pitch restaurant may sadly be no more, but he’s now opened up a third outpost of his Patty Guys restaurant at Worthing’s Dome Cinema (worth a visit in its own right) if you’re after a fix of his smash burgers and tots.
For a breathtaking setting (and good food) Perch On The Pier is somewhere I always enjoy taking visitors. Opening in 2022, at the end of Worthing Pier, the Perch team have lovingly renovated and restored the Southern Pavilion to create an art deco-inspired space that pays homage to its glory days, while bringing it bang up to date with tasty dinner dishes, such as black lobster and crab ravioloni, Sri Lankan-style coconut dal and lamb shank tagine. While I would recommend Perch for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea too, I really love heading here for dinner. It’s a prime location for watching the sunset and toasting another dreamy day in Worthing.
And it’s even more of a destination now that Johnny Stanford (ex Alexander House and The Pass) has opened his relaxed fine-dining restaurant Tern. Head to the first floor for a five- or seven-course tasting menu and more epic views.
By Shelley Welti
Have we missed any of your Worthing faves? Let us know!