I swear I spend my week planning day trips from London. it’s not that I don’t like London, but I do feel the need to go for a nice walk and get some fresh air and London and fresh air aren’t really a thing even when you’re in a park.
One of these recent day trips from London was a trip to Box Hill in Surrey. It’s only about 40 minutes away on the train from Vauxhall to Box Hill and Westhumble and it’s no further south than Gatwick so I think you could probably even class it as ‘London’ itself.
Box Hill is where keen cyclists head to on the weekend to race up and down the hill, and where the London 2012 road race was held.
I didn’t take my old, beaten up bike that I bought when I lived in France. Instead I took my walking boots and plenty of water ready for a day of walking.
There are plenty of different walking routes you can do around Box Hill ranging from short ‘let’s get straight to the top walks’ to longer ‘let’s make a day don’t walks’. We went with the latter.
I’d looked up some routes online and we ended up following a version of this suggested route.
I’d heard climbing up to box hill was pretty steep and it can be in places, but this route wasn’t too bad. Plus there weren’t any dreaded stairs which I think you have to tackle on the more typical route.
If you’ve got a bit more time on your hands then I’d definitely recommend the Box Hill walk we did. Especially given that there’s a fantastic pub about 2 hours in.
The pub is called The Tree on Box Hill. It does a fantastic carvery with several cuts of meat and homemade roasties and yorkshire puddings. You’ll be greatful you’ve still got some walking left to do after you’ve filled up on that!
When you do reach the top of Box Hill on your walk, it’s pretty impressive. You can see the planes taking off and coming into land at Gatwick (I felt a bit like a plane spotter!) and then miles of rolling fields with few buildings in other directions.
From the top you have the option to either loop back round to Box Hill and Westhumble station or head to Dorking where you can have a quick wander round the town before catching the train to London from there.
We looped back round to Box Hill and Westhumble station, stopping for ice cream from the ice cream van along the way. Yes I was stuffed from limb by there’s always room for ice cream!