29 of the best day trips from London with kids

29 of the best day trips from London with kids

There’s a lot to discover in London itself that you possibly can simply fill a lifetime uncovering all the town’s secrets and techniques – however there’s no denying that it additionally makes an amazing base to discover, with a complete string of unbelievable day journeys from London with youngsters.

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Whether or not you reside within the metropolis and are in search of concepts of household days out close to London, otherwise you’re visiting the capital and making an attempt to pack in a bit extra of the UK on the similar time, I’ve picked 29 days out for youths close to London to encourage you.

I’ve tried to make these as life like as attainable – for instance, you possibly can technically go to York as a day journey from London, with trains taking round two hours every method, nevertheless it’s a protracted day and also you’d nonetheless barely have likelihood to see all of the unbelievable points of interest in York with youngsters. Identical goes for Birmingham, which is nearer however equally deserving of greater than a day.

However with greater than 29 concepts for days out from London with youngsters, you’ll nonetheless have loads of inspiration for all ages and pursuits, plus recommendations on the best way to get there.

TOP TIP: In case you’re travelling by prepare, do issue within the time wanted to get from wherever you’re staying to the station you depart from: crossing London can simply add one other half-hour or extra to your journey

Contents – click on to leap to a piece

Day journeys near LondonWindsor, Berkshire Winchester, HampshireThe New Forest, HampshireStonehenge, WiltshireSalisbury, WiltshireBath, SomersetBristolHenley-on-Thames, OxfordshireOxfordBlenheim Palace, OxfordshireCotswoldsStratford-Upon-Avon, WarwickshireRoald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, BuckinghamshireWarner Bros Studio Tour, HerfordshireSt Albans, HertfordshireHertfordshire Zoo, Hertfordshire (previously Paradise Wildlife Park)Woburn Safari Park, BedfordshireCambridgeNorwich, NorfolkBury St Edmunds, SuffolkColchester, EssexSouthend-on-Sea, EssexMersea Island, EssexNorth Kent beachesMargate, KentCanterbury, KentDover Fortress, KentBrighton, East SussexSussex seashores

Day journeys near London

In case you don’t need to journey too removed from central London however you do need to try among the highlights, the next all make simple days out from London with youngsters.

Theme parks

There are a string of theme parks inside simple attain of London, together with choices for various ages:

29 of the best day trips from London with kids

Hampton Court docket Palace

The house of King Henry VIII and a number of other of his Queens, to not point out different Tudor royalty, Hampton Court docket Palace is formally a part of the town, however as you do should make a journey from central London to get there, it’s finest thought of as a day journey.

Not least as a result of you may simply spend all day exploring. The great Magic Backyard play space can hold youngsters occupied for a very long time, fairly aside from the palace itself, together with the Tudor kitchens and Nice Corridor, the opposite royal residences, the grounds and gardens, together with the well-known hedge maze, plus numerous further occasions through the faculty holidays.

There are direct trains from Waterloo to Hampton, and it’s solely a brief stroll from the station to the palace.

Windsor, Berkshire

There’s nowhere fairly like Windsor Fortress – one among my high UK castles to go to with youngsters. In any case, how usually do you get to peek inside a ‘working’ palace?

A view of the Union flag flying in front of Windsor Castle - hopping on to the  Windsor bus tour with kids

One of many late Queen Elizabeth’s favorite houses, the royal household nonetheless commonly spends time at Windsor, and you’ll see the Altering of the Guard right here, eye up a really spectacular doll’s home, see the tombs of royalty together with Henry VIII in St George’s chapel on the fort, in addition to getting a glance indoors on the state residences.

Guide tickets to Windsor Fortress right here

After all, there’s extra to Windsor than the fort alone. you may nonetheless stroll the historic streets and sort out the well-named Lengthy Stroll by way of Windsor Nice Park. Try the Treasure Map Trails of Windsor and Eton for a enjoyable technique to discover with youngsters, recognizing among the quirky sights of the historic cities – get 10% off utilizing code MUMMYTRAVELS.

Sadly the hop-on hop-off bus tour of Windsor is now not operating (beforehand it was a straightforward technique to uncover the origins of Eton, with some Shakespeare thrown in) however there’s lots to find with out it.

For extra issues to do in Windsor with youngsters, try my high picks

Winchester, Hampshire

England’s first capital, Winchester is the proper place to step again in historical past – and there’s hundreds for youths to take pleasure in as properly.

The statue of King Alfred in Winchester - exploring Winchester with kids on a day trip from London

Together with the well-known cathedral, which my daughter first visited as a toddler (try the Christmas market in December too), you may see the medieval spherical desk on show within the thirteenth century Nice Corridor, uncover the town’s gone in its museums and wander the traditional streets.

For extra fashionable enjoyable, the Winchester Science Centre reopened in 2020 after a multimillion pound overhall, and you possibly can simply spend a complete day there.

For extra concepts of issues to do in Winchester with youngsters, try my high picks

The New Forest, Hampshire

The New Forest Nationwide Park in Hampshire is the proper family-friendly day journey from London for households who take pleasure in woodland walks and energetic adventures, together with the possibility to identify the wild ponies which stay there.

Standing by one of the New Forest ponies while holding my toddler - a great family-friendly day out from London

You possibly can take a scenic stroll or rent bikes to discover the traditional woodland, then hop right into a kayak for a visit alongside the river to see the gorgeous nationwide park from a distinct vantage level. 

In case you’re visiting with toddlers and youthful youngsters, there are additionally a number of farms the place you may meet the animals and, in fact, the thrilling Paultons Park and Peppa Pig World – toddler and preschooler heaven!

Probably the greatest instances to go to the New Forest with youngsters is through the early autumn months when the leaves are beginning to change color and the cooler climate means much less likelihood of sunburn throughout your outside adventures – though in the event you’re visiting on a sunny day, head to Buckler’s Arduous for an ice cream by the waterfront.

For extra concepts of issues to do within the New Forest with youngsters, try my high picks, together with extra issues to do in Hampshire with youngsters

The best technique to attain the New Forest and discover is by automobile. However there are additionally numerous stations if you wish to take the prepare to the New Forest from London: among the finest stations to move in direction of is Brockenhurst, which takes round 90 minutes from Waterloo.

Stonehenge, Wiltshire

There’s nowhere on the planet fairly like Stonehenge – this superb creation nonetheless has the facility to fascinate and spark your curiosity at any age.

Whereas it’s not a brief go to (round 2 1/2 hours every method by automobile), it’s properly definitely worth the effort to have a look at what might be the world’s most well-known prehistoric monument.

Try my submit on a go to to Stonehenge after lockdown

View of Stonehenge Neolithic stone circle in Wiltshire, UK - a family visit to Stonehenge after lockdown

On the entrance, there’s a small museum and recreated Neolithic homes to discover – the exhibition specifically is unmissable, not least for the possibility to face in a recreation of the stones on the solstice, in addition to offering some background.

Then common buses can shuttle you right down to the henge itself (helpful in the event you’re visiting with youthful youngsters or older family), and even higher, stroll the paths by way of the fields for the total expertise, seeing the well-known stone circle instantly showing on the horizon.

There’s extra data in the event you obtain the free app earlier than you go to (or utilizing the location’s free WiFi), as a substitute of an audio information, however the impression of seeing Stonehenge in actual life, marvelling on the measurement of the stones, the precision of the design, isn’t lower than jaw-dropping.

You will get a wide range of excursions from London to Stonehenge, together with half-day choices which provide you with a few hours on the stones themselves in the event you don’t need to drive. In any other case, direct trains to Salisbury take 90 minutes from Waterloo and you’ll both take a taxi immediately or a 30-minute bus journey every method with the Stonehenge tour bus (bus solely tickets value £12.50).

Salisbury, Wiltshire

One other fabulous metropolis to go to with youngsters on a day journey from London in the event you’re excited by historical past – Salisbury cathedral is the best-known attraction, residence to one of many copies of Magna Carta, in addition to the world’s oldest mechanical clock.

View of Salisbury cathedral in the UK against a blue sky - ideas for a visit to Salisbury with kids

However that’s solely the beginning of the issues to do in Salisbury with youngsters – half the pleasure is wandering the historic streets, the place you may nonetheless see medieval buildings in addition to the cathedral itself.

As soon as a Saxon city, then residence to a Norman fort, you may nonetheless see the ruins of this and an Iron Age fort simply exterior the present metropolis at Outdated Sarum.

Salisbury can be an amazing choice to group with a go to to Stonehenge – though making an attempt to pack each right into a day journey from London with youngsters could be distinctly formidable by public transport.

For extra concepts of issues to do in Salisbury with youngsters, try my high picks

Trains to Salisbury from Waterloo take round 80-90 minutes direct, or round two hours by automobile.

Bathtub, Somerset

Fairly Bathtub is one among my favorite cities in England, and fast trains imply it’s simply attainable for day journeys from London with youngsters (though you’ll in all probability be tempted to remain longer exploring this fabulous Unesco World Heritage Web site).

View of Bath Abbey in Somerset through the ornate arch on York Street - climbing the tower is one of my recommended things to do in Bath with kids once they're old enough

The town is right whether or not your youngsters are fascinated by Roman locations, love the writing of Jane Austen and Regency magnificence, or for the combination of metropolis points of interest and close by countryside.

I’ve picked out my high issues to do in Bathtub with youngsters right here for extra inspiration: you shouldn’t miss the Roman baths themselves and a stroll round absorbing the beautiful structure with its honey-coloured stone, together with the Royal Crescent, in addition to a wander to Pulteney bridge.

There’s additionally the Trend Museum, Jane Austen Centre, American Museum and extra, or the stunning Bathtub skyline stroll – to not point out a Bathtub bun earlier than you permit.

In case you’re spending longer within the space than a day journey, try my high issues to do in Somerset with youngsters


On a equally quick prepare path to close by Bathtub, vibrant Bristol is a good place to go to with youngsters – you’ll discover nice road artwork, the SS Nice Britain and Clifton Suspension bridge, museums and animal points of interest.

My daughter touches the Bristol Gromit statue, set on a viewpoint with the Clifton Suspension Bridge in the background - following the Gromit Unleashed 2 trail in Bristol, our review

The interactive science centre, We The Curious, is one among my daughter’s all-time favourites – we go to every time we’re in Bristol and the toughest factor is tempting her again out once more.

Visiting the SS Nice Britain and the Being Brunel exhibition, celebrating the achievements and lifetime of Isambard Kingdom Brunel, is equally unmissable.

The town can be residence to an aquarium (plus the unbelievable Bristol zoo Venture simply exterior the town centre), the free M Shed museum concerning the metropolis, and every part road artwork from Banksy to classes in creating your individual works, with an amazing self-guided tour or Banksy-themed strolling tour that will help you uncover them.

For extra issues to do in Bristol with youngsters, try my high picks

Trains to Bristol Temple Meads from London (the very best station for the town, slightly than Bristol Parkway) take round 90 minutes direct, or round two hours by automobile.

Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire

In case you’re in search of day journeys from London with youngsters that don’t embrace a protracted journey, fairly Henley-on-Thames is only a quick prepare experience or drive from the capital.

A view of the bridge over the Thames at Henley in Oxfordshire - one of my top day trips from London with kids

Set on the Thames within the Oxfordshire countryside close to the Chilterns, Henley is finest recognized for its annual boating regatta – however when that isn’t on, among the finest issues to do is rent a ship for the day to hit the river your self.

Seize a picnic, and spend the day on a self-drive electrical boat, exploring the river Thames and recognizing the luxurious houses and historic buildings that line the banks. 

For one thing extra adventurous, it’s also possible to rent kayaks and canoes that are appropriate for youngsters 5+.

Plus, don’t miss a go to to the surprisingly kid-friendly Henley River and Rowing Museum – I visited when my daughter was simply two and she or he liked the Wind within the Willows themed displays, however there’s lots for all ages.

It takes between 45 minutes to an hour to achieve Henley by prepare from Paddington – there are not any direct prepare routes, so that you do have to vary alongside the way in which – or round an hour by automobile.


Even after a number of years dwelling within the metropolis, I’d nonetheless discover myself stopping to stare at simply how pretty Oxford is – that beautiful honey-coloured stone, the previous school buildings, the beautiful riverside, the botanic gardens.

The bridge of sighs in Oxford, against a blue sky with the honey-coloured buildings of the city behind - one of my top day trips from London with kids

For youths who love studying, you’ll find every part from the doorway to Narnia to Alice in Wonderland and Harry Potter – don’t miss the Oxford Story Museum to step inside tales, nice for youthful guests in addition to eager readers.

Or try a Harry Potter tour – this Oxford strolling tour contains CS Lewis and JRR Tolkein in addition to the Bodleian library, whereas this Harry potter Strolling tour mixes Oxford historical past with Wizarding World trivia.

Try my evaluate of a Harry Potter strolling tour of Oxford with youngsters

The Oxford Pure Historical past Museum is one other of my daughter’s favourites – with loads of probabilities to get arms on, and the College Parks close by – whereas there’s an enormous quantity to find on the Ashmolean Museum with youngsters. Neither has an entry cost, in order that they’re additionally nice in the event you’re in search of free issues to do.

The town is finest explored on foot (or bike!) however the hop-on hop-off bus tour is a enjoyable choice with youthful youngsters or for a fast overview of a few of Oxford’s highlights. And on a sunny day, there’s nothing higher than hiring a punt and cruising alongside the river.

For one more enjoyable technique to discover, try the Treasure Map Trails assortment, together with two treasure hunts for Oxford – and get 10% off utilizing code MUMMYTRAVELS

Trains to Oxford from Paddington station take from round 45 minutes, or round 75 minutes by automobile. You may as well take a coach from London Victoria to Oxford (together with the Oxford Tube) which takes round 1 hour 40 minutes.

Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire

The one non-royal nation home in all of England to carry the title of palace, Blenheim Palace is round 20 minutes from Oxford, at Woodstock within the Oxfordshire countryside.

Exterior of Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, seen across a statue in the gardens under a blue sky - one of the best day trips from London with kids

Well-known for being the birthplace and residential of wartime Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill, it’s additionally an extremely child-friendly day trip from London, together with an amazing audio tour of the grand palace itself.

Try my evaluate of a day trip at Blenheim Palace with youngsters for extra of the location’s household points of interest

One of many highlights for youths is the fabulous new journey playground – there’s a separate price to enter, with timed slots, however with a lot for all ages, it’s large enjoyable.

Elsewhere within the 2,000-acre property, you’ll discover immersive household exhibitions on the palace’s historical past, in addition to sprawling gardens that characteristic a two-mile hedge maze, a miniature prepare, butterfly home and pony path for little ones, to not point out particular occasions all year long.

Go to within the run-up to Christmas, and there’s an illuminated path too.

It takes round 1h 20 minutes to get to Blenheim Palace from London by automobile, though there are additionally a wide range of excursions to Blenheim Palace in the event you don’t need to drive. Alternatively, the simplest technique to get there by public transport is to take the prepare to Oxford after which a bus on to Woodstock, which takes an extra 30-40 minutes.


The Cotswolds are really the postcard-perfect picture of England. Scattered throughout a number of counties, largely Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire, the gathering of fairly villages is understood for its quaint thatch-roofed cottages and historic stone bridges, surrounded by the rolling inexperienced hills of the English countryside.

Street lined with honey coloured stone cottages under a blue sky in the Gloucestershire village of Icomb in the Cotswolds, one of the best days trips from London with kids

As the biggest Space of Excellent Pure Magnificence (AONB) in England, the Cotswolds are best to discover by automobile, however you possibly can simply go to two to a few villages on a day journey from London.

Bourton-on-the-Water is among the most kid-friendly villages within the Cotswolds, with a shallow river operating straight by way of the center that children can splash in with an ice-cream in hand whereas dad and mom loosen up on the riverbank.

There’s additionally a mannequin village, hedge maze and Birdland Park and Gardens – which has one of many largest collections of unique birds within the UK, and close by Cotswold Farm Park.

Among the different high villages to go to within the Cotswolds with youngsters embrace Decrease and Higher Slaughter, in addition to the gorgeous Fortress Combe and Moreton-in-Marsh.

For extra concepts of issues to do within the Cotswolds with youngsters, try my high picks

It takes round two hours to drive from London to Bourton-on-the-Water. In case you don’t need to drive, there are direct trains to Moreton-in-Marsh from London Paddington, and buses to close by villages, though you’ll be extra restricted in your exploring. You may as well be part of a tour from London to the Cotswolds, though these don’t are usually appropriate for youthful youngsters.

Stratford-Upon-Avon, Warwickshire

This fascinating historic city is finest recognized for being the birthplace of William Shakespeare, and also you’ll discover loads of points of interest linked to the well-known playwright as you discover.

The historic timbered house that is William Shakespeare's birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon - a fascinating day out from London with kids

Go to the home that Shakespeare grew up in, the place you’ll be greeted by tour guides in genuine Tudor costume who deliver the expertise alive and are nice at partaking youngsters of all ages. With older youngsters, you may watch a efficiency on the Royal Shakespeare Theatre too, in fact.

There’s additionally a hop-on hop-off bus tour of Stratford-upon-Avon, which hyperlinks a number of of the city’s highlights, or you possibly can expertise a Tudor lesson in Shakespeare’s schoolroom, the place the younger William was educated.

Mary Arden’s farm – the house of Shakespeare’s mom – is one other enjoyable family-friendly attraction, with its many cattle, individuals wearing genuine Tudor outfits and conventional crafts and actions which youngsters can attempt for themselves, together with archery and falconry.

Away from the city’s Shakespeare connection, you may see mechanical artwork on the uncommon MAD museum, spend a while at Stratford’s Butterfly Farm and take a soothing boat journey alongside the River Avon.

The Stratford Treasure Map Path is one other enjoyable technique to discover Stratford-on-Avon with youngsters, discovering among the quirky sights alongside the way in which – there’s additionally 10% off utilizing code MUMMYTRAVELS

It takes round 2 hours half-hour by prepare to Stratford-upon-Avon from London Marylebone, or slightly below two hours to drive. You may as well e-book a tour to Stratford-upon-Avon from London, corresponding to this selection which additionally contains Oxford, though this a protracted and busy day so not one for youthful youngsters.

When you have longer to spend exploring England, it’s simple to mix Stratford-upon-Avon with a go to to Warwick and Warwick Fortress

Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, Buckinghamshire

This little museum in Nice Missenden, Buckinghamshire, is unbeatable for followers of Roald Dahl – he lived within the village itself, and it’s simple to see how the realm impressed a few of his books.

A view of the Roald Dahl museum in Great Missenden, bunting flying against the blue sky - one of the many easy days out from London with kids

However even with out wandering round Nice Missenden itself, the Roald Dahl Museum is a unbelievable mixture of information concerning the creator, areas to encourage youngsters to get artistic, and details about his books and their origins.

If you wish to curl up in a nook along with your favorite story, you may, whereas there are storytelling classes and crafts actions that are enjoyable for younger kids.

Learn my full evaluate of a go to to the Roald Dahl Museum with youngsters

Trains to Nice Missenden run from London Marylebone twice an hour, taking 45 minutes, and it’s solely a brief stroll from the museum. There isn’t a parking on the museum and restricted parking within the village in the event you’re driving.

Warner Bros Studio Tour, Herfordshire

One of the crucial well-liked day journeys from London with youngsters, the Warner Bros Studio tour is heaven for Harry Potter followers (small and enormous!) Not removed from London, in Hertfordshire, the Harry Potter Studio tour can be one of many closest London day journeys in my record.

The shops of Diagon Alley at the Warner Bros Harry Potter studio tour - if you're visiting Harry Potter locations in London, you can't miss this

Having visited the Leavesden studios a number of instances – it’s one among my high days out for Harry Potter followers and high Harry Potter places in London – you possibly can very simply spend all day there in the event you needed.

For extra recommendations on visiting the Harry Potter Studios, try my submit

In addition to the possibility to see props from the films in all their spectacular element, you possibly can pose with a broomstick towards a inexperienced display, watch animatronic creatures from the wizarding world – and see how they have been designed.

There’s additionally a mannequin of Privet Drive and the Hogwarts Categorical, an opportunity to wander by way of Diagon Alley, a fire-breathing dragon in Gringotts and the one place you may see Hogwarts.

St Albans, Hertfordshire

The historic metropolis is one other very simple day journey from London with youngsters, and it’s an amazing choice if your loved ones loves historical past – together with a historic road market, with some nice meals stalls.

The ruins of the Roman amphitheatre at Verulamium Park, St Albans - a great day out from London with kids who love history

The location of one among England’s most necessary Roman settlements, Verulamium, it was additionally the house of the nation’s first Saint, Alban – you may nonetheless go to the Norman cathedral – and the scene of the primary battle within the Warfare of the Roses so there’s lots to find.

Step additional again in time to search out Romans on the 100 acres of Verulamium Park: this stands on the previous Roman metropolis with among the historic partitions nonetheless seen, together with the Hypocaust mosaic. Close by are the stays of the Roman Theatre.

Head to Verulamium Museum too to search out extra of the objects excavated from the location, plus a hoard of golden cash, some spectacular mosaics, and household actions in the event you’re visiting with youngsters.

The St Albans treasure hunt from Treasure Map Trails is one other nice technique to discover – get 10% off utilizing code MUMMYTRAVELS.

Trains to St Albans from London take as little as 17 minutes from St Pancras, or it’s round a 50-minute drive. If you’re driving, it’s a straightforward one to mix with Hertfordshire Zoo (previously Paradise Wildlife Park).

Hertfordshire Zoo, Hertfordshire (previously Paradise Wildlife Park)

In case your youngsters love animals, a household day trip at Hertfordshire Zoo is a good choice with over 800 unique wild animals housed on the former Paradise Wildlife Park.

Two red pandas asleep in a tree at the Paradise Wildlife Park in Hertfordshire - one of the best days out from London with kids who love animals

It’s the one one within the UK which is residence to 5 totally different huge cat species, plus a giant assortment of small monkeys and an enormous anaconda. If that’s not sufficient, the World of Dinosaurs attraction has 30 life-size animatronic dinosaurs so as to add some further thrills to your day.

Throw in particular occasions, talks, feeding instances, reveals, particular animal experiences, just a little prepare and even the possibility to play safari golf and it’s not laborious to fill a full day right here.

It takes round an hour to drive to Hertfordshire Zoo from London. In case you’re travelling by public transport, the simplest choice is to move to London Liverpool Road to catch one of many trains to Broxbourne. These take round half-hour and the prepare station is round 5 minutes away from Hertfordshire Zoo by taxi (there isn’t any longer a minibus operating to the park).

Woburn Safari Park, Bedfordshire

The closest safari park to London, Woburn Safari Park makes a unbelievable day trip from London with youngsters. In addition to the possibility to drive by way of to see among the larger animals, there’s additionally a piece to stroll round, splendid for youths to stretch their legs.

Monkey sitting on the bonnet of a car at Woburn Safari Park in Bedfordshire - one of the best day trips from London with kids for animal lovers

As a bonus, there are some very memorable VIP experiences too in the event you’re forking out – you may get near smaller animals together with meerkats and lemurs (for age 5 + ), or take an off-road safari journey (appropriate for all ages although you could want to offer a toddler seat) with particular variations that embrace assembly the lions, tiger and giraffe (some age restrictions).

Try my evaluate of the VIP experiences at Woburn Safari Park

It’s residence to every part from elephants and bears to lions and tigers, right down to monkeys, penguins and sea lions, to call just some. There are additionally play areas, each indoor and out, a mini prepare to experience and swan and dragon boats on the lake.

Woburn Safari Park is round one hour’s drive from London – and it’s important to drive. Not solely would it not be a protracted journey to attempt on public transport, it’s important to drive to the doorway, after which clearly you may’t stroll across the safari park, so that you do want your individual automobile for at the present time journey.


The second of England’s most prestigious college cities, Cambridge can be an amazing vacation spot for a kid-friendly day trip from London – get your bearings with a hop-on hop-off bus tour across the metropolis.

View across the river to Kings College in Cambridge - a beautiful day trip from London with kids

Dwelling to a number of nice museums, together with dinosaurs on the Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, youngsters may also love visiting the close by College Museum of Zoology and the Cambridge Science Centre. The Science Centre commonly runs enjoyable workshops and classes for youths so make sure to examine the schedule earlier than your go to.

And there are some unbelievable concepts for household actions on the Fitzwilliam Museum for even the youngest guests: this free artwork gallery is among the most household pleasant within the UK.

On a sunny day, punting alongside the River Cam, admiring the town’s many spectacular college buildings, is an absolute should, and save a while for a stroll across the Botanic Gardens too. The Treasure Map Trails are one other enjoyable technique to discover the town with youngsters, trying to find a few of Cambridge’s quirky sights and statues – get 10% off utilizing code MUMMYTRAVELS.

For extra issues to do in Cambridge with youngsters, try my high picks

Trains to Cambridge take as little as 50 minutes from London and you’ll journey from Kings Cross or Liverpool Road direct. It takes round 90 minutes to drive, though like Oxford, Cambridge is significantly better explored on foot, so it’s price contemplating parking exterior the town on the park & experience.

In case you’re staying in Cambridge for longer, it’s simple to mix with a visit to Ely with youngsters in addition to discovering among the finest issues to do in Suffolk with youngsters as properly

Norwich, Norfolk

This usually missed metropolis in East Anglia, a go to to Norwich is unbelievable with youngsters – I’ve visited a number of instances with my daughter, and there’s an amazing mixture of points of interest, historical past and picturesque streets to wander round.

My daughter walks along a cobbled street in Tombland in Norfolk, past a series of old buildings on a Norwich Treasure Trail, one of the most fun things to do in Norfolk with kids

The truth is Norwich is among the finest cities I’ve come throughout for placing up indicators about its historical past, so you may uncover the origins of bizarre names, learn the way previous buildings are and be taught a number of native tales as you wander across the county city of Norfolk.

Discover a few of my favorite spots and concepts for the best way to spend at some point in Norwich with youngsters right here

Don’t miss an opportunity to look contained in the cathedral, with its labyrinth and cathedral cat, whereas it’s also possible to discover contained in the fort the place the town’s museum is about. There are museums galore, together with the Museum of Norwich on the Bridewell inside a former jail, and the medieval Stranger’s Corridor.

Stroll by way of Tombland and right down to the Quayside, the place the sculptures commemorate the individuals and trades which as soon as helped make it England’s second metropolis, in addition to wandering round Norwich Lanes, full of cafes and little outlets. Wherever you wander, you’ll discover loads of road artwork too.

Trains to Norwich take just below two hours from London Liverpool Road – it’s also possible to journey from Kings Cross nevertheless it takes barely longer and it’s good to change trains in Ely. It takes an analogous period of time to do the identical journey by automobile.

Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk

For a barely totally different place to attempt in the event you’re in search of day journeys from London with youngsters, Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk is lower than two hours away, with its magnificent cathedral, ruins of the previous abbey and hyperlinks to Charles Dickens – for starters.

Norman Tower and St Edmundsbury cathedral in Bury St Edmunds - one of the many things to do in Suffolk with kids

The creator made a number of visits to the city, staying at The Angel teaching inn – you may nonetheless see a blue plaque commemorating it on the entrance of the constructing.

Reverse, the beautiful Abbey Gardens have their imposing previous gatehouse in addition to pillars, arches and even previous graves from the medieval abbey which was one of many richest and strongest within the nation. Wander inside the gorgeous cathedral of St Edmundsbury too, with a Discovery Detective path for youths to comply with.

There are some sudden sights as properly: within the close by church of St Mary, you may spot the grave of Mary Tudor – sister of Henry VIII, Queen of France and later Duchess of Suffolk, whereas Moyse’s Corridor Museum, voted Suffolk’s most family-friendly museum, has shows on homicide and witchcraft, in addition to on the historical past of Bury St Edmunds.

Colchester, Essex

Calling itself Britain’s oldest metropolis, Colchester is one other nice choice in the event you’re in search of history-packed day journeys from London with youngsters – particularly if yours love the Romans.

View of Colchester castle, home to the town's museum - one of my top things to do with kids in Colchester

Then referred to as Camelodunum, it was one of the crucial necessary Roman websites, with a part of the traditional wall nonetheless remaining, together with the ruins of the one Roman circus within the nation.

You may as well see a part of the massive Temple of Claudius, destroyed within the revolt by Boudica and the Iceni, within the shadow of the fort – the Norman fortress now homes a unbelievable museum, with displays from excavations within the space, AR recreations of life within the fort, hyperlinks to the Witchfinder Common and extra. Excellent for conserving the entire household entertained.

For extra concepts of issues to do in Colchester with youngsters, try this submit

Take a wander across the fairly fort park too, in addition to exploring a few of Colchester’s different museums and wandering the previous streets. There’s an amazing zoo simply exterior Colchester itself too.

Trains to Colchester take simply over an hour from London; select a route from Liverpool Road to Colchester City station, which is lower than 10 minutes stroll to the fort (or you may journey to Colchester Station, which is faster however barely additional exterior the centre. It takes round 90 minutes to drive.

Southend-on-Sea, Essex

Southend-on-Sea is a basic British seaside vacation spot on the Essex coast that makes for a enjoyable kid-friendly day journey from London. 

Southend-on-Sea seafront with the longest pleasure pier in the world - one of the best day trips from London with kids if you want to be beside the seaside

In addition to the big pebble seaside for youths to take pleasure in, you’ll additionally discover loads of family-friendly points of interest, together with a number of gaming arcades, the Journey Island amusement park and the Sealife Journey aquarium.

The city can be famously residence to the longest pleasure pier on the planet, which encompasses a loopy golf course, museum and a number of other small outlets and cafes. You possibly can both stroll half-hour to achieve the top of the pier (advised you it was lengthy!) or soar on the electrical railway. 

In case you’re considering this could solely be in your record for a go to in summer time, Southend-on-Sea is definitely a beautiful year-round London day journey with youngsters – all through October and November every year, the city places on a tremendous free fireworks show each Saturday night from a barge out within the water, accompanied by stay music and festivities alongside the seafront.

Trains to Southend-on-Sea take round an hour, and you’ve got a alternative of two totally different routes – from Fenchurch Road to Southend Central, which is barely nearer the seaside, or Liverpool Road to Southend Victoria, which is barely quicker. It additionally takes round an hour to drive from London to Southend-on-Sea.

Mersea Island, Essex

For a barely extra low-key and chilled-out day journey to the seaside from London, head to the small estuary island of Mersea in Essex.

A view along brightly coloured beach huts on West Mersea beach, Essex on a sunny day - a great day trip from London with kids if you're looking for time at the beach

Spend an idyllic day on Mersea Island having fun with the peaceable sandy seashores, making an attempt your hand at catch-and-release crabbing, hiring a paddleboard or kayak from Mersea Island Watersports and heading out onto the water, and snapping a number of photographs of the colorful seaside homes that line Victoria Esplanade.

And if the queue isn’t too lengthy, make sure to cease for lunch at The Firm Shed which has a repute for serving the tastiest fish and seafood on the island, and youngsters are welcome.

If you wish to journey by prepare to Mersea Island, the closest station is Colchester, round an hour from London. You possibly can take bus 67 to West Mersea from there, which takes round 45 minutes – or a taxi experience is round 20 minutes. To drive from London, it takes round 1 hour 45 minutes.

North Kent seashores

For one more alternative of seashores near London, head to the North Kent coast, the place you’ll discover a string of pretty spots by the ocean and a string of potential day journeys with youngsters.

The view of the pier at Herne Bay in Kent on a summer day, with the funfair and classic carousel and people paddling - a great place for a day trip from London with kids

Whitstable is one among my favourites: in addition to the shingle seaside, there’s an amazing cycle monitor to discover just a little additional and a well-deserved repute for excellent fish and oysters.

One in all my favorite issues is the road artwork in Whitstable although, with works to identify everywhere in the city. Gas up with some candy treats from the outlets alongside Harbour Road first (with lots to tempt grown-ups in addition to youngsters)

For a standard seaside really feel, select close by Herne Bay. Wander alongside the pier, try the helter skelter and seize fish and chips to eat by the waves, earlier than strolling additional alongside the seaside to identify the seaside huts.

In case you’re ready to journey a bit additional, Broadstairs has a number of beautiful seashores, fabulous ice cream at Morelli’s and a few nice locations to eat alongside the seafront.

For extra of the very best seashores in Kent with youngsters, try my high picks

Trains to Whitstable from London take round 75-90 minutes from St Pancras and Victoria, in addition to Cannon Road, whereas the identical trains to Herne Bay take 5-10 minutes longer. Driving to Whitstable and Herne Bay from London takes round 90 minutes. The quick prepare to Broadstairs from St Pancras takes round 75 minutes, or it’s an additional half-hour to drive.

For extra concepts of issues to do in Kent with youngsters, try my decide of the very best

Margate, Kent

The seaside city of Margate on the Kent coast is one other nice day journey from London for youths who take pleasure in being by the water.

Traditional fairground ride at Dreamland Margate in Kent - one of the best Kent days out with kids

This conventional British seaside city has a classy fashionable twist, so when you’ll discover fish and chips overlooking the sandy seaside, it’s also possible to discover a city centre stuffed with cool classic outlets and hipster cafes serving cold-brew espresso.

For a enjoyable kid-friendly day trip in Margate, don’t miss a go to to Dreamland, the thrilling 100-year-old amusement park which is residence to the UK’s oldest picket curler coaster.

You may as well discover Iron Age stays contained in the Margate caves and go to the ornate Shell Grotto – an uncommon sequence of passageways mysteriously lined in hundreds of thousands of shells.

Trains to Margate from London take round 90 minutes from St Pancras, or barely longer from Victoria. It takes round 1 hour 45 minutes to drive to Margate.

Canterbury, Kent

As soon as an necessary pilgrimage website, commemorated in Chaucer’s well-known Canterbury Tales, the charming metropolis of Canterbury in Kent continues to be a well-liked place to go to from London for the day with youngsters.

Medieval half-timber houses and Stour river in Canterbury, Kent - one of my top places if you're wondering where to go in Kent with kids

Older youngsters will take pleasure in exploring the spectacular Canterbury cathedral, wandering the traditional Medieval partitions, and visiting the fascinating Canterbury Roman Museum, one among my favorite Roman locations within the UK.

Youthful kids are certain to like embarking on the Canterbury Spy Mission Path as a enjoyable technique to discover the town’s historic streets, or you may get one other view by heading to the water, and punting on the river.

Select a quick prepare to Canterbury from London St Pancras and you may get to the town in an hour. There’s one other route from Victoria to Canterbury East station, in addition to to Canterbury West from Charing Cross, however you’ll want to permit not less than one other half-hour. Each stations are round 10 minutes stroll from the cathedral. It takes round 75-90 minutes to drive to Canterbury from London.

Dover Fortress, Kent

In case you’re seeking to go to one of many UK’s historic castles on a day journey from London with youngsters, you’re spoiled for alternative, with a complete string of unbelievable castles in Kent alone. However one of the crucial spectacular, which can be one of many best to go to is Dover Fortress.

View of Dover castle in Kent against a blue sky with white clouds, flags flying from the towers - one of the best day trips from London with kids who love history

Relationship again over 900 years, the inside is embellished as it could have been again when a few of England’s Norman kings (and queens), and their Plantagenet successors, would have visited – full with roaring fires within the coronary heart on chilly days.

When you’ve explored the massive hold and the fort grounds, there are medieval tunnels in addition to more moderen historical past within the Second World Warfare tunnels, plus some fabulous views out throughout the English Channel and to the White Cliffs of Dover.

Learn my evaluate of a day trip at Dover Fortress with youngsters

Trains to Dover Priory station run from a number of stations in London – the route from London St Pancras is quickest, with trains taking simply over an hour. You may as well journey from London Bridge, which takes round 1hour 40 minutes, or Victoria, which takes just below two hours. It’s simply over a mile on foot from the station (permit round half-hour) though there are a number of bus routes to take you all or a part of the way in which. It takes round two hours by automobile.

Need to go to extra castles in Kent?

In case you’re hoping to go to one other fort, Hever Fortress and Leeds Fortress are each unbelievable household days out however much less accessible by public transport.

A view of Hever Castle, Kent from the grounds against a blue sky - one of the best castles in Kent with kids and a great day out from London with kids

Hever Fortress is simply a mile from Hever station, with direct trains from London Bridge taking round 45 minutes – these depart as soon as per hour, and also you would want to stroll as there are not any taxis at this small station. Alternatively you may take the prepare to Edenbridge and get a taxi from there.

To go to Leeds Fortress, there are direct trains from Victoria to Bearsted station however you’ll want a taxi for the three-mile journey from there (except you need to take two buses and stroll). In both case, it’s price reserving prematurely (and making certain you’ve got a plan for the return journey).

Brighton, East Sussex

One in all my favorite UK cities, Brighton can be one of many best day journeys from London with youngsters if you wish to hit the seaside.

Stripy deckchairs on Brighton beach, with the pier in the background - one of my own favourite day trips from London with kids

The seaside itself is shingly and pebbles slightly than sand, however there are some nice household points of interest within the metropolis, together with Sea Life Brighton, the world’s oldest aquarium, a string of quirky museums and a few unbeatable views from the Brighton i360 remark tower.

Try my high issues to do in Brighton with youngsters for extra concepts

Don’t miss the long-lasting Royal Pavilion too, with a path for youthful youngsters to comply with, and loads of opulent royal dwelling to make your jaw drop. Teenagers will love wandering the Lanes with their classic outlets and retro homewares, or trying out the stalls on the Open Market.

Trains to Brighton from London Victoria take round an hour – it’s also possible to journey from Blackfriars and London Bridge, which takes one other 5-10 minutes. It takes round 1h 45 minutes to drive to Brighton: parking is commonly at a premium so be ready for prime expenses or to discover a area exterior the centre.

Sussex seashores

In case you’re in search of sandy seashores close to London, the Sussex coast is among the closest stretches to the capital for a paddle and an opportunity to construct a sandcastle.

My daughter scrambles up the sand dunes at Camber Sands in Sussex - one of the best day trips from London with kids if you're looking for sandy beaches

There’s a good selection of days out from London with youngsters as properly, from Camber Sands to Littlehampton and West Wittering.

Each Camber Sands and West Wittering are backed by dunes, with tide swimming pools when the tide is out: each may also get very busy on sunny summer time days!

Or Littlehampton has some extra conventional seaside enjoyable at its japanese finish, with sand when the tide is out and the UK’s longest bench, whereas the western finish is extra unspoiled with dunes to discover.

Trains to Littlehampton from London take from round 90 minutes, and it’s a 15 minute stroll right down to the beachfront, or it takes just below two hours to drive, with parking simply off the seaside. The others are more durable to achieve by prepare: the closest station to Camber Sands is fairly Rye, round three miles away, which takes simply over an hour by prepare, or it’s round two hours by automobile. Realistically, a day journey to West Wittering is simply sensible by automobile however prebooking a parking area on the seaside automobile park is strongly suggested.

*First revealed 2021, final up to date 2024*


The best day trips from London with kids - 29 great family days out from London, with ideas for the best beaches near London, great UK city breaks near London with kids and some of the country's top historic sites, landmarks and family attractions

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