Summer is over and unless you silently endured August in the office, secretly saving yourself for a blowout 2 weeks of Caribbean sunshine in December, you’ve most probably used up all your holiday days. But don’t despair. There is a whole world outside of London didn’t you know? And the British countryside has a lot more to offer than you may have realised (you ignorant city-dweller, you). But before you start with all your geographical whinings and the but-there’s-no-ubers-there, we’ve given you the TFL equivalent of the journey time in London, just to prove that a countryside escape doesn’t need to be anymore of a fag than a day out in the city. (And will probably be a lot more pleasant too).
1. Hever Castle
A Southern train from London Bridge will get you to Hever in 45 minutes, with a 20 minute walk on the other side.
TFL equivalent: Ever tried to get from Wimbledon to Buckingham Palace (via Covent Garden because you fancy the walk)? Don’t bother. Hever Castle is much prettier.
A day out in Windsor will take 30 minutes, if you get the First Great Western train from Paddington.
TFL equivalent: Want to get out of stifling West and head somewhere a bit more trendy? Well, a trip from High Street Kensington to Hackney Central would take you even longer – and no craft beer is better than a pint at The Duchess of Cambridge.
3. Blenheim Palace
Via a First Great Western train from Paddington, you can be at Blenheim Palace in just 30 minutes.
TFL equivalent: Going to Westfield Shepherd’s Bush on a Saturday? (Are you mad?) Heading in from Liverpool St on the Central Line will take you the same amount of time. Something tells us Blenheim Palace is a little easier on the eye too.
4. New Forest
A day trip to this gorgeous National Park will take 1 hour 30 minutes if you get a South West train from Waterloo.
TFL equivalent: Ever wondered how long it takes the folk of Romney to get to Heathrow? A long time. And a lot of heavy luggage.
For the perfect little weekend break, speedy Great Northern trains from Kings Cross can you get you to Cambridge in under 45 minutes.
TFL equivalent: In need of some green South Londoners? The trip from Peckham Rye to Hampstead Heath will take you about the same time as it would to get to the Botanic Garden in Cambridge… Change of plan?
A Southeastern train from Victoria will take 1 hour and 30 minutes – and when you taste how good the oysters are here, it will all be worth it.
TFL equivalent: Want to take the kids to see the Cutty Sark? If you’re travelling from much further west than Ealing we wouldn’t bother. A boat day in Whitstable will be much more fun.
A lung-full of sea air and one of the prettiest towns in East Sussex lurks just 1 hour from St Pancras on a Southeastern train.
TFL equivalent: You’ve heard us wax lyrical about the wonders of Richmond Park right? Not so wondrous when you’re trying to get there from Maida Vale. Three changes on the tube, a walk and a bus ride will get you there in the same time (providing there’s no traffic of course…)
8. Leeds Castle
Leeds Castle isn’t in Leeds, it’s in Kent, and a Southeastern train from Victoria to Bearsted Station will take you just under 1 hour. You’ve got to get a cab or shuttle bus from the station. But minor details…
TFL equivalent: My commute to work. Don’t even.
Featured Image Credit: The Telegraph