We’ve been promised a week or two of unseasonably delicious weather so have been thinking back to a few of my favourite day trips from London worth pulling a sickie for. We’re talking lovely beaches, ancient history and lovely rambles in nature, soaking up all of that sunshine.
Sure, the classics are pretty amazing; Bath, Oxford, Cambridge, Stratford-Upon-Avon, The Cotswolds & Stonehenge/Salisbury, Brighton, York… I could blather on. The key to any good day trip is booking ahead (use my tips to escape London on a budget), using railcards and having snacks on hand. And taking a phone charger.
It could be the last chance saloon for sunshine and sneaking away from the office before Christmas. Tumbling out of the car after a quick brunch (Rye style, rather than Kiwi-style) we dashed onto the sand and straight into the sea (handbags, shoes and magazines clutched under our arms). Once our bones were saturated with vitamin-D, we dodged the crowds, turned tail and headed towards the pub for a relaxed evening of local wine, nipping between chalets bargaining and a rather epic ice cream parfait.. Learn about a day trip to Rye here.
Every corner of York is beautiful. Especially on a crisp early autumn evening as the dusk is falling and you are enroute to a cozy bar where you’ll settle in for a few libations and celebrations of yore(k). Learn more here. York is always one of my favourite day trips from London.
The slightly-less well known cousin of Margate, Broadstairs is simply lovely. I lucked into all of the Great British seaside traditions; jauntily painted sea huts, Viking history, fish and chips, kids racing around with joy, the crash of waves, silky sand settling between toes, soft-serve ice cream melts and seagulls cry over fishing boat hauls. Ps. Get in a local cab to Botany Bay for an hour or two. Read on about my spontaneous day trip to Broadstairs Beach.
Forget snow-white steeds tossing their manes and knights in chain mail baring swords. All the modern princess of today needs is a train ticket, a great friend with exquisite taste in music and a glass of bubbly in the sunshine. Disclaimer: we were guests of Hever Castle. Leaving London quickly behind (it’s only a 40-minute train ride, the perfect day trip from London Bridge Station.) Learn more here.
You won’t find a friendlier county than Lincolnshire, well, except if you’re one of their sworn Yorkshire frenemies; the cross Humber rivalry runs deep in their bones. Especially on the football field. Lincolnshire is the perfect place to hop on a train or take a leisurely roadtrip – one of those ones where you have plenty of time and dimble into local pubs for dinner (after fish and chips on the seafront for lunch obviously.)
With a grand cathedral, roman ruins, quirky pubs, insanely grand coffee shops, leering gargoyles, a medieval clock tower and English Heritage listed train signal box, St Albans is a perfect afternoon wander.
We played holiday roulette this summer – with travel still limited to the UK, booking somewhere to stay has been competitive to say the least. In the title of this blog post I promised to share all the things to do in Felixstowe, but honestly the most important for my friend and I was switching off our busy brains and revel in the sound of the ocean. (All those negative ions; I’ll explain shortly…)
Simply couldn’t resist my favourite recent discovery. With a burgeoning foodie scene, knights of the round table and mysterious statues in flooded cathedral vaults, why would you want to? Winchester was fabulous.
Bletchley Park had been on my ‘must do list’ for far too long. The crazily designed mansion house, the World War Two secrets, code cracking and Alan Turing connection – just all of it. I must have said to myself a hundred times ‘right, this weekend we go’ before being overwelmed with a hundred excuses – other tasty offers, causes for procrastinating about chores or simply a dismal grey rainy day. Bletchley Park was so interesting – and the perfect place for a leisurely picnic.
You can see how these all made my list of my favourite day trips from London – and trust me, they’re well worth pulling a sickie for. I may just have to pull a fast one over my non-existant boss…
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