London x London

Posted on 21st November 2023 Categories Things to do

By: Author Lotte Reford

19 Delightful Weekend Getaways from London for Your Next Break

19 Delightful Weekend Getaways from London for Your Next Break

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Let’s face it, we’re all in need of a break. Although the city at the weekend is a fabulous place, these cheeky weekend trips away from London are the perfect spots to unwind, take time out and discover a new destination. 

Think about it, when’s the last time you got out of the city? That’s right, you deserve a little holiday. So, here’s a guide to the best weekend getaway spots accessible from London. 

Some are perfect for city breaks, others just right for getting some much needed time outdoors, not to mention a few luxurious spa escapes . We’ve even included a few overnight trips from London that seem built for romance (I’m not blushing – you’re blushing). 

Get your overnight bag ready my friends, you’re going on a mini break!

The Best Weekend Getaways from London 

Oxford .

Perfect for: History, art, and culture. Oxford is also pretty romantic, so a good couple’s retreat. 

Radcliffe Camera Oxford

Oxford is like something out of a picture book, all cobbled streets, dreaming spires, and pubs with literary pedigrees. Which is probably why it’s such a popular choice for a weekend trip from London.

If you’re an arty type, you can visit the world famous Ashmolean museum and wander the streets taking in the architecture. But the real joy of Oxford is that whatever you do there, it feels intellectual. We mean, even a trip to the pub takes on another meaning when you realise it’s CS Lewis and JRR Tolkein’s favourite boozer.

How to get there: Oxford is a tight 53 minutes from Paddington station on the train, with no changes. 

Where to stay: Malmaison Oxford isn’t your typical boutique hotel. For one thing, it’s housed in a converted prison. Rooms normally start at £195, check out rates and availability .

Perfect for: Exploring independent coffee shops, slow fashion boutiques, and independent eateries. A city break that remains relaxing. 

Bristol

Bristol is undeniably cool. In fact, the Montpellier area of the city was recently judged the UK’s coolest neighbourhood.

Ever a hub of activism, Bristol was named the country’s first Cycling City in 2008 so if you enjoy life on two wheels then bring your bike on the train with you. 

Popular attractions in Bristol include Clifton Suspension Bridge and the SS Great Britain, but if wonders of Victorian engineering aren’t your idea of fun you can spend your weekend in the city’s excellent independent record shops, coffee shops and bars instead. 

How to get there: The train takes 1 hour 44 minutes from Paddington.

Where to stay: With amazing freestanding baths in every room and a spa, the Harbour Hotel is the best place to stay in Bristol for full-on relaxation. Rooms start at £195, but rates vary have a look at prices and availability . 

Perfect for: Spontaneous summer beach weekends. 

Brighton

Many people would rank Brighton as the best weekend escape from the city, ourselves included. In fact, it’s so close you can easily hop to the beach for a cheeky one-night getaway from the capital.

There are many sides of Brighton, from Victorian terraces to donuts on the pier to LGBTQ+ venues to rival London. Brighton’s thriving foodie scene means you have drinking and dining options galore – we’d recommend Burnt Orange for its wood-fired mediterranean treats.

But, of course, the main draw is the beach! It’s pebbles rather than sand, but that doesn’t stop Brighton residents and visitors alike from enjoying it.

How to get there: Brighton is 1 hour from London Bridge by train.

Where to stay: The Artist Residence Brighton offers gorgeous, period rooms with a modern twist from £174 a night. Check rates and availability here . 

North Norfolk

Perfect for: The seaside, but wild. 

Norwich Houses

North Norfolk is a fantastic weekend getaway that feels as though it should be much further from the city than it is. 

The salt flats of North Norfolk are breathtaking, and offer long, windswept walks out to desolate beaches. 

You’ll also be impressed by the seafood, cheese, and even the railway. Seriously, the Poppy Line runs from Sheringham to Holt, with Victorian carriages and the option of afternoon tea. 

How to get there: You can reach Sheringham in 3 hours from Liverpool Street by train, changing at Norwich. 

Where to stay: Dales is a gorgeous English country house hotel set on 4 acres of National Trust parkland. Prices start at £179 a night but check rates and availability .

Perfect for: A beach holiday with a little culture and history thrown in. The Kent countryside is also lovely, though. 

Margate - Kingsgate Bay

Margate has long been an overlooked gem but things have really changed in the past decade. This seaside town’s beach rivals Brighton’s (and it’s sandy!) and the seafront is all Georgian townhouses, so the view is amazing in every direction! 

Londoners have been day tripping to Margate for a while now, but why not make that day trip into a weekend getaway? 

There’s more to Margate than beaches and “Kiss-me-Quick’ hats – for a start there’s the Turner Contemporary gallery, then spend some time browsing vintage shops, frequenting cute cafes and finding irresistible seafood spots.

How to get there: Margate is about 1.5 hours from St Pancras or Victoria by train. 

Where to stay: Located just a minute from the Winter Gardens and a few more from Margate’s seafront, The Victoria Hotel is exceedingly convenient for all this Kent seaside town has to offer. The period rooms start at £204 a night. Why not check out availability now?

Perfect for: Long walks and wildlife, with the option of town comforts. 

Cotswolds

The Cotswolds is a great destination if you want to spend some serious time outdoors. 

You have two options for staying in the Cotswolds if you’re travelling mostly by train. You can go to Cheltenham and enjoy a balance of town and country life, including a lovely 1930s lido in the summer, or make your way to Moreton-in-Marsh and keep things rural. 

Whatever you choose, you’re sure to be charmed by the area’s rolling green countryside. Especially after the hustle and bustle of London. 

How to get there: Cheltenham is 2 and a half hours from London, changing in Bristol. Morton-in-Marsh is 1 and a half hours from London, changing in Oxford. 

Where to stay: Cheltenham is an old spa town, with all the regency romance you would expect from one. Stay at No. 38 the Park for a real taste of period luxury. Rooms start at £145 per night.

The Gower Peninsula

Perfect for: Getting back to nature and exploring historical sites. 

Gower Peninsula

This wild slice of Wales probably doesn’t leap to many people’s minds when they’re considering weekend getaways from London, but do you know what? Wales is closer than you think!

This southwestern corner of the country also has the honour of being the UK’s first area of outstanding natural beauty, which presumably means it’s the absolute best looking part of the UK. 

How to get there: The train to Swansea is 2 hours and 45 minutes, and to get to Oxwich Bay or Gower you’ll need to take local buses from there. The drive from London is around 4 hours. 

Where to stay: Stradey Park Hotel and Spa in Llanelli is a converted Edwardian country house right on the coast. Rooms usually start at £150 per night, but you should check rates and availability . 

Perfect for: History and culture by the sea. 

Rye

Rye is probably the cutest town in East Sussex, and that’s really saying something.

Lost in the steep, twisting, cobbled lanes it’s easy to imagine Rye back in the 1800s when it was full of smugglers. Now, though, you’ll find more art galleries and boutiques than swarthy sea dogs. 

There’s still the beach, of course, which is another fantastic place to wander thoughtfully as you enjoy your cheeky getaway from London. Speaking of beaches, if you’re in the area, definitely visit Camber Sands, a beautiful and unspoiled expanse of sand – get the 102 bus from Rye, which departs hourly.

How to get there: Rye is about an hour from St Pancras, with a change at Ashford International. 

Where to stay: Jeake’s House on Mermaid Street is a quirky, and slightly over the top seaside B&B. Rooms start at £146 per night. Check rates and availability. 

Perfect for: Both historical city breaks and access to the Yorkshire Moors. 

York Minster

Known for its Minster, cute alleyways and 13th Century pubs, York is a city that shouts Britishness from the rooftops. 

That’s probably why it’s so popular with international tourists, and yet it’s often overlooked as a London weekend getaway location.

The old town within the city walls is a historical experience, but you’re also only 45 minutes from the Moors when you’re in York. Why not plan a city-break, walking-break combo when you choose York for the weekend?

How to get there: Amazingly, York is just 1 hour and 52 minutes from King’s Cross by train. 

Where to stay: Grays Court Hotel sits right by York Minster, and offers views over the city walls. The historic property also has a 2-Rosette restaurant with popular tasting Rooms start at £200 check rates and availability.  

Perfect for: Picturesque city breaks with plenty of art and culture. 

Edinburgh

Scotland’s capital city is one of the most beautiful urban areas in the UK. It’s also on the coast, stuffed full of museums, galleries and parks, an entertainment powerhouse, and it has a literal mountain in the middle of it!

Of course, people flock to Edinburgh for the Fringe every summer, or almost every summer at least, but the city has plenty to offer year round. In fact their Hogmanay (New Year) celebrations are world famous. 

How to get there: From King’s Cross, Edinburgh is a 4 hour and 46 minute fast train away. 

Where to stay: If you don’t mind splashing some cash on your big international weekend trip from London, then try The Witchery By The Castle , which drips with Gothic Scottish glamour. Rooms are available from £395 per night, but prices vary by season and suite. Why not check rates and availability now?

Perfect for: Romantic weekend getaways, relaxation and a touch of history. 

Bath

An extremely convenient weekend getaway from London, Bath combines regency spa town, southwest cool (being right next to Bristol) and Roman history.

You can visit the Roman baths themselves if you’re visiting for pure relaxation, or simply wander the grand centre of town and imagine yourself to be a lady or gentleman there to take the waters.

There’s an abundance of independent tea rooms, coffee shops, pubs, and arty boutiques dotted around Bath too, so it’s an easy place to while away a weekend. 

Where to stay: Number 15 Great Pulteney Hotel and Spa offers boutique townhouse accommodation in the heart of Bath. Rooms start at £235 per night. Check prices and availability.  

Perfect for: Exploring the historical town, or enjoying nature in the Mendips. 

Frome - Catherine Street

Frome (hint: rhymes with ‘room’) is a lovely market town in East Somerset, an area often ignored when it comes to weekend trips from London.

Sitting on the edge of the Mendips, Frome is hilly and elevated and offers both a great town centre for weekending and access to the hills. 

You’ll find mediaeval buildings and independent shops and eateries in Frome all year, but why not time your visit for the Frome Festival or, even better, the annual Agriculture and Cheese Show! A weekend built around cheese sounds like a pretty good use of your break from London to us!

How to get there: Frome is 3 hours and 8 minutes from Paddington, with a change in Westbury. 

Where to stay: If you’re in a mediaeval town, why not stay at a mediaeval inn? The Archangel is just that, with a history as accommodation dating back to 1311. Rooms start from £95 per night, though you should check dates and prices before booking. 

Perfect for: Romance and rambling. 

New Forest

Visit Brockenhurst in the New Forest for a weekend of rambling. Walks are unlikely to run out, with 140 miles of trails to explore including a secret coast and miles and miles of ancient forest.

And if you do manage to get tired of the forest? Well, the village of Brockenhurst itself is quaint, historical, and a lovely place to spend a day. 

As a complete contrast the New Forest is also home to the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu (pronounced ‘Bewlee”), with a collection of over 280 vehicles spanning over 120 years.

How to get there: From Waterloo, Brockenhurst is 1 hour and 32 minutes on the train. 

Where to stay: There are plenty of country house hotels around Brockenhurst, but our favourite is Careys Manor Hotel and Spa. Rooms start at £200 per night, but do check prices and availability .

South Downs

Perfect for: Enjoying nature.

South Downs

The South Downs National Park stretches from Winchester, England’s first capital city, all the way to the cliffs of Eastbourne. Of course, even if you’re a seasoned walker you’re unlikely to cover it all in one weekend getaway from London, but that just means you can keep coming back.

Winchester is the easiest entrance point for the South Downs, but it’s also a destination in itself. So, when you’ve got tired feet from exploring bronze age burial mounds and rolling hills, you can relocate to the town centre, take a look at the cathedral, and grab yourself a bite to eat. 

How to get there: Trains from Waterloo and Victoria reach Winchester in just under 1 hour. 

Where to stay: The Old Vine, a historic inn in Winchester, is a great base for a trip to the South Downs. You’ll be able to reach the park easily, but still come home to a great pub dinner. Rooms start at £170, but do check rates and availability .

Perfect for: History, culture, or a romantic city break. 

Cardiff

Cardiff Bay has been made pretty famous over the last couple of decades through its starring role in BBC vehicles like Doctor Who, but there’s more to the city than the Bay’s modernist monoliths and that statue of Captain Scott that looks a little melted.

As Wales’ biggest city, Cardiff plays host to some great gigs, shows and exhibitions, and has an up and coming food scene. Central Market is a great place to browse, and if you’re feeling historical you can add a trip to Cardiff Castle to the itinerary. 

How to get there: The train to Cardiff takes just under 2 hours from Paddington Station. 

Where to stay: Hotel Indigo Cardiff is a modern hotel with a terrace and fitness centre located right in the middle of the city. It’s part of the IHG group, but retains a boutique feel. Rooms start at £107 per night, but rates vary so do check prices and availability . 

Perfect for: Long walks, enjoying the outdoors and getting back to nature.

Dartmoor

Dartmoor must be inspiring, because it’s the setting for Hound of the Baskervilles and War Horse . 

It’s easy to see how the area’s desolate beauty led to such dark and intense literature, but hopefully a weekend break to Dartmoor should turn out more relaxing than terrifying.

Dartmoor is a fantastic place for genuinely outdoorsy activities like fishing, cycling, horse riding and multi-day walks. It’s also abutted by Devon’s two main cities, Exeter and Plymouth, so you don’t have to keep things entirely rural. 

How to get there: With the train journey to Dartmoor clocking in at 5 hours and 50 minutes, this is one weekend getaway location you’ll need to either plan to visit on a bank holiday weekend, or drive to. The drive is a more reasonable 4 hours. 

Where to stay: If you want to be close to Dartmoor, Chagford is a fantastic option. Plus, it was voted the best place to live in the UK! Try the Mill End Hotel, which offers modern decor and classic farmhouse beams for £185 per night. Prices vary, so check rates and availability before booking. 

Peak District

Perfect for: Exploring nature. 

Peak District

When people think about a walking holiday, the Peak District often comes to mind. Walks range from the challenging trails of the Dark Peak to the more gentle rambles of the White and Southwest Peaks. 

Whatever part of the Peak District you choose to explore, views are dramatic and breathtaking. There’s also a whole lot of history to get stuck into in the area, from castle ruins to old mill towns. 

The Peaks are pretty easily accessible from Sheffield, which is an arty, charming town in its own right. 

How to get there: From King’s Cross, you can be in Sheffield in 2 hours and 14 minutes. From there, it’s about another half hour on local buses to the Peak District national park. 

Where to stay: Brocco on the Park in Sheffield is a boutique, 4-star hotel with all mod cons and just a little period elegance. It makes a great base for forays into the Peaks. Rooms start at £135 a night, but do check rates and availability for your planned visit. 

Perfect for: This is the ultimate weekend city break accessible from London.

Manchester

When you want to go on a weekend trip from London, but you still want to be in one of the UK’s most exciting cities there’s only one obvious contender. You’re going to Manchester for the weekend!

Manchester is an exciting clash of old and new, with Victorian architecture up against state of the art modern buildings. The Northern Quarter is the place to be for food, booze and alternative shopping options, but in Manchester you can throw a stone and hit a great night out or a coffee shop you’ll never forget. 

How to get there: Trains from Euston to Manchester take 2 hours and 6 minutes. 

Where to stay: The large, stylish, purpose-built Dakota Manchester offers high-spec accommodation in the heart of the action. Rooms start from £126, but check prices and availability before you make any booking decisions. 

Canterbury 

Perfect for: History and country walks

Canterbury Cathedral

This historic city boasts beautiful streets, houses in the mediaeval style and some seriously good pubs. Star of the show though, has to be the Cathedral. Founded by Augustine in 597, the cathedral is the oldest, and probably most impressive of Britain’s Christian structures. 

Want to get out of the city? There are plenty of country walks that can be taken without needing to hop in a car or use public transport. Just follow the city’s river and you’ll find yourself stomping through the delightful Kentish countryside feeling a million miles from civilization. 

How to get there: Trains from St. Pancras take just over an hour.

Where to stay: The Corner House is slap bang in the middle of the city only 400m from the cathedral. They have comfortable rooms starting from £120 per night and lay on a complimentary continental breakfast for all their guests. See availability here .

Whitstable 

Perfect for: Good eating by the sea and quiet walks around the bay. 

Whitstable

If you’d like a bit of seaside with your getaway, consider heading down to Whitstable. The town is known for its rows of multicoloured beach huts, some great local beer and a reputation for good oysters. 

As such there are some great restaurants you should check out while you’re in town, Whitstable Oyster Company and The Lobster Shac k being two of them. When you’re not busy eating your way through fantastic seafood restaurants head out of town for walks along the seaside and Herne Bay. 

How to get there: Trains from St. Pancras take just over an hour. 

Where to stay: The Marine offers classic grandeur on the seafront at a very reasonable price. It also offers some great sea views from both the rooms and the restaurant and complimentary breakfast for all guests. Check rates here .

Weekend Trips from London: Map

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Padstow, best weekend breaks

The best weekend trips from London

We're having a heatwave and there's never been a better time to plan your next break from the city

Ellie Walker-Arnott

London's teeming with stuff to do, but its endless array of museums, parks and attractions can lose their allure for even the most imaginative city dweller. So when that wanderlust hits (and you don't fancy booking a flight to Porto) here's where to go for an easy weekend away, full of the UK's best  restaurants , museums, shops, stunning scenery and hotels.

When you want to get out of London without any faff, look no further than these gorgeous getaways – from cosy rural retreats to proper city breaks.

This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click  here .

RECOMMENDED: Stay nearer to home with  17 dreamy day trips close to London , or check out the very best  walks near London.

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Great weekend getaways from London

Edinburgh

1.  Edinburgh

The Fringe in August is of course when the city comes into its own, but Edinburgh’s brimming with things to do and see during the other 11 months of the year. Climbing Arthur’s Seat is obligatory, as is trekking to Edinburgh Castle – then an evening picnic on the Meadows before hitting the dancefloor at small but legendary venue Sneaky Pete’s. Come bedtime, Rabble has gorgeous mid-century ‘rough-luxe’ rooms in the heart of the New Town, with a top-notch restaurant downstairs. While we’re on the subject of food: pop-up-turned-bricks-and-mortar-venture Ting Thai Caravan is well worth a visit to feast on street food to a soundtrack of, say, The Stooges. Still got itchy feet? Glasgow’s less than an hour away by train.

Get there  One hour and 20 minutes by plane; four hours 20 minutes by train from London King’s Cross; around eight hours by car.

The Yorkshire Dales

2.  The Yorkshire Dales

It’s probably the UK’s most famous national park, and for good reason – the Dales has staggering good looks and drama in spades. A weekend gives you plenty of time to roam the vast Bolton Abbey Estate near Skipton and be wowed by the Ribblehead viaduct and the natural amphitheatre of Malham Cove (see if you can spot the pair of resident falcons). The Dales are heaven if you live to stuff yourself silly – it’s well worth touring the Wensleydale Creamery, home of the famous cheese, and nosing around Theakston’s brewery. Speaking of pints, The Black Bull near Sedbergh is in a class of its own, with a fantastic, modern kitchen. It's also an inn, so you can kill two birds with one stone and rest your head here after enjoying their finest food and drink. 

Get there: two hours 15 minutes by train from London King’s Cross to Leeds; around three hours 30 minutes by car.

The Peak District

3.  The Peak District

The Lake District’s slightly gentler cousin has loads to recommend it: pretty market towns like Bakewell (home of the tart!), miles of undulating hills and stately Chatsworth, home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. If the weather’s fine you could spend a whole weekend exploring the Peak District National Park on foot or on two wheels (bikes can be found at Blackwell Mill Cycle Hire), stopping off at the likes of the Devonshire Arms at Beeley for real ale and venison pie. After all that yomping about you’ll want a comfy spot to lay your head, and The Peacock at Rowsley, a historic country house near Bakewell, the plush four-poster beds will do the job nicely.

Get there two and a half hours by train from London St Pancras; around three hours by car.

Padstow

4.  Padstow

This pretty-as-a-picture port really is the cream of Cornish. It’s synonymous with everyone’s favourite seafood chef, Rick Stein – get to his fish-and-chip shop early to beat the queue. Or for a slightly less-trodden path, head to Prawn on the Lawn for the best shellfish you can stuff your mouth with. Mosey around the independent galleries and boutiques, before taking the Black Tor Ferry over the water to Rock for a pint at The Mariners, now co-run by chef Paul Ainsworth. Hire bikes and cycle the 18-mile Camel Trail to Bodmin, sign up for a lesson at Waves Surf School, or just take a kite for a spin on the beach. All that sea air means you’ll sleep like a log – book one of Georgian townhouse St Petroc’s cool, contemporary rooms, or a luxe tipi at Cornish Tipi Holidays if you have a car.

Get there  three hours 43 minutes by train from London Paddington to Bodmin Parkway, and a bus; around five hours 30 minutes by car. 

The Cotswolds

5.  The Cotswolds

Think of the English countryside and chances are you think of the Cotswolds: 750-odd ridiculously green and pleasant square miles straddling Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Somerset, Warwickshire, Wiltshire and Worcestershire. Each county has its own unique charm, but for a textbook weekend stick to Gloucestershire, land of Jilly Cooper, honey-coloured stone cottages and retired rock stars. Immerse yourself in nature: go leaf-peeping at Westonbirt Arboretum, take a clay pigeon-shooting lesson at the Cotswold Clay Club and coo over grazing cattle as you drive into Minchinhampton. Push the boat out with a stay at The Wild Rabbit in Kingham – a Pinterest board come to life – and don’t miss The Wheatsheaf Inn’s superlative Sunday roast.

Get there:  one hour 30 minutes by train from London Paddington to Moreton-in-Marsh; around two hours 30 minutes by car.

The Gower Peninsula

6.  The Gower Peninsula

It’s official: this south-westerly chunk of Wales is one of the UK’s best-looking spots (in 1956 it became the first area to be hailed as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). It’s very close to Swansea but much of its coastline feels pleasingly remote – beaches like pebbly Pwll Du, for instance, are only accessible by foot. Explore ruined Pennard Castle and Three Cliffs Bay, and if the waves are beckoning you sign up for a lesson at Progress Surf School near Llangennith. For a meal to remember, The Beach House at Oxwich Bay has a Michelin star and stunning seafood, while Surfside Cafe on Caswell Bay has been hailed as one of Britain’s best beachfront eateries. Come bedtime, head for award-winning barn conversion Slade Barn, which has beautiful Scandi-style interiors and a surfing beach a five-minute walk away.

Get there four hours by car. 

Winchester

7.  Winchester

It’s always had the looks, but Winchester never used to have that much in the way of personality. Suddenly, though, this handsome cathedral city has become Hampshire’s coolest corner. The food’s fantastic, for starters: you can breakfast on cruffins at Hoxton Bakehouse, settle in for craft brews and tacos at Overdraft, then tuck into a chilli beef burrito pie while flipping through a vintage comic at Piecaramba. Winchester’s the perfect base to explore the rest of Hampshire from, too: nose around Jane Austen’s house in Chawton and join a tour at Hambledon, the UK’s oldest vineyard. Accommodation-wise, you’ll get the VIP treatment at Hotel du Vin – or try gorgeous boutique B&B Hannah’s.

Get there  one hour by train from London Waterloo; one hour 45 minutes by car.

Bristol

8.  Bristol

The West Country’s undisputed foodie capital, Bristol’s got it all. From cheesecake at Hart’s Bakery to modern British plates in a shipping container at Box-E, you could easily spend 48 hours here doing nothing but eating. And then there are the sourdough toasties with a side of Gallic charm at Bar Buvette and Poco’s internationally influenced tapas (don’t miss the merguez with buttered kale at brunch). Make time to visit the Clifton Suspension Bridge, the gorgeously restored lido and Stokes Croft’s street art – and don’t forget to sip some legendary Exhibition cider in The Coronation Tap (it’s so strong it only comes in halves). Bed down in former merchant’s house Number Thirty Eight, or at the utterly lush Bristol Harbour Hotel.

Get there  one hour and 38 minutes by train from London Paddington or if you’re watching your wallet National Express coaches run from Victoria for just £3.90 one way; around 2 hours 30 minutes by car. 

Oxford

9.  Oxford

Those dreamy spires are just the start of Oxford’s charms. As well as being an ancient university city with history in every brick, it’s a young, thriving cultural hub with plenty of great places to eat and drink (The Varsity Club's where it's at if you're after cool rooftop vibes). Tick off the Ashmolean and the Pitt Rivers Museum, then wander through Port Meadow and the University Parks, stopping off for burgers at The Rickety Press. Shop till you drop in the Covered Market, make like Inspector Morse with a pint of Wychwood Hobgoblin at The White Horse on Broad Street (one of the show’s filming locations), then turn in at boutique B&B The Glove House in Woodstock – or bunk up in the Artist Residence, a sweetly chic pub with rooms just outside the city.

Get there  one hour by train from London Paddington; one hour 30 minutes by car. 

North Norfolk

10.  North Norfolk

With its vast skies and meandering waterways, North Norfolk has an eerie beauty all of its own. Start off with a visit to see the seals at Blakeney Point (the pups arrive in the winter), then head to Cromer, where you can tuck into the famous crab at The Jetty, stroll down the pier and stock up on local preserves at the farm shop. Make time to chuff along the North Norfolk Railway from Sheringham to Holt, and see if you can book a tour of Voewood House, an arts-and-crafts masterpiece. After all that fresh air, bed down at The Chequers Inn in Thornham, a gastropub with luxe rooms in a building that dates back to 1499. Or for a splurge, head inland to The Gunton Arms, a plush inn set in a deer park with a magnificently meaty menu.

Get there: three hours 30 minutes by train from London Liverpool Street to Cromer, with changes; around three hours by car.

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11 beautiful European train journeys from London

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Where Jess Travels

13 Romantic Getaways from London Perfect For Couples

My guide to 13 of the very best romantic getaways from London will help you find the perfect place for a couples weekend away

A romantic hotel in the UK

I lived in London for 4 years and spent many weekends escaping the city with my boyfriend. I’ve stayed in beautiful hotels, cosy pubs and quirky shepherds huts, and I know what makes the perfect couple’s trip.

I’m not the traditionally romantic type, so my priorities when booking a couples getaway don’t revolve around grand gestures and declarations of love.

The most important thing to me on any getaway is being able to truly connect with the person I’m with.

I gravitate towards places that make that as easy as possible. Late checkouts as standard? Sign me up. Digital room service so I don’t have to call reception? I’m sold.

If you’re looking for rose petals on the bed and heart-shaped chocolates, you won’t find them here. But for my take on the most romantic getaways near London, read on.

Some links in this post are affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.  It won’t make a difference to what you pay, but I earn a small commission if you purchase something I’ve recommended. I’m really grateful for your trust in my advice, and if I wouldn’t recommend it to a friend, I won’t recommend it to you.

ROMANTIC GETAWAYS NEAR LONDON

#1 Artist Residence #2 The Rose #3 University Arms #4 The Pilgrm #5 The Mitre #6 Graduate Hotels #7 Double Red Duke #8 The Fish #9 Thyme #10 Elmley Nature Reserve #11 Dormy House #12 Port Hotel #13 Unplugged

MY TOP 3 ROMANTIC GETAWAYS FROM LONDON

Artist residence, oxfordshire.

romantic weekend trips from london

Artist Residence is a cosy 16th-century inn with rooms perfect for a romantic getaway near London.

It’s only an hour and a half from the capital, located in the quaint village of South Leigh on the outskirts of The Cotswolds – destinations don’t get more idyllic than this.

THE ROSE, DEAL

romantic weekend trips from london

The Rose is a charming boutique hotel located in the seaside town of Deal in Kent, 2 and a half hours from London.

Its been named as one of Britain’s most romantic hotels, making it the perfect choice for a couples escape.

UNIVERSITY ARMS, CAMBRIDGE

romantic weekend trips from london

Located near the city’s renowned university, the classic English decor at University Arms makes it the perfect hotel for a romantic getaway.

If you fancy treating yourself, book a suite – complete with a terrace and freestanding bath overlooking Parker’s Piece.

13 BEST ROMANTIC HOTELS NEAR LONDON

From boutique hotels with self-serve wine, to shepherds huts on sprawling country estates, my curated guide to the best romantic hotels near London will help you find the perfect place to stay.

1. Artist Residence

romantic weekend trips from london

Artist Reside nce hotels are some of my favourite in the UK. The food is excellent, they’re well-located, and all of the hotels feature beautiful pieces of art and exceptional design.

Their Oxfordshire outpost is the only one not in a city, located just outside The Cotswolds. The rustic village pub it calls home gives it a fairytale feel perfect for a romantic break.

A traditional pub with rooms, grab a board game and curl up by the fireplace, before retiring to one of the bedrooms above. If you’re looking for something a bit different, there’s even a shepherd’s hut at the bottom of the garden.

Distance from London: Around an hour and a half by car, or an hour by train from London Paddington to Oxford, followed by a 30-minute taxi.

2. The Rose

romantic weekend trips from london

A small town on the Kent coast, Deal is home to independent shops, a pebble beach and even a castle.

The Rose is undoubtedly the best place to spend the night, 2 minutes from the beach with incredible interiors.

The Telegraph has listed it as one of Britain’s most romantic hotels, and Rooom Four was featured in The Times’ 30 most romantic hotel rooms in the UK.

The Rose has 9 bedrooms, all adopting Wes Anderson style interiors, with thoughtful touches such as toiletries from Norfolk-based brand Austin Austin , record players in the bedrooms, and whisky nightcaps alongside the tea and coffee stations.

Distance from London: Around two and a half hours by car, or a two hour train from London Bridge to Deal Station, followed by a short walk to The Rose.

3. University Arms

romantic weekend trips from london

Boasting the best views in Cambridge, University Arms was the first hotel to open in the city in 1834.

Today it’s made up of 192 rooms with a classic design and seriously impressive bathrooms. If you fancy treating yourself, book a suite – complete with a terrace and freestanding bath.

There’s everything you need for the perfect city break. It overlooks Parkers Piece in the heart of Cambridge, with free bikes to get around if you’re not in the mood for walking.

The hotel restaurant, Parkers Tavern, is one of the best in town, serving British staples sourced locally.

Distance from London: Around an hour and forty minutes by car, or a 50-minute train from Kings Cross to Cambridge.

4. The Pilgrm

romantic weekend trips from london

Instead of searching for a romantic getaway near London, why not just stay in the Capital?

London might not be the first place that comes to mind when you’re planning a romantic break in the UK. But after living there for 4 years, it’s a city I’ll forever romanticise.

There’s always something new to discover, and the disparity between the individual neighbourhoods make you feel like you’re in a completely different place each time you step off the tube.

A trip to London often conjures up images of staying in eye-wateringly expensive hotels or having to sacrifice design and comfort to save money.

But the opening of The Pilgrm in 2017 changed the game. It’s beautifully designed with lots of cosy corners, artwork and plants and has an outdoor terrace for al fresco drinks. And with rooms from £100 a night, it won’t hurt your bank account too much either.

Just across the road from Paddington station, it’s perfectly located for a stroll down to Little Venice, arguably one of London’s most romantic neighbourhoods.

5. The Mitre

romantic weekend trips from london

If you don’t fancy venturing too far from the capital, The Mitre is the perfect choice.

Boasting some of the most beautiful hotel rooms I’ve ever seen, the roll-top tubs are the perfect touch for a romantic getaway.

Located on the River Thames, right next to Hampton Court Palace, there’s plenty of cosy pubs and countryside walks right on your doorstep.

Distance from London: 1 hour by train

6. Graduate Hotels

romantic weekend trips from london

Graduate h otels started life in America aiming to improve accommodation choices in university towns.

After opening 30 hotels across the US, in 2021 they launched their first UK locations in Oxford and Cambridge (where else?).

Their designs are quirky – each property takes inspiration from the university’s culture. Expect nods to the town’s history, most notably Alice in Wonderland (Lewis Carroll set the story there) in Oxford, and restored punting boats in the lobby of the Cambridge outpost.

Classic British food is central to both hotels – dine in The Alice, or grab a drink in The Snug and The Morse Bar in Oxford.

In Cambridge, enjoy afternoon tea in the garden and the Garden House’s locally sourced menu.

Both hotels are dog-friendly, and for humans, the Oxford location is home to a wellness centre – complete with a steam room, sauna and five private treatment rooms.

Distance from London: The Graduate in Oxford is an hour by train from London Paddington, and the Cambridge outpost is a 50-minute train from Kings Cross to Cambridge.

7. Double Red Duke

romantic weekend trips from london

Located in the quiet Cotswolds village of Clanfield, Double Red Duke has been lovingly restored from a former grain store to a stunning boutique hotel.

The bedrooms are beautifully decorated with patterned wallpaper, Roberts radios and thoughtful details like guides to the area and freshly baked cookies on arrival.

There’s not much to do at the hotel except eat great food and drink delicious cocktails (both fine with me). But you’re only a 15-minute drive from lots of amazing villages in The Cotswolds .

If you don’t have a car, there’s a lovely walk to neighbouring Bampton, where parts of Downton Abbey were filmed. Or, cancel all plans and book yourself in for a massage in the garden spa shed. 

Distance from London: 2 hours by car

8. The Fish

romantic weekend trips from london

The Fish sits on The Farncombe Estate in The Cotswolds, alongside neighbouring hotels Dormy House and Foxhill Manor . Choose from rooms, huts and treehouses spread across the grounds.

For special occasions, book Boaty McBoatface (yes, really). Complete with a roll-top bath, hot tub, and your own private lake and paddle boat, there’s no reason to leave.

If you do want to head out and explore, nearby Broadway is one of the most beautiful villages around.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours by car

romantic weekend trips from london

Another Cotswolds contender, Thyme is a country-house hotel home to 31 bedrooms, cookery school, spa, restaurant, bar and pub. It’s family-run and the outpouring of love into every detail is evident.

There’s an on-site tennis court, endless country walks and bikes you’re free to borrow during your stay.

But if you choose to stay put in the grounds of the hotel, you won’t be disappointed. It doesn’t get more romantic than waking up in a four-poster bed in the heart of The Cotswolds countryside.

Distance from London: Just over 2 hours by car

10. Elmley Nature Reserve

romantic weekend trips from london

There are few places you visit and are able to truly relax, switch off from the world, and forget about your everyday stresses, but El mley Nature Reserve is one of those few.

Found on the Isle of Sheppey, just over 40 miles from central London, yet you feel as though you’re on a completely different planet – making it the perfect romantic break.

We checked into The Damson on our stay – a cosy shepherd’s hut with floor-to-ceiling windows on one end offering incredible views over the reserve, yet still completely secluded from other guests.

The beauty of Elmley is that all of their huts feel totally private, and have separate entrances so you can walk around in the nude, safe in the knowledge that you won’t have any unwelcome visitors, apart from a few ducks.

The best part about our hut was definitely the outdoor bath, which we spent hours in drinking wine, befriending the local wildlife, and watching the sun go down.

Distance from London: 1.5 hours by car

11. Dormy House

romantic weekend trips from london

The neighbouring hotel to The Fish, Dormy House is home to 38 bedrooms, a spa, two gyms and a 16-metre swimming pool.

The House Spa spans several floors featuring a sauna, salt-infusion therapy room, flotation tank and outdoor hot tub.

There’s six treatment rooms including one perfect for two, aptly named ‘Couple’s Closet’. There’s three restaurants to choose from, from The Back Garden’s local menu to MO’s chefs table experience.

After dinner, help yourself to wine (literally) in The Shed, where you’ll find a wine dispenser – top up a card and drink away.

12. Port Hotel

romantic weekend trips from london

A trip to the beach is synonymous with British summertime, and over the last few years, the seaside town of Eastbourne has seen the rise of buzzy restaurants, bars & more recently, the opening of Port .

A boutique, dog-friendly hotel located on the Royal Parade with incredible views over the sea, there’s 19 bedrooms, a restaurant and bar, with pastel interiors running throughout.

Six of the bedrooms overlook the beach, and it’s well worth the extra money to wake up with the waves. For an extra special stay, book into one of four rooms with freestanding bathtubs.

Downstairs, the restaurant and outdoor dining offer a seasonal menu, locally sourced in Sussex. Mid-week, you’ll find small plates on the menu, with everything from charcuterie boards to spiced lentil dip.

The brunch menu is endless, with classics like avocado toast and a full-English making an appearance alongside duck royale and waffle stacks.

Distance from London: 2 hours by car or 1.5 hours from London Victoria to Eastbourne Station, followed by a short taxi

13. Unplugged

romantic weekend trips from london

Where better to experience complete uninterrupted quality time than a place where your phone is locked away in a box?

Unplugged is a 3-night digital detox designed to help you relax, switch off and reconnect. Choose your cabin (all the locations are within an hour of London), lock your phone in a box and spend the next few days doing very little.

We spent our time cooking, listening to the radio, completing a 500-piece puzzle, reading, and walking. Time seemed to slow down, but not in a “has it only been 20 minutes” kind of way, in a “look how much you can achieve when you aren’t distracted by a screen” kind of way.

We came away feeling truly connected and vowed to make no screen time part of our everyday routine. For me, this was the ultimate romantic break. One where you’re forced to spend time together and reminded that you do actually quite like each other after all.

My stay here was kindly gifted, but all opinions are my own. If I wouldn’t recommend somewhere to a friend, I wouldn’t recommend it to you.

Distance from London: All within an hour of London

Save money on your romantic getaway near London

  • Be flexible on when you can stay – It’s no secret that hotels charge a premium for weekend stays, and a lot of the best hotels in the UK also have 2-night minimum stays Friday-Sunday (I hate it too). Your best chance of staying in beautiful hotels on a budget is going mid-week during their off-peak periods, when they’re not as busy and more likely to drop their prices.
  • Look for last-minute deals – If you’re really flexible on when you stay, keep an eye out for last-minute deals on same-day travel. We booked to stay at The Rectory last year on the same day and got £50 off the room price. The hotel knows they’re unlikely to fill the room so late in the day and they’d rather have the room full at a cheaper rate than not at all. 
  • Use Booking.com on your mobile – Did you know Booking.com offers mobile-only prices? You can usually save at least 10% on hotel bookings just by switching devices. 
  • Earn cashback on your stays with affiliate sites – Use websites like TopCashback and Quidco to earn money on hotel bookings. oYou won’t usually find boutique hotels on affiliate websites, but bigger companies like Booking.com and Hotels.com are always there. All you have to do is search the affiliate site for the website you’re intending on purchasing from, and follow their link through to book your hotel. The amount of money you make depends on the time of year and any offers running at the time, and is always paid out after your stay. If you’re thinking, what’s the catch? There isn’t one. It genuinely is free money just for booking through these websites. The incentive for companies to use affiliate marketing is to capitalise on users they might not otherwise reach, and you can reap the rewards!
  • Book during sales periods like the start of the year or Black Friday – If you’re a planner and know exactly when you want to take your romantic getaway, your best chance of getting a deal is whenever hotels have sales. The biggest sales will usually be around Black Friday and the beginning of the year and you’ll either get a % discount off the price, or another night added to your stay at no extra cost. 

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Hi, I'm Jess, the founder of Where Jess Travels. After studying Psychology at University, I pursued a career in Marketing for 7 years, whilst taking as many trips as my annual leave would allow. I now work full time on my blog, sharing destination guides and hotel reviews.

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17 Top-Rated Weekend Getaways from London

Written by Bryan Dearsley Updated Feb 15, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )

Author Bryan Dearsley has visited England many times, including an eight week trip in the spring of 2022.

Whether you're visiting London or living here, it serves as an ideal point from which to enjoy a seemingly endless choice of fun weekend getaways. Not only are weekend trips from London easy to organize, but thanks to great rail and numerous flight connections , there are plenty of places to visit for those seeking a memorable weekend getaway.

King's College in Cambridge, England

Fancy a trip to Paris? Easy! Take the fast Eurostar train through the Channel Tunnel or hop aboard a short flight from one of London's five airports. On a tight budget? You can even hop aboard a coach or bus for the journey to the French capital, a trip that only takes a few hours and often involves only bargain basement pricing.

Looking for something a little closer? Again, no problem: London's a major transportation hub that serves pretty much all of the UK. For somewhere quick and easy to get to, consider the delightful old market town of Windsor. Just 25 miles west of the center of London, Windsor offers a variety of short breaks worth looking into, including stays at historic bed-and-breakfasts and the chance to tour historic Windsor Castle.

Whether you're on the hunt for a cheap weekend getaway, a romantic couple's break , or even an exciting last-minute city stopover in the UK or Europe, be sure to read our list of the top weekend getaways from London.

1. Paris, France

2. bath, somerset, england, 3. amsterdam, the netherlands, 4. canterbury, kent, england, 5. edinburgh, scotland, 6. york, north yorkshire, 7. cardiff, wales, 8. birmingham, west midlands , england, 9. dublin, ireland, 10. brighton, east sussex, england, 11. the channel islands, england, 12. cambridge, cambridgeshire, england, 13. berlin, germany, 14. bournemouth, dorset, england, 15. zurich, switzerland, 16. windsor, england, 17. oslo, norway.

Eiffel Tower

Few travel destinations fuel the imagination quite like Paris. Just a 2.5-hour rail journey or an hour by plane from London, the "City of Lights" offers no end of things to do during an exciting European weekend break.

Topping the list for couples seeking a romantic getaway is visiting such iconic locations as the Eiffel Tower , perhaps the world's most romantic couples' selfie spot, as well as the Louvre , home to the famed portrait, the Mona Lisa .

In addition to its many fine-dining restaurants and pleasant street-side cafés, visitors should also spend time exploring the city's many markets. Tucked away down quaint old streets and alleys, it's here you'll quite literally get a true taste of Paris, the authentic Paris known and loved by those who live and work here.

Notable neighborhoods to explore on foot include the Latin Quarter , with some of its oldest buildings dating as far back as medieval times. Then, of course, there's magnificent Montmartre , famous for its connections to the city's vibrant art and literary scene, both past and present.

Paris also boasts a wide variety of accommodation options, from opulent 5-star luxury hotels to reputable hostels perfect for backpackers.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Paris

Pulteney Bridge in Bath

The historic town of Bath in Somerset is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful small cities in England. And as such, it's another destination that's a lot of fun to visit for couples seeking a romantic weekend getaway. An easy 1.5-hour train journey east of London , this charming destination is perhaps best known for the historic Roman Baths after which it's named.

Given the fact that over six million tourists visit Bath, with many of them stopping at the site of these ancient Roman baths each year, you'd do well to plan your trip for a quieter time of year if you can be flexible. Christmas is, in fact, a wonderful time to arrive.

Not only are there fewer line-ups and crowds to deal with at the baths and other top Bath attractions , there's also the opportunity to shop for locally made gifts and crafts in the popular Christmas Market , one of the largest in England.

Royal Crescent, Bath

The elegant old homes of the Royal Crescent neighborhood are also worth checking out. Royal Crescent's beautiful architecture has been attracting visitors to the city since Georgian times. If you've got time, be sure to explore the historic No.1 Royal Crescent , built in the late 18th century. It's not difficult picturing yourself and your partner living as the gentry of the time in so opulent a setting.

Spring tulips along an Amsterdam canal

Long considered one of the leading city breaks Europe has to offer, the city of Amsterdam in the Netherlands is an easy one-hour flight from London. And thanks to the Channel Tunnel, it's also now extrememly easy to get to by train, too.

You'll find plenty of fun attractions and things to do in Amsterdam , from gallery hopping in the magnificent Rijksmuseum , with its classic artworks by such greats as Rembrandt, to hopping aboard a tour boat for a cruise along the city's famous canals.

Amsterdam is where you'll find the historic location where the young Anne Frank wrote her famous diaries, a sobering reminder of the horrors of war and hatred. It's also home to the stunning Van Gogh Museum , with its vast collection of art and memorabilia relating to this most revered of painters, and the impressive Royal Palace , residence of the Dutch Royal Family since 1648.

Canterbury Cathedral

A favorite for history buffs, the cathedral city of Canterbury in Kent is an easy one-hour rail ride from central London. Getting to Canterbury from London is also easy by road and bus.

For a truly unique weekend getaway, book a stay in the excellent Canterbury Cathedral Lodge , located in the grounds of the cathedral. You'll be rewarded not just with an extremely comfortable place to stay but also some memorable views over the gardens and the cathedral. A stay here also includes privileges such as direct access to areas in the Cathedral Precincts.

Royal Museum, Canterbury

You're also just steps away from exploring the interior of the cathedral itself. A great way to get the most out of this magnificent UNESCO World Heritage Site is to book a guided tour, taking in such features as the spot where Archbishop Thomas Becket was murdered—possibly by order of the King—back in 1170. You'll also find yourself in the heart of plenty of great shopping, dining, and walking experiences.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Canterbury

Edinburgh skyline

Just over an hour's flight north of London is another capital city worth exploring: Edinburgh. While driving or taking the train from London to Edinburgh is also possible, the five-plus hour journey will mean less time to explore the top points of interest in the Scottish capital.

Topping your list of must-see attractions is majestic Edinburgh Castle , which is easy to get to on foot from most centrally located hotels and B&Bs. You can expect to spend the best part of a day exploring the castle, and longer if you plan on seeing the many displays of historic artifacts, such as the impressive collection of crown jewels.

Within easy reach of the castle and the old part of the city is the Royal Mile . This stretch of historic old townhomes and shopfronts, as well as the New Town area, is a delight to explore on foot. In addition to the many fine old hotels, B&Bs, and guesthouses sprinkled about this pleasant Georgian-era neighborhood, you'll have access to Princes Street with its excellent dining and shopping experiences.

If you're able, try to time your weekend getaway to coincide with some of the city's best-known events and festivals. These include the Edinburgh International Book Festival, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, or the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Edinburgh

York Minster

The unofficial "capital" of northern England, the cathedral city of York in North Yorkshire makes for an excellent choice of weekend getaway from London. With frequent train connections between London and York , getting here is fast and easy, especially if taking the train—a less than two-hour journey.

Fun things to do include visiting the Shambles, a pedestrian-only shopping and entertainment area that can trace its roots back to medieval times, and taking a sightseeing tour of York Minster . England's biggest medieval church dates from the 13th century, featuring an amazing collection of stained glass windows and a rich treasury with displays of priceless religious artifacts.

Other top activities include walking the city's two miles of medieval city walls, visiting the National Railway Museum, and taking a cruise along the River Ouse.

Where to stay in York? While York has no shortage of luxury hotels, a favorite among travelers from London is the recently renovated Principal York . In addition to having its own access from York railway station, this historic luxury hotel is located an easy 10-minute walk from the city's top attractions. If available, be sure to request a room with a view of York Minster.

Read More: Top-Rated Things to Do in York, England

City Hall, Cardiff

The capital of Wales, Cardiff, is another great UK weekend destination to explore. Easily accessed by car and only a tad under two hours by train from London, this world-class city offers everything from luxury stays in grand old hotels to cheap breaks in modest accommodations. Wherever you stay, though, expect to have fun.

Not only are the Welsh among the friendliest of people, they're known for their handiwork and craftsmanship. This can easily be experienced by taking a fun self-guided walking tour of the city's pleasant Victorian arcades with their boutiques and galleries.

While there are a number of these old shopping areas open to the public, the best is the Royal Arcade . Built in 1858, here you'll enjoy a pleasant stroll while getting the chance to explore numerous shops selling a variety of Welsh-made goods. Be sure to also spend time exploring Cardiff Castle, too.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in South Wales

Victoria Square, Birmingham

Fresh from its stint hosting the 2022 Commonwealth Games , the city of Birmingham in England's West Midlands has found its mojo.

Once shunned by domestic and international travelers alike, this former industrial city has successfully reinvented itself as one of the top places to visit in England for those seeking a fun-packed getaway from London. Just 90 minutes away from the capital by train, Birmingham is certainly a lot of fun, whatever your interests.

Those seeking great shopping experiences will want to spend time exploring the Bullring & Grand Central shopping district. This revitalized section of the city center is home to an endless variety of big-brand stores and unique boutique shops as well as entertainment including an endless stream of very talented buskers.

Birmingham has also earned a reputation as a leading center for great dining experiences. Favorites for foodies include the excellent Fazenda , popular for its authentic gaúcho meat dishes; chic Fumo Birmingham featuring fine Italian dining experiences; and Chapter, an independent neighborhood restaurant offering delicious dishes served indoors and out.

Looking for the perfect place to stay while in Birmingham? You can't get any closer to the downtown action than checking in to Staying Cool at Rotunda . Boasting views of the Bullring and Grand Central station area, this tall historic building features fully furnished apartments with kitchens, huge windows, and a surprisingly quiet sleep given its central location.

Read more: Top Attractions & Places to Visit in Birmingham

Trinity College, Dublin

An easy one-hour flight from London, the Irish city of Dublin makes for a great weekend getaway for families and couples alike. As well as having numerous fun attractions geared towards specific interests, there are plenty of great places to stay, whatever your budget.

When it comes to choosing where to stay, be sure to give serious consideration to the city's downtown core. It's here you'll find most of the best tourist attractions in Dublin along with the best hotels. Highlights include touring the splendid Trinity College , with its magnificent grounds and gardens, and the popular Grafton Street area.

In addition to its great shopping, here you'll find plenty of entertainment opportunities, much of it provided by musicians busking on the sidewalks. Dublin also makes for a great base from which to explore nearby attractions such as the attractive Wicklow Hills.

Brighton Beach

The attractive seaside resort town of Brighton is easy to get to from London . An hour by train due south of the nation's capital, this picturesque city provides an authentic British seaside weekend getaway experience with access to some of the best beaches in East Sussex .

When it comes to accommodations, choose from the numerous fine hotels and B&Bs set in the old townhomes that overlook the beach.

Once settled in, head straight for the promenade. Here, you can walk for hours as you take in the views over the English Channel, the old Regency-era architecture that lines the streets, the many pleasant gardens and parks, and its two most recognizable landmarks, the Palace Pier and Royal Pavilion .

Royal Pavilion

If you can, try to time your visit to coincide with the Brighton Festival . Held each May, this fun festival features a riot of cultural events as diverse as classical concerts and pop performances, comedy and film shows, and top venues, including the majestic Royal Pavilion.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Brighton

Mont Orgueil Castle on the island of Jersey

Often overlooked by visitors to the UK, the charming Channel Islands are only an hour's flight from the capital. This chain of islands off the coast of France includes the smaller islands of Guernsey, Alderney, Sark, and tiny Hern, but it's in Jersey, the biggest, that you'll want to begin your adventure...and possibly finish, depending on the length of your stay.

In addition to incredible views from almost every vantage point, you'll be rewarded with a relaxing break spent exploring seemingly endless walking and hiking trails. It's also fun exploring major attractions such as the quaint streets and fortifications of St. Helier, as well as sites such as the popular Durrell Wildlife Park .

If you can squeeze in a visit to one other island, make it Guernsey . Accessible by ferry, it's equally pretty and also popular as a hiking destination, particularly along its striking cliff-lined shoreline. Especially suited to long weekend breaks, the Channel Islands should definitely be on your bucket list.

  • Read More: Exploring the Top Attractions of the Channel Islands

King's College in Cambridge

The university city of Cambridge is another easy-to-get-to weekend getaway from London for those who don't want to travel too far. An easy hour by car or rail from the center of London, this beautiful old city has much to recommend it.

Try to set up shop as close to the heart of the old city as possible, as Cambridge was made to be explored on foot. There are many luxury hotels, as well as cheaper B&B options located here, too.

Mathematical Bridge, Queens' College, Cambridge

Save time to explore at least one or two of the old colleges, some of which even offer short-term stays in student accommodations for tourists. Other fun things to do here include attending cool events, such as the 800-year-old Midsummer Fair or the Cambridge Folk Festival; both are great ways to anchor a memorable weekend getaway.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Cambridge, England

Brandenburg Gate in Berlin

Most visitors to London are surprised to learn that they can fly to so many other European capital cities in under two hours. Take Berlin, for example. Just 1.5 hours away by plane, it's the perfect excuse to take a weekend break Europe-style.

There are also a surprising amount of good quality, affordable hotels near the city center. Many of the best are within an easy walk of such top destinations as the iconic Brandenburg Gate , the magnificent Museum Island area, and the remnant of the Berlin Wall .

Also worth checking out is the city's burgeoning food scene, the many war memorials here, as well as its many parks and green spaces.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Berlin

Bournemouth Pier

Another great seaside destination in the UK that's relatively easy to get to is Bournemouth in Dorset. Under two hours by train, Bournemouth is perhaps the classiest of the country's coastal towns. Here, you'll have plenty of great luxury hotels to choose from, along with elegant B&Bs and historic old inns, most of them within an easy walk of what the town is best known for: its beaches.

Bournemouth's beaches stretch some 17 kilometers, connecting Hengistbury Head all the way past Bournemouth to neighboring Poole. If visiting in summer, you'd be forgiven for thinking you'd arrived in the warmer parts of the Mediterranean.

Bournemouth Pier

You'll find lush vegetation in its green parks, copious quantities of people strolling the streets and promenades, and sunbathers on the beach, not to mention many excellent opportunities to dine alfresco.

Read More: Best Things to Do in Bournemouth, Dorset

Zurich

Just a 1.5-hour flight from London, the city of Zurich offers one of the best city breaks in all of Europe. Switzerland's biggest city has moved mountains to create an extremely pedestrian-friendly experience for visitors, who flock here to shop for luxury goods like Swiss watches as well as to soak up the culture and ambience of the Old Town.

After disembarking the fast and efficient airport train, you'll find yourself in the heart of a multi-million-dollar redevelopment that offers wide streets for pedestrians, with few if any cars anywhere to be seen. It's here you'll find trendy hotels and chic restaurants, superlative shopping experiences, and, just a few minutes away, one of the most romantic city centers to be seen anywhere.

In the Old Town, pull up at a table alongside the Limmat river and simply enjoy the ambience of the medieval quarter. Better still, do this on a Saturday night and you'll be rewarded with the remarkable experience of hearing the peals of bells from city churches, ringing in the night and reminding residents and visitors alike that Sunday is a church day.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Zürich

Windsor Castle

One of the top weekend getaways for those seeking short city breaks from London is to head to the town of Windsor. Just 30 minutes away by train , it's an easy trip that will drop you off in the midst of one of the most impressive old towns in the country, and just a few steps away from one of its most iconic landmarks: Windsor Castle .

A home to the British Royal Family for over 950 years, this spectacular attraction can easily consume at least a day or more as you explore its many nooks and crannies. And there are a lot of them! So many, in fact, you should consider joining an organized tour, guaranteeing you'll see highlights such as the State Apartments and St. George's chapel. Be sure to also allow some time afterwards to wander the Great Park.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Windsor

Akershus Fortress

Oslo, the capital city of Norway, is only a two-hour flight away from London. While not a cheap weekend away, as Norway is considered one of the most expensive travel destinations in Europe, Oslo offers many fun things to do .

If you can check into one of the city center hotels, do so. You'll enjoy access to one of the most pedestrian-friendly cities to be found anywhere. Start with a walk to the stunning Opera House , then head to the large Akershus Fortress , a military complex that guarded the city and its harbor for centuries. From here, it's a bit of a haul to the Royal Palace , but it's worth it.

Finally, no trip to Oslo is complete without spending a few hours exploring the spectacular Vigeland Sculpture Park , a sprawling area that's home to 650 sculptures created by Norway's Gustav Vigeland.

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romantic weekend trips from london

29 of the Best Romantic Weekend Getaways From London

  • enamoree Contributor
  • January 19, 2022

romantic weekend trips from london

Need somewhere to go this weekend? Are you tired of London’s hustle and bustle? Do you need to get away from the neverending fast lane of modern day life? Well, there’s plenty of quieter and calmer weekend getaways from London, all of which are just a short trip from the capital. You’ve just got to know where to find them! 

Best of all, Britain’s collection of weekend hotspots are perfect for romantic weekend trips away together as a couple. Every great partnership needs a little effort and some quality time to get away from it all. A mini-break might be just what you need! Take a set of couples’ challenge questions with you and you’ve got yourself wholesome weekend of rekindling the spark once and for all. 

So duffle bags at the ready, people! We’re going to show you 29 of the best, most romantic weekend getaways from London.

Table of Contents

romantic weekend trips from london

Our Criteria

romantic weekend trips from london

Is the town/city picturesque? Are there plenty of photo opportunities for a cute couple’s photo?

Does the town/city come alive at night? Are there plenty of bars and restaurants to grab a bite to eat or sip on a cocktail?

Attractions

Does the town/city have any tourist attractions? Are there plenty of places to see and things to do?

Is the town/city a hotspot for romance? Is it conducive for a romantic weekend away?

Weekend Trips From London

The UK is full of incredible staycation destinations. From picturesque hiking spots to historical and cultural excursions, we’ve got something for every type of couple needing one of their spontaneous overnight trips from London. Take your pick…

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Explore the Gorgeous Sights of the Lake District

Best for: Basking in the beauty of some of Britain’s best views.

No staycation in the UK matches the gorgeous scenes of the Lake District. Covering around 912 square miles of green mountains and quaint local villages, the Lake District is perfect for couples who’d like to find some peace and tranquillity. The surrounding areas of Lake Windermere are the most popular destinations for tourists. Here you’ll find tourist attractions like World of Beatrix Potter and plenty of cool water sports activities, plus there’s luxurious B&Bs or scenic campsites to stay over in. England’s tallest peak, Scafell Pike also attracts expert hikers who love to put on their moody walking boots and pack a rucksack.

Journey Time From London: About 3.5 hours on a train.

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Enjoy an Overnight Stay in Rye

Best for: Mature couples looking to grab a scone and cup of Earl Gray. 

Nestled nicely into the Sussex countryside, the medieval village of Rye attracts over a million tourists looking for London weekend breaks. You can stroll down the winding cobblestone high street and browse through its selection of vintage boutiques and independent speciality shops. You can also take your pick of tasty restaurants , from welcoming local pubs to legendary fish and chip kitchens. Plus, there’s plenty of adorable homeware stores for you to pick up a trinket or two for loved ones. 

Journey Time From London: About 2 hours in the car.

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Enjoy Britain’s Old Seaside Town of Margate

Best For: Couples who enjoy the simple things in life. Like paper-wrapped fish and chips!

Kent’s seaside town of Margate might not be the most luxurious seaside resort, but it sure makes up for it with its local vibrancy. Recent rejuvenation projects of its town centre and huge sandy beach have made Margate a newly popular destination for seaside-goers. There’s an eclectic mix of restaurants , a cute high street full of vintage boutiques, and of course Dreamland : one of the country’s most beloved amusement parks featuring both thrill rides and gentler fairground classics. Margate is a great option for a cheap and cheerful beach staycation. 

Journey Time From London: About 1.5 hours on a train.

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Stay over in Cardiff

Best For: People-persons who enjoy market shopping and afternoon strolls. 

Cardiff offers visitors plenty of things to do and see on a weekend away from London. Firstly there’s the beautiful Cardiff Castle for history-lovers. Then there’s The Royal Arcade , a shopping area first built in 1858 offering market stores of alternative Welsh-made goodies, like sweet treats, quirky jewellry and vintage clothing. Cardiff also has various scenic waterfront walks, perfect for romantic hand-in-hand strolls. Best of all, Cardiff’s residents are often voted some of the country’s friendliest people. So expect good vibes all-round!

Journey Time From London: About 2 hours on a train.

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Stroll Along Bournemouth’s Beaches

  Best For: Beach-lovers and sun-soakers.

Bournemouth is another of Britain’s favourite seaside towns, and for one good reason: its famous sandy beach! Stretching over 17km, Bournemouth’s beach has been welcoming summer tourists for centuries. As a result, another big draw to Bournemouth is its selection of accommodation , from grand historic beachside hotels to smaller independently-run B&Bs offering unbeatable fry-ups. There’s also plenty of restaurants for sunnier days where you can dine alfresco on a rooftop terrace.

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Stroll Down York’s Cobbled Streets

  Best For: Enjoying one of Britain’s most romantic cities.

You can get lost wandering around York’s higgledy-piggledy streets for hours. Browse through boutique stores and market stalls and then finish off the day with an evening reservation at a world-class restaurant . But perhaps the biggest reason why York is perfect for London weekend breaks is its air of romance. The cobbled shambles and old timber-framed architecture create a storybook-like setting that’s popular for weddings. Maybe on your next visit you’ll be in a black tux or white dress?

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Enjoy the Cultural Seaside City of Brighton

Best For: LGBT couples looking for a vibrant seaside city. 

The best weekend trips from London end in a sore head, right? Well, Brighton offers one of the country’s biggest and best LGBT night out with its selection of lively bars and clubs . But away from its waterfront shops, bars, and restaurants, Brighton is a charming city in its own right, full of rich history and arty culture. Take a peek inside the golden walls of the Royal Pavilion or book your weekend away from London around the dates of Brighton Festival : an annual event celebrating all sorts of entertainment including comedy, music, and theatre.  

Journey Time From London: Just under an hour on a train.

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Learn About the Cultural History of Liverpool

Best For: Music-lovers and The Beatles fans.

Liverpool is known as a music mecca in Britain. Fans of The Beatles will especially love exploring the city’s hotspots, including a visit to 20 Forthlin Road, the childhood home of Paul McCartney now turned into a museum. There’s also Hard Days Night Hotel , a Beatles-themed hotel where you can stay in either the McCartney or Lennon Suite. The choice is yours. But beyond its music history, there’s a city also offering must-see landmarks (especially the Royal Albert Docks ) and plenty of world class restaurants for hungry bellies. 

Journey Time From London: About 2.5 hours on a train.

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Explore the Various Channel Islands

Best For: Feeling that Mediterranean climate without a passport. 

The English Channel’s collection of islands include Jersey, Guernsey, and Alderney, all of which offer up incredible holiday experiences to make you feel like you’re in sunny Spain…Well, almost. So hop on a short flight and enjoy one of the best weekend getaways from London without having to venture out of the UK. Across the various islands you’ll find delightful towns, recreation centres (for golf, tennis, and even volleyball), luxurious hotel resorts, and best of all, stunning ocean views. 

Journey Time From London: About an hour on a plane (to Jersey).

Loch Lomond, looking south from Ben Lomond

Visit Scotland’s Loch Lomond

Best For: Active couples who prefer early morning walks over lie-ins. 

Often referred to as Scotland’s very own Lake District, Loch Lomond is the perfect location if you fancy a weekend of hiking, watersports, or fishing. You’ll find that many of the best restaurants around Loch Lomond have menus featuring the lake’s delicious salmon or trout. For fitness-lovers and keen mountaineers, we suggest trekking around the scenic Trossachs National Park to take in some beautiful views. Or you can see the sights from the comfort of a seat onboard a riverboat tour. It’s down to you.

Journey Time From London: About 7 hours in a car.

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Take In the Views of Edinburgh

Best For: Experiencing the very best of Scotland’s heritage.

Scotland’s capital offers one of the best overnight trips from London. Edinburgh boasts a whole range of reasons you should visit , including award-winning restaurants , unmissable annual events, and important historical landmarks (like Edinburgh Castle and St. Giles Cathedral ). There’s spectacular landscape views if you know the right spots to find them (the very top of Arthur’s Seat is our personal favourite).

Journey Time From London: About 4.5 hours on a train.

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Camp around Wales’s Brecon Beacons

Best For: Keen campers who don’t mind getting a little muddy.

Wales is rather underrated when it comes to finding Britain’s best views. So why not tie up your hiking boots and explore the gorgeous scenes of Brecon Beacons , South Wales? A must-see stop off point is Henyrd Falls : Wales’s tallest waterfall standing at 90 feet. Not just a hiker’s idea of heaven, Brecon Beacon also offers a selection of luxurious hotel resorts if a wet weekend in a tent isn’t quite for you. Instead, enjoy the great outdoors knowing you’ve got a warm suite to come back to afterwards. Take your pick. 

Journey Time From London: About 4.5 hours in a car.

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Discover the Wonders of New Forest

Best For: Outdoorsy types who want to get back to nature.

Venturing to the New Forest is one of the best London weekend getaways you can book as a couple. Why? Because it’s so just darn beautiful. Boasting an array of accommodation options , including hotel resorts, quaint b&bs, and woodland cabins, the New Forest is the perfect city escape when all you need is some fresh air. Pack a picnic full of goodies (a bottle of champagne is essential!) and explore the ancient forestry along 140 miles of winding trails and footpaths. 

Journey Time From London: About 2 hours in a car.

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Hike the Hills of the Peak District

Best For: Midland couples who don’t want to travel as far as the Lake District. 

The Peak District located in Derbyshire is often described as the smaller version of the Lake District, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less beautiful. Here you’ll find miles and miles of rolling hills, incredible scenic foot trails, and wonderful villages which are always happy to welcome visitors into their pubs, cafes, and B&Bs. A Peak District must-visit is Bakewell , home to the classic Bakewell pudding and Chatsworth House : a Grade 1 stately home with pristine gardens to wander through. 

Journey Time From London: About 3.5 hours in a car.

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Rent a Cottage in the Cotswolds

Best For: Long walks and cosy nights in.

There’s no feeling more freeing than strolling through the English countryside, especially the Cotswold. Found across various Western counties including Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, Somerset, here you’ll find hundreds of cosy cottages to rent for a weekend trip from London. The surrounding countryside has plenty of outdoor activities to book too (like gorge-scrambling), or you can venture off on foot through the moorland greenery. Then once your feet are a little tired, you can stop off at a local Cotswold pub for some grub and a pint. 

Journey Time From London: About  2.5 hours in a car.

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Take a Bike Ride Around Bristol

Best For: Big foodies who’d simply like to guzzle beer and chomp burgers all weekend. 

Surely one of the best weekend getaways from London is a weekend full of incredible food and drink, right? If so, Bristol is for you! Real foodies will love the city’s huge variety of restaurant options, from beloved chain restaurants to specialty hidden gems (our personal favourite right now is The OX : a steak and cocktail eatery. Need we say anymore?) But beyond the plates of food, Bristol is a city of spirited art and culture, best with an independent cinema called The Watershed : a must for film buffs!

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Unwind in Bath’s Roman Baths

Best For: Bath-lovers who want to relax the proper way.

The roman baths of Bath have been relaxing their visitors for over 2,000 years, and now it’s time you visited too. After exploring the ancient baths on a guided tour, you can then take a dip yourself at Thermae Bath Spa: a popular bathhouse boasting an incredible rooftop pool, 2 thermal baths, and plenty of therapeutic spa treatments for you to choose from. After your relaxation, you can book a table at one of the city’s many restaurants for a top-class meal.

Easy trips from London

Want to enjoy a weekend getaway from London but without the big-budget travel costs? Well, take your pick from our easy trips from London that are all within 2 hours of the capital..

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Discover the History of Cambridge

Best For: Intellects who want to explore the city’s incredible university buildings. 

Want a history-rich weekend trip from London that’s also super close? If so, the city of Cambridge just North of the Capital is perfect! You can explore the fascinating university grounds of the city’s many historic colleges, most notably the world-renowned University of Cambridge (alumni includes Isaac Newton, Stephen Hawkings, and Stephen Fry). Other attractions on offer include a romantic punt ride through the city’s canal waterways.

Historic town houses overlooking the river Yare, Norwich, Norfolk, East Anglia, England.

Visit the City of Norwich

Best for: A peaceful and quiet city break.

If you love cities but want an experience that’s a little quieter than London, then perhaps a trip to Norwich will be right up your street. Like most cities, Norwich offers plenty of quaint cafes and high street shops to browse through. One of our personal favourites is Rabbit Coffee: a cute little coffee shop that sells perhaps the best sausage rolls you’ll ever try.  There’s also the stunning historic Norwich cathedral for you to visit too. 

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Take a Wander Around Winchester

Best for: Finding a cute town to explore.

There’s a reason Winchester is often voted one of the best places to live in the UK: it’s just so darn lovely! Steeped with history and culture (it was once the capital city of the Anglo-Saxons!), Winchester has a huge variety of historic buildings and attractions for you to look around including Winchester cathedral and The Great Hall. There’s also plenty of cute winding streets to wander through if you love nosing around. 

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Visit Canterbury’s Cathedral

Best for: History buffs who enjoy a spot of shopping too.

Canterbury is one of Kent’s must-visit cities. First there’s Canterbury Cathedral , one of Britain’s most beloved and beautiful cathedrals that’s protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Inside you can gaze at the out-of-this-world architecture that dates back nearly 1000 years. Plus just a stone’s throw away you’ll find a bustling high street boasting all of your retail giants and a collection of quaint vintage shops too. A chauffeured punt ride around the city’s canals is a tourist favourite too.

Journey Time From London: About 1 hour on a train.

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Take a Trip to Oxford

Our list of easy trips from London simply wouldn’t be complete without Oxford. Just like Cambridge, one of the biggest draws to Oxford is its university grounds full of historical buildings and wonderful architecture. It’s a charming place, and a lot younger than you think with such a large population of students. So expect to find plenty of quirky bars and eateries amongst the history, including one of our personal favourites, Happy Friday Kitchen : a plant-based American grill-type restaurant with a menu of carby hotdogs, pizzas, and burgers. Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it!

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Explore the Royal History of Windsor

Best for: Royal enthusiasts who love guided history tours. 

One of our top weekends away from London is a minibreak to Berkshire’s Windsor. The town is best known for being the home to the Royal Family for over 9 centuries, and as a result, there’s plenty of royal-based tourist attractions for you to enjoy, most notably the iconic landmark of Windsor Castle : Britain’s largest occupied castle. It might be worth booking a guided tour to really get the most out of your trip here. There’s so much to see and learn. A romantic stroll through The Great Park is a must too!

International Overnight Trips from London

If you’re willing to spend a little more and travel overseas, take your pick from these international overnight trips from London. Passports at the ready, lovers! It’s time to take your romance abroad…

Paris

Hop Over to Paris

Best for: Ultra-romancers who want to experience the ‘City of Love’.

Paris pretty much tops the list of romantic weekend getaways from London. With such iconic landmarks to explore including Eiffel Tower , Notre Dame, and the Louvre (home to the Mona Lisa), you and your partner can spend the weekend roaming the city taking cute selfies with the sights you see. In the evenings you can book a reservation at one of Paris’s many fine-dining restaurants ; they’re pretty much scattered across the entire city. So have the full authentic experience by exploring old streets and spontaneously choosing the one you most like the look of. Chances are it’ll be great. Plus, taking your girl on a romantic trip to Paris is one of the best ways to ask her out. Need some more ideas?

Journey Time From London: Just over an hour on a plane.

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Discover the Joys of Oslo

Best for: Couples not afraid to stretch their wallets.

Although Oslo is one of the most expensive European cities to visit, we think the city’s beauty alone is well worth the extra price. Plus, you just have to look in the right places for the cheaper experiences. We could spend hours simply wandering around the incredible Vigeland Sculpture Park , home to over 650 statues and monuments! There’s also the magnificent Opera House to visit and Akershus Fortress : a spectacular medieval castle dating back to the 13th century. The list is endless.

Journey Time From London: Just over 2 hours on a plane.

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Head Over to Berlin

Best for: Exploring the city’s rich urban culture.

Berlin is an absolute must-see European city. There’s no place like Berlin found across Europe’s travel map tour. Beyond the hipster bars and clubs, Berlin is rather romantic too. Especially when strolling through the winding paths of Britzer Garten or sightseeing the city’s must-visit landmarks including the iconic Brandenburg Gate and of course the remnants of the Berlin Wall.

Journey Time From London: About 2 hours on a plane.

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Explore the City of Dublin

Best for: Seeing the very best of urban Northern Ireland.

Dublin is one of the best weekend getaways from London for a whole variety of reasons. Firstly there’s lots of historical and cultural attractions to try out, including museums, art galleries, and Trinity College : the oldest university in Dublin, founded by Queen Elizabeth I back in 1592. There’s plenty of fun to have elsewhere too, including the Guinness Storehouse : a must-see brewery for Guinness lovers with regular exhibitions and an atrium shaped like a pint glass. A refreshing pint of the good stuff comes free with the price of admission too. 

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Take a Quick Flight to Amsterdam

Best for: Museums and art-lovers.

Amsterdam is a super popular weekend trip from London. Why? Because the Netherlands’ capital has so much to do and see. Most impressive is its selection of world-renowned museums including the Rijksmuseum (holding paintings by all-time greats like Rembrandt) and the Anne Frank House (the preserved hiding place of Frank and her family during WW2). The city also offers good vibes, wacky tourist attractions, and plenty of cafes to sip on a coffee and watch the world passing by outside.

Reignite date night

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20 of the best weekend breaks from London

Fridays are made for escaping the city; whether you crave wide-open spaces, blustery beaches or cocktails and culture, there’s a weekend getaway to suit.

romantic weekend trips from london

P ress pause on the hustle and bustle soundtrack of the capital and make the most of all of the incredible places within a few hours’ train journey. Get some fresh air and cycle around the pony-filled New Forest or go back in time with a wander around the cobbled streets of York before refuelling with afternoon tea at Bettys. If you want something closer to home, you can punt your way along around the Cam in Cambridge, relax in a thermal spa in Bath or leave dry land entirely with a trip to the Isle of Wight where hundreds of walking trails await.

Main photo: Bournemouth beach huts (Getty Images)

Overlooking the Sugar Loaf mountain (Alamy)

1. Abergavenny

The gateway to the Brecon Beacons National Park, Aber is perfect for a foodie weekend; pick up picnic treats in the bustling Saturday market and enjoy wine tastings and tours in the Sugar Loaf Vineyard. The nearby River Usk offers some of the best salmon-fishing in Wales and you can hike up the volcano-shaped Sugar Loaf mountain for panoramic views over South Wales. Don’t miss the chance to pop into Abergavenny Castle either — it’s one of the best-preserved motte-and-bailey castles in the UK — and stroll through the castle meadows which roll out beside the Usk.

Distance from London 2hr 40 mins by train Where to stay Rhona’s Cottage, a cosy house sleeping six within striking distance of the centre

A hut in Rye Harbour Nature Reserve (Getty Images)

Quaintly pretty, Rye is one of the best-preserved medieval towns in England , with cobbled streets dotted with art galleries and craft shops. Rye Castle Museum gives insight into the town’s history, while Lamb House — once the home of American novelist Henry James — focuses on its literary connections. Birdwatchers and wildlife-lovers should head to Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, with over 280 bird species spotted in the area, along with the occasional seal.

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Distance from London 1hr 10 mins by train Where to stay The Gallivant, a sophisticated boutique B&B at nearby Camber Sands

Explore Oxford’s honey-dipped ancient colleges and halls

Steeped in history, Oxford also has an edgy, contemporary side, thanks to its huge student population. Get an insight into university life with a tour of Magdalen college and a visit to the Ashmolean Museum, before hiring a punt to glide along the Cherwell. Dip into the vibrant Covered Market, which combines arts and crafts with foodie treats; then in the evening, head to the Jericho neighbourhood to find the city’s hippest bars.

Distance from London 1hr by train Where to stay The Old Parsonage is a sleek luxury hotel in the centre of the city

Best hotels in Oxford

The Lanes (Alamy)

4. Brighton

Begin in the nine streets of the North Laine area; a mix of boutiques, plant-based cafés and ethnic shops that sum up the city’s boho-chic vibe. Spend an hour beneath the iconic domes of the Brighton Pavilion and browse the jewellers and designer boutiques in the Lanes, a lattice of alleyways that were once home to fishermen’s cottages. Families will love the Sea Life Aquarium and the Palace Pier; a 15-minute walk along the Prom brings you to the more genteel Hove Lawns and the elegant Bandstand Café.

Distance from London 1hr by train Where to stay Artist Residence is a hip, art-themed boutique hotel on an elegant Regency square

Best hotels in Brighton

Best things to do in Brighton

Lime Wood is a handsome country retreat in the New Forest

5. New Forest

Ideal for an outdoorsy break from London, you can explore the New Forest on foot, bike or horseback. Stroll beneath the spectacular trees dotted along the Rhinefield Ornamental Drive, visit beautiful Exbury Gardens or take the kids to the Moors Valley Country Park, which has two fantastic adventure play areas. Petrol-heads should visit the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu; afterwards hire bikes to cycle the Beaulieu river, or glide down the estuary in a kayak or canoe.

Distance from London 2hr 30 mins by train Where to stay Lime Wood is a chic spa hotel with an Angela Hartnett restaurant

Best hotels in the New Forest

Broadway Tower (Getty Images)

6. Broadway, Cotswolds

Arguably the most beautiful of all the Cotswolds villages, Broadway’s picturesque High Street is dotted with antique shops and boutiques — perfect for a morning’s browse. Pop into the Broadway Museum and Art Gallery to discover the villages’ rich artistic history and lace up your walking boots for a hike up to the Broadway Tower, an 18th-century tower on the top of the Cotswold escarpment with views stretching across 16 counties.

Distance from London 2hr 20 mins by car Where to stay Dormy House is a luxury country house hotel just outside the village

dormyhouse.co.uk

Thermae Bath Spa (Alamy)

One of the UK’s most elegant cities, the Georgian streets of Bath are ideal for a romantic weekend break. Book a treatment at the Thermae Bath Spa — and take a dip in the outdoor pool on the roof, which has wonderful views of the city rooftops. Visit the Jane Austen Centre for an insight into life in the city in the early 19th century, and refuel at Sally Lunn’s, home of the famous Bath Bun since the 1480s.

Distance from London 1hr 20mins by train Where to stay No 15 Great Pulteney, a classic Georgian townhouse with 21st-century design

8. Isle of Wight

Pack your walking boots for a weekend getaway across the Solent; the island has 500 miles of walking trails, with the West Wight boasting truly dramatic scenery. Walk up Tennyson Down for a spectacular view of the Needles, or kick back in a waterfront café in Cowes, where yachts and sailboats whisk across the water. Visit Osborne House, Queen Victoria’s beloved holiday home, and take the kids to Blackgang Chine, a charmingly old-fashioned activity park.

Distance from London 1hr 30 mins by train, 50 mins ferry Where to stay The Garlic Farm, which has luxury yurts sleeping up to six, alongside a garlic-themed shop and restaurant

Burnham Market (Alamy)

9. Burnham Market, Norfolk

Norfolk’s most picturesque village, with a charming High Street, Burnham Market is a great base for exploring the spectacular beaches of the north Norfolk coast. The vast swathe of sand at Holkham is nearby, along with 18th-century Holkham Hall, and the Norfolk Coast Path offers vast skies and plenty of birdwatching opportunities. Nearby, Wells-next-the-Sea is a pretty harbour town with a good mix of shops and cafés on Staithe Street.

Distance from London 2hrs 20 mins by car Where to stay The Chequers Inn for crackling fires and freestanding bath tubs to soak in after a day of exploring

thompsonchequers.co.uk

Take time out in the spa at Talbooth House

10. Dedham, Essex

Made famous by the paintings of John Constable, Dedham Vale is an unspoiled swathe of countryside with a picturesque village at its heart. Browse the gift shops and Arts & Crafts Centre on Dedham’s picturesque High Street before visiting Flatford Mill, the inspiration for many of Constable’s paintings. Relax on a boat trip up the river Stour, or discover the region’s artistic history by bike, on the Painter’s Trail, a 69-mile circular route, split into shorter sections.

Distance from London 1hr 40 mins by train Where to stay Talbooth House, a boutique hotel and spa on the banks of the Stour

milsomhotels.com/talbooth-house-spa

Bishop’s Palace (Alamy)

11. Wells, Somerset

The smallest city in England, Wells punches above its weight in terms of attractions, with the glorious 13th-century cathedral and 800-year-old Bishop’s Palace the two biggest draws. The city is an ideal base for exploring the nearby Mendip Hills and the spectacular cave system at Wookey Hole. Foodies will find much to fawn over, with a high number of trattoria and gelaterias, run by descendants of some of those interred at the Italian POW camp, set up just outside the city in the Second World War.

Distance from London 2hrs 50 mins by train Where to stay Lord Poulett Arms, a country pub with fancy food and cosy rooms that dates back to the 17th century

Best luxury hotels in Somerset

You need to be quick to bag one of just 12 rooms at No 38 Clifton

12. Bristol

Art and food compete for prominence in Bristol ; visit St Nicholas Market to sample the best local produce, or dip into the Harbourside Food Market to browse arts and crafts stalls as well as food. Pack a swimming costume for a dip in the outdoor pool at the elegantly-restored Lido, and take time to visit the iconic Suspension Bridge. Stokes Croft — one of the city’s hippest roads — is famous for its street art, and the lively bars and cafés nearby, many of which host regular live music nights.

Distance from London 1hr 40 mins by train Where to stay No 38 Clifton is a stylish, 12-room boutique hotel in the fashionable Clifton neighbourhood

Best things to do in Bristol

The Millennium Bridge (Alamy)

There are myriad ways to explore this hugely picturesque cathedral city; walk the Roman city walls or take a river cruise up the Ouse to see the Millennium Bridge and 14th-century Clifford’s Tower from the water. Discover the city’s Scandi past at the Jorvik Viking Centre, and dip into world-famous York Minster – an architectural marvel dating back to medieval times. Reward yourself with afternoon tea at Betty’s, a York favourite since 1936.

Distance from London 1hr 50 mins by train Where to stay The five-star Principal is set in quiet gardens overlooking York Minster

Best hotels in York

Get lakeside views at Linthwaite House

14. Windermere

A weekend in the Lake District gives a real feeling of escape; base yourself on the banks of Lake Windermere and explore the waterside towns and attractions by using the network of boats that criss-cross the water. Kids (and parents) will love the World of Beatrix Potter, while the Lakeside and Haverthwaite Railway is a relaxing way to take in the stunning landscapes. At Fell Foot Park, kayaks and rowing boats are available for hire.

Distance from London 2hrs 40 mins (Oxenholme station) Where to stay Linthwaite House, a relaxing country house hotel with wonderful views over Windermere

Best hotels in the Lake District

Hope Valley (Getty Images)

15. Hope Valley, Derbyshire

One of the most beautiful areas of the Peak District National Park, the Hope Valley is home to spectacular scenery both above and below ground. The Castleton Caves are some of the best show caverns in the country, while the Heights of Abraham site combines an underground tour with a cable car ride high above the countryside. Walkers are spoilt for choice, with the spectacular ridge of Mam Tor and Winnats Pass.

Distance from London 3hrs by car Where to stay Cotton Cottage is a cosy, three-bedroom house in Hope village

Make Windmill Cottage your base for exploring Lincoln

16. Lincoln

An under-the-radar gem, Lincoln is a charming cathedral city with its own copy of Magna Carta on view at Lincoln Castle, works by Turner and Lowry at the newly opened Collection gallery, and one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the country. Take a wander up Steep Hill, a historic street home to retro and vintage boutiques and antique shops, and walk the medieval walls, built in the time of William the Conqueror.

Distance from London 2hrs by train Where to stay Windmill Cottage is a charming house, sleeping four, walking distance from Lincoln’s main historic sites

hotels.uk.com/uk/lincolnshire/hotels-in-lincoln/windmill-cottage.ln1-3jj

17. Bournemouth

Blast away city ennui with a seaside weekend; pick from Durley Chine, Southbourne or Bournemouth’s main beach for sandy strolls and hot chips by the water. Up the cultural factor with a visit to the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery, the former home of two Victorian travellers and collectors, or check out the cute penguins at the Oceanarium. To escape the crowds, hop on the ferry to Brownsea Island, a nature reserve rich in wildlife.

Distance from London 2hrs 40 mins by train Where to stay The Green House, an eco-friendly boutique hotel five minutes’ stroll from the beach

Go boutique at 42 The Calls

A city break in the north’s cultural capital is a whirlwind of cocktails and shopping, art galleries and leafy parks. Pack the credit card for a spree in the elegant Victorian shopping arcades, now home to designer boutiques, and pop into the Corn Exchange, which combines foodie stalls with local arts and crafts. Discover the rich Leeds art scene, with a visit to The Tetley gallery and grab some peace and fresh air in the lush, tree-lined space of Roundhay Park.

Distance from London 2hrs 10 mins by train Where to stay 42 The Calls, Leeds’ first boutique hotel and still one of the city’s best

42thecallshotel.com

Best hotels in Leeds

Arundel Castle’s gardens (Getty Images)

19. Arundel

Dominated by the spectacular Norman castle, Arundel is the ideal weekend getaway for those who want to slow the pace. The River Arun flows through the town; hire a boat to explore further into the Downland countryside, or follow the riverbank walk to the lovely Black Rabbit pub. Dip into the galleries and boutiques on Tarrant Street, and make the 15-minute journey to walk the sand dunes at West Beach, a protected site and one of the last undeveloped stretches of coast in the southeast.

Distance from London 1hr 25 mins by train Where to stay Bridles Park Place is a cosy three-bedroom cottage that welcomes dogs

Punting on the River Cam (Alamy)

20. Cambridge

Drift along the Cam in a punt, take afternoon tea at the waterside Orchard Tea Garden and explore the stunning architecture of Kings’ College on a pint-sized city break. Cambridge is easily explored on foot; explore the art and artefacts at the Fitzwilliam Museum, stroll through the University’s charming Botanic Garden, or drop in at the Cambridge Gin Laboratory to mix your own spirit.

Distance from London 50 mins by train Where to stay The University Arms is a literary-themed boutique hotel in the heart of the city

Best hotels in Cambridge

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Live Work Play Travel

18 Best Weekend Trips from London

by Sharyn McCullum | Last updated Dec 25, 2023 | London and UK Live Work and Play

Tudor style building in Chester. An old English style of building and wonderful to visit on a London weekend getaway.

Are you after suggestions for some great weekend trips from London? Then you are in luck as there are some pretty amazing places to visit outside of London. If you are living and working in London or even visiting for a few days, you may feel like getting out of London on a weekend escape. There are so many wonderful destinations to visit in Britain . Whether you are looking for somewhere to discover solo, on a romantic weekend or travelling with the family, there are plenty of London weekend getaways. And to help you decide where to go on your London weekend escape, here are 18 of the best London weekend getaways to enjoy. Where will you go on your weekend trip from London?

Table of Contents

18 of the Best Weekend Getaways from London

The following weekend getaways near London are in no particular order. So scroll through until you find one of the short breaks from London, which is just perfect for you!

Southampton

Favourite weekend getaway from London of Jenni from Cruise Mummy . 

Southampton Bargate Is An Old Sandstone Building With Turrets. A Great Place To Visit On A London Getaway.

Bargate, Southampton

Southampton is a fantastic place to spend a weekend away from London. Located on the South Coast of England, it’s easy to get to and from London via train or car. Southampton is the main cruise port for the UK. If you’re taking a cruise then I recommend you spend a couple of days here before or after your cruise to make the most of your time in this wonderful city.

Southampton is a historic maritime city. It has a great mix of old and new, with lots to see and do during your weekend away from London. Take a walk along the city’s walls before visiting the historical sights of the Old Town. Then head to the waterfront to take a look at the cruise ships that are in port.

If you like shopping then the Westquay shopping centre is well worth a visit. You’ll find some great places to eat there as well. If you visit in the summertime, then Mayflower Park is the best place to stop and enjoy a picnic with a view of the ocean. There’s also a lovely playground here so it’s a great place to visit if you have kids.

For a night out, head to Ocean Village. Here you’ll find the city’s tallest buildings, mooring for luxury yachts and lots of places to eat and drink, many of which have outside terraces.

Click here to check out where to stay in Southampton .

Yorkshire Dales

Favourite London weekend getaway of Ada of Beyond the Yellow Brick Road: A Travel Blog

Fountains Abbey In Yorkshire Is An Abbey In Disrepair. Visit To See The Massive Remains Of Windows and Structure. It Must Have Been Magnificent. Visit It On A Day Trip From London.

Fountains Abbey in the Yorkshire Dale s

While you can’t catch the Hogwarts Express at London’s King’s Cross Station , a less than three-hour train ride from the station gets you to Leeds. The doorstep of an equally magical English destination, the Yorkshire Dales. Despite its close proximity to London, you’re officially in the “north” of England here. This hilly region of England known for its heather covered moors has a rural vibe all its own, making it the perfect London getaway.  

During your visit, be sure to hit up little hillside hamlets like Haworth – the hometown of the Bronte sisters. For a larger town experience, visit the ancient spa town of Harrogate. Don’t forget to stock up on cakes from Bettys Café Tea Rooms as well as toffee from Farrah’s of Harrogate before departing. Not to worry, a visit to Yorkshire isn’t just about sweet stuff. You can stretch your legs on the over 1600 miles of hiking trails crisscrossing the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Take a ramble through the stunning ruins of Fountains Abbey. This 12 th century Cistercian abbey is located outside of Ripon is an absolute Yorkshire Dales must.

Although not officially in the Yorkshire Dales, consider a visit to the city that gives the region its name, York. Known for its spectacular minster, this cathedral town is one of the oldest cities in England. The Shambles, a twisting medieval street, is said to have inspired Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter series.  

Click here to book some accommodation options in Leeds so you can explore the Yorkshire Dales on your London weekend escape .

Best getaway from London by Annie of Into the Bold

There Are Many Old Castle Looking Buildings In Brighton, The Seaside Town In England. Only One Hour From London By Train It Is A Great Place to Visit For The Day Or To Have A Weekend Getaway.

Brighton Pavillion

The nearest seaside resort to London is Brighton, making it the perfect place to get away for a day or weekend from the city. The town is full of vibrant street art and an off-beat energy! From King George IV’s Oriental palace, the Royal Pavilion, to the narrow alleys of the Lanes, I loved exploring this quirky spot.

The Royal Pavilion is the most popular attraction in Brighton. You can tour the interior for a look into the life of George IV and his eclectic taste. The Brighton Dome, once George IV’s stables, has been turned into a major arts venue. You can catch a show at Brighton’s Theatre Royal, where many plays show before making their way to London’s West End.

The Brighton Palace Pier is one of my personal favourites, offering amusements for kids of all ages! Visit the Paradox Place House of Illusions allows you to be part of the interactive illusions. Then stop at the Brighton Toy and Model Museum to wonder at the world of fun they’ve created!

Wandering the narrow alleys of the Lanes, the oldest part of the city, is one of my favourite ways to spend an afternoon! It is sure to delight you with some of the best shopping and dining you can find. There are plenty of cafes, pubs, bars, and restaurants to choose from. Whether you want a day trip or weekend away from London of relaxation or entertainment, Brighton has something for everyone.

Book your accommodation for your weekend stay in Brighton here .

Seven Sisters

A favourite London escape of Pauline of UK Everyday

Seven Sisters Or The White Cliffs Of Dover Are Often The Last Thing You See When Sailing Away From England To Europe. The Cliffs Are White Because Of The Chalk. They Are A Must See When In England And Can Be Reached Easily On A Day Trip From London Or A Weekend Getaway.

Seven Sisters White Cliffs

There are plenty of places to see white cliffs in England . However, Seven Sisters was always my favourite place to visit when I lived in London. Seven different hills form stunning scenery in the south coast of the UK. Also, it is a popular filming location well known from the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire movie.

  The cliffs are slowly being eroded so don’t miss out the opportunity to see this natural beauty. Particularly between Eastbourn and Cuckmere Haven beach. You can get there in just 2 hours 20 minutes from London so it is a great spot for a one day trip or London weekend getaway.

Leave your car at Seven Sisters Car Park and walk by the Cuckmere River. Next to Cuckmere Haven beach you will see dramatic cliffs. It is easy and definitely worth it climbing Seven Sisters cliffs, because the views are breathtaking.

  Infinite views of white chalk cliffs and green hills will offer you unforgettable experience. Hiking over Seven Sisters cliffs is a wonderful way to spend a day. If you would like to spend a weekend there, it is located only 15 minutes drive from Eastbourne where you can find some good accomodations.

Book your accommodation here in Eastbourne to see the fabulous Seven Sisters .

Favourite weekend escape from London of Kenny of Knycx Journeying

Edinburgh Castle Is A Large Castle Sitting On Top Of A Large Rocky Mountain In Edinburgh. Edinburgh Is A Great London Weekend Getaway.

Overlooking Edinburgh, Edinburgh Castle

Venerable, dramatic Edinburgh is a historic, cultured and cosmopolitan city , regularly topping polls as the most desirable place to live in the UK. It takes about 4.5 hours by train from London and it’s a perfect location for a short getaway and a change of scenery.

The Waverley Station is at the heart of Edinburgh that straddles the Princes Street Gardens. Along with its beauty, Edinburgh is blessed by its brevity, a wonderfully compact city built for navigation on foot. Medieval Old Town of Edinburgh is packed with key landmarks with a deep connection to the Scottish past. These include the Royal Scottish Academy, Scottish National Gallery, the Writers’ Museum, and the Edinburgh Castle.  

Among Edinburgh’s many museums, the exciting National Museum of Scotland houses ten thousand of Scotland’s most precious artifacts. Don’t forget to check out the business district on Holyrood Road, and New Street, just off the Royal Mile. Calton Hill is the best spot offering a view overlooking the city. The National Monument of Scotland is a Greek-style unfinished monument dedicated to the Scottish soldiers and sailors who died fighting in the Napoleonic Wars. It was considered a disgrace because of the incompletion of the build due to lack of funding.

In August, more than a million visitors flock to the city for the Edinburgh Festival. On a less elevated theme, the city’s vast array of distinctive pubs, allied to its brewing and distilling traditions, make it an unrivalled drinking city. All great reasons making Edinburgh a wonderful place for a London getaway. Get a full list of things to do and see in Edinburgh here and where to stay in Edinburgh here .

South Downs, Hampshire

A favourite spot of Annabel of Smudged Postcard for a London getaway

The Moon Valley Trail In Hampshire Is A Lush Valley With Many Walking Trails To Enjoy. Hampshire Is Close To London So You Could Visit For A Day Or Turn Your Visit Into A Weekend London Getaway.

Mean Valley Trail, South Downs, Hampshire

A brilliant destination for escaping the big smoke and just a short journey from London is the South Downs in Hampshire . This national park stretches across several counties in southern England. In Hampshire there are wonderful hills to climb, far reaching views and stunning scenery.

If you’re looking for a weekend away from London, there are several charming villages in the South Downs and plenty of excellent gastropubs to dine in. There is an excellent walk – or cycle route – along a former railway line called the Meon Valley Trail. This route takes walkers and cyclists through some of the most enjoyable countryside in the region. Passing charming villages on route with plenty of great places to stop for lunch. The Shoe Inn at Exton is a good choice – ensure you book ahead.  The trail is 10 miles long running between the villages of West Meon and Wickham.

The South Downs is brilliant at any time of year but the scenery is particularly special in spring. This is when the woodlands are filled with bluebells, and in autumn when the changing colours are particularly vivid.

By road, the South Downs National Park is under an hour away from London. If travelling by train, the medieval city of Winchester on the edge of the Downs is an hour from London Waterloo. From there it’s worth hiring a car for the weekend in order to explore the region fully. Check out this full list of accommodation available for your weekend escape in Winchester .

Jurassic Coast

Favourite weekend getaway from London of Stefanie of Open Road Odysseys

Durdle Door Is Found On The Jurassic Coast In England, Named So Because Some Of The Rocks Look Like Dinosaur. The Jurassic Coast Is A Great Day Trip From London Or You Could Extend Your Stay to A London Weekend Getaway.

Durdle Door, Jurassic Coast

Less than 3 hours from London is the beautiful Jurassic Coast. Stretching 95 miles from Exmouth to Swanage, this breathtaking region is the only natural World Heritage Site in England.

The Jurassic Coast is a hiker’s paradise. The South West Coast Path traverses nearly every section of the coastline, allowing hikers of every skill level to enjoy the stunning views and landscapes. Some of the most popular landmarks include Durdle Door, Lulworth Cove, Chesil Beach, and Old Harry Rocks.

There’s more to do here than just hiking. Fossil hunting is a popular activity, and the best places to search are Charmouth and Lyme Regis, although you can find fossils anywhere along the coast. There are also the ruins of Corfe Castle to wander, and a ride on the Swanage Railway is a unique and fun way to spend a day.

And don’t be discouraged by bad weather. There are lots of museums to explore on a rainy day, such as the Etches Collection and Dorset County Museum. There’s also an aquarium in Lyme Regis, and the Beer Quarry Caves is a fun place to explore.

No matter your interests, there is something for everyone along the Jurassic Coast. Whether you’re on a weekend road trip or just visiting for the day, I guarantee you’ll want to come back for more! Click here to check out accommodation where in to stay in Exmouth, near the Jurassic Coast .

Favourite weekend escape near London of Joanna of The World in My Pocket

Windsor Castle Stands Proudly In Windsor. One Of The Queen's Homes It Is Very Squarish With Turrets And Is Surrounded By Spectacular Gardens. Make A Day Trip Of It Or Spend The Weekend.

Windsor Castle with its beautiful gardens

Home to one of the royal residences of the Queen of the United Kingdom, Windsor makes a perfect day trip from London. As well as experiencing the English countryside, the main attraction in Windsor is the mighty Windsor Castle, which is open to the public, even when the Queen is home. It is highly recommended to book tickets to the castle ahead of time, as currently they are timed. Plan to spend between two and three hours visiting the Castle and the State Apartments, which display many of the Royal collections, including Henry VIII’s armour garniture for the field and tilt.

Another nice thing to do on a day trip to Windsor is walk the mile. This is a long path that connects the castle with the Copper Horse Statue, in Windsor Great Park. The path is actually three miles long. It passes through the deer park, which is home to around 500 red deer. You don’t have to search too long for deer, as they are used to people and roam relatively closely to the path.

Windsor is a lovely town on the shores of River Thames. After you finished exploring the town’s cobbled streets, jump on a boat for a short cruise, to see the castle from a different perspective. For somewhere to stay during your weekend in Windsor, check out these accommodation options .

A favourite weekend escape from London by Coralie from Grey Globetrotters

Victoria Gate Shopping Centre In Leeds Is A Spectacular Shopping Centre. Walk Along A Black And White Floor With Fabulous Shops. Everyone Loves Shopping On A London Weekend Getaway.

Shop till you drop at Victoria Gate

The vibrant city of Leeds in West Yorkshire is an exciting place for a day trip from London. And it’s only 2 hours away by train. Whether you’re looking for impressive historical sights, fabulous food, top-quality shopping, or to discover miles and miles of glorious Yorkshire countryside on its doorstep, Leeds has something to delight every visitor.

Moments away from the train station, you’ll find the beautiful Victorian Corn Exchange. It is packed with quirky independent shops and eateries. Then there’s the bustling historic Leeds City Markets, home of the original Marks & Spencer “penny bazaar” store. In complete contrast, Victoria Leeds is where you’ll find top stores like Harvey Nichols and John Lewis and luxury brands. There’s also the gorgeous shopping arcades in the historic Victoria Quarter, filled with high-end boutiques to browse.

The unmissable Royal Armouries Museum, with its eight storeys ”Wall of Steel”, contains the UK’s national collection of arms and armour. Still, suppose you prefer something more quirky. In that case, the Thackray Museum of Medicine takes you on the story of medicine through the grimy streets of Victorian Leeds. Fancy watching pretty gruesome operations in the 19th-century operating theatre! Kids love it! Alternatively, hop on a bus and head for the best-preserved Cistercian monastery in Britain – 12th century Kirkstall Abbey. Or perhaps spend the day exploring  Harewood House. Then head back to the city for a curry or a drink in the bars of Boar Lane, before checking into your pre-booked Leeds accommodation – check out accommodation options here .

A favourite weekend spot away from London of Milijana of World Travel Connecto r

Arundel Castle Is a great Place To Visit On A London Day Trip or Weekend Getaway.

Arundel Castle – waiting to be explored

Want to visit one of the loveliest places in England with one the most incredible castles in England on a day trip from London? Check out Arundel and Arundel Castle in the West Sussex.  

Picturesque Arundel on the River Arun is one of the prettiest places in England. Beautiful Arundel is famous for its Georgian buildings and Arundel Caste. The streets of this charming Sussex town are not full only of history but of fun sites as well. Arundel has plenty of classy restaurants, cozy pubs, lovely cafes, independent boutiques, art galleries, and antique markets to make Arundel a perfect day trip from London. If you want to learn about the history of Arundel, join an Arundel historic walking tour and visit Arundel Museum. Hire a motorboat at the Arundel Boatyard and cruise the river if you feel somewhat romantic. And, if you want to eat some of the best foods in Britain , reserve your table at The Parsons Table, a Michelin-star restaurant in Arundel.  

But the landmark of Arundel and a must-visit in Arundel is medieval Arundel Castle. The castle is one of the most magnificent Victorian buildings in England.  

The majestic Arundel castle was a filming location for several films and series, among which Doctor Who (Silver Nemesis), The Young Victoria, The Madness of King George and Wonder Woman are probably best known.

Arundel Castle is a private manor and the seat of the Duke of Norfolk for the past 900 years. One part of the castle is open to the public. So, when in Arundel, don’t miss out on visiting this magnificent castle.  

Arundel is only about 2 hours away from London. Remember, Arundel is one of the best weekend trips from London to treat yourself! Click here to check out where to stay in Arundel.

A favourite weekend escape to another capital city from London of Cath of Wales with Kids

The Cardiff Millennium Centre Looks Like A Massive Arena From The Outside. Cardiff Is The Capital Of Wales And Is A Good Weekend Getaway City To Visit From London.

Wales Millennium Centre

Cardiff is the Welsh capital and is a vibrant city that is easily visited from London, be it for a day trip or weekend. Just 2 hours by train from London Paddington and less than 3 hours from Central London by car, it’s ideal for a short getaway. Day trips can be done if you take an early morning train and leave Cardiff in the evening.

Cardiff has lots to offer visitors including Cardiff Castle, the National Museum, Cardiff Bay and St Fagans on the outskirts. The Castle is located in the centre of the city and visitors can see inside the Castle Apartments, wonder at the Norman Keep and discover the secrets hidden in the battlements. It might be a bit noisy and frightening at first but worth going inside them. Prepare to be amazed.

Just behind the castle is Bute Park, a lovely park that is a quiet haven in the middle of a bustling city. It is especially lovely in autumn when the leaves are crunching under your feet. And for those who haven’t gotten their fill of history in the castle, the National Museum is located just across the road.

For those who love retail therapy, the entire high street in the city centre is pedestrianised and filled with all the high street shops you could need. St David’s and St David’s 2 shopping centres have even more opportunities for shopping. Music to my ears.

Foodies should head to Mill Lane, Trinity Street or the Hayes. There are also plenty of restaurants in Cardiff Bay where you will find the Senedd Building (Welsh Parliament), the Wales Millennium Centre and the Norwegian Church, all very photo-worthy buildings.

For those staying for the weekend, St Fagans, the Welsh Museum of History is a must. Visitors can step back in time and imagine life in Wales centuries ago through the various buildings on-site that have been transported brick-by-brick. Buildings date back almost one thousand years.

Cardiff is a city that I have visited many times, both while living in South Wales and while in Portugal and it never fails to bring a smile to my face. Whether it is shopping, getting my fill of history or seeing friends, a visit to the city never disappoints. Click here to see accommodation options in Cardiff for your weekend getaway .

One of the best weekend getaways from London of Natasha of Planes, Trains and Karcz

York Minster Stands Proudly In The City Of York. It Dominates The Skyline. Visit For A Weekend Getaway Or Day Trip From London.

Get the best views of York from the top of the York Minster

York, located in northeast England, is a breathtaking city brimming with gothic architecture, a lively pub scene and eclectic shops. Being a four hour train ride away from the heart of London, York makes for a perfect weekend getaway. You experience the same lively buzz of the big city, but with its own unique and cultural spin.

Begin your visit to York with a walk upon its signature stone walls, of which there’s over 3.5km of preserved circuit to cover. This serves as a great way to first orient yourself with the layout of the city. From there, take a stroll down the most picturesque street in Britain, The Shambles. It can only be described as real-life Diagon Alley (for all you Harry Potter fans out there!). It features tall, slouching timber-framed buildings dating back as early as the 1300’s. And don’t forget to pop into one of York’s many pubs. York literally has more pubs than there are days per yea r , so there’ll be no shortage to stop in at and have a pint!

Lastly, my absolute favourite stop…the York Minster. No visit to York would be complete without a climb up the renowned York Minster. It provides none other than the town’s best view. Even seeing as far as Scotland on a clear day! Needless to say, regardless of how you spend your time in York, you’re bound to be met with jaw dropping beauty and historical significance around every corner. Click here to get a full list of York accommodation options .

The Cotswolds

Favourite weekend spot of Shireen of The Happy Days Travels

The Cotswolds Are Known For Their Quaint Villages Of Old Houses Lining The Streets. The Cotswolds Are A Great Place To Visit For A Day Trip Or Weekend Getaway.

One of the beautiful villages in the Cotswolds to visit

A beautiful area of the South-Central English countryside is a cluster of villages, rolling hills and canals that make up The Cotswolds. Just 2 hours from London, making it an ideal day trip from London. In 1966 it was designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and covers 787 square miles of land.

The Cotswolds is a special place to visit. It’s full of the quintessential English houses, classic British pubs and honesty boxes where you can purchase books, and locally-produced honey, jam and chocolate. Many TV shows and movies have used The Cotswolds as filming locations. Bridget Jones’s Diary and Harry Potter to name a couple. It can get overwhelming deciding which places to go so research the best villages in The Cotswolds and plan your route for your day trip or weekend away from London.

Some of the top things to do include trying Cotswold Cheese and visiting Arlington Row said to be the prettiest street in England and which is featured on the British passport. Also visiting Blenheim Palace to see where Winston Churchill was born. And maybe having a spa day in the Roman baths in the city Bath.

When looking for somewhere to stay in The Cotswolds consider the largest town in the area, Cirencester. Click here to check out accommodation options in Cirencester .

Favourite weekend escape from London of Sinead of York with Kids

Durham Cathedral Is A Spectacular Cathedral In The Centre Of Durham Town. With Spires And Build From Many Bricks It Stands Over The Town. Durham, In The North Of England Makes A Great Weekend Getaway From London.

Durham Cathedral

The historic city of Durham is often overlooked in favour of other UK cities or simply passed by on a trip from London to Edinburgh. But the city is a great destination for a day or weekend trip from London. Durham can be reached by train from London in approximately 3 ½ hours. This may sound like a long journey but, once you leave London, it is a scenic journey through the English countryside and the time will pass quickly. Plus, Durham’s rail station is a short ten-minute walk from the city centre so you will not need to use public transport during your visit.  

Start your day in Durham at the UNESCO World Heritage cathedral which towers over the city. The 12th century cathedral is an interesting mix of Romanesque and Norman architectural styles and is worth visiting just for its stained glass. The cathedral holds the relics of two saints and its cloisters featured as Hogwarts in the Harry Potter movies. Climb the north west tower for a fantastic view of the city. On the cathedral quadrant, Palace Green, you can visit Palace Green Library, the Durham Museum and Heritage Centre or, by a pre-arranged tour, Durham Castle.  

Once the history part of your trip is over, wander Durham’s cobbled pedestrianised lanes which are lined with cafes and independent shops. Browse the market stalls in the indoor Victorian market or explore St. Nicholas Church and the Victorian town hall. Take a break from the city with a tranquil walk along the River Wear. Durham is a lively, charming city and unlike other UK destinations it rarely feels overrun with tourists. Click here to check out accommodation options for your visit to Durham .

Weekend from London favourite spot by Cristina of My Little World of Travelling

The Town Of Lincoln In England Has Many Cobbled Streets And Old Sandstone Buildings Lining The Cobbled Streets. It's A Great Place To Step Back In Time While On A London Getaway.

Explore cobbled streets with old brick buildings

Lincoln, located in Lincolnshire (East Midlands), is a perfect city to visit for a day or short weekend away from London. This charming city has many things to offer – from outstanding historic buildings and museums to cosy afternoon tea rooms and unique local independent shops.

Lincoln Castle is an unmissable attraction. Here you can find one of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta, an international document of high importance that represents liberty and freedom. Walking on the castle walls is also a great experience as you get breathtaking views of the city.

Another historic building that is worth visiting is Lincoln Cathedral. Not only does it have impressive architecture on the outside, but on the inside too. Its stained-glass windows are to admire. You cannot miss is the rooftop tour in which you can enjoy incredible views of the city and discover some secret spots inside the cathedral.

Last but not least, wandering around the town centre is an experience. Steep Hill is the most famous street in Lincoln where you will find many quaint tea rooms like Bunty’s Tea Room. I spent two days in Lincoln , and I had a great time. Before visiting Lincoln, I hadn’t heard much about it, but I am very glad I visit it because it is a true gem destination.”

Click here to book your accommodation in Lincoln .

Favourite London weekend escape of Izzy of The Gap Decaders

Norwich Is A City Built Along A River. Enjoy The City From The Water Or The Land When On A London Day Trip or Weekend Getaway.

River Wensum winds through Norwich

Norwich in Norfolk is the perfect destination for a short break from London. Just a few hours from London it’s surrounded by gentle Norfolk countryside and with the unique Norfolk Broads on the doorstep, Norwich is the perfect place for a quintessentially British break.

The only city in Norfolk, Norwich is the most complete medieval city in the United Kingdom today. Home to historic architecture, cobbled streets, ancient buildings, half-timbered houses and twisting medieval lanes. And don’t forget the pretty winding River Wensum that flows through the city centre. Norwich is a feast of history and architecture.

Alongside the flourishing growing food scene, the city has a strong focus on culture, the arts and literature. Plus has a lively independent shopping scene. Spend a weekend in Norwich exploring the rich history, enjoying top class dining and soaking up the atmosphere of this lively and welcoming city.

Within a few miles of the city are the vast beaches of the glorious North Norfolk Coast, perfect for a Sunday morning stroll. And the lazy rivers of the Norfolk Broads, ideal for a boating adventure. If that feels like too much hard work, find one of Norfolk’s excellent country inns . Where you can settle in for a glass of something chilled over a fine lunch of locally sourced ingredients.

Contributed by Sydney of A World in Reach

Stonehenge Is A Circular Stone Structure Standing In The Middle Of A Field. It's Not To Be Missed On A Day Trip from London Or Weekend Getaway.

Standing tall in a field on its own – Stonehenge

Stonehenge is on the bucket list of many travellers, and it can easily be visited on a day trip from London. It is a prehistoric monument full of mystery and the questions surrounding its existence have captivated travellers for ages. Believed to have been built during the Bronze Age, there are dozens of theories to the purpose of the stone circle.

The monument is located in Wiltshire, just 1 hour and 45 minutes away from London by car or 2 hours and 15 minutes by public transport. When you arrive at the Stonehenge Visitor Centre, take some time to explore the exhibitions. They detail the history of Stonehenge and what life was like during the years of its construction. After learning a bit about the monument’s history, hop on the complimentary shuttle bus to the Stone Circle. Before leaving, stop back in the visitor’s centre to find answers to questions you might have after viewing the stones or enjoy a lunch at the Stonehenge café. You could even have a picnic if you’d like!

To get to Stonehenge from London on public transportation, take the South Western Railway from Waterloo Station to Salisbury. From there, purchase a ticket on the Stonehenge Tour Bus to take you directly to the visitor centre. If you’re short on time, consider taking a guided tour of Stonehenge from London – you could even add in stops at Bath or Windsor Castle!

There is no accommodation at Stonehenge itself, so you will need to stay in one of the nearby towns – perhaps Salisbury – click here for accommodation options .

Favourite weekend getaway from London of Victoria of Guide Your Travel

Brighton Is A Seaside Town In England. The Beaches Have Small Stones Rather Than Sand. It Is Still A Great Place For A Day Trip Or London Weekend Getaway.

A day at the beach

Brighton is the perfect weekend getaway from London. It’s easy to reach, not too far away and has lots of things to do and see. By train, it takes just over an hour to get to the little beach town from London and the trip is easy and convenient. Brighton is especially beautiful during the summer when you can relax on the beach and maybe even go for a swim if the weather is nice. A walk along Brighton Pier is absolutely mandatory and especially fun in the early evening.

There are food stalls and rides to try so make sure you plan to spend some time here. The Lanes are another great place to stop by. Grab lunch or sit in a little cafe and watch people pass you by. This is one of the oldest parts of Brighton and also one of the most beautiful. If you’re looking for more shopping opportunities you should head to North Laine. This is a great place to shop for clothes or really anything you might need. Finally, the Royal Pavilion is a beautiful photo location and one of the most popular places in Brighton.

Click here for Brighton accommodation options .

When to take a Weekend Getaway from London

In my opinion, anytime is a good time to go on a weekend getaway from London. What are you waiting for?

How to Take your Weekend Getaway

Having a car is a great way to get around the UK. If you don’t have one you can easily rent one. Check out these hire car options through DiscoverCars . Having a car makes any day or weekend getaway easy as you can go where you want, when you want. However, the train and bus systems in the UK are extensive. They literally will take you to wherever you need to go.

Where will you stay on your London Weekend Getaway

If you are extending your day trip from London to be a weekend getaway, or a little longer, you will require accommodation for night. Lucky the UK has plenty of hostels , hotels and B&Bs at your service. It is preferable to book in advance to ensure you have somewhere to stay.

London Staycation

I hope these suggestions of London weekend getaways have inspired you to getaway yourself. But if you can’t get out of London, consider a London Staycation . There are plenty of hotels in the centre of London where you could pamper yourself overnight or for longer. Why not enjoy a show at theatre in the   West End or simply walk around and enjoy everything London has to offer. And don’t forget to stop into a nice cafe for a cuppa! I’d love to hear about your favourite London day or weekend getaway in the comments following.

Castles, beaches and old Tudor style buildings are some of the things to see on a Weekend trip from London.

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romantic weekend trips from london

Sharyn McCullum – Travel Writer / Blogger, Remote On-line Worker, sometime Digital Nomad and Travel, Live and Work Abroad Expert. Is a chocoholic, coffee connoisseur and lover of ’80s music. Been travelling all her life thanks to her dad who worked for an airline. Lived in London 4 years on a working holiday. Has holidayed in Hawaii over 15 times and currently calls Melbourne, Australia home. Is inspiring others to live work play travel around the world with this blog. Read more about Sharyn here.

18 Comments

Jenn

Brighton and the Seven Sisters would be my first choices for a day trip from London – those cliffs are breathtaking, even in a photo!

Sharyn McCullum

Yes, Brighton, the Seven Sisters and the Jurassic Coast are top of my list too.

Digitaldaybook

Edinburgh, the Cotswold, London and all are long overdue on my travel list

I hope you can get to them soon.

Denise

The Cotswolds looks so enchanting! I need to make sure I hit it next time!

Renee

Seven Sisters – oh my! What incredible landscape. That would be where I would head to first.

There are some incredible places to see in the UK – The Seven Sisters being one of them.

Travelling Tam

A lot of these definitely need longer than a weekend let alone a day ut some good and varied suggestions of places to visit in the UK! York, the Cotswolds and the Yorkshire Dales are some of my favourites!

Yvonne

I am supposed to visit London this summer and I will have time for a day trip. These suggestions are really helpful. Windsor and Stonehenge look especially interesting.

Farrah

The Jurassic Coast is so pretty! I’m all about hiking so I’d love to go there someday. The Cotswolds would be really cool to check out as well!

I’m super impressed with the Jurassic Coast myself. I lived in the UK for 4 years and never heard of it, so I am looking forward to getting back there to see it for myself.

lisa

I literally didn’t even know some of these places existed! Definitely going to carve out time on my next trip to london to leave the city and explore!

Lorraine Caputo

It’s amazing how many places are so close to London — even ones in Wales and Scotland! Ah, some day I hope to explore that corner of the world!

Absolutely – the UK is quite small compared to some countries and you are right, weekend trips to Wales and Scotland, even Ireland can be done.

Elizabeth

I love the UK! I can’t wait until I can travel there again. I have been to a few places on your list, but so many more to visit. I have never heard of Lincoln, but it does sound like a charming place to visit. I love towns or small cities where you can just wander around.

Jade from NamastetoNihao

I LOVE THIS GREAT LIST! We’ve only been to London once for a 8 hour layover and made the BEST out of it. Now I know there’s more to London and all the day trips! Thank you!

Taylor

I’d love to visit the white cliffs! I’ve never been over to that part of England.

Kelly

I never knew how many picturesque and fun places there were to explore near London! I’d love to try a few of these weekend trips from London some day. Thanks for sharing!

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Top 10 weekend getaways near London

temple bar dublin

There’s so much going on in London that it’s easy to spend a week or two just exploring the city. When you’re done ticking off all the must-do and must-see things in London, it’s time to explore nearby destinations that are a couple of hours away by train or plane.

We’ve rounded up 10 of the best weekend getaways near London:

1. Bath, England

bath england

Best for: Spa and wellness retreats

Getting there: 1.5 hours by train

Sometimes, we all need a little respite from the hustle and bustle of the city. Bath offers the perfect remedy; it’s a charming, historic town that’s perfect for a relaxing weekend spa break. Home to ancient Roman baths , the town is popular with couples and adults looking for some R&R.

Other than soaking in the baths , take a stroll along the ornate Royal Crescent , learn about all things Jane Austen or, if you’re there at the end of the year, check out the Christmas Market (that’s one of England’s largest!).

2. Bristol, England

 Bristol england

Best for: art and culture

Getting there: 1 hour 40 minutes by train, or 2.5 hours by coach

There’s just so much to see in Bristol : explore Wapping Wharf, a new quarter of shipping containers home to an eclectic range of eateries and bars; hunt down street art at Stokes Croft , walk across the Clifton Suspension Bridge , shop at the Old Market, and more.

With multiple art galleries and creative spaces, Bristol is a haven for cultural enthusiasts—see it all with these walking tours . And if you’re lucky to visit during summer, the Foodies Festival is a glorious explosion of food, music, performances, and workshops.

3. Cardiff, Wales

cardiff wales

Best for: food and people watching

Getting there: About 2 hours by train

Experience the famous Welsh hospitality firsthand in Cardiff . Spend the weekend people-watching, enjoy a taste of Wales at these restaurants , discover the central market , or visit Cardiff Castle .

Don’t miss out on buying some traditional trinkets from the Royal Arcade , or have a whale of a time with your family at the Infinity Trampoline Park and Treetop Adventure Golf .

4. Dublin, Ireland

dublin ireland

Best for: nightlife

Getting there: 1 hour by plane

Perfect for a getaway with friends, Dublin is a vibrant city filled with countless things to do. The Irish sure know how to have a good time; say cheers with a pint of Guinness or a shot of Irish whiskey, best enjoyed at the iconic Temple Bar that dates back to the 1300s. Not sure where to start? Go on an epic bar and pub crawl armed with this list .

Or visit the Guinness Storehouse to learn all about the beverage, before visiting the city’s major sights such as Dublin Castle , the Spire , Trinity College Library , or St. Patrick’s Cathedral .

5. The Cotswolds, England

Kevin M / Tripadvisor

Best for: the English countryside

Looking for somewhere relaxing far away from the crowds? The Cotswolds is just what you need. Venture out to the English countryside, where you’ll find around 750 square miles of tranquility, spanning over six counties like Gloucestershire , Oxfordshire , and Worcestershire , among others.

Get back to nature, be surrounded by cattle, have a picnic on rolling hills, discover medieval villages, try the local produce, and travel back in time at nostalgic cottages. There’s just so much to see and do; take it all in with one of these fascinating tours .

6. Manchester, England

manchester london

Getting there: 2 hours by train

Best known for its team in the English football universe, Manchester appeals especially to youngsters looking to have a good time. Down a craft brew at the Port Street Beer House , trawl the Great Northern Warehouse district, attend a concert at The Warehouse Project, hunt down a vintage record at Piccadilly Records, or party it up at Canal Street.

That’s not to say that Manchester isn’t for families as well: entertain the kids at Play Factore , a family entertainment extravaganza complete with laser tag, virtual reality, a zip wire, and the UK’s tallest indoor slide.

7. Brighton, England

Brighton, England

Best for: seaside break

Go on an adventure to Brighton , a lovely family-friendly seaside resort. Get a sun-kissed tan at the beach , take a leisurely stroll along the picturesque promenade, go on a fairground ride at Brighton Palace Pier , enjoy the burgeoning coffee scene, marvel at the intricate Regency architecture, or lose yourself in The Lanes art district.

Kids will love discovering creatures of the deep at Sea Life Brighton , riding on the Volks Electric Railway , or enjoying a panoramic view from the 150-meter-high British Airways i360 observation tower.

8. Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh Scotland

Best for: nature and culture

Getting there: 1 hour 20 minutes by plane, or 4 hours 20 minutes by train

A paradise for explorers, Edinburgh is a charming destination full of zest. Scale the 251-meter-high Arthur’s Seat , an extinct volcano that offers one of the best views of the city. Wander around Edinburgh Castle , and marvel at its stunning crown jewels collection.

Explore the Royal Mile , which is home to restaurants, shops, and the like; or discover the city’s different personalities on a comedy walk , darkside walking tour , or underground walking tour . The city also transforms into a pulsating wonderland every summer, when the popular Edinburgh Fringe Festival takes over.

9. The Peak District, England

peak district england

Best for: nature

Getting there: 2.5 hours by train

This one’s for all you outdoor lovers out there. You can easily spend the whole weekend at the scenic Peak District National Park ; go on a hike, cycle along rugged trails… the possibilities are endless.

You’ll never be bored here—see the architectural marvel of Ladybower Reservoir , discover the idyllic Bakewell village , venture deep into the Peak Cavern (if you’re lucky, you might chance upon a music performance in the cave), step into the shoes of Charlotte Bronte at Hathersage , scale the cliffs of Stanage Edge , explore Thor’s cave , and more.

10. Windsor, England

Windsor England

Best for: history

Getting there: 30 minutes by train

Windsor is one of the most popular weekend breaks near London for people of all ages, and it’s easy to see why. Steeped in history, the city was home to the British royal family for nearly 1,000 years. Compact in size, the area can be easily covered on foot.

Drop by the iconic Windsor Castle , discover every nook and cranny of the Old Town, take the kids to Legoland Windsor Resort , or frolic at Windsor Great Park .

Recommended tours and activities

romantic weekend trips from london

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8 easy must-do weekend trips from London

The best weekend trips from London

London is one of the most historic and vibrant cities in the world. Anyone living or visiting there has an enviable number of cultural, culinary, and recreational activities at their fingertips every day. But the hustle and bustle of a city like London can be a lot. Needing to get out of the big city is a natural feeling, so going on a weekend getaway to the country, a national park, or a charming smaller town, known colloquially as city breaks, just makes sense.

Don’t worry. All the spoils of the capital city aren’t going anywhere. Once you’re out in the open on a hike or touring historic villages, you won’t worry about missing out on what’s going on in London. Planning the perfect weekend trip involves a little research and preparation. You’ll want to book lodging, you’ll need to plan how you’ll get there, you might need to find luggage storage in London , and you’ll want to plan what you’ll be doing. But first, you need to decide where you’ll be going.

Here are the best weekend trips from London:

Weekend trips from London to Bath

Bath, Somerset 

Widely regarded as one of England’s most charming towns, Bath is a beautiful little village famed (and named) for its well-preserved Roman baths . There are many boutique inns and hotels, making it ideal for a romantic getaway. 

Distance from London 

It only takes about 90 minutes by train to reach this historic town. It’s definitely possible to make a day trip out of your visit, but there’s enough to do and see in Bath that staying a few days during weekend breaks is definitely worth it.

Our activity recommendations

The “Bath experience” is fairly simple. It’s a quaint and quiet town, with lots of older houses and buildings. Visiting from London or the US, it’ll feel somewhat like stepping out from a time machine and into an 18th-century English market town. Most of the city’s architecture dates back to the Georgian era. Look into tours and museums while staying here. You can also just take it easy and try to “live like a local” while in town. It’ll be a relaxing and enjoyable experience away from the chaos of London 

Best season to visit 

Bath is one of the most popular travel destinations in the UK, especially during the summer. While it’s a charming town and extremely walkable, there’s nothing here that demands a high-season visit. Going between October and April has its advantages. For one, you’ll avoid the hordes of tourists. It’s also an idyllic place when it’s not overrun with crowds; the quintessential Bath experience is when it’s quiet. You can also stumble upon one of the largest Christmas Markets in England if you visit during the holidays.

Plan a weekend trip from London to Brighton

Brighton, Sussex

Hitting the beach is probably the last activity non-Britons will ever associate with England. But along the southern shores of England is one of Europe’s most underrated beach towns. Brighton is perfect for summer weekend trips when you want to take a dip in the English Channel, relax on the beach, and enjoy the fresh ocean breeze. There are also pubs because there are always pubs!

Distance from London

It’s an hour's train ride and a 90-minute drive directly south of London. Depending on what you’re trying to do in and around Brighton, it could be better to take a car. 

There are plenty of vacation rentals, B&Bs, and hotels to stay in, but you’ll want something close to the promenade. This stretch has the best views of the English Channel and is lined with charming restaurants, shops, pubs, and landmarks. 

Brighton frequently hosts theater performances, film screenings, concerts, and comedy at its many venues, the Royal Pavilion being the most prominent. Having a plan B for when the weather isn’t great is a good idea because Brighton may be beautiful, but you’re still in England.

Brighton is one of the best Beach towns in England, so it’s safe to say that summer is the ideal time of year to visit. Really, when the weather is right, it's one of the best London weekend trips. The pubs will be more lively, and the boardwalk will have more action as well. Booking lodging and making reservations for dinner well ahead of time is the best way to plan around the crowds of other visitors.

Weekend trip from London to Canterbury

If you’re looking to get out of the big city, but want all the cultural offerings of London, then Bristol is your best bet. With a well-preserved Old Town, foodie-favorite restaurants, cool bars, street art, cafés, and music venues, Bristol appeals to just about everyone. It's the quintessential destination for a city break and one of the best weekend getaways for hipsters and young creatives.

The drive (including traffic) is about two and a half hours. The train to Bristol takes between 90 minutes and two hours from Paddington Station in London. There’s also a VERY inexpensive coach from Victoria Station for budget-minded travelers. 

The Clifton Suspension Bridge is a legitimately impressive architectural marvel and the most notable landmark in Bristol. It’s a nice hike that will get you out in the brisk air, and the views of Bristol's historic city center are wonderful. After your hike, head to Stokes Croft for a bit of culture. There are wonderful shops, bars, restaurants, and music venues here. The nightlife scene in Bristol is surprisingly vibrant, if a little more relaxed than Lobdon’s. 

Bristol’s main draw is its culture, restaurants, and nightlife, so just about any time of year will do for weekend getaways.  

Canterbury, Kent 

Anyone who’s taken a high school English class will doubtless have read Geoffrey Chaucer’s classic, Canterbury Tales . While the content of the book doesn’t quite resemble weekend trips from London, Canterbury is the perfect place to visit to appreciate a well-preserved historic town.

Canterbury is extremely close to London, so the drive should take about 90 minutes, potentially more with traffic. The train line runs slightly longer, at about a three-hour ride from central London. 

Canterbury Cathedral is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which makes it a must-visit landmark for curious travelers. Taking a tour of the grounds and cathedral is a great way to learn a few things before you inevitably explore the town’s many quaint restaurants, pubs, shops, and cafés. Simply walking around Canterbury’s cobbled streets is an experience. 

UNESCO World Heritage sites aren’t weather dependent, so making the short trek for a weekend getaway can happen any time of year.

Trip to the Cotswolds from London for a weekend

The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds are almost more of an idea than a single place. Historically, this region consists of land in Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, Somerset , Gloucestershire, Worcestershire, and Wiltshire. That probably means little to non-Britons, but it’ll tell you that it could take you a few weekend trips from London to fully explore the Cotswolds. This bit of countryside is famed for its outstanding natural beauty, with rolling hills, winding streams, and fields that will redefine your idea of the color green. There are stone cottages, tiny villages, and countryside mansions dotting the landscape. It’s a picturesque and idyllic place to enjoy a long weekend, and it is quintessentially British. 

The train to the Moreton-in-Marsh train station from London Paddington only takes about 90 minutes. It’s a bit longer to drive, taking two and a half hours, but getting around the Cotswolds is more convenient when you have a car.  

Pick a village with an inn or vacation rental that appeals to you, and plan your weekend trip around that. There are hunting and recreation clubs like the Cotswold Clay Club for clay pigeon shooting, golf clubs with some of the finest courses in England, and there are lakes and rivers to rent a boat on. Of course, there are quaint towns with delightful pubs to get cozy in as well. 

If you’re going to be spending a lot of time outdoors, which is entirely the point of visiting the Cotswolds, you’ll want to visit during the warmer months. Late spring and early fall are great times to go because there will be smaller crowds. 

Oxford weekend trips from London

Home to, perhaps, the world's most famous and renowned university, Oxford is one of the best London weekend getaways. Anyone looking for fun restaurants, bars, cafés, and a vibrant performing arts scene should look no further than this cultural hub. 

The train from London Paddington takes only an hour and lands you right in the middle of Oxford, where all the shops, bars, restaurants, and hotels are. The drive is only 90 minutes, but parking can be a challenge in a smaller town like Oxford. 

While Oxford’s historic campus is one of the main draws, this is far from a college town. A vibrant culture has sprung up around the university to make Oxford a fun place for people in their 20s and 30s to visit. Great vintage stores, trendy bars, charming cafés, and eclectic restaurants line the cobbled streets. There’s also a lively music scene, with up-and-coming bands playing venues across the city. 

Oxford is a lovely destination for weekend trips in any season. The crowds will be largest in the summer when school is out, however. Going in the winter is a great way to save on lodging, and the pubs are perfectly cozy. 

Peak District National Park

The best weekend trips from London aren’t always in quaint little villages. Peak District National Park is one of the best outdoor recreation areas in the UK. With miles upon miles of winding hills, this is the ideal weekend getaway for hiking and cycling enthusiasts. There are a few small towns in the district where you can find lodging and pubs. If getting to Peak District isn't an option, South Downs National Park is another option for outdoor recreation and outstanding natural beauty.

From Kings Cross or St. Pancras stations in London, it takes about two and a half hours by train to get to Peak District. You’ll have to get a connector from Derby, but it’ll land you in the middle of the park. Coach and driving both take three hours from central London.

Hiking the rolling (and sometimes steep) hills of Peak District National Park is the rather obvious first choice for spending your time here. One way to efficiently see all the best sights is to rent a bike from Blackwell Mill Cycle Hire, or you can bring your own from London. After you explore the hills, relax with a pint at one of the many historic pubs. Devonshire Arms and The Peacock are the most popular places for real ale and superb traditional pub fare. 

Best season to visit  

Visiting Peak District is all about hiking and enjoying the natural beauty, so it’s best to visit during the summer. Weekend getaways during winter are inadvisable, but spring and fall are certainly doable if the weather cooperates. 

Weekend trips to Winchester from London

Winchester, Hampshire 

While Winchester was never the go-to weekend getaway for Londoners, the city has seen a jump in tourism in recent years. Perhaps it’s Jane Austen ’s enduring legacy as one of England’s great voices or the restoration of the town’s historic cathedral. Either way, visitors are heading to Winchester in droves.

Trips from London Waterloo take about an hour to get to Winchester. Driving takes just under two hours but does allow for more flexibility. 

Winchester is one of those smaller UK cities that has a fantastic food scene. Hoxton Bakehouse is legitimately excellent and would be on lists of London's best places to eat. There are also vineyards like Humbledon, along with a number of perfectly serviceable pubs. Literary (and history) buffs will absolutely want to check out Jane Austen’s house, which offers tours of the legendary author’s home. 

Visiting Winchester is based entirely around cultural and historical activities, so any time of year will do. 

With so many national parks and quaint towns nearby, you’re never short of options for weekend trips from London. If you’re short on time, there are always some exciting day trips you can take from the capital city. Many people who visit spend a jam-packed 3 days in London , but if you want to get away for a long weekend and refresh and recharge (or go on grueling hikes), you’ll be sure to find the perfect destination. 

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romantic weekend trips from london

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Stories by Soumya

The Travel Blog of a Culture Addict

Looking for the best weekend trips from London? Check out the 16 most epic weekend getaways that you totally need to have in your London weekend trip bucket list. #London #WeekendTrips

Best Weekend Trips From London: 16 Epic Getaway Ideas

Last Updated on October 13, 2022 by Soumya

What are the best weekend trips from London ? Where to go from London for the next weekend? Are there quick London getaways that will make you fall in love with history and nature? Or epic city breaks near London that can be easily done by train?

My answer to all your questions is a big, resounding YES!

With the most eclectic collection of weekend getaways , London satiates the needs of every traveler. Whether it is venturing out in the wide open meadows of Surrey Hills, marveling at the stunning architecture of Bath, visiting a bustling city with centuries of industrial history, or doing some soul searching at Stonehenge, London provides everyone with a plethora of weekend trip options.

In this ultimate bucket list, I have listed 16 epic weekend escapes from London . This list is a combination of short and easy trips as well as longer getaways where you can combine 2-3 places and see a bit of everything – history, architecture, nature, and much more. If you are wondering what to do in London over the next weekend, try one of these amazing getaways and thank me later!

Please note: This post may contain affiliate links which means I may earn a commission if you make a purchase by clicking a link on this post. This will be at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links help me keep this website up and running. Thanks for your support!

Looking for the best weekend trips from London? Check out the 16 most epic weekend getaways that you totally need to have in your London weekend trip bucket list. #London #WeekendTrips

Table of Contents

Best London Weekend Trips for History Lovers

Salisbury & stonehenge – an epic weekend escape from london.

Stone Circle at Stonehenge

Salisbury and Stonehenge are just 20 mins from each other and make for an easy weekend getaway from London .

Stonehenge is the abode of a mysterious megalithic circle in the Salisbury Plain that is more than 4500 years old. Archaeologists are still unsure who built Stonehenge and the jury is out if it was a scientific observatory or religious site for ancient Britons. Or maybe a place for ancestral worship! Nobody knows for sure.

Salisbury has lots of interesting things to including visiting the magnificent Salisbury Cathedral (known to hold an original copy of the Magna Carta), walking through the historic center, and exploring the aisles of the Salisbury Museum.

No doubt, there are tons of amazing places to visit in Salisbury and Stonehenge. You can also head to the stone circle of Avebury and visit the Old Sarum Hill nearby.

One of my favorites, this weekend trip combines historic sites and wide open meadows and is, therefore, a wonderful mixture of both history and nature. There are several camping sites nearby if you wish to spend the night under the stars and be close to Stonehenge at the same time. Remember to hire your motorhome in London and plan for an epic outdoorsy getaway.

Practical information for visiting Salisbury & Stonehenge

Getting there: 1.5hrs by train from Waterloo Station to Salisbury. Stonehenge is just 20 mins away from Salisbury.

Best places to stay: Cricket Field House (4-star) | Caboose

Recommended guided tours: Stonehenge, Salisbury, and Windsor tour from London (Bestseller!) | Salisbury Plain Off-Road Tour

Best time to visit: Summer months of June through August.

Bath – Austen fans will love this one!

Bath in UK - one of the best weekend trips from London

If you are a history buff like me, you’ll love visiting the historic city of Bath on a really popular weekend trip from London . Located only a couple of hours away from London, the City of Bath is a UNESCO world heritage site steeped in history.

Bath is home to well-preserved Roman Baths that once functioned as a thermal spa town in medieval Europe. In the 1700s, the city also became one of the most elegant towns in Europe with abundant examples of neoclassical architecture . The Assembly Rooms, the Queen Square, and the Royal Crescent are stunning examples of Bath’s architectural achievements.

Oh, and I forgot to add Bath was once home to my favorite author, Jane Austen for 5 years of her life. If you are a Jane Austen fan too, then you know where to visit.

Practical information for visiting Bath from London

Getting there: 1hr 15mins by train from London Paddington to Bath Spa.

Best places to stay: No 15 by Guest House (5-star) | The Z Hotel Bath (affordable)

Recommended guided tours: Stonehenge, Bath & Windsor Castle full-day tour from London (bestseller!) | Walking tour of Bath (Highly recommended!)

Best time to visit: June – September because this is summer time in the UK. The month of September sees a lot of festivals in Bath including the famous Jane Austen Festival.

Oxford – The City of Dreaming Spires

Oxford - spend the best weekend away from London here

Home to the world famous University of Oxford, the spires-filled city of Oxford is a wonderful place to visit near London. There are so many amazing things to do here than you’ll run out of time even on a long weekend trip.

Among the numerous attractions of Oxford, Christ Church College with its close association with Harry Potter and Blenheim Palace with its stunning Baroque architecture are the most iconic.

Christ Church College’s Great Hall and top stairway are said to have inspired the enchanting dining hall and the grand stairway at Hogwarts. In fact, a Harry Potter tour is one of the most popular things to do in Oxford.

Some of the other popular places to visit in Oxford are the Bodleian Library, Museum of Natural History, Ashmolean Museum, and the Oxford Castle. The Radcliffe Camera or the Rad Cam is the most photographed building in Oxford .

If you are a Harry Potter fan and/or an architecture enthusiast, then you have to visit Oxford – “The City of Dreaming Spires”.

Practical information for visiting Oxford from London

Getting there: 1.5hrs by train from London Paddington to Oxford.

Best places to stay: Old Parsonage Hotel (5-star) | Bear and Ragged Staff (affordable)`

Recommended guided tours: Harry Potter Tour (Bestseller!) | University & City Walking Tour

Best time to visit: Summer is the best time to visit Oxford because days are long and weather is just perfect to be out and about. Plus, there are a ton of events being hosted at the end of the academic year, giving the city a festive vibe.

Cambridge – one of the quickest weekend trips from London

Cambridge UK

Cambridge is another university town that makes for a great weekend break out of London . Even though it is often done as a day trip from London, Cambridge deserves at least a couple of days because it has so much to offer.

One of the best things to do in Cambridge is to step into King’s College Chapel where you’ll see the world’s largest fan vaulted ceiling.

See the Mathematical Bridge which is nothing short of an engineering wonder. Marvel at historic relics in the Fitzwilliam Museum and discover the history of earth at the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences. Go punting on River Cam or simply chill in the university’s botanic garden.

With so many amazing museums, stunning university buildings, wide open parks and gardens, and popular eateries, Cambridge will keep you busy for a weekend and more.

Practical information for visiting Cambridge from London

Getting there: 50mins by train from King’s Cross to Cambridge.

Best places to stay: The Cambridge Guest House (4-star) | Leverton House

Recommended guided tours: Student-guided punting tour (very popular) | Hop-on Hop-off bus tour

Best time to visit: Summer is a good time but fall is even better with the city showcasing glorious fall colors.

Stratford-upon-Avon – For the Shakespeare fans

Stratford-upon-Avon is the birthplace of William Shakespeare and a historic town built on the River Avon. It is not just the “Mecca” for Shakespeare fans (of course, it is a big one at that) but is also a place of interest for lovers of nature, good food, and shopping.

The best thing to do in Stratford-upon-Avon is to follow in the footsteps of Shakespeare . You can visit the house where he was born , see where he courted his wife, Anne Hathway, and explore the New Place where his final home was built.

Be sure to explore the town center that is filled with happening streets, clothes and lifestyle shops. Henley Street and Wood Street are the most popular. Also, check out the black and white Tudor style cottages on High Street to get a feel of medieval times.

Practical information for visiting Stratford-upon-Avon from London

Getting there: 2.5hrs by train from London Marylebone to Stratford-upon-Avon.

Best places to stay: The White Swan Hotel (4-star) | Stratford Limes Hotel (affordable)

Recommended guided tours: The Shakespeare Trail (Bestseller!) |

Best time to visit: Summer is definitely the best time to visit. But if you are a fan of “The Bard of Avon”, you’ll want to check what Shakespeare events are on before you plan your visit.

Best London Weekend Getaways for Nature Lovers

The UK is blessed with amazing natural beauty. Chalk white cliffs by the sea, sprawling national parks, and areas of outstanding natural beauty (AONBs) abound in this country. No doubt there are so many amazing weekend escapes from London for every nature lover.

Bonus: Most of these places have attractive camping sites where you can unplug from city life and enjoy the magic of nature.

Seven Sisters Cliffs

Coastal trail at Seven Sisters Cliffs

Located just a couple of hours from London, Seven Sisters is a beautiful series of chalk white cliffs along the East Sussex coast.

Created by nature millions of years ago, the Seven Sisters have a soft white allure due to the presence of chalk on their faces. The sheer beauty of this natural landmark makes it one of the most scenic places to visit in the UK.

The cliffs are called so because there are 7 peaks of varying heights plopped by the coast, almost as if 7 sisters are having a fun day by the sea.

A walk on the cliffs is probably the best way to enjoy the beauty of this place. Club it with Brighton and you have the most amazing weekend holiday near London.

To get to the Seven Sisters, take a train from the London Victoria train station to Eastbourne or Brighton (about 90 mins) and then take a Brighton & Hove 12X bus to the Seven Sisters Park Center. From the bus stop, you can hike a scenic 1.5km trail to the cliffs.

Practical information for visiting Seven Sisters from London

Getting there: 1.5hrs by train from Victoria Station to Eastbourne or Brighton from where you can take Bus 12X to Seven Sisters Country Park.

Best places to stay: The Chatsworth Hotel (5-star) | Best Western Lansdowne Hotel

Recommended guided tours: Seven Sisters full-day tour from London (Bestseller!)

Best time to visit: Summer is a good time for hiking, given that the temperatures are higher and days are longer.

White Cliffs of Dover

White Cliffs of Dover

England is bestowed with stunning landscapes and beautiful mountains. And the White Cliffs of Dover are one of the most iconic among them.

Another set of chalk white cliffs in England, the Dover cliffs face the Strait of Dover and are the closest to mainland Europe. The cliffs are extremely symbolic because they are often the last sight of home for every English man who leaves his country. Essentially, the White Cliffs of Dover are an inherent part of British heritage .

One of the best things to do at the White Cliffs of Dover is to walk along the coastal path and appreciate the beauty of the region. Also, check out the old Dover Castle that dates to the 13th century. There’s also a Victorian lighthouse at South Foreland which makes for a great addition to any Dover trip. Do not miss the tea and some homemade cakes at Mrs. Knott’s tea room, located right beside the lighthouse.

Practical information for visiting White Cliffs of Dover from London

Getting there: 2.5hrs by train from London Bridge station to Dover Priory (includes 40min walk). 2hrs 10mins by car.

Best places to stay: Heathwood (Excellent location) | Hubert House

Recommended guided tours: White Cliffs of Dover & Canterbury day trip from London

Best time to visit: Summer is the best time to visit the White Cliffs of Dover because you’ll be spending a lot of time outdoors.

Kent Downs AONB

Stunning natural beauty of Kent Downs

Kent Downs are one of the prettiest AONBs in England. Stretching from Surrey border to the Dover cliffs, Kent Downs comprise of sprawling woodlands, rich wildlife habitats, and a unique sandstone cliff called the Greensand Ridge.

When in Kent Downs, you can walk and ride through woodlands, go hiking on peaceful trails, experience wine tasting at one of the many vineyards in the area, drop into unique village churches, and sample local delicacies at farmers’ markets.

Located just 65 miles southeast of London, Kent Downs AONB makes for a refreshing weekend getaway from London . Getting here by car is the most convenient with the ride taking about 1.5 hours. You can also take a train to Bearsted from London Victoria and then walk 30 mins to get to Kent Downs.

Practical information for visiting Kent Downs from London

Getting there: 1.5hrs drive or 1.5hrs by train from London Victoria to Bearsted (involves some walking).

Best places to stay: New Flying Horse Inn (Superb reviews) | Oakside Lodge Guest House

Best time to visit: Spring and summer (April – September) are good times to visit Kent Downs.

Surrey Hills AONB

Surrey Hills AONB UK

The Surrey Hills is another beautiful AONB that makes for an easy weekend getaway from London.

Bordered by Kent Downs AONB (in the east) and South Downs National Park (in the south), Surrey Hills have tons of interesting things to do. Walking trails, hikes, wide open meadows, local wine, quaint churches, and fantastic views are just to name a few.

Do not miss the spectacular views at Devil’s Punch Bowl and the unending miles of tranquil trails at Newlands Corner.

Located just 25 miles south of London, Surrey Hills AONB is easy to get to by car. The drive takes only an hour and 15 mins. Since it is in the same direction as the Seven Sisters Cliffs, you can easily club the two together.

Practical information for visiting Surrey Hills AONB from London

Getting there: 1.5hrs by car. Can be easily clubbed with Seven Sisters Cliffs.

Best places to stay: Castle Mill Bed and Breakfast (superb reviews!) | The Running Horses (3-star)

Best time to visit: Spring is a good time to visit and do some hiking and walking along the coastal trails. Summer can be crowded.

Peak District

Yet another nature-filled and adventure-packed trip from London is to the Peak District National Park located up north in Central England.

Filled with hiking trails, camping grounds, quaint villages, and thrilling rock climbing opportunities, Peak District is a tempting destination for thrill-seekers. The region is especially known for its stunning limestone valleys such as Dovedale and Cave Dale. These valleys abound with walkers, hikers, and cyclists, especially in summer.

However, the Peak District is not just about nature and hiking trails. Here, you’ll also find the majestic Chatsworth House, that was used as Pemberley, Mr. Darcy’s residence in the 2005 movie “Pride and Prejudice”. You can also visit Buxton, a spa town from the medieval times.

Practical information for visiting Peak District from London

Getting there: 4hrs drive from London to Peak District. 40mins drive from Sheffield. Peak District can be easily clubbed with Sheffield for a long weekend trip from London.

Best places to stay: Leopold Hotel Sheffield (4-star) | IBIS Budget Sheffield Center

Best time to visit: Late spring and summer are perfect seasons to visit Peak District.

Epic Weekend Escapes to Charming Towns & Castles

The cotswolds – one of the prettiest london weekend getaways.

Pretty Cotswolds Villages in the UK

The Cotswolds is an AONB in central England that is filled with charming villages, limestone hills, and picture-perfect landscapes. If you are looking for a rustic escape from London , then a Cotswolds village is the perfect place to be.

Some of the prettiest villages in the Cotswolds include Bourton-on-the-Water – known as the Venice of the Cotswolds because of its beautiful 18th century bridges, Burford – known for its thatched roof cottages, and Castle Combe – the quintessential English village . In Castle Combe, you’ll find an abundance of houses built with the yellow Cotswold stone.

The most convenient way to get to Cotswolds is by car. Not all villages have train stations and it is difficult to see many of them without a car at your disposal. Some of the bigger villages, however, have a train station. These are Moreton-in-Marsh and Kemble. You can easily reach Kemble from London by train. From there, you can take a taxi to explore.

Practical information for visiting Cotswolds from London

Getting there: 1hr 15mins by train from London Paddington to Kemble. Can be clubbed with Oxford and Stratford-upon-Avon for a long weekend trip.

Best places to stay: The Old House At Home (3-star) | The Dial House

Recommended guided tours: Cotswolds Small Group Tour from London (Bestseller!) | Oxford and Cotswolds villages trip from London

Best time to visit: Apart from summer, fall is also a good time to visit the Cotswolds, especially for fall colors.

Highclere Castle – For fans of Downton Abbey

Are you a fan of the British drama, Downton Abbey ? Well, I am. A big one at that. And obviously, I want to visit the Downton Abbey house whenever I am in London.

I was so glad to know that Highclere Castle, where the series was filmed, was just a stone’s throw away from London. Located 70 miles west of London, Highclere Castle not only makes for a good day trip from London but also a great weekend break if clubbed with Bath or North Wessex Downs AONB.

Highclere Castle, built in 1679, is massive with more than 250 rooms. However, not all are open to the public. On your tour, you can see many of the state rooms that were featured in Downton Abbey. In the cellars, there is an Egyptian Exhibition.

The castle grounds have several gardens to interest the naturalist in you. The Monks’ Garden, the Wood of Goodwill, and the Rose Arbour are some of the most prominent ones.

Practical information for visiting Highclere Castle from London

Getting there: 2hrs by car. Can be easily clubbed with Bath or North Wessex Downs AONB.

Best places to stay: Highclere Estates Lodges

Recommended guided tours: Downton Abbey + Village tour from London | Downton Abbey + Cotswolds tour from London

Best time to visit: Any season is good to visit Highclere Castle. However, one thing to note is that the castle is not open on all days. Tours and events are organized during a few days, every season, when you can visit. Check for opening hours and days on the official website here .

One of the prettiest and most historic towns in England is Canterbury . An important pilgrimage center for the past 800 years and the seat of the Church of England, Canterbury has some of the finest religious buildings in the world. Canterbury Cathedral, St. Augustine’s Abbey, and St. Martin’s Church combine to form the Canterbury UNESCO world heritage site today.

One of the best things to do in Canterbury is to visit the magnificent Canterbury Cathedral , which is the seat of the Anglican Church. It has some gory history also – this is where Archbishop Thomas Becket was assassinated in 1170. The history, the stunning Gothic architecture, and the aesthetic stained glass windows make the Canterbury Cathedral one of the best places to visit in England.

Step into Canterbury Norman Castle for spectacular views of the town. There is also a Roman Museum that gives you an insight into the city’s Roman past.

Perhaps, the most interesting thing to do is to take a stroll through the town or do a historic river tour and marvel at Canterbury’s architecture. Gorgeous half-timbered buildings line the River Stour and the streets on King’s Mile. Easily transported me to the Bavarian towns of Nuremberg and Rothenburg ob der Tauber where I had seen some of the most beautiful half-timbered buildings during my 10 days in Germany .

Practical information for visiting Canterbury from London

Getting there: Less than an hour by train from London St Pancras to Canterbury West.

Best places to stay: Ebury Hotel Cottages and Apartment’s (set in a Victorian townhouse) | 3 The Stables

Recommended guided tours: Canterbury Cathedral, Dover Castle, & White Cliffs day trip from London (Bestseller!) | Guided walking tour of Canterbury

Best time to visit: Spring months of March and April when the weather is lovely and the gardens are at their best. Summer is also a good time because the days are long and you can see a lot.

Best Weekend City Breaks from London

Cardiff – welsh history and culture.

Author at Cardiff Castle

If you’d like to explore a bit of Wales on a weekend from London, then head to Cardiff. Whether you choose to drive or take the train from London, you’ll be in Cardiff in under 3 hours.

Cardiff is the capital city of Wales and has lots of interesting things to do. First and foremost, is a visit to the Cardiff Castle , one of the best preserved historic castles in the country. Some of the highlights include the state rooms, the clock tower, the banquet hall, and gorgeous chapel.

Step inside the Cardiff National Museum to learn all about Welsh history. See the medieval Llandaff Cathedral . Stroll through Cardiff’s many green spaces and walking trails. Or visit the fairytale Castle Coch , located just a few miles from the city center.

Practical information for visiting Cardiff from London

Getting there: 2hrs by train from London Paddington to Cardiff Central.

Best places to stay: Hotel Indigo – Cardiff (4-star) | Sleeperz Hotel Cardiff

Recommended guided tours: Hop-on Hop-off bus tour of Cardiff

Best time to visit: Summer months of June – September when the weather is just perfect for exploring.

Portsmouth – a coastal weekend break from London

The port city of Portsmouth in the UK

A port city in southern England, Portsmouth makes for one of the most amazing weekend trips from London . Whether you wish to discover miles of uninterrupted coastline or centuries of storied history , Portsmouth in the UK has something for everyone.

If you are interested in naval history, the best place to visit in Portsmouth is the Historic Dockyard where you can check out old warships and submarines. Also visit Spinnaker Tower , modeled on a ship’s sail, for stunning views of the sea and the countryside.

Step into Portsmouth’s Museum and Art Gallery for curios dating back to the 17th century. Plan a visit to the home where Charles Dickens was born. It is now a museum and gives us an insight into the life of the famous novelist.

Be sure to check out some of the fab beaches near Portsmouth. Southsea, West Wittering, and the Hayling Island beaches are some of the most popular ones.

Practical information for visiting Portsmouth from London

Getting there: 1.5hrs by train from Waterloo Station to Portsmouth Harbor.

Best places to stay: Seacrest Hotel (seafront property) | Esk Vale Guest House (3-star)

Recommended guided tours: Portsmouth Historic Dockyard Explorer Ticket (Bestseller!) | Spinnaker Tower Ticket

Best time to visit: Summer months from June – August especially if you are looking to swim in the sea.

Sheffield – An unusual weekend getaway from London

Weston Park Museum in Sheffield

Sheffield is not the usual weekend getaway from London . It is a little too far from the capital. But I still have it on my list of best London weekend trips because once upon a time, it was my favorite city to visit in the UK.

Sheffield has always been known as an industrial city. And the industrial history of the city shows in many of its attractions such as the Kelham Island Museum and the Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet.

Several other interesting museums dot the city. Some of the most popular ones are the Graves Gallery (home to a large art collection), the Turner Museum of Glass, and the Weston Park Museum that tells you the real story of Sheffield. Cannon Hall Museum, a magnificent Georgian country home-converted-into-museum is not very far from the city.

The best part about visiting Sheffield over a long weekend is that you can easily club it with Peak District . So, you’ll have a bit of nature, history, and city life – all bundled up in one vacation.

Practical information for visiting Sheffield from London

Getting there: 2.5hrs by train from St Pancras International to Sheffield.

Best places to stay: Leopold Hotel (4-star) | IBIS Budget (central location)

Recommended guided tours: Fun treasure hunt around Sheffield

Best time to visit: Late spring, summer, and early fall (April – October) are all good times to visit Sheffield.

Interactive map of best London weekend trips

Map of best weekend trips from London

The interactive map (above) gives you an idea of how far each of these destinations is from London. The best part about seeing it on a map like this is that it makes it easier to visualize things and combine discrete options into one long weekend getaway from London.

For example, Oxford, Stratford-upon-Avon, and other villages in the Cotswolds can be easily combined into one trip. And so can be Canterbury, Kent Downs, and the White Cliffs of Dover.

Loved this London weekend trips bucket list? Pin it for later!

Looking for the best weekend trips from London? Check out the 16 most epic weekend getaways that you totally need to have in your London weekend trip bucket list. #London #WeekendTrips

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Our SALT Souls

Travel Guides | Inspiration | Date Ideas

UK , Destinations , London

Best Romantic Weekend Breaks from London

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Looking for a weekend away from London. Want to spend some quality time with your significant other, we have the most perfect places for you to visit! Don’t have much time or maybe you’re looking for a place to visit where you don’t need to travel by car. There are so many easily accessible places around the UK that you can explore even if you only have a weekend.

Need some more inspiration? Check out the 15 Most Romantic Getaways in the UK

*Disclosure: We only recommend products we would use ourselves and all opinions expressed here are our own. This post may contain affiliate links, that at no additional cost to you, we may earn a small commission.

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Cotswolds (Wiltshire)

When the world was closed due and we could only travel in our own backyard we booked a cozy winter weekend away in the Cotswolds. If youre driving to the Cotswolds you are given lots of options for areas to stay such as Bibury, Castle Combe or Cirencester. If you are heading there on the train we would recommend a larger town to base yourself such as Cirencester, you can buy your train and bus tickets through Trainline here .

For our trip to the Cotswolds we stayed in Castle Combe a 3 hour drive from London. We stayed in the most beautiful Shepards Hut on a farm near Castle Combe for the link to the accomodation here . ⁣The hut had a wood burning fire inside and a fire pit outside, it was also a convenient walk away from The Salutation Inn which did the best Sunday roast.

Wiltshire is home to the fairytale village of Castle Combe. The village itself is only small but the walk and drive around is absolutely breathtaking. If you are also heading to the Cotswolds with a car we recommend checking out Lower Slaughter and Bibury as well.

If you don’t have a car however you still want to see the cotswolds you can also check out a range of day tours from London through Get Your Guide here .

Where to stay?

The angel at burford.

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Brighton, famous for it’s artsy vibe and it’s seaside charm, is one of the best and closest weekends away. The journey from central London to Brighton will take around an hour and all your train tickets can be booked through Trainline . There are lots of hidden gems and unique places to visit whilst on your city escape.

Spend your day playing and enjoying the rides at Brighton Palace Pier before heading to The Lanes to shop for some hidden gems. After you will have a large choice of places to eat and drink at including some of our favourites Little Jack Fullers and Twisted Lemon.

For our full guide to Brighton check out Our 1 Day Guide for Things to do in Brighton & Hove

Artists Residence

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Wanting to tick another country off the list but don’t have that much time? The High Speed LNER train departs Kings Cross to Edinburgh in 4.5 hours, you can purchase your tickers through Trainline here .

A beautiful old medieval towns with many different alley ways to be able to explore Edinburgh is a perfect getaway. There is always something happening in Edinburgh like the gin festival, Edinburgh Fringe or a musical festival.

This is also the destination where we picked up our camper van for our NC500 trip. If youre interested in doing the NC500 you can Check out that blog post here!

Haymarket Apartments

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Don’t have a car? Still want to get away for a few nights to somewhere beautiful but also rich in history? Windsor might be the solution for you. Trains to Windsor depart from London Waterloo regularly and only take around an hour, you can purchase your tickets with Trainline here .

Castle Hotel Windsor

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St Ives is a Cornish seaside town full of romance. This seaside town is located 5 hours south of London and will need a car to be able to reach it as the train does not directly service this area. If you are looking to stay in Cornwall and want to go by train then the best places to stay is Penzance or St Austell, you can get your train tickets through Trainline here .

St Ives is filled with beautiful beaches and small boutique shops and galleries. Unfortunately over the summer and the school holiday months Cornwall can become busy, try to avoid these times if possible.

Boskerris Hotel – St Ives

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Tolcarne Beach Village – Newquay

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Looking for a shorter getaway from London? Trains run to from London Kings Cross to Whitstable in 1 hour and 20 minutes! It the perfect seaside escape from all the hustle and bustle from London life.  Tickets for the trains can be purchased through  Trainline here .

Though it is a small town there is always a lot going on in Whitstable. Spend your time wandering its boutique shops or eat your way through its independent food and drinks scene.

For more on Whitstable see our Whitstable Guide: The Ultimate Day by the Sea

Warehouse Holiday Lets

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Bath located in Somerset in the UK and can be reached from London in 2.5 hours by car. The city itself is famous for its beautiful Roman architecture and can be a well needed relaxing escape from city life.

The best way to reach Bath is by train which takes 1.5 hours from Paddington Station, however it is best to book train tickets to Bath in advance as they do become very expensive if bought on the day. If you’re on a budget, you can also get the bus from London Victoria however this trip will take you around 3 hours. All your bus and train tickets can be booked through  Trainline .

For more on our weekend guide to Bath check out our post Our weekend itinerary for Bath, England .

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Only a 1.5 hour train journey from London Paddington is Bristol. Bristol has its very own unique style, think of it as the ‘Camden’ of England. The city is always vibrant with its bright and colourful art lining the streets. There is always something happening in Bristol, whether it is a big concert, local band or even a gorilla park rave.

One of the biggest art attractions to the area is off course Banksy. Banksy, the street artist, is believed to have lived around the Bristol area in the 1990’s, most of his public artwork still remains and is now well maintained.

Not sure where to stay in Bristol? Check out Our guide to a weekend in Bristol: Things to do & where to stay in Bristol

Leonardo Bristol City

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A Lady in London

A Lady in London

And Traveling the World

Lady’s 27 Weekend Trips from London to Europe You’ll Want to Take

Today I want to bring you my guide to the best weekend trips from London to Europe. From famous cities to beautiful towns and islands, there’s no shortage of unforgettable trips you can take from the UK capital to the continent. Whether you love exploring iconic urban centers or discovering somewhere under the radar, there’s a weekend trip you’ll want to take to Europe.

Weekend Trips from London to Europe

Weekend Trips from London to Europe

The best weekend trips from London to Europe range from big cities to sun-drenched islands. Some offer medieval walled towns, while others are known for their contemporary cool.

Wherever your passions lie, these European weekend trips will get you in the mood for traveling and inspire your upcoming journeys.

I’ve been to all the places on my list and I can personally recommend them for 2-day getaways. They’re some of my favorite travel destinations, and some of the best places to visit in Europe . I’m sure you’ll love them as much as I do.

Seine in Paris

Tips for Weekend Trips from London to Europe

Two days is a short amount of time to discover the destinations on my list. If that’s all the time you have, there are a few things you can do to maximize your experience.

First, try to leave on Friday night and return on Sunday night. If you can’t, try to catch the first train or flight of the day on Saturday morning and return as late as possible on Sunday.

Remember to factor in travel distances from railway stations and airports, too, as transfers will eat into your time. The same goes for time zones.

Paris Carousel

Second, try to book a hotel or other accommodation somewhere central. This will allow you to maximize your time doing the things you want to in the destination, and save you from spending half your weekend traveling to and from the city center. You can book a place to stay here .

Third, factor in the time of year you’ll be going on your weekend trip to Europe from London. Days are short in the winter, so you’ll need to be prepared to do activities that require daylight in a compact amount of time.

On the contrary, traveling in the summer months will mean you’ll enjoy daylight during your whole visit. You can check sunrise and sunset times before you book your trip to find out how much sun you’ll see (or not) during your trip.

Paris Restaurant

Fourth, make sure to plan an itinerary and check opening hours prior to traveling. With such a limited time, you’ll want to ensure each place you plan to tour, eat, and see is open when you’re in town. This is particularly true in the off-season.

Fifth, try not to stuff too much into one weekend. Two days isn’t nearly enough to see a major capital city, let alone a large town or island. You can always return in the future to see more if you love the place.

Sixth, do some research into how to get around before you leave home. Using public transport or bicycles and scooters will help you see more than you could on foot.

Paris River Cruise at Sunset

For example, the metro is a fast and easy way to travel long distances in cities like Paris, and bikes are a popular way to get around in places like Amsterdam and Copenhagen.

Seventh, be aware that service in cafes and restaurants can be much slower than what you might be used to at home. It’s a good idea to either factor in more time for meals or eat quick ones at markets or street food stalls.

1. Paris Weekend Trip from London

First on my list of the best weekend trips from London to Europe is Paris. With direct trains from London, the City of Light is just over 2 hours and 15 minutes away. That leaves you plenty of time to see the main attractions.

The capital of France is celebrated for everything from its cuisine to its culture. It has fashion for shopping lovers, museums for art aficionados, and picturesque streets for those who love to wander.

Notre Dame, Paris

While the City of Light is best explored over the better part of a week (or more), you can see the highlights in a weekend in Paris .

If you use the metro and RER trains, you’ll be able to visit Paris landmarks like the Eiffel Tower, soak up the scene on the Seine, and walk around neighborhoods like Montmartre.

If this weekend trip sounds good to you, you can book a place to stay here . You can also take a look at my guide to the best area to stay in Paris for my top picks.

Restaurant in Paris

2. Amsterdam Weekend Trip to Europe

Amsterdam is another of my favorite short trips from London to Europe. There are direct trains from London, but given the distance and time, it’s easier to fly.

Flights from London City Airport are ideal, as it’s one of the easiest airports to get to in the UK capital. The flight time is around an hour, too.

Two days in Amsterdam is enough time to get your fix of narrow houses, bucolic canals, and world-class museums housed in beautiful buildings.

Dutch Shoe Magnets in Amsterdam

It’s easy to spend a weekend walking or cycling along Amsterdam’s waterways and soaking up the colors in the floating flower market or the Vondelpark.

The restaurants and nightlife scene are great, too. Don’t miss the Indonesian rijsttafel menus or the opportunity to sample genever, a famous Dutch spirit.

If this quick getaway sounds good to you, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve enjoyed a stay at the Amsterdam Marriott Hotel . You can book a room here .

Sculpture in Amsterdam, Europe

3. Rome Weekend Trip from London

Next on my list of the best weekend trips from London to Europe is Rome . The Eternal City is an easy flight from the UK capital, and once you’re in town there’s a lot to do and see.

Rome is famous for its ancient ruins, world-class art, and great food. A weekend is enough time to see highlights like the Colosseum and Roman Forum, browse the Galleria Borghese or Vatican Museums, and eat all the Italian cuisine you could want.

Using the metro is a great way to cover long distances in Rome. It will help you see as much as possible in a couple days.

If this 2-day getaway sounds good to you, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve stayed at the The St Regis Rome and I loved the hotel and its location near the Piazza della Repubblica. You can book a room here .

Galleria Borghese in Rome

4. Lisbon Weekend Trip from London

One of my favorite weekend trips from London to Europe is Lisbon. The Portuguese capital is a straightforward flight from London, and it’s one of the few European capitals that’s on the same time zone as the UK.

A weekend in Lisbon is a great amount of time to see the city’s dramatic hills, admire its ceramic azulejo tiles, ride its iconic yellow trams, and eat your fill of custard tarts.

Given Lisbon is more affordable than most European capitals, it’s a great place to spend an extra day or two if you have time. You can also head up to Porto and do a combined Lisbon and Porto itinerary .

If this short break sounds good to you, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve stayed at Portugal Boutique Hotel and I really enjoyed the experience. You can book a room here .

View of Lisbon, Portugal

5. Barcelona Weekend Trip from London

Barcelona is another fun weekend trip from London to Europe. This Spanish city is an easy flight from the UK, and it’s a popular place to visit.

Barcelona is packed with historic streets, stunning beaches, beautiful museums, and fun restaurants and nightlife.

It has a bit of everything, and it’s a great place to explore for a couple days. From Barri Gotic to the Sagrada Familia and Park Guell, it’s a beautiful city.

Barcelona’s historic streets are easy to walk around, but the metro is helpful for places like Tibidabo that are further afield.

If this 2-day getaway sounds good to you, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve stayed at Le Meridien Barcelona and I loved its central location. You can book a room here .

Roof of Gaudis Casa Batllo in Barcelona, Spain

6. Prague Weekend Trip from London

Prauge is next on my list of the best weekend trips from London to Europe. I studied abroad in Prague when I was in college and I still consider it one of the most beautiful cities in Europe .

Prague is an easy flight from London. Once you’re in the city, winding cobbled streets and sweeping castle views tick all the boxes for classic scenery. Subterranean bars and hideaways provide the perfect spots for nightlife, too.

Add to that the stunning Art Nouveau buildings, the Charles Bridge, and some of the most well-preserved historic architecture in Europe, and the Czech capital is amazing to see.

If this sounds like a fun getaway good to you, you can book a place to stay here . I lived in Hotel Adler when I studied in Prague, and I loved it. You can book a room here .

Statue in Prague

7. Venice Weekend Trip from London

Venice is another of my favorite weekend trips from London to Europe. It’s a quick flight from the UK capital, and you can even take a water taxi from the airport to the city.

With its maze of canals and fairy-tale bridges, Venice does romance like London does rain.

A moonlit gondola ride and a Bellini with a view are just the things to get acquainted with the city, and there’s no better way to spend an afternoon than getting lost in the labyrinth of side streets.

Spending 2 days in Venice is a great weekend getaway from London. If this trip appeals to you, you can book a place to stay here . My favorite hotel in Venice is the luxurious The Gritti Palace . You can book a room here .

Building on a Canal in Venice

8. Reykjavik Weekend Trip from London

Reykjavik is another of my favorite trips from the UK capital to Europe. It’s a direct flight from London, and there’s a lot you can do and see in 2 days in Iceland .

2 days in Reykjavik is a great amount of time to see the city, visit places like the Sky Lagoon , and get out and discover the Golden Circle .

The landscapes around the city are prehistoric, the geysers and waterfalls breathtaking, and the myths and legends dramatic.

I always love seeing where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, bathing in steaming lagoons, and eating all the good seafood.

If this sounds like a fun getaway to you, you can book a place to stay here . My favorite is the hip 101 Hotel in Reykjavik . You can book a room here .

Grandi View, Reykjavik

9. Copenhagen Weekend Trip from London

Copenhagen is another European city that’s worth a weekend trip from London. Easy to get to by plane from the UK capital, it’s a manageable size for 2 days.

The Danish capital’s culinary scene is hot, and its other charms are equally appealing. From the markets to the waterfront, the architecture to the design, this cool city is hard to beat.

Parks like Superkilen are one of a kind, and alternative Christiania is unique. Getting around by bicycle is a great way to see the city and live like a local, too.

If this sounds like a fun getaway to you, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve enjoyed a great one at the Phoenix Copenhagen . You can book a room here .

Royal palace in Copenhagen

10. Florence and Pisa Weekend Trip from London

Back in Italy, Florence and Pisa make for a great weekend trip from London to Europe. If you fly to Pisa Airport (which most people do), you can see both in one trip. It’s easy to take the train between them.

After seeing the Leaning Tower, you’ll have the better part of 2 days in Florence . Given the city is so walkable, you’ll be able to see highlights like the Duomo and the Uffizi Gallery while you’re visiting.

Don’t forget the restaurants and markets, either. Florence has great food, and you’ll have plenty of time to sample some of the best.

If this getaway sounds like your cup of tea, you can book a place to stay here . My top pick is the Continentale . It has one of the best rooftop bars I’ve ever been to. You can book a room here .

Sculptures in Florence, Italy

11. Gothenburg Weekend Trip from London

Up in Sweden, Gothenburg is another easy weekend trip from London to Europe. A direct flight will get you there and allow you to see the best of the city in two days.

Gothenburg has a laid-back vibe, pretty parks, and good seafood. With a weekend you can visit the markets, shops, and gardens, and take a river boat tour.

This city is easy to see on foot, and you’ll probably want to walk after eating all the good food at the best restaurants in Gothenburg .

If you like the idea of spending a couple days here, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve had a great one at the Hotel Royal . You can book a room here .

Church in Gothenburg, Sweden

12. Dubrovnik Weekend Trip from London

Next on my list of the best weekend trips from London to Europe is Dubrovnik . A direct flight from London, it’s an easy place to escape to for a couple days.

Dubrovnik is one of the best places to visit in Europe for its marble streets, fortified city walls, beautiful coastline, and delicious food and wine. This city on Croatia’s coast is one of the most scenic on the continent.

Given how compact the walled city is, you can easily see it all on foot in two days. You’ll even have time to explore more places and go to the beaches outside the walls.

If spending a couple days here sounds like fun, you can book a place to stay here . My favorite is Hotel Bellevue with its gorgeous views. You can book a room here .

Old town in Dubrovnik, Croatia

13. Athens Weekend Trip from London

Athens is another great place to go for a weekend in Europe. It’s an easy flight from London, and once you’re in town there’s a lot to see.

With a weekend in Athens , you can visit the Acropolis, explore the historic streets of Plaka, take in the antiquities in the Acropolis Museum, and enjoy the great food and drink scene in the city.

The heart of Athens is easy to walk around, so if you stay somewhere central you’ll be able to explore on foot easily. There’s also a metro that can help you cover longer distances faster.

If you think you’d enjoy this getaway, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve had a great time at an apartment in hip Kerameikos . You can book one here .

Acropolis, Athens

14. Budapest Weekend Trip from London

Budapest is another of my favorite weekend trips to Europe from London. The Hungarian capital is a direct flight from the UK capital, and there’s lots to do and see.

A weekend in Budapest will allow you to admire the city’s dramatic bridges, soak in one of its historic spas, and take in the stunning architecture on its streets.

From the Neo-Gothic parliament building to the banks of the Danube, you can experience many of the best things to do in Budapest on foot.

If this sounds like a fun escape to you, you can book a place to stay here . My top pick is The Four Seasons , which is right on the Danube. You can book a room here .

Budapest Street

15. Cyprus Weekend Trip from London

A weekend in Cyprus is another exciting 2-day trip from London to Europe. There are flights from London to various parts of the island, and once there it’s easy to get around by car.

Legend has it that Cyprus is the birthplace of Aphrodite. Add to that boulder-studded beaches and lush mountain vineyards, and Cyprus is one of the perfect romantic weekend getaways in Europe .

If you want to experience romantic Cyprus at its best, you can visit the beach by the Petra tou Romiou rock stack in Paphos. Aphrodite was said to be born from the sea here.

If this sounds like your kind of thing, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve enjoyed two great stays at the waterfront Almyra in Paphos. You can book a room here .

Birthplace of Aphrodite in Cyprus

16. Cork Weekend Trip from London

Everyone loves Dublin, but my favorite weekend trip from London to Ireland is Cork . It’s a quick flight from London, and a fun place to discover.

Down in the south, Cork is often referred to as the “real capital” of Ireland. But whether it is or not is less important than the fact that Cork offers an impressive display of everything a capital should offer.

With a gorgeous university, bustling market, historic fort, and great pubs, the city is every bit as exciting as Dublin .

If you want to get even more off the beaten path in Ireland, a weekend trip to Ardmore is also a fun adventure.

If this sounds like your kind of spot to explore, you can book a place to stay here . I had a lovely time at Hayfield Manor in Cork. You can book a room here .

Cork, Ireland

17. Vienna Weekend Trip from London

Next on my list of the best weekend trips from London to Europe is Vienna. The capital of Austria is a straightforward flight from London, and it’s a great place to escape to for a couple days.

With 2 days in Vienna you can see highlights like the Spanish Riding School, The Hofburg, the MuseumsQuartier, the Danube, and the parks.

There are lots of under-the-radar streets and squares to discover in the city, too. They’re some of my favorite places to visit in Vienna .

The Austrian capital is easy to explore on foot, and there’s also a well-developed public transport network with buses, trains, trams and underground lines.

If this weekend trip appeals to you, you can book a place to stay here . I loved my experience at the hip 25Hours Hotel at MuseumsQuartier . You can book a room here .

Historic Street in Vienna

18. Bruges Weekend Trip to Europe

Bruges is one of the best short train trips from London to Europe. While there are no direct rail services from London to Bruges, you can take the train to Brussels and change there for rail services to Flanders.

Bruges is littered with waterways and wander-worthy streets. This medieval city in Belgium is worth seeing for its pretty squares, tall bell towers, and well-preserved old town.

Being in Bruges feels like stepping back in history. Everything from the bridges to the waterfront houses is postcard-perfect. It’s easy to get around on foot, and you can see all the highlights in two days.

If this sounds like something you’d love, you can book a place to stay here .

Boat in Bruges

19. Salzburg Weekend Trip from London

Over in Austria, Salzburg is another great weekend trip to Europe. There are plenty of direct flights from London, and lots to see in a couple days.

Salzburg Garden

Salzburg is worth a visit for its hilltop castle, manicured gardens, pretty historic center, and Mozart connections. The filming locations for The Sound of Music are fun to see as well.

When the festive season comes, the Christmas markets are magical. They make Salzburg one of the best places to visit in Europe in winter .

Salzburg is easy to explore on foot, as many of the highlights are in easy walking distance of one another.

If this sounds like your kind of getaway, you can book a place to stay here . I enjoyed my time at the stylish Villa and Hotel Auersperg . You can book a room here .

Salzburg View

20. Bergen Weekend Trip from London

On the west coast of Norway, Bergen is another fun weekend trip from London to Europe. Less than a 2-hour flight from the UK capital, it’s an easy place to escape to for a couple days.

Nestled between mountains and fjords, Bergen’s stunning scenery is enhanced by the colorful wooden houses on the Bryggen wharf. And that’s to say nothing of the delicious seafood around every corner.

Given its compact size, 2 days in Bergen is enough to see the highlights. This is one of my top picks for under-the-radar European destinations .

If this sounds like your kind of getaway, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve stayed at the Thon Hotel Orion and I recommend it. You can book a room here .

Bergen Fish Market

21. Mykonos Weekend Trip from London

If you love islands, Mykonos is a great weekend trip from London to Europe. Several airlines offer direct flights, and once there you can rent a car or take taxis to see the highlights.

2 days in Mykonos is enough time to explore the whitewashed streets of Mykonos Town, go to some of the famous beaches, and eat at the top restaurants.

Mykonos is one of the best Greek islands to visit when it comes to parties, too. If you like to dance all night on the beach, this place is for you.

If this kind of getaway excites you, you can book a place to stay here . My top pick is the Absolute Mykonos Suites & More . You can book a room here .

Mykonos Beach

22. Sofia Weekend Trip from London

Over in Bulgaria, Sofia is another winner when it comes to weekend trips from London to Europe. This capital city can be reached on a 3-hour direct flight from London.

With 2 days in Sofia you can see famous landmarks like the St. Alexander Nevski Cathedral, walk around the city’s streets, go to some of its cool cafes, and soak up the history (it dates back thousands of years).

The major sites are in walking distance of one another, but you can also use the metro, buses, trolleys, and trams to maximize your time in the city.

If this kind of short break is your thing, you can book a place to stay here . I enjoyed my time at the Hotel Marinela Sofia . You can book a room here .

Facade of the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Sofia, Bulgaria

23. Helsinki Weekend Trip from London

Back up north, Helsinki is another of my favorite weekend trips from London. The Finnish capital is served by direct flights from the UK capital, and it’s a fun place to visit for a couple days.

2 days in Helsinki is enough time to take in the Market Square, see the museums, check out the cathedral, and enjoy the city’s food and drink scene.

Helsinki’s city center is easy to get around on foot, so you can easily see the highlights in two days.

If this part of Finland sounds good to you, you can book a place to stay here . I loved my time at the historic Hotel Kamp right on the Esplanade. You can book a room here .

Church Building in Senate Square in Helsinki

24. Nice Weekend Trip from London

Down in Provence , one of my favorite weekend trips from London to Europe is Nice. There are direct flights from the UK capital, and the airport is close to the city center.

From the historic streets of Vieux Nice to the famous Promenade des Anglais, there’s a lot to do on this part of the French Riviera. I studied here when I was in college, and I loved the beaches, shops, and squares like Place Massena.

If you want to go a bit further afield, you can fly into Nice and spend a weekend in a pretty village in Provence like Tourrettes-sur-Loup , Saint Paul de Vence, or Eze .

Nice Palais de Justice in France

You can also take the train along the coast to places like Monaco , Beaulieu-sur-Mer , Cannes, Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat , Antibes, Villefranche-sur-Mer , and Ventimiglia .

Alternatively, you can spend one day in the city and choose from any number of day trips from Nice on your second day.

And if you want something different in the region, you can spend a weekend in Aix-en-Provence . It’s a beautiful city with historic fountains, markets, and streets.

If this part of France gets you excited to travel, you can book a place to stay here .

Historic building with a clock in Aix en Provence, France

25. Malta Weekend Trip from London

Back to islands, Malta is another great weekend trip from London to Europe. A direct flight from the UK capital, this place is worth discovering.

From the capital of Valletta to the hilltop city of Mdina, there are historic streets and squares, cafes with views, and architectural details befitting a great European travel destination. And that’s to say nothing of the food, which is amazing.

You can see as much or as little of Malta as you want in a weekend. Whether you stick to the cities or explore Malta’s stunning natural wonders, there are a lot of ways to spend your time here.

If this island sounds like your cup of tea, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve enjoyed a great time at The Xara Palace , and I loved how unique it was. You can book a room .

Historic Building in Valletta

26. Tallinn Weekend Trip from London

Out in Estonia, Tallinn is another of my favorite weekend trips from London. It’s a direct flight from the UK captial, and once you’re in town it’s easy to get around on foot.

If Europe has a cutest city center, it would be Tallinn . This Baltic capital has tile rooftops and colorful facades galore. The city also has great nightlife, contemporary art museums, botanical gardens, and towers with views.

If you want a nearby alternative, Riga in Latvia is also worth a special trip. The Art Nouveau architecture is amazing.

If Tallinn appeals to your inner travel lover, you can book a place to stay here .

Tallinn Old Town View

27. Brussels Weekend Trip from London

Brussels is one of the best weekend trips from London to Europe by train. Like Paris, the Belgian capital benefits from direct rail services to the UK. You can get here in just under 2 hours, leaving you with plenty of time to discover the city.

Brussels is underrated as far as European capitals go. I spent a summer living and working here after college, and I loved the city.

Rue des Bouchers in Brussels

From the stunning buildings in the Grand Place to the narrow streets lined with restaurants, the historic shopping arcades, the pretty parks and squares, and the Art Nouveau buildings, this city is full of beauty.

And that’s to say nothing of the street art, museums, and delicious food and drinks (think waffles, chocolate, fries, mussels, and beer).

It’s easy to see a lot in a weekend in Brussels , as most of the sightseeing highlights are in one compact area near the Grand Place and the central train station. There’s a metro, buses, trains, and trams for places further afield, too.

If this capital city sounds appealing, you can book a place to stay here . I’ve visited many times, and my top pick is the Hilton Brussels Grand Place . You can book a room here .

Grand Place, Brussels

I hope you’ve enjoyed this list of the best weekend trips from London to Europe, and that it’s inspired you to get out and discover some of the most exciting places to visit on the continent in 2 days.

If you want more inspiration, you can take a look at my blog post about the best weekend trips from London . Happy travels!

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La Vie de Jacquelyn

11 Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Last updated on April 3rd, 2024

Planning to explore the UK? Here are 11 of the best weekend trips from London by train . 

While London is quite the adventure, several surrounding areas are also well worth the visit. And if you’re going anyway, you may as well explore where you can. 

As someone who loves a good weekend trip (and England), I’m giving you the best weekend getaways in the UK. 

From Edinburgh to Amsterdam, this list includes some of the best short trips from London by train. 

Why travel by train? Not only is it a more affordable means of transport in the UK, but you also get to see Britain’s beautiful countryside. It’s a win all around. 

This post is all about the best weekend trips from London by train .  

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read the full disclosure  for more information.

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

1. cambridge.

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Cambridge is the first destination on the list of best weekend getaways in the UK. In just over an hour, you can be in one of Great Britain’s top destinations. 

This historic town is a trip back in time with its gothic architecture and centuries-old colleges and churches. And with the gorgeous greenery, Cambridge makes a great, quiet spot for a romantic getaway. 

Quick tips : Train tickets to Cambridge are roughly £10. 

2. Edindurbgh

Old Town Edinburgh

One of my favorite destinations in the UK is Edinburgh! While Scotland’s capital city is small, it is full of adventure and excitement. 

Unbelievable architecture, ancient history, DELICIOUS food, and gorgeous views. So, there is so much to see and do in Edinburgh. 

The commute : Edinburgh is roughly 4 hours away from London by train. And it’s one of the cheapest weekend trips from London; train tickets cost anywhere from £31-75, depending on when you book your ticket.

3. Brighton

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Another easy trip from London by train is Brighton. This coastal town is a nice break from the city life of London. 

Brighton is the perfect place to spend a weekend, whether you’re soaking up the sun on the beach or treasure-hunting for unique souvenirs. 

The town is also known for its fun, quirky people. So, get prepared to meet a lot of interesting folks!

The commute : The ride from London to Brighton is 1.5 to 2 hours long, and tickets can run as low as £10.  

Next on the list of best weekend trips from London by train is Kent. 

Kent is an underrated gem you don’t want to miss out on. From the famous White Cliffs of Dover, epic castles, and sandy beaches, Kent is an excellent choice for a weekend trip.

The town is perfect for solo travelers, couples wanting a romantic getaway or even family looking to enjoy a nice trip. 

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Historic sites, outdoor activities, gorgeous nature views …I mean, what more can you ask for?

The commute : Kent is a little over an hour’s train ride from London. You can expect to spend anywhere from £15 to £20 on a ticket. 

romantic weekend trips from london

Bath is another excellent destination for a weekend getaway. The city is famous for its Roman baths, where the city’s name originates. 

Besides the baths, famous landmarks like The Royal Cresent and The King’s Circus attract travelers every year. Both of these iconic structures date back to the 18th century and showcase unique Georgian architecture. 

The gorgeous landscape and historical streets make Bath a top choice for a relaxing weekend away from London. 

The commute : Bath is a quick 1.5 hour away from London, and tickets are roughly £23. 

*** Bath is where Netflix’s hit show, Bridgerton , was filmed. So, if you’re a fan of the show, make sure to visit all the popular filming sites! ***

6. The Cotswolds

The Cotswolds are the next destination to make a perfect weekend trip from London by train. It only takes 1.5 to 2 hours to travel from London. You could make it a day trip. 

The Cotswolds are one of the most famous destinations in rural England. The countryside views are truly out of this world, so it’s no wonder why so many people enjoy visiting. It is definitely a nice change from the city. 

romantic weekend trips from london

Why should you visit? Despite the Cotswolds being in a rural area, it has some of the best food in the world. Probably because everything is locally grown.  

Another reason to visit is because it’s full of history, as is much of England. Some top places to see are Sudeley Castle , the Avebury Ring, and Blenheim Palace . 

The commute : It takes 1.5 to 2 hours to reach the Cotswolds from London; tickets range from £70 – £130. 

7. Yorkshire

Next up is the beautiful Yorkshire. You simply can’t visit England without stopping in Yorkshire. Whether you’re looking for adventure or a relaxing weekend away, this is the perfect spot.

Yorkshire is home to 3 National Parks: The Yorkshire Dales, The North York Moors National Park, and The Peak District National Park. So, there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities & simply being in the nature.

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Besides all the outdoor adventures available, Yorkshire is full of traditional pubs where you can get ale and some famous Yorkshire pudding. 

Yummy food & adventure.. sign me up . 

The commute : Travel time from London to Yorkshire can take 3.5 to 4 hours. Tickets range from £90 – £150. 

8. Glasglow

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

A little further down the road, so to speak, is Glasglow, Scotland. This port city is a popular destination in the UK, known for its gorgeous terrain, castles, and fantastic shopping. 

Glasgow also has an excellent live music and entertainment scene, so you can expect festivals and events all year round.  Music lovers and creatives alike will have a great time vibing with the locals!

The city is also home to some of the world’s top museums and galleries. Kelvingrove Art Gallery And Museum , Riverside Museum , and the Hunterian Art Gallery are just a few you don’t want to miss. 

There is so much to see and do in Glasglow. And with some of the friendliest people in the world, you’ll be bummed to say goodbye. 

The commute : Glasgow is roughly five and a half hours from London by train, perfect for a weekend trip. Tickets are around £90. 

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Next up is one of my favorite destinations in the world, Paris! 

Paris is one of the best weekend trips from London by train. And it is closer to London than some of the other UK destinations on this list. 

So why visit Paris? Why not is the better question.  

Paris is an unforgettable city you MUST visit at least once in your lifetime. Famous landmarks and museums like the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre , and more are some of the city’s iconic sites visitors travel miles to experience. 

If that’s not enough, the cuisine is delicious. From 5-star restaurants to corner cafes, there is something for everyone. If you’re like me, you need to try it all 😝.  

Whether you’re strolling the ancient streets or spending the day exploring museums, there is plenty to do in Paris. 

The commute: Paris is just under 2 and a half hours away from London by train. So, it’s close enough to make it a day trip. Train tickets are about £100. 

10. Brussels

Another short trip from London by train is the beautiful Brussels. The capital city of Belgium is another European destination you don’t want to miss. 

The gorgeous architecture, museums galore, and delicious chocolate are just a few reasons to visit. 

short trips from London by train

Additionally, the city is super old, so there is plenty of history to explore. Walking the streets of Brussels is almost like time traveling; it’s a world away from the modern world. 

Brussels is also considered a ‘global city’ as the European Union headquarters are located there. So naturally, it’s one of the more political cities in Europe. 

Brussels is the place to be if you want to experience something a little different than England. 

The commute : Brussels is just a little over two hours away from London by train. Tickets are about £100. 

11. Amsterdam

And lastly, another destination I’m pretty fond of is Amsterdam, and even better, it’s not that far from London. 

Amsterdam is a city unlike any other. Beautiful historic sites, bikes everywhere, canals, and much more. So, as you can see, there are many ways to explore Amsterdam. I definitely recommend renting a bike to ride through the streets. AND booking a boat trip on the canal! 

Best Weekend Trips from London by Train

Other things to do in Amsterdam include shopping at the Albert Cuyp Markt, beer tasting, and exploring the city’s neighborhoods.  There are also several excellent museums like the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh Museum . 

Whatever you choose to do, you’re in for a real treat!

The commute : The quickest train ride to Amsterdam from London is just under 4 hours. Tickets cost around £150. 

As you can see, there are several weekend trips from London by train. There are enough to keep you busy for a while!

Let me know in the comments below which is your favorite destination. 

Wishing you safe & happy travels. 

XOXO ~ Jacquelyn

This post is all about the best weekend trips from London by train .

Madrid

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Jacquelyn is the owner of La Vie de Jacquelyn, a travel blog that helps people make the most of their traveling experiences. When she isn’t exploring the world or writing blog posts, she’s loving on God & His people.

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weekend trips from london weekend breaks from london

16 weekend trips from London that are less than an hour away

Grab your weekender and head for the country

London might be the place where everything's happening but it's also great to get out of the capital once in a while and nothing says 'escape' like weekend trips from London that remind us of how beautiful Britain's coast and country really are.

While the Lake District , Scottish Highlands and Cornwall are some of the loveliest places for a staycation , there are wonderful locations and hotels outside London that are close to town but feel a world away, offering natural scenery, fresh air and plenty of space to breathe.

Cambridge and Oxford are excellent options for weekend trips near London if you're after a city, break while Surrey is home to an array of country house retreats .

With UK breaks that allow us to fully get away from it all in mind, we've picked a few of the best places for weekend breaks from London that take less than an hour to reach by car or train.

So, grab your weekend bag and head for the hills (or beach , or riverbanks ) to these beautiful staycation spots for a fabulous weekend away from London. Check out our pick of the top weekend trips from London for 2024.

Mitre Hotel, Surrey - 40 minutes from Waterloo by train

weekend trips from london

This charming hotel that sits on the banks of the River Thames might only be 40 minutes from London but it feels a world away. You'll feel your stresses melt away from the moment you step through the Mitre's doors as you snuggle up with a whisky from the honesty bar in the cosy Library or head for the chic 1665 Riverside Brasserie to feast on oysters and steak. On a sunny day, you'll feel like you're somewhere as glamorous as St Tropez, and if it rains, the in-room roll-top bathtubs call your name.

If you're after an elegant yet homely place to stay for a weekend trip from London, The Mitre is as warm and stylish as they come. Here, everyone's welcome (including the dog!) and it's jam-packed with history (Hampton Court Palace is just opposite), while providing everything you could require when escaping from the city: top-notch dining, beautiful spaces (don't miss the sun-drenched terrace in summer) and friendly faces.

Artist Residence Brighton, East Sussex - 55 minutes from Victoria by train

Weekend trips from London - Brighton

Soak up the epic views of Brighton's coastline from this cool townhouse in iconic Regency Square. Just under an hour away, this coastal city is the perfect weekend trip from London.

Nestled directly opposite the old pier and i360 tower, Artist Residence Brighton is complete with quirks and unexpected surprises. Some rooms have been decorated by local artists, while others have been designed in-house using rustic vintage furniture.

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Boys Hall, Kent - 59 minutes from St Pancras by train

weekend trips from london

A 59-minute train journey from London St Pancras, Boys Hall on the leafy outskirts of Ashford is a glorious place for a weekend escape from the Smoke, especially if you have an epicurean bent. Enjoy a glass of local fizz on the sunny terrace, lose yourself around the scented wild English garden or get cosy over a game of Scrabble and a spicy Margarita in the oak-panelled lounge.

However, it's worth getting on that train just for the food. Showcasing the very best produce from the Garden of England, dine out on zesty delights such as burrata with garden peas, mint, lemon oil and broad beans or charred cod with butter curry, mango and chilli salsa, or maybe try a rare breeds T-bone pork chop cooked on an asado-style grill, all served with local Kent wines in the beamed dining room in the 17th-century Manor House. After dinner, hunker down in one of nine heavenly suites. Words: Tracey Davies

Cliveden House, Berkshire - 45 minutes from Ealing by car

Weekend trips from London - Cliveden House

It might have hosted royalty but you don't need to be a duke or duchess to spend the night at the opulent Cliveden House. Ideal for splurging on a luxury weekend away from London, this unique country house is set in 376 glorious acres of formal gardens and woodland.

It's wonderful for a royal-inspired short break, with the most glamorous and decadent spaces imaginable. Don't miss the sanctuary that is the Cliveden Spa, which offers the ultimate escape - think indoor and outdoor pools with beautiful settings. And when it's sunny, you must enjoy a dip in the outdoor pool or a long soak in the hot tubs overlooked by Cliveden's stunning clocktower.

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Converted Barn House, Surrey - 40 minutes from Heathrow by car

Weekend trips from London - Surrey Hills

A traditional barn in the woodlands of the Surrey Hills near the market town of Dorking, where only walkers and horse riders make up the traffic, this is a fabulous home from home outside of London.

A pool table for entertainment, three bedrooms and beautiful features, like the exposed beams and picturesque garden, make this one place you'll love for a weekend getaway with friends or family.

Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, Oxfordshire - 45 minutes from Marylebone by train

Weekend trips from London - Oxfordshire

When it comes to foodie weekend trips from London, the utterly lush Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons sure knows how to deliver. Brought to us lucky gourmands by the legend that is Raymond Blanc, this dream-like hotel close to the village of Great Milton in Oxfordshire is a paradise for those who love dining, cooking and learning about food.

The seven-course tasting menu at the restaurant is a must, if you want to experience the Michelin-starred chef's incredible French cuisine in a thoroughly British setting. Many of the seasonal ingredients are plucked straight from Le Manoir's sprawling kitchen garden, which you can enjoy strolling during your stay.

Then there's the Raymond Blanc Cookery School, which offers one of the most memorable cooking experiences you'll ever have. Here, you'll learn from chefs who work closely with Raymond Blanc with Le Manoir's kitchen staff working next door.

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The Flint House, Buckinghamshire - 36 minutes by car from Hammersmith

Weekend trips from London - Buckinghamshire

Sleeping 15 people, this beautiful detached farmhouse in Beaconsfield is ideal for a group girls' holiday or family weekend. Think art deco meets country glamour in the gorgeous retreat set in 2,000 acres of farm and woodland.

Beyond its imposing façade, there’s a drawing room with a lavish fireplace, a kitchen (the hub of the house) and spacious dining room, perfect for long lazy meals. The Chiltern Hills offer miles of walking paths for when you want to get out and about.

Sopwell House, Hertfordshire - 42 minutes from St Pancras by train and bus

Weekend trips from London - Hertfordshire

A stunning Georgian manor house in St. Albans' lush countryside, Sopwell House makes for the perfect weekend break from London. With two restaurants, an elegant cocktail lounge and conservatory bar, all of which look out on 12 acres of beautiful gardens, you have plenty of spaces to soak up the views.

Cottonmill, its spa, has its own garden featuring private hot tubs and a fire pit, along with a panoramic sauna, salt and botanical steam rooms and dining.

Hotel Du Vin Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire - One hour from Paddington by train

weekend trips from london

There are few more idyllic locations for a hotel than this: nestled in the Chilterns, in the heart of the 12th century market town anda stone’s throw from the banks of the River Thames. Hotel Du Vin Henley-on-Thames is a reincarnation of a 300-year-old brewery, successfully blending Georgian period detail with stylish contemporary furnishings.

Drinks and alfresco meals in the courtyard are a highlight, as are the walks, boutiques and boating experiences available on your doorstep.

Pennyhill Park, Surrey - One hour from Waterloo by car

weekend trips from london

The luxurious Pennyhill Park sits in a grand 18th-century manor, with a spa and a four AA Rosette restaurant headed by Michelin-starred chef Steve Smith. You can swim to the sound of underwater music in one of the spa’s eight pools, and sip Champagne in the outdoor tub -waiters are on hand to serve drinks in and around the pools.

You'll also want to enjoy a superb dinner in The Latymer restaurant and learn about the provenance of the artistically presented dishes

Castle Hotel, Windsor - 35 minutes from Paddington by train

Weekend trips from London - Windsor

The perfect place for a royal-inspired mini-break, Windsor is where you can explore the amazing Windsor Castle and see the red deer of Windsor Great Park. At the Castle Hotel, you can watch the Changing the Guard and relax in a fantastic location opposite Windsor Castle.

When you're not soaking up the royal sites, the boutique hotel steeped in history has afternoon tea created in honour of Captain Sir Tom Moore and restaurant Leaf, where you can feast on dishes inspired by nature. There's an alfresco terrace for sipping cocktails in the sun, too.

The Dundas Arms, Berkshire - 55 minutes from Paddington by train

Weekend trips from London - The Dundas Arms

Perched in the charming town of Kintbury, this 18th century Grade II listed inn is an idyllic retreat for a weekend by the river. The pub with rooms has just eight rooms decorated in a gorgeous country house style.

Many of the bedrooms come with their own private terrace overlooking the canal, where you can sit back and enjoy breakfast the next morning or a sundowner in the early evening.

University Arms, Cambridge - 55 minutes from King's Cross by train

weekend trips from london cambridge

The city of punting and ancient colleges, Cambridge makes for a splendid mini-break if you're looking to get out of London without escaping to somewhere totally remote.

At landmark hotel University Arms, there are views over Parker’s Piece and historic Regent Street from your city centre location. Inside, you'll find playfully designed rooms, a destination restaurant and stylish bar to complete your romantic weekend away.

Rocksalt Rooms, Folkestone - 54 minutes from St Pancras by train

weekend trips from london update folkestone

For a weekend away from London by the sea , head to Folkestone in Kent and reward yourself with a meal at Rocksalt , an acclaimed restaurant that helpfully has rooms attached. The restaurant is right by the harbour, so you can enjoy views of the Channel while you dine on dishes such as Rye Bay scallops with apple and celery beurre blanc, Folkestone crab with sherry caramel, and baked mussels with Kent cider. There’s a terrace to enjoy during the summer – and since you’ll be in one of the sunniest parts of England, the chances of good weather are in your favour.

The Grove, Hertfordshire - 20 minutes by train from London Euston

weekend trips from london hertfordshire

So close to the capital that you barely have to leave it, the Grove is in Chandler’s Cross in Hertfordshire, reached via a 20-minute rail journey from Euston to Watford Junction and a swift taxi ride. You can also travel to Rickmansworth from London Marylebone. The proximity doesn’t mean it’s suburban, though – instead, it has its own ‘beach’, by the pool in the expansive (by which we mean 300-acre) grounds. The hotel, in the former seat of the Earls of Clarendon, is popular with actors filming in nearby Elstree Studios. We’re sure they’re fans of the Bamford spa, championship golf course and assorted restaurants.

Monkey Island Estate, Berkshire - 29 minutes by train from London Paddington

weekend trips from london update

The Home Counties provide lots of opportunities for easy weekending from London – and if you want to feel worlds away from the capital, this riverside Berkshire retreat is an excellent choice. Your total transit time might even be shorter than a Tube journey: hop on a train out of Paddington to Maidenhead and you’ll be a 10-minute cab ride from Monkey Island Estate . The hotel is on an island on the River Thames, close to fine-dining enclave Bray, the Royal Windsor Racecourse and Windsor itself. The seven-acre estate has private residences for groups or families, along with the main hunting lodge, which has a serious roll call of famous former guests, including Edward Elgar, HG Wells and Siegfried Sassoon.

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  1. 11 Romantic Getaways from London

    This magnificent Victorian country house should be on your list of romantic weekend getaways from London. Situated in Horsham with an elevated view, South Lodge enjoys views of a 93 acre garden and parkland overlooking the South Downs. As well as stunning leafy views, South Lodge has 89 individually designed rooms styled to combine the past and present.

  2. 19 Delightful Weekend Getaways from London for Your Next Break

    How to get there: Cheltenham is 2 and a half hours from London, changing in Bristol. Morton-in-Marsh is 1 and a half hours from London, changing in Oxford. Where to stay: Cheltenham is an old spa town, with all the regency romance you would expect from one. Stay at No. 38 the Park for a real taste of period luxury.

  3. 17 Amazing Weekend Trips From London

    Get there two and a half hours by train from London St Pancras; around three hours by car. See local Airbnbs. 4. Padstow. This pretty-as-a-picture port really is the cream of Cornish. It's ...

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    Distance from London: Around two and a half hours by car, or a two hour train from London Bridge to Deal Station, followed by a short walk to The Rose. check availability. 3. University Arms. Boasting the best views in Cambridge, University Arms was the first hotel to open in the city in 1834.

  5. Lady's 35 Weekend Trips from London You'll Want to Take

    34. Weekend in Amsterdam. With direct rail services and short flights between London and Holland, Amsterdam is another of the best weekend trips from London. This city in the Netherlands is known for its picturesque canals, unique houses, art museums, and great nightlife scene.

  6. 17 Top-Rated Weekend Getaways from London

    10. Brighton, East Sussex, England. The attractive seaside resort town of Brighton is easy to get to from London. An hour by train due south of the nation's capital, this picturesque city provides an authentic British seaside weekend getaway experience with access to some of the best beaches in East Sussex.

  7. 29 of the Best Romantic Weekend Getaways From London

    Dublin is one of the best weekend getaways from London for a whole variety of reasons. Firstly there's lots of historical and cultural attractions to try out, including museums, art galleries, and Trinity College: the oldest university in Dublin, founded by Queen Elizabeth I back in 1592.

  8. 20 of the best weekend breaks from London

    Distance from London 1hr 20mins by train Where to stay No 15 Great Pulteney, a classic Georgian townhouse with 21st-century design. 8. Isle of Wight. Pack your walking boots for a weekend getaway ...

  9. The best weekend breaks for couples near London

    Discover Kent as part of a day trip, with the Leeds Castle, Canterbury, Dover and Greenwich tour from London. Discover more days out and day trips within easy reach of London. From countryside getaways to romantic escapes to the seaside, plan your next couple's weekend break in the UK with these top destinations for two near London.

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    Cornwall. Located in the far southwest corner of England about a four-and-a-half hour drive from London, Cornwall is worth the longer trip to enjoy a weekend along this breathtaking coastline with 300 miles of dunes. cliffs, medieval harbors and oak-forested creeks.

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    Whether you are looking for somewhere to discover solo, on a romantic weekend or travelling with the family, there are plenty of London weekend getaways. And to help you decide where to go on your London weekend escape, here are 18 of the best London weekend getaways to enjoy. ... One of the best weekend getaways from London of Natasha of ...

  12. 30+ Epic London Weekend Trips: Places to Visit Near London

    15. Dover - One of the Best Places to Visit Near London. Explored by Mal of Raw Mal Roams. 🏖 Why you should visit: The ancient town of Dover is definitely one of the best weekend escapes from London as it boasts a magnificent coastline that's home to the famous White Cliffs.

  13. Top 10 weekend getaways near London

    1. Bath, England. Image: Management / Tripadvisor. Best for: Spa and wellness retreats. Getting there: 1.5 hours by train. Sometimes, we all need a little respite from the hustle and bustle of the city. Bath offers the perfect remedy; it's a charming, historic town that's perfect for a relaxing weekend spa break.

  14. 17 Weekend Trips from London by Train

    1. Weekend in Edinburgh. I'll start my list of the best weekend trips from London by train with Edinburgh.The Scottish capital is one of the most beautiful cities in the UK, and the train ride from London passes through stunning countryside, cities, and coastal areas.. Edinburgh is famous for its hilltop castle, historic streets, and village-like areas.

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    Peak District National Park. The best weekend trips from London aren't always in quaint little villages. Peak District National Park is one of the best outdoor recreation areas in the UK. With miles upon miles of winding hills, this is the ideal weekend getaway for hiking and cycling enthusiasts.

  16. Best Weekend Trips From London: 16 Epic Getaway Ideas

    Salisbury & Stonehenge - An epic weekend escape from London. Salisbury and Stonehenge are just 20 mins from each other and make for an easy weekend getaway from London. Stonehenge is the abode of a mysterious megalithic circle in the Salisbury Plain that is more than 4500 years old.

  17. Best Romantic Weekend Breaks from London

    Looking for a weekend away from London. Want to spend some quality time with your partner we have some perfect short weekend getaways for you! ... Best Romantic Weekend Breaks from London September 4, 2022 No Comments. Pin Email Facebook Share. Looking for a weekend away from London. Want to spend some quality time with your significant other ...

  18. Weekend Trips from London to Europe

    18. Bruges Weekend Trip to Europe. Bruges is one of the best short train trips from London to Europe. While there are no direct rail services from London to Bruges, you can take the train to Brussels and change there for rail services to Flanders. Bruges is littered with waterways and wander-worthy streets.

  19. 101 romantic things to do in London

    Go for a wander in Greenwich Park: Be amazed by beautiful blossoms, autumn colours and gorgeous city views. Walk along the South Bank at night: Go for a romantic walk from London Bridge to Waterloo. Take a tour of Highgate Cemetery : Revolutionary Karl Marx and English novelist George Eliot are buried here.

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    The commute: Edinburgh is roughly 4 hours away from London by train. And it's one of the cheapest weekend trips from London; train tickets cost anywhere from £31-75, depending on when you book your ticket. 3. Brighton. Another easy trip from London by train is Brighton.

  21. 16 weekend trips from London that are less than an hour away

    Artist Residence Brighton, East Sussex - 55 minutes from Victoria by train. Soak up the epic views of Brighton's coastline from this cool townhouse in iconic Regency Square. Just under an hour away, this coastal city is the perfect weekend trip from London. Nestled directly opposite the old pier and i360 tower, Artist Residence Brighton is ...

  22. Top 10 Romantic Getaways In London, UK

    For your stay, here are the top romantic getaways in London, UK. London is a perfect destination for couples to explore, unwind, and make lovely memories. For your stay, here are the top romantic getaways in London, UK. ... 9 Best Romantic Weekend Getaways In Mississippi, USA - Updated 2024. 07 February 2024. NEARBY CITIES. London, UK (200)

  23. Romantic weekend in London itinerary for couples

    Evening: Discover Soho or Carnaby. Round off your weekend of romance in and around Soho, which is home to an array of cocktail bars, eateries and entertainment venues. Settle down to some jazz in the atmospheric Ronnie Scott's, and enjoy a taste of China at Chinatown's best restaurants. Alternatively, swing over to the cool area of Carnaby.