With a diverse culture, lots to do and plenty of opportunities, it is no surprise that London is bursting at the seams with tourists and locals alike. But every now and again it’s nice to escape the crowds, leave your oyster card at home and head a little further afield for some fresh air and a different scene.
If a London Escape is something you are thinking about, then you’ve come to the right place! We’ve created a nifty little guide pinpointing some of the fantastic places that you can head to when you want a little break away from the capital.
Whether you consider yourself a bit of a culture vulture, fancy a romantic break or just want to head away with the family, we have a few ideas for you. The best thing about these escapes is that they are each roughly two hours or less from The City of London and we’ve picked out a few things that you can get up to in each area. We’ve even given you an interesting fact about each of the destinations, so that you can impress your travelling companions with your knowledge!
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Five Easy London Escapes
London is a great place, but there comes a time when we all need to escape the daily grind. Travel just a few hours, and you can find a spot that’s perfect for beach lovers, foodies, romantics, culture vultures or families…
Oxford for culture vultures
59.8 miles from London with a 1 hour & 17 minute drive or a 58 minute train journey
See: The impressive Bodleian Library, which is one of the oldest in the world
Do: Wander the cobbled streets and marvel at the 38 colleges that make up one of the world’s most famous universities
Don’t miss: Christ Church College, the largest and grandest building in the university complex and location for the Harry Potter films
Did you know? The oldest form of graffiti on record can be spotted at the bottom of the stairs in the Great Hall at Christ Church, it says ‘no peel’ and there are different stories as to what it refers to
Whitstable for beach lovers
61.2 miles from London with a 1 hour & 16 minute drive or train journey
See: The Tankerton Slopes with their rolling hills and colourful beach huts provide a great vantage point overlooking the coast
Do: Take in the town by foot so you don’t miss the quirky cafes and independent shops dotted around the old high street
Don’t miss: The nautical artefacts and art of The Whitstable Museum and Gallery, which also hosts special exhibitions 6 times a year
Did you know? Oysters are synonymous with Whitstable and have been harvested in the town since Roman times
Brighton for foodies
53.7 miles from London with a 1 hour 30 drive or a 1 hour train journey
See: The Lanes, a maze of quaint cobbled streets littered with traditional pubs, independent cafes and top notch eateries
Do: Eat at Riddle and Finns- classic seafood dishes are brought to life at this Brighton culinary institution
Don’t miss: The Royal Pavilion, an incredibly ornate structure that looks as if it would be more at home in India
Did you know? Brighton and Hove’s food and drink festival occurs twice a year and is one of the largest of its kind in the UK
Bath for romantic breaks
115 miles from London with a 2 hour 6 minute drive or a 1 hour 27 minute train journey
See: A panoramic view of the city from atop Bath Abbey’s 160 foot tower, a Grade I listed building featuring no less than 212 steps
Do: Take in the architecture of Bath’s iconic Roman bathhouse and treat yourself to a dip in the natural hot spring water of the Thermae Bath Spa
Don’t miss: Jane Austen’s house and visitor centre, a charming memorial to the late novelist who set two of her novels in the city
Did you know? Bath is the only whole UK city to be designated a world heritage site by UNESCO.
Stratford Upon Avon for families
109 miles from London with a 1 hour 46 minute drive or a 1 hour 59 minute train journey
See: The sciencey MAD Museum is brimming with odd contraptions, giving kids the chance to unleash their inner inventor
Do: Take the kids on the Stratford Treasure Trail; not only is it a great way to explore the city and get some exercise, but there’s also prizes to be won!
Don’t miss: A fun family workshop at the Royal Shakespeare Company; little ones can learn some of the bard’s famous lines before settling down to enjoy a show
Did you know? Shakespeare wrote 37 plays in his lifetime- an average of 1.5 a year!
Book your Escape
So if you’re looking for a short break from London, then what are you waiting for? Head over to the Sykes Cottages main page to browse our properties and book your getaway today!