Photo of Petworth

About Petworth

Petworth is a picturesque market town in the South Downs of West Sussex, famed for its charming cobbled streets, Tudor houses and antique stores. A favourite weekend-away of the rich and rare of Mayfair, it has all the trappings of a self-contained English town: townhouses crawling with wisteria, country churches aglow with lavender and a whole host of lovely independent shops, making you feel as if you have stepped into a different century. Our collection of the best places to stay in Petworth tend to encapsulate this charm with a quintessentially old-world feel.

The architecture is understated and beautiful. The streets are lined with old houses - many of which date back to Elizabethan times - and charming oakwood pubs, antique stores, gourmet restaurants, art galleries and museums greet you as you stroll on by. The atmosphere of Petworth is incredibly warm: locals are friendly and very proud of their little town's history. This is self-evident in the still popular Petworth Fair, held on every November 20th since 1174, full of Punch & Judy shows, carousels and the roars of town criers. In all respects, this town is like an old postcard of Ye Old England, and therein lies its charm.

The town stands in the shadow of Petworth House, a 17th century stately home and one of the most famous of its kind in the United Kingdom. With a 700-acre deer park and a wall ringing around the land, it is fascinating to visit and is full of sculptures and artworks from the likes of Blake, Turner and van Dyck. The grounds it stands in were used for the filming of Elizabeth: the Golden Age, amongst other films. Amberley Castle, a 900-year-old castle once owned by Elizabeth I, is just 6 miles away and is fascinating to walk around. Adding to that is its impressive restaurant, it makes for a delightful afternoon sightseeing trip.

What not to miss

  • Historic sites: Petworth House is nearby, a 17th-century country mansion with a 700-acre deer park. It has a great collection of artworks and sculptures and makes for a wonderful day-out. Further afield is Amberley Castle, once owned by Elizabeth I.
  • Shopping: if you like small independent shops, Petworth is right up your street. Whether it's cute boutiques or high-quality antique stores, you will see why crowds of wealthy Londoners throng the streets on weekends.
  • Fairs: there are regular antique fairs held in Petworth, which are worth checking out. If you're lucky enough to be in town in November, go to the Petworth Fair - an event that has been going on since 1174 - which has a carousel, Punch & Judy shows and a town crier. The Petworth Farmer's Market is also a must-see.

This is not a big town so in order to ensure a spot at one of the best places to stay in Petworth we recommend booking well in advance.

The best places to stay in Petworth

Country escape

  • The Horse Guards Inn: on the outskirts of Petworth House, this charming inn has 3 rooms and is ideal for couples. Great for long rambles through the countryside, afterwards you can enjoy the delicious homely food they serve.
  • The Welldiggers Arms: really good value for money, this 4* hotel has 14 rooms decorated in a rustic-chic style. The restaurant serves seasonal, locally-sourced cuisine. Great for hiking.

Rural inns

  • The Angel Inn: is a picturesque pub located in the South Downs National Park. Charming rooms have traditional features, from exposed beams to original fireplaces and the restaurant serves a fresh, seasonal menu.
  • The Halfway Bridge: is a cosy inn with comfortable rooms serving superior pub grub and a warm atmosphere.

For an apartment or cottage

  • For something self-catered, we suggest looking at the options on our partner Booking.com's site which has a wide range of cottages and apartments in the nearby area.

Travel information

  • Fly to London Gatwick and get a train to Chichester Railway Station, where you can get a bus or taxi to Petworth.
  • If you want to rent a car, our partner Rentalcars, has a wide range of options.
  • Petworth has pleasant summer temperatures (May-August), averaging at around 21 degrees and this is the best time to go.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in Petworth

  • The Welldiggers Arms 14 rooms from £80

    Petworth

    The Welldiggers Arms offers 4* accommodation in the rural town of Petworth. ~The fourteen rooms are country chic in style - featuring plenty of muted tones and contemporary furnishings. Excellent food with a regularly changing seasonal menu. A cosy, smart and unassuming country getaway!

    Birdwatching  -  The Pulborough Brooks RSPB Nature Reserve is located just 5 miles away from The Welldiggers Arms
    Great walks  -  Make the most out of your location to spend your days hiking around the area
    Sights nearby  -  Go visit Arundel Castle, Arundel Cathedral or Amberley Castle
    Local markets  -  be sure to check out Petworth Farmers Market
    Check prices
  • The Horse Guards Inn 3 rooms from £85

    Petworth (West Sussex)

    On the outskirts of a 700-acre Petworth House, this wonderful homely inn is worth a detour just to experience its charm. Friendly staff, delicious food and a cosy atmosphere make for a thoroughly enjoyable stay - for families, couples and lone escapees.

    Country Escape  -  Located within the picturesque grounds of Petworth Estate this is a true country getaway
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the charming National Trust property of Petworth House
    Great walks  -  The South Downs boasts plenty of walking paths
    Quirky  -  An experience!
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays
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  • The Angel Inn 7 rooms from £130

    Petworth

    A picturesque inn located in the South Downs National Park. Charming rooms have traditional features, from exposed beams to original fireplaces. Groups can hire neighbouring Hyde House, a stately Georgian-era gem. The inn's restaurant offers a fresh, seasonal menu; an idyllic escape to the country.

    Back to Nature  -  Set in the breathtaking South Downs National Park, this is a great starting point to explore the natural landscape
    Families  -  There are lots of activities for families in the area, from cycling and hiking to horse riding
    Country Escape  -  Situated in a quiet village, this inn makes for a perfect country getaway
    Sights nearby  -  Visit Petworth House, a 17th-century listed country house, just five minutes' walk from the inn
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  • The Halfway Bridge 6 rooms from £140

    Petworth (West Sussex)

    Cosy inn with comfortable rooms serving superior pub grub and a warm atmosphere Ideal for couples exploring the Sussex countryside and groups wanting a good spot for a gathering.

    Local markets  -  The old market town of Petworth with its independant boutiques, cafes and antique shops is great for local exploring.
    Sailing  -  The seaside towns of Bogner Regis and Worthing are great for maritime activities.
    Great walks  -  The walking trails of the South Downs are accessible directly from the property.
    Sights nearby  -  The impressive Petworth House is just five minutes away and well worth a visit.
    Recommended by  -  Sawdays
    Check prices