5 great road trips from London

December 20, 2013 (Last Updated: May 22, 2020)
by Carolyn
Immaculately kept cottages are everywhere in the Cotswolds. This one is in Chipping Campden.

There’s nothing like the freedom of hiring a car and exploring a country at your own pace and when you’re ready to escape the hustle and bustle of London there are an endless number of towns and villages to explore.

After driving my way around England and Wales earlier this year, I’ve come up with 5 great road trips from London that I think you’ll enjoy, too.

5 Great Road Trips from London


For a taste of the English seaside, Brighton is the place to be. Just an hour and a half from London, Brighton attracts thousands of tourists year round but never more so than during the summer.

Beach lovers shouldn’t expect the smooth white sands of Aussie beaches, though. In Brighton you’ll find over 614 million pebbles on the beach, according to the official Visit Brighton website!

Brighton, UK
Brighton’s pebbly beach even attracts nudists! Photo by Simon Carey, Creative Commons via Wikipedia.

Bath and Stonehenge

A bit further afield is the gorgeous city of Bath. Famous for its Roman baths and Georgian architecture, Bath is worth the two and half hour drive from London.

Make sure you include the Royal Crescent and Bath Abbey in your visit, too, and before you return to London, a stop at the infamous Stonehenge is a must.

The Roman Baths at Bath
The Roman Baths are one of Bath’s major attractions.


Prepare to be overwhelmed with the beauty of the Cotswolds’ quaint villages bursting with charming honey-coloured buildings with thatched roofs. As you drive through this stunning part of central England, you’ll run out of superlatives as each village appears to be prettier than the last.

A day trip from London is possible but if you have the time, my advice is to stay longer – you won’t be disappointed.

The Cotswolds
You’ll never tire of looking at the quaint thatched-roofed cottages of the Cotswolds.


A comfortable morning’s drive from London is all it takes to reach the Welsh capital of Cardiff. Not long after you cross the Severn toll bridge, you’ll notice the road signs start to appear in both Welsh and English and shortly thereafter you will arrive in this thriving University city.

Cardiff Castle and the Millennium Stadium dominate the city centre whilst the National Museum is home to one of the finest impressionist art galleries outside of Paris.

Cardiff Castle
Cardiff Castle is an impressive centrepiece of the city.

Lake District

For a serious road trip, head north to the beautiful Lake District in Cumbria. Your driving efforts will be rewarded with sparkling lakes, craggy mountains and lush green fields.

The Lake District is the outdoor capital of England with all sorts of activities on offer from hiking and cycling to fishing and water sports, just to name a few.

It’s also one of England’s most popular tourist resorts so whatever your interests, you’ll find plenty to do.

The Lake District, England
Boating and water sports are popular on the tranquil Cumbrian lakes of the Lake District.

Enjoy your road trip!

This article is written in conjunction with UK car hire specialists