Durdle Door Jurassic Coast Sarah Latham

There’s no denying there are a LOT of things to see and do in London – but did you know that extends to its surrounds as well? Thanks to just how well connected England is by train and road and how close everything in this country is to each other, there are some magnificent London day trips you can partake on to truly make the most of your time being based in London. So if you’re ready to spend some of your time in London on day trips, read on to discover the best day trips from London.

Suggested read: Things to do in London

1. Ouse Valley Viaduct

Starting off the list of the best day trips from London strong with the Ouse Valley Viaduct. The underside of a train bridge found south of London, the Ouse Valley Viaduct is a photographer’s dream thanks to the incredible impression of infinity it creates. Due to its location, the Ouse Valley Viaduct is best accessed by car and can be found about a 90 minute drive out of London. To find this exact spot, read: How to get to the Ouse Valley Viaduct and then be sure to add it to your top London day trips list!

Ouse Valley Viaduct Sarah Latham

2. Cambridge

One of the most well known day trips from London, Cambridge is a must do for anyone visiting England. Famous for its university, Cambridge is a wonderful place to spend a day where you can wander through the town and, of course, go punting down the river. Cambridge is one of the very accessible day trips from London with direct trains between the two towns. Plus, the journey will take less than 90 minutes!

Cambridge Sarah Latham

3. Canterbury

And while we’re talking about quaint English towns, we can’t go pass Canterbury – another one of the fantastic day trips from London. Canterbury is found south-east from London and is basically what you imagine every British town to be like with charm, cute cobbled streets and etched with history. Whether you explore the cathedral, the town or (again, a popular choice!) go punting, this little town is guaranteed to impress. To find the best things to do in Canterbury, read: Things to do in Canterbury | Top Rated Attractions. Canterbury is found just 90 minutes outside of London by train making it one of the easy day trips from London, but if you want to extend your time in Canterbury like we did, read: Canterbury bed & breakfasts: The Black Horse Inn.

Sarah Latham Canterbury Westgate Gardens

4. Brighton

Ah Brighton, surely the most photographed beach town in all of England? Brighton is a very popular spot and easy to access on a day trip from London. Only an hour train will take you from the English capital to the pebbly beach where fish and chips, ice-cream and the famous pier are all waiting. Top tip: try and avoid timing this London day trip with a bank holiday (especially if there’s considerably good weather after a period of poor weather) as the trains will be exceedingly busy! Suggested read: Explore the Brighton Beaches around the world.

Brighton Pier England Sarah Latham

5. Great Missenden

If you’re a fan of Roald Dahl books, then this is the London day trip for you. Visit Great Missenden, a quaint village found just outside of the north-west of London, which is home to the very famous author. One of the most wholesome day trips from London, spend your time exploring the village Roald Dahl lived in as he wrote his famous children stories, visit his grave (complete with BFG footprints) and explore the Roald Dahl Museum, found in the centre of town. For more information on this London day trip, read: Great Missenden: A Roald Dahl day trip from London

Great Missenden Roald Dahl

6. Framlingham Castle – The Castle on the Hill

And while we’re on the topic of famous people – did you know that Ed Sheeran grew up in Framlingham? Another quaint village found in Suffolk in England. Framlingham is home to Framlingham Castle, which features in Ed’s top hit ‘Castle on the Hill’ – in fact, it is the castle on the hill that Ed Sheeran is singing about. Due to its location, this is one of the London day trips that is easier to reach by car. Here you can explore the town before partaking in a tour of Framlingham Castle and even watch the sunset – although, spoiler alert, the sun doesn’t actually set over the castle (and it’s a bit of a stretch to say this castle even sits on a hill!).

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham Framlingham Castle
We are sitting in the old moat here

7. Seven Sisters Walk

While London is known for being a concrete city, for those who love hiking and fresh air you are in luck. One of the best London day trips for just that is the Seven Sisters Walk in the south of England. We took a train to Eastbourne (more on this later), then hopped on a bus to take us to the start of the walk. From there we spent the day walking along the absolutely incredible coastline back to Eastbourne. While some fitness is required due to the inclines and declines of the walk, this is a popular London day trip for people of a range of ages.

Best Day Trips from London Seven Sisters Sarah Latham

8. Hampton Court Palace

Okay so technically this one isn’t exactly ‘leaving’ London, but given Hampton Court Palace is closer to the outskirts of London than the centre and is a fantastic way to spend a day, I’ve included it in this list of best London day trips. You can find Hampton Court Palace south-west of the centre of London. Famous for being home to Henry VIII, you can spend a day exploring the palace and the grounds and learn all about its history and grandeur. Find out more about Hampton Court Palace here.

Hampton Court Palace Sarah Latham

9. Stonehenge

A major English landmark and one to tick off the bucket list – say hello to Stonehenge! Stonehenge is found south west of London and is an incredible place to see in real life. It is so popular that there are many day trip tours out of London that will take you here – with many including other great London day trips such as Bath and Windsor Castle included in their day trip itinerary. You can find out more of the London Stonehenge day trips available here.

Stonehenge Sarah Latham

10. Eastbourne

As mentioned above, Eastbourne is a great part of a London day trip and can be easily combined with the Seven Sisters walk or visited by itself. Found on the southern coastline of England, you can visit Eastbourne by train. Those who are a fan of the Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging teen movie will also recognise many of the places on the Eastbourne promenade – in fact, this film was the main reason I had wanted to visit Eastbourne!

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham Eastbourne

11. Durdle Door and the Jurassic Coast

One of my favourite day trips from London is Durdle Door on the Jurassic Coast. One of the most photographed landmarks of the Dorset region, Durdle Door is a stunning spot with incredible views across the ocean. Soak them in as you walk along the cliff tops or hang out on the beach below. This is a particularly beautiful place to go as a London day trip on a clear, sunny day.

Durdle Door Jurassic Coast Sarah Latham

12. Hundred Acre Woods – yes, really!

It’s fair to say that England has produced many iconic characters and stories over the years and, of course, Winnie the Pooh is absolutely no exception. Escape London for the day by visiting Ashdown Forest, the real-life 100 Acre Woods. The author A. A. Milne would visit this forest and based locations in the book on spots in the forest. You can download a trail map to find these spots, play Pooh Sticks on the official Pooh Bridge and find cute Winnie the Pooh houses (like in the photo below!). Find out more about Ashdown Forest and the Hundred Acre Woods here.

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham Ashdown Forest 100 Acre Wood

13. Whitstable

There are no shortage of seaside day trips from London in England. Another popular spot to explore is Whitstable. Found close to Canterbury, Whitstable is accessible within 90 minutes from London Victoria Station and is a great place to come – especially if you’re a fan of Oysters! Oysters have been harvested in Whitstable since the time of the Romans and you will find them served at the many restaurants, cafes and beach shacks dotted across the village.

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham Whitstable

14. Bekonscot Model Village and Railway

Now this is one of the London day trips that will leave you feeling very wholesome indeed – the Bekonscot Model Village and Railway is found just outside of London and is very impressive. Get here by catching a 30 minute train from London Marylebone Station to Beaconsfield Station and spend an hour or so wandering through the world’s oldest original model village. You can find out more of what to expect here.

15. Birmingham

Swap a day in London city for a day in Birmingham city. Thanks to the UK’s fast trains, you can reach Birmingham in less than 90 minutes, making it one of the easy day trips from London. From a quirky city centre to a thriving food scene, you can discover the best things to do in Birmingham here.

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham Birmingham

16. Bath

Bath is a World Heritage English town found near the border of South Wales. You can reach this town from London Paddington Railway Station in about 80 minutes and it is one of the fantastic day trips from London on offer. Explore The Roman Baths, eat a Bath Bun and tick off the Instagrammable locations in Bath.

Bath Instagrammable Sarah Latham COPYRIGHT

17. Bristol

One of the best things about day trips from London is that there are so many options and Bristol is a fantastic one. Explore the home of Banksy, snap a picture at the beautiful coloured and iconic Bristol houses and don’t forget to admire the view of the Clifton Suspension Bridge as well! You can find out more about what to see on this day trips from London here: The Bristol Tourist: Things to see in Bristol.

Bristol Colourful Houses Sarah Latham COPYRIGHT

18. Plane spotting at Myrtle Avenue

A perfect day trip (or half-day trip) from London is visiting Myrtle Avenue near Heathrow Airport. If you’re a fan of planes, photography or just want to do something a little bit different and cool, this is an easy way to spend a day on the outskirts of London. Find out exactly how to get here (including timing, which is very important: Myrtle Avenue: Heathrow’s plane spotting road).

Myrtle Road Heathrow Plane Spotting Road London Sarah Latham Copyright

19. Windsor

Say g’day to the royals and visit Windsor for the day. Found on the outskirts of London, Windsor is famed for being home to Windsor Castle, The Long Walk, Eton College and the Crooked House of Windsor and is a must do, one of the best day trips from London.

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham Windsor

20. Harry Potter Day Trips from London: 4 Privet Drive

Fan of Harry Potter? Well in addition to discovering all the Harry Potter locations in London, including the real birthplace of Harry Potter, be sure to visit Bracknell, just outside of London. If you have a car, this day trip from London is easily combined with a Windsor day trip. Head over to 12 Picket Post Close, Bracknell and you’ll find the filming location of 4 Privet Drive. Just remember to respect the owner’s privacy, don’t knock on their door, enter their land and dawdle around.

Best Day Trips from London Sarah Latham 4 Privet Drive

21. Lacock

For those who like Harry Potter (or just love a beautiful village), Lacock is another one of the great day trips from London. Get here by hopping on a train to Chippenham and then a local bus to Locack. Suggested read: All of the Harry Potter filming locations at Lacock.

Sarah Latham Harry Potter Lacock

22. The Cotswolds

While the Cotswolds is often a longer weekend to week trip, it is possible to see a few of the Cotswolds highlights on a day trip from London – especially if you have access to a car and can run your own itinerary. When visiting the Cotswolds on a day trip from London be sure to add Castle Combe or Bibury village to your list. Suggested read: The cutest places to see near the Cotswolds.

Sarah Latham Copyright Castle Combe Cotswolds

23. Oxford

Home to one of the most famous universities in the world, and an incredible destination to explore on its own, Oxford is a very easy (only 50 minutes from London Paddington Station by train) day trip from London. When you’re here be sure to snap a picture at the Radcliffe Camera, drink at the Turf Tavern and book a guided tour to the Bodleian Libraries. Suggested read: How to find all the Harry Potter filming locations in Oxford.

Sarah Latham Copyright Oxford

24. Gloucester

Another one of the easy day trips from London (thanks to UK trains!) is Gloucester. This city is found near the Cotswolds and is a must for those a fan of Harry Potter filming locations or just interested in beautiful cathedrals.

Sarah Latham Copyright Gloucester Cathedral Harry Potter

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