While London has plenty to offer any traveler, it’s nice to venture outside the city to experience a different, more realistic side, of English life. Easily hop on a one- or two-hour train ride going to Kent, The Cotswolds, or Bath, each of which has its individual charm.
Castles, gardens, and cathedrals draw visitors year-round to this gem of a city. Known as the “Garden of England” Kent is an idyllic, quintessentially English destination to explore and discover.
Kent is home to Canterbury Cathedral, one of the oldest and most famous Christian structures in England, as well as Dover Castle, set high on the Cliffs of Dover, which has protected Kent’s shores for centuries, defending the realm from invaders, rebels, and tyrants for more than 2,000 years. You can travel deep underground into the Secret Wartime Tunnels to discover how the castle served the country during the Napoleonic era, Dunkirk, and the Cold War.
Great for a day trip or short break from London, Kent offers some of the best beaches in Europe as well as art galleries, elegant stately homes, fun-filled attractions, and plenty of walking and cycling trails.
The Cotswolds (“wolds” means rolling hills), is a rural area of south-central England filled with thatched medieval villages, churches, and stately homes built of distinctive local yellow limestone. It’s also home to some of the best hotels in Britain including quaint rental cottages and pubs with rooms. Be sure to visit Blenheim Palace and Sudeley Castle and Gardens.
Besides being designated an “Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty,” The Cotswolds area is also home to some impressive manmade structures, most of which were built for royalty. Highlights include the Prince of Wales’ Highgrove Estate, which is open to the public, and Corsham Court, a grandiose former royal manor whose gardens were designed by famed landscape architect, Capability Brown.
Royalty aside, Kate Moss, Kate Winslet, Jamie Dornan, and Liz Hurley are perhaps the most famous residents to call The Cotswolds home.
Bath is a town set in the rolling countryside of southwest England, known for its natural hot springs and 18th-century Georgian architecture. Honey-coloured Bath stone has been used extensively in the town’s architecture, including at Bath Abbey, noted for its fan-vaulting, tower and large stained-glass windows. The museum at the site of the original Roman-era Baths includes The Great Bath, statues and a temple. There is plenty to see and do in Bath, including visiting the Roman Baths, relaxing at Thermae Spa, strolling across the Pulteney Bridge, climbing up Bath Abbey’s Tower, or visitng the Jane Austen museum. Also noteworthy are the Victoria Art Gallery, the Holburne Museum, and the Herschel Museum of Astronomy. Visit “The Circus,” a historic street of large townhouses in the city, forming a circle with three entrances and “The Royal Cresent,” a row of 30 terraced houses laid out in a sweeping crescent, which was designed by the architect John Wood the Younger and built between 1767 and 1774.
Whether you choose Kent, The Cotswolds, or Bath (or any other of a variety of day trips from London), we are here to help you plan your trip. Call Across the Pond Vacations at 310-791-6101 today!