Whether you’re looking for the perfect summer day trip to take advantage of the sunshine or a romantic day out to escape the city, here are the 10 best day trips from London.
Some of these are day trips I’ve done myself, others are trips I’ve taken as part of an organised tour group from London, so I’ll give an option for each, depending on whether you have your own car and whether you prefer to plan your own one day trips from London.
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The 10 best day trips from London UK for couples
There are the 10 best one day trips from London which can all easily be done in 12 hours or less.
If you’re interested in Eurostar day trips or any kind of day trip or weekend trip to the European continent, you might be interested in my budget trips from London to Europe.
Here are my top 10 best trips from London.
The romantic city of Bath is said to have inspired much of Jane Austen’s writing, and it’s easy to see why.
The iconic sandstone brick, sweeping crescent streets and charming Georgian facades make this a quintessentially English option for a day out from London.
Thinking about spending longer in Bath? Use this 2 day Bath itinerary, perfect for a relaxing, romantic weekend away.
Alternatively, this highly reviewed day tour from London takes you to Bath and Stonehenge for just £81 per person.
With 8 hours to explore Bath and a stop off at the iconic Stonehenge, this tour has almost 700 reviews and is rated 4.4 stars out of 5 on Get Your Guide, making it a great option if you’re looking for easy day trips from London.
I personally did this tour and absolutely loved being able to see so much in a day!
The beautiful city of Oxford was also my home for over two years so if you’re planning a trip to Oxford, make sure you check out my one day Oxford itinerary and the best free things to do in Oxford to plan your day.
Being just one hour on the train from London Paddington, Oxford is one of the easiest and best train day trips from London.
The historic university buildings and the opportunity to go punting on the river makes this the perfect romantic day trip for couples!
If you prefer bus day trips from London, this Oxford and Cotswolds tour from London gives you plenty of time to explore Oxford, see the famous sights like the Bridge of Sighs and see the city of spires from above. Then you get to see famous villages like Burford and Bibury - which is the village shown on the inside page of every British passport!
Alternatively, if you and your partner are Harry Potter fans then of course visiting Oxford is a must-do to see the filming locations. So why not combine it with a day tour to Oxford and the Harry Potter studios on this Harry Potter tour.
Brighton is a popular option for beach day trips from London and it’s easy to see why! With quirky and colourful streets and shops, the iconic Brighton Pier and the beach to enjoy, it’s the perfect summer day trip for couples.
Less that two hours by car and only one hour by train, Brighton is even a great option as one of the best half day trips from London to the coast!
- Brighton Palace Pier
- Brighton Pavilion
- Brighton Beach
- The Upside Down House
- Go up the Brighton British Airways i360 - for panoramic views 138m above Brighton and the sea
- Fly on the Brighton Zip Line - the highest zipline in south England
- Enjoy fish and chips on the beach or treat yourself to food from around the world, right on Brighton’s Beach from the epic Shelter Hall food hall
If you’re looking for the best short day trips from London, you can’t go wrong with Windsor. Less that 40 minutes by train from London and less than one hour driving, Windsor is a small but epic location for a romantic day out.
The charming Royal Town located in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead is of course the second residence of the Queen, who frequently resides at Windsor Castle. Windsor Castle is also the famous location for many a royal wedding and funeral too.
Enjoy a stroll along the iconic Long Walk - often seen on TV coverage of Royal events. You can even visit the Castle and see the spectacular State Rooms - buy your tickets here..
Enjoy a stroll around the picturesque town - you can plan your one day in Windsor itinerary here.
If you prefer a faster paced day out, this Oxford, Bath and Windsor tour is definitely a jam-packed option but one of the best day trips from London for value for money, and it’s got over 1000 reviews with 4.3 stars out of 5.
Is there anything more romantic than a day out exploring picturesque villages surrounded by quaint stone houses and rolling green hills? It’s no wonder that the Cotswolds is one of the best road trips from London and one of the most popular too!
Driving to the Cotswolds takes around two hours from London and exploring by car really is the best option to see as many villages and as much of the scenery as possible.
Use my Cotswolds Guide to plan your day out. Although this is a weekend guide, it’s roughly divided into South and North Cotswolds, so depending on where you want to explore, you can pick one day of the weekend itinerary.
The newest National Park in the UK is South Downs National Park and luckily for us, it’s less than two hours by car from London.
The expansive National Park area is home to beautiful walks and hikes, postcard-perfect villages, castles and epic coastline. Making it the perfect place for outdoor or adventurous couples looking for the ultimate escape from London city life for the day!
The Seven Sisters white chalk cliffs and Birling Gap
The village of Chawton, home to Jane Austen’s house
Follow part of the South Downs Way - a 100km track through the National Park that’s perfect for easy strolls, pick any part of it and the path is generally well maintained and easy to follow
For the more adventurous, why not try a hike to the highest points in the Park - Ditchling Beacon and Devil’s Dyke
Luckily for us Get Your Guide offers lots of great day trips from London and this day tour takes you from London to South Downs National Park, Seven Sisters Cliffs as well as farmshop stops and neolithic sights at the Long Man of Wilmington.
Rye and Camber Sands
Another great option for day trips from London to East Sussex, especially if you’re looking for romantic day trips to the beach, pretty towns and the chance of a picnic in the sunshine.
Visiting Camber Sands is one of the best beach day trips from London, with over 2 miles of unspoiled sandy beaches, sand dunes and uninterrupted views.
Camber Sands is located on the coast by Rye, full of red-roofed houses and cobbled streets like the famous Mermaid Street.
For the ultimate romantic activity, why not book on an East Sussex Wine Tasting Tour to visit two different wine estates in the area - this tour will even pick you up from the town or train station where you arrive so no need for a designated driver!
Canterbury and Whitstable
Kent day trips from London are thankfully also very quick and easy, with trains to Canterbury taking just over one hour and Whitstable an hour and 20. It’s just a 20 minute taxi ride between the two destinations.
Alternatively if you have a vehicle, Canterbury is around 1 hour 30 - 2 hours drive from London depending on traffic!
Visit the stunning Canterbury Cathedral, the headquarters of the Church of England and visit the historic medieval town centre with timber framed houses and cobbled streets.
At Whitstable, enjoy the sunshine and the colourful beach huts on the Whitstable beachfront or head to Tankerton Beach. Try fresh local oysters from Wheeler’s Oyster Bar or grab a coffee and a light bite at Windy Corner Cafe.
The Whitstable Harbour Market also runs Thursday to Sunday with dozens of local traders and artisans as well as a range of cuisines and local food dishes.
Also don’t miss the charming Whitstable Castle and Gardens!
To experience one of the best 1 day trips from London, even without a car, this epic kent day trip from London includes Leeds Castle (in Kent), Canterbury Cathedral, and a Greenwich walking tour and Thames River boat ride for just £106 per person. This is such great value for money if you’re looking for a Kent day trip as a couple but perhaps you’ve always wanted to go on a romantic Thames River cruise too. All tickets and admission are included.
Alternatively visit Canterbury, Dover Castle and the white cliffs of Dover on this Kent day tour from London. Admission to the castle and the cathedral are both included in the ticket price of £99 per person.
Like Oxford, Cambridge is a classic English university city, full of charming cobbled streets, narrow alleyways, historic university buildings and a winding river you can go on a romantic punting boat ride on. Book your Cambridge punting tour here.
Punting on the River Cam
- Climb Great St Mary’s Church tower for views across the city
- The free Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
- Heffers Bookshop
- The Corpus Clock
- Finish your day with cocktail bars at the rooftop bar at Six
Summary: best UK day trips from London
There are so many options for some top day trips from London, whether you have your own vehicle or not. Hopefully this list has given you some inspiration for your next romantic day trip as a couple!
Pin this for later to help you plan your future trip!