The five best scenic drives near London: These are the best places to drive to near London

Staycations are looking like they may overtake sunny holidays abroad this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The deadly virus has seen countries across the world close their borders and put stringent travel bans in place to halt the spread of the virus. Despite being home to the second busiest airport in the world, the UK has put its own strict rules in place which mean that Britons are not allowed to travel overseas unless it is “essential”, according to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO). Further quarantine rules have also devastated British holidaymakers hoping for a trip abroad this year.


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Britons returning from a holiday could be subject to two weeks in quarantine on their arrival back into the UK.

With that in mind, Britons are now keen to find new holiday options that are closer to home.

And there is arguably no better way to see the UK than from behind the wheel.

For those looking for a great road trip close to London, has compiled a list of the best five scenic drives near the capital.


Distance & time: 53 miles, 1 hour 39 minutes

Brighton is a must-visit destination that has been dubbed “London by the Sea”.

If you avoid the motorway, you will hit the gorgeous Surrey countryside where you’ll be certain to come across some of the county’s adorable local pubs.

It’s a stunning journey that takes you from the urban high rises of south London to the Surrey countryside and the beautiful coastline of West Sussex.

Once there, you can explore the city’s stunning lanes that are made up of winding streets filled with antique jewellery shops and cafes.

Or you can walk the seafront and visit the arcade where you can either indulge in some sweet treats or try your hand at some games.

Either way, be sure to grab a fish and chips on the beach before you return home.

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Distance & time: 64 miles, 1 hour 24 minutes

If you avoid the motorway, you’ll see beautiful countryside and have the opportunity to stop off at some idyllic villages in Bedfordshire.

Although technically further than Oxfordshire, Cambridge is slightly more picturesque with its cobbled streets and grand colleges.

If you manage to get there, you must tryout punting on the river which is definitely harder than it looks.

New Forest

Distance & time: 82 miles, 1 hour 33 minutes

Avoid the motorways and you’ll experience a picturesque journey through some of Britain’s best countryside.

However, if you take the motorway your journey will be cut in half and the sooner you’ll reach the highlight of Hampshire.

Wild horses, thick forest, idyllic villages and winding roads, the New Forest is definitely a driving haven.

Be sure to stop off at Brockenhurst to admire the wild horses who sometimes refuse to let you drive down the road.

Epping Forest

Distance & time: 30 miles, 48 mins

While parts of Epping Forest are still in London, a drive to the former royal forest feels like a lifetime away from the bustling city.

The forest is brimming with history and is perfect for anyone looking to take their dog for a long walk away from the capital.

With more than 100 lakes and ponds among a variety of trees and plants, its truly a walk through nature.


Distance & time: 60 miles, 1 hour 26 minutes

London to Canterbury feels like a long journey but along the way you’ll be sure to see some stunning sights.

If you drive through Whitstable, be sure to sample some of their famous oysters.

Other places to drive through include the pretty villages of Lenham, Charing and Chilham.

Once there, stroll down the King’s Mile to witness some of the city’s stunning boutiques.

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