Guides London Day Trips from London: Exploring the Coast and Cliffs

Day Trips from London: Exploring the Coast and Cliffs

City Guide June 28, 2023
Nannybag - Day Trips from London: Exploring the Coast and Cliffs


After a few days of sightseeing and exploring London, you should take a break and discover the stunning countryside and charming towns that surround the city. Fortunately, plenty of day trips from London offer diverse experiences. 

To help you explore, we created a series of guides with practical information and must-see sights for each destination. You'll learn about the best times to visit, how to get there, and which places you shouldn't miss out on. If you're seeking adventure,  fun, or historical surroundings, you’ll find everything you need to plan your perfect day trip in our guides. Follow our lead, as we take you on a discovery quest through the British countryside and it fascinating villages. From Stonehenge, to Cotswolds, Brighton, and Stratford upon Avon, this series will help you understand what has made it such a special part of Europe for centuries. 

Plus, with Nannybag's luggage storage solution, you can travel baggage-free, making it even easier to explore your chosen destination without worrying about your belongings.

So, if you're looking for a break from the city and want to discover the beauty and charm of the English countryside and towns, read on for inspiration and start planning your next adventure.

In this guide, we'll explore a range of outdoor day trip options from London, with options for adventure seekers and seaside lovers. From Durdle Door to the White Cliffs of Dover and Botany Bay, get ready for a peaceful getaway from London.


Durdle Door

Durdle Door is the ultimate photo prop, a testament to millions of years of erosion and England’s first UNESCO site. You can swim under the arch during warmer months, but be careful. It’s rocky, and there aren’t any lifeguards.

If you’re not into swimming, you can capture the arch, framed by the stunning coastal cliffs and the vast expanse of the sea. ******After visiting the arch, feel free to roam around the Jurassic Coast in Dorset, England.

Fun Fact: The rock feature is approximately 200 feet high!

Here are some must-do things and must-see sights around Durdle Door:


Man O’War Beach

Soak up the sun and enjoy the crystal-clear waters of this stunning beach located near Durdle Door. It's a perfect spot for relaxation and beachside fun.


Lulworth Cove

A picturesque horseshoe-shaped bay is renowned for its natural beauty and tranquil atmosphere.


Corfe Castle

An ancient fortress that dates back to the 11th century. Explore its storied past, climb the battlements, and take in the panoramic views of the surrounding countryside.


Water Sports

For those seeking a dose of adventure, indulge in thrilling water sports activities such as kayaking, paddle boarding, or even coasteering along the stunning Jurassic Coast.


Nannybag - Day Trips from London: Exploring the Coast and Cliffs

Limestone Archway in Durdle Door

Unleash your inner photographer and embrace the wonders that await you at Durdle Door and its surrounding sights.

Easiest way to get there: Train from London Waterloo Station to Wool, then bus or taxi to Durdle Door (approx. 3 hours)

Ideal moment to visit: Summer months (June to August) for the best chances of swimming and clear skies


White Cliffs of Dover

The White Cliffs of Dover stand proudly along the southeastern coast of England and have been revered for centuries. These cliffs served as a natural defense for centuries, protecting the shores and guarding against invaders. And on a clear day, you may even catch a glimpse of the French coastline across the channel, making it the perfect lookout.

Here are some must-do things and must-see sights around the White Cliffs of Dover:


Explore the White Cliffs

Embark on an adventure as you hike along the stunning White Cliffs and discover hidden viewpoints, enjoy panoramic vistas, and soak up the serenity of nature.


Visit Dover Castle

Step back in time with a visit to Dover Castle, an imposing medieval fortress perched atop the cliffs. The castle played a crucial role in defending England throughout various periods, serving as a strategic stronghold during conflicts and invasions. Today, visitors can explore its well-preserved rooms.


Take a Boat Tour

Experience the White Cliffs from a different perspective by embarking on a boat tour. Cruise along the coastline and marvel at the towering cliffs from the water.


Roam the Coastal Towns

Explore and immerse yourself in the nearby coastal towns such as Deal, Sandwich, and St. Margaret's at Cliffe. Roam free and discover local eateries and small shops. Who knows? You might find a hidden gem.


Visit the South Foreland Lighthouse

Learn about the maritime history and importance of the lighthouse as it guided ships in the past. Tackle the stairs and enjoy the fruits of your labor with its gorgeous panoramic views.


Enjoy Beaches and Coastal Walks

Finally, Make the most of this day trip by enjoying and taking all the sights in. Breathe in the crisp air, grab an ice cream, and let your toes feel the silky sand as you walk down the shore.


White Cliffs of Dover

White Cliffs of Dover symbolize resilience, beauty, and the enduring allure of England's coastline.

Easiest way to get there: Train from London St Pancras International Station to Dover Priory, then bus or taxi to the cliffs (approx. 2 hours)

An ideal moment to visit: Spring (March to May) or Summer (June to August) for pleasant weather and stunning coastal views

Whether you're seeking adventure, culture, natural beauty, or historical significance, these day trips offer diverse experiences. So grab your camera, pack your curiosity, and set off on an incredible journey through some of England's most captivating destinations. So use this guide as inspiration to leave the bustling city of London for a day in exchange for a memorable adventure. And before your adventure, don’t forget to use one of Nannybag’s luggage storage locations to safely store your belongings and travel baggage-free!



For the seafood lovers

This is the place to be if you always want to be 5 minutes from the beach. This seaside town is home to instagrammable pastel-painted beach huts, cute independent street shops, and lots of (cheap) oysters. Whitstable is also known for its famous art scene.

Here are some must-do things and must-see sights in Whitstable:


Whitstable's Beach

Feel the soft sand between your toes and the gentle sea breeze against your skin and capture Instagram-worthy moments against the backdrop of the iconic pastel beach huts at the beach.


The Old Neptune Pub

No visit to Whitstable is complete without a stop at The Old Neptune Pub, a beloved seaside institution. Savor a pint of local ale or a refreshing cocktail while soaking up the laid-back atmosphere and panoramic sea views.


The Forge

Treat your taste buds to a typically British experience by enjoying some mouthwatering fish and chips from The Forge. Delight in the crispy golden batter, tender fresh fish, and perfectly seasoned chips.


Whitstable Castle

A stunning example of 18th-century architecture nestled in picturesque gardens. Take a leisurely stroll through the grounds, explore the castle's interior, and revel in the tranquility that surrounds this hidden gem.


The Lobster Shack

For seafood lovers, a visit to The Lobster Shack is a must. Indulge in fresh and flavorsome seafood dishes, specializing in succulent and juicy lobsters.


Explore the Shops

Don't miss the opportunity to explore the unique independent shops and small businesses that line the streets of Whitstable. Browse through handmade crafts, locally sourced products, and artistic creations that showcase the town's vibrant creative scene.


Old Neptune Pub

Whitstable invites you to immerse yourself in its tranquil beauty, savor its delectable seafood and discover the hidden gems that make it a cherished destination. Whether you're seeking a relaxing beach getaway, a taste of local flavors, or a dose of artistic inspiration, Whitstable offers it all.

Easiest way to get there: Train from London St Pancras International Station to Whitstable (approx. 1 hour and 40 minutes)

Ideal moment to visit: Summer months (June to August) for sunny beach days and the Whitstable Oyster Festival (July)


Botany Bay

Botany Bay is a picturesque coastal paradise that captivates visitors with its natural beauty. The highlight of Botany Bay is its breathtaking chalk cliffs that provide a stunning backdrop, creating a sense of awe and wonder as you gaze upon their majestic presence.

There is also a fascinating history attached to Botany Bay, the beach used to be a smuggler’s port of entry, and that is why it’s named after its counterpart in Australia- where the smugglers were shipped off to. You can choose to relax in the sand or go fossil hunting and explore the rock pools. It’s the perfect destination for guests of all ages (and smugglers).

Here are some must-do things and must-see sights in Botany Bay, the perfect combination of peace and adventure:


Botany Bay Beach

Sink your toes into the soft sand, bask in the warm sun, and let the gentle sound of the waves wash away your worries. For the intrepid explorer, embark on a thrilling fossil hunting expedition or explore the mesmerizing rock pools, uncovering hidden treasures from the depths of the sea.


Viking Coast Trail

Lace-up your hiking boots or hop on a bike as you traverse this scenic coastal path, meandering through lush landscapes and revealing breathtaking vistas along the way.


Neptune’s Tower

Neptune's Tower in Botany Bay is an intriguing landmark that adds a touch of mystique to the coastal landscape. With its exact origin posing as a mystery, it adds an element of intrigue to the visit.


Water Sports

Whether you're a seasoned pro or a first-time adventurer, dive into thrilling activities such as surfing, paddleboarding, or kayaking, and feel the excitement of riding the waves or gliding through the crystal-clear waters.


Botany Bay

Botany Bay welcomes guests of all ages and interests, inviting you to unwind and explore. Botany Bay is the perfect place whether you're a peace-seeking beach lover, a curious history buff, or an adrenaline junkie in search of adventure.

Easiest way to get there: Train from London St Pancras International Station to Margate, then bus or taxi to Botany Bay (approx. 2 hours)

Ideal moment to visit: Summer months (June to August) for the warmest weather and the best beach experience. However, Botany Bay's natural beauty can be enjoyed year-round, so visiting during any season when you want a serene coastal escape is worth visiting.



Situated on the South Coast, Eastbourne is a captivating seaside town that offers a variety of attractions and experiences for visitors. From stunning natural landmarks to cultural gems, Eastbourne is the perfect coastal escape for a day or a weekend.


Beachy Head

Beachy Head is a magnificent chalk cliff that towers above the pebbly beach in Eastbourne. Take a leisurely stroll along the clifftop paths and be rewarded with breathtaking vistas of the English Channel. And don't forget to treat yourself to delicious ice cream, a beloved seaside tradition.


Birling Gap

This picturesque spot, located just a short distance from Eastbourne, offers stunning views of the dramatic coastline and is part of the South Downs National Park. Snap some pics for Instagram and take a leisurely stroll here!


Market Town of Lewes

This vibrant town in East Sussex is filled with historic and small independent shops. The shops each offer their own distinct personality and a handpicked selection of goods. Browse antique shops brimming with vintage treasures and explore artisanal stores where you can find souvenirs to take home.


Towner Art Gallery

Discover the world of contemporary art at the Towner Art Gallery. With thought-provoking exhibitions and a diverse collection of art from many artists. Maybe you’ll find your new favorite piece here. The museum puts on a series of events, from lunchtime conversations to movement courses.


Carpet Gardens

The Carpet Gardens are located on the seafront, with flower displays and well-manicured landscapes. Don't miss the award-winning Helen Garden, with an 18-hole putting course, lawn bowls, and pétanque to partake in.

Eastbourne is the ideal location if you’re looking for coasts and cliffs. Gotta save the best for last, right?

Easiest way to get there: Take a direct train from London Victoria or London Bridge stations to Lewes. The journey takes approximately one hour, providing a comfortable and efficient means of transportation.

Ideal moment to visit: Ideal moment to visit depends on your preferences!

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