The best day trips from London

por Postcards from IvI

London is one of the most visited cities in Europe. Although the city offers thousands of activities in the center, it is a great idea to also get to know its surroundings and make a day trip to nearby cities or towns. That’s why in this post I tell you which are the best day trips from London.

It is true that the city of London has an infinite number of activities to do and you could spend many days just visiting the city center. Therefore, I only recommend taking a day trip if you are going to spend at least 4 days in London. There are many places to visit near London but I’ve selected what I consider the 10 best day trips from London. They are all located less than 3 hours from London and can be done in one day.

The best day trips from London:

1. Windsor CastleLas mejores excursiones desde Londres

Windsor Castle is located in Berkshire, around 40 minutes by train from central London. It is a perfect day trip to do near the city.

Windsor Castle is a place that you cannot miss if you are interested in the history of English royalty. It is the oldest and largest active castle in the world. Several royal weddings were held here and it is where Queen Elizabeth II is buried.

How to get to Windsor Castle from London

  • By public transport: You can take the train to Windsor at London Paddington and London Waterloo stations. In approximately 40 minutes you will arrive at Windsor & Eton Riverside station and from there you can walk to the castle.
  • By tour: The most convenient option is to book a day trip to Windsor Castle including a guide and transfers to and from London. Book a tour to Windsor Castle from London here

Also read: Day trip to Windsor Castle from London

2. Harry Potter Warner Bros Studios

For Harry Potter fans, London is the dream city! It is full of places you can visit that are related to famous films such as the Warner Studios where they were filmed.

This is one of the most popular day trips from London. In the studios you can see the original settings and objects that were used in the films.

You can book this tour to the Harry Potter Studios which includes bus transportation to and from Warner Bros + entry ticket to the studios. You can also choose to go on your own combining a train and a bus (50 minute trip approximately).

3. Oxford

Another must-see place for Harry fans is Oxford, since many scenes were filmed or inspired here. Oxford is a university town located in the county of Oxfordshire and is the seat of the famous Oxford University. It is a super picturesque city that is worth visiting from London.

How to get to Oxford from London

  • By public transport: the cheapest option is to get there by bus (2 hours) or train (1 hour).
  • By tour: There are many important buildings throughout the city so a good idea is to take a guided tour. If you are a Harry Potter fan I recommend this combined tour to Oxford and Harry Potter Studios.

Also read: Day trip to Oxford from London

4. Cambridge

Cambridge is another of the famous English university cities that you can visit from London. As in Oxford there are colleges that you can visit on your own. Among the most famous places to visit are King’s College Chapel, Great St Mary’s Church and the Bridge of Sighs.

How to get to Cambridge from London

It is very easy to get to Cambridge by train. The fastest trains from London King’s Cross take approximately 50 minutes. I recommend looking for train schedules and fares on Omio or Trainline.

Once in Cambridge you can take this university alumni tour to learn more about the history and curiosities of the university.


5. Stratford-upon-Avon

Stratford-upon-Avon is a borough situated in Warwickshire south of the city of Birmingham. Its main tourist attraction is the birthplace of William Shakespeare. Beyond everything related to the famous writer, it is a very picturesque town to visit.

↣ How to get to Stratford-upon-Avon from London

6. Leeds, Canterbury & Dover

Another day trip to do from London is to visit Leeds Castle, Canterbury and the cliffs of Dover. The city of Canterbury is a beautiful medieval city located 70 km from London. Here you can see its incredible cathedral, considered one of the most beautiful in Europe. Leeds Castle is very close and you can take a guided tour of its interior and gardens. Finally you will visit the impressive Cliffs of Dover that impress everyone with their 106 meters high.

You can do this tour by renting a car, but if you prefer not to worry about anything, my recommendation is to book a tour from London.

Book a tour to Leeds, Canterbury & Dover here

7. Stonehenge

Stonehenge is one of the most interesting and curious places you can visit from London. These stones were built approximately 5000 years ago and are located in the county of Wiltshire, England. It is a totally mysterious place since to this day it is unknown why this monument was built.

How to get to Stonehenge from London

  • By public transport: The option to go by public transport is to take a train on the South Western Railway line from Waterloo station (London) to Salisbury. From there you will have to take a bus or taxi to Stonehenge. In total the trip takes about 2 hours.
  • By tour: The most comfortable option is to book a tour to Stonehenge, there are several tours that include it:


Read more: Stonehenge day trip from London

8. Bath

Bath is a World Heritage city located 156 km west of London. It is famous because it was founded as a thermal complex by the Romans. You can’t miss Pulteney Bridge, the Roman Baths and the Abbey.

Additionally, this city was the home of Jane Austen, so you can follow in the footsteps of the famous writer.

How to get to Bath from London

9. Cotswolds

Less than two hours from London we find the Cotswolds, a group of towns that seem straight out of a story. Stone streets, picturesque houses and a natural environment of rivers and hills. There are a lot of towns to visit so you could spend more days at this destination but you can also take a day trip and visit some of the best-known towns.

How to get to the Cotswolds from London

  • Rent a car: The ideal is to do this tour by car so you can stop in each town for as many hours as you want. The page that I always use on my trips to rent cars and I recommend is
  • By tour: The towns of the Cotswolds do not have a train station so the other option is to hire an excursion from London. I recommend this Cotswolds small group tour.

10. Brighton

Last but not least, we have Brighton, a coastal city located 85 km from the capital. If you travel in summer it is an ideal destination for a getaway from London since Brighton has a beach. Among its best-known attractions is the Royal Pavilion, unique for its architecture, and the Brighton Observatory, a 130-meter tower with panoramic views of the coast and the English Channel.

How to get to Brighton from London

  • By public transport: It is very easy to get to Brighton from London by taking a train from Victoria or St Pancras stations. The journey takes 1 and a half hours to the center of Brighton.This guide ends here with the best day trips and tours from London! Be sure to read all my posts about London to plan a trip to this great city.

Other London posts that you might like:

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