Chichester AONB tourist information

Chichester Harbour, West Sussex

Visit Chichester Harbour

Chichester Harbour is located on the south coast of England, to the west of the town of Chichester.

The region consists of a flooded river valley, comprising three main channels, in an undeveloped stretch of coastline, providing ample opportunities for wildlife to thrive - especially birdlife, with a large number of water based birds finding the ideal habitat.

As well as the water based region, there are also large areas of wetland and low-scale farming which further contribute to the diversity of wildlife.

The region has been designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in part to protect this valuable environment - especially unusual in the over-developed south of England.

Although it is possible to reach the inhabited parts of Chichester Harbour by road, it is preferable to explore by boat (see 'sailing' below).

Chichester Harbour villages and towns

Apart from the larger town of Chichester there are several smaller towns and villages of note in and around Chichester Harbour:

  • Birdham
  • Bosham (historically known as Broadbridge) - attractive village with harbour, sailing club and notable saxon church tower
  • Bracklesham and Bracklesham Bay - coastal resort
  • Chidham
  • East Wittering - coastal resort
  • Emsworth - town to the north of Chichester Harbour
  • Fishbourne
  • Havant
  • Itchenor
  • Langstone
  • West Wittering - coastal resort

Sailing in Chichester Harbour

Sailing is among the most popular pastimes in the harbour region, with several marinas available, but note that care is needed when entering the harbour since there are a couple of significant difficulties and obstacles just below the water. Entrance is between Selsey and Hayling Island.

Several of the communities have their own sailing clubs, and it is said that more than 10,000 boats are regularly moored within Chichester Harbour.

If you don't have your own boat, there are opportunities to take boat trips within the harbour region to enable you to better appreciate the landscape, departing from Itchenor.

Nearby

  • Chichester - outside the designated area of natural beauty, Chichester itself is an attractive town with a well known cathedral
  • Queen Elizabeth Country Park, a lovely region of traditional mixed woodland where you can enjoy a peaceful walk (we visited in autumn, when the trees were just turning golden, especially beautiful!)

Map of Chichester Harbour and places nearby