The Best Rural Places to Explore Outside London

Visiting or living in London is a treat by itself. With gorgeous architecture and some world-famous landmarks, you have plenty to discover. But the city is also tiring. A fast-paced life can be daunting, especially if you don’t give yourself time to rest and disconnect. If you are looking for a relaxing day surrounded by nature, check out these rural gems.

Ashwell, Hertfordshire

Just 45 miles away from London’s city centre, this beautiful and quaint little village dates all the way back to the Bronze Age and was occupied during Roman times. If you want to see several centuries of architecture in one place, this is the spot to check out. While you’re in Ashwell, visit the church of St. Mary the Virgin, which dates from the 14th century, and check out the carved medieval graffiti depicting historical moments such as the bubonic plague.

Sonning on Thames

Located on the edge of Berkshire county, this is a beautiful spot to enjoy a day of leisure. First, you may want to explore the Thames path, or at least parts of it (as it would take you around 14 days to cover it all). We especially recommend the Blue Water Walk, where you’ll be greeted by large numbers of blue dragonflies. When you get hungry, you can visit the Bull Inn for great seasonal food and a taste of the traditional English country pub. Another interesting spot to visit is Saint Andrews Church, which was built on the remains of an Anglo-Saxon church from which you can still see the stonework.

Leith Hill

Built-in 1765 by Richard Hull,

Leith Hill Tower is the highest point in South East England. From Leith Hill tower you can see London’s landmarks like the London Eye, Big Ben, and the English Channel. While you are in the area, explore the many walking trails, beautifully surrounded by nature, where you can find an arboretum and a spring. These trails are a perfect place to walk with dogs.

Seven Sisters country park

This is a beautiful hiking trail with some of the most amazing coastal views. Located inside of the South Downs National park, and spanning over 280 hectares of coastline, meandering river valleys and grasslands, this country park is also a working farm Aside from the famous hiking trails, this is also a good spot for water sports such as canoeing and paddle boarding. And the best thing is, this beautiful landmark is only 7.2 miles (a 25-minute drive) away from London. These are some of the best walks near London, but there’s a lot more to cover. So take out those maps, do some online research, and choose the spot for your new adventure.