The Otter Channel

UK England South East England East Sussex Rye

  • Campfires allowed
  • Dogs welcome
  • Beaches nearby
  • Good walks nearby
Spacious, nature-friendly camping with campfires on the banks of the River Rother

Rare, elusive but wonderfully beautiful, there aren’t many otters in the south east of England. But when one was first spotted, for the first time in over 50 years, it was the River Rother that it called home. It’s a prime patch for it to have chosen, the waters glistening, the shaggy grass banks providing hiding nooks and shade. What a joy then, down river, on the quiet banks of that same waterway, to find another rare and beautiful thing: a low-key campsite with nature at it’s heart.

On the edge of the High Weald, three miles from Rye, the Otter Channel is a great escape for those looking to step away from their phone and enjoy the wonder of wildlife. There are less than 20 pitches here in total, but oodles of space, and the site offers splendid views over open farmland and the hills of the old shoreline that was once Romney Marsh before it joined the sea. It’s a great home for local wildlife, with grass left long around the edges, surrounding trees to climb and the flowing Rother alongside. Just sitting by the river is a great way to spend an afternoon, spotting the dragonflies, rising fish and, if you’re lucky, the piercing blue Kingfisher.

The site feels as natural as its setting: Campfires are allowed, there's a shop inside a horsebox and adventurous campers can try the three ‘Hot Bucket’ showers. Bathing under the stars with water you’ve boiled on the campfire is an experience to remember and, if you’re brave enough to rise to the challenge, you get to wear it like a badge of honour for the rest of the trip. There’s a real technique to the process but learning it is just as fun as the shower itself and if you’re feeling, well, a bit boring, then there are normal showers available too.

Kayaks and paddle boards are available to hire to make the most of the river during your stay but, for those looking to explore further afield, Pett Level beach has amazing cliff lines and is a great place to go crabbing. Some of the beach isn’t suitable for small children – it’s very rocky and bruised knees and feet are somewhat unavoidable – but it’s a fun day out for older kids and adults, and historic Hastings, Battle and Bodiam Castle are also within a half-hour drive too.

Details

Facilities

There are toilets, showers (‘normal’ and bucket type), a basic washing up area and a small farm shop operating from inside a horse trailer. Grills and fire pits are provided and firewood is available to buy from the shop.

Suitable For

Tents, groups, kids and dogs – yes. Caravans and campervans – no.

Nearby

The River Rother itself offers huge amounts of fun, from paddle boarding and kayaking to swimming – equipment is available to hire from Epic Life (07377184505). If you take a ten-minute drive to the town of Rye, you’ll be able to explore it in all its medieval glory. One of the most complete medieval towns left in England, its cobbled, windy streets are perfect for history buffs with its various antique shops, including The Mint and its fascinating Rye Art Gallery (01797222433). If that’s too much, climb to the top of St. Mary’s Spire for views of the whole town in one place, plus the estuary leading to Camber Sands. Once you see Camber Sands you might as well go there, it’s a short distance from Rye (or a fifteen-minute drive from the campsite). The beach is backed by cafés and restaurants and can get very busy in the summer months but it’s great for sandcastle building and a swim.

Food & Drink

There are several scenic walks across farmland to the local village of Peasmarsh. It’s about 20 minutes to The Royal Oak (01797 230494) and The Horse and Cart (01797 230034). Both are dog friendly and have beautiful gardens and the latter serves fine pizzas. In Rye, try Webbe’s at The Fish Café (01797 222210) set inside a characterfully converted warehouse space and with a focus on fresh, local seafood and sustainable cookery.

Open

April–September.

Why book with Cool Camping?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
  • Instant booking confirmation
  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

The Owner Says

In the heart of the East Sussex and Kent border is the location of the The Otter Channel campsite. It’s located on the edge of the River Rother which flows into Rye and out to sea. Surrounded by wildlife, twittering birds, mooing cows, stunning views, and in the summertime, the sound of the combine harvesting in the surrounding fields. It is the ideal place to mute the phone or even turn the phone off and enjoy that glass of your favourite tipple by the campfire.

There are two compostable toilets which have been especially designed for The Otter Channel and eventually the ‘compost’ ends up back in our veggie patch! Don’t worry we do not sell the veg in the shop. There are three ‘Hot Bucket’ showers for the more adventurous and brave of the campers. It really is an experience to shower under the stars with water you have boiled on the campfire. There is a huge technique to the showering process, but learning it is just as fun. With washing up being the worst bit of camping, there is a basic washing up area, just to make it a little less painful. At The Otter Channel we always believe it is the Kid’s job, definitely not the Chef’s. 

Pitches

Around 20 spacious pitches in a grassy riverside field.

Otter Channel

Grass pitch Sleeps 6 15 Available
A spacious pitch on one of The Otter Channel grassy fields with stunning views of farmland. Suitable for Tents only.

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Location

Contact The Otter Channel, Wittersham Road, Peasmarsh, East Sussex TN31 6TD

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Getting There

You’ll likely be coming from the A259 to get to the campsite. If so, head northeast on the Winchelsea Road towards the Kettle o’Fish roundabout. Once you’ve reached the roundabout, take the third exit onto the A259. Continue for just over half a mile until you reach the next roundabout, then take the first exit onto Fishmarket Road (the A268). Stay on this road for a mile, then follow the slight right bend that leads on to Iden Road (the B2082). Follow this road for a little over two miles and you’ll find yourself on Wittersham Road before seeing the The Otter Channel signposted.

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Why book with Cool Camping?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
  • Instant booking confirmation
  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

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