With the Olympics and William and Kate’s first anniversary coming up, the world’s abuzz about London. But sometimes you just want to get away from it all — especially when things are at their most frenetic.
And no British city embodies full-blown English eccentricity better than Brighton. Blame it on George IV. He built the loopy, orientalist-inspired Royal Pavilion here as his seaside escape, helping to transform the relatively sedate fishing village of Brighthelmston into a fashionable Regency-era retreat. Yet Brighton is also the gateway to the South Downs and that quintessentially English ritual of the country walk. You can experience both the peculiar and the pastoral sides of the British personality after a quick trip south from London.
Check out four other fab getaways just hours from Victoria station (including the real Downton Abbeythe real Downton Abbeythe real Downton Abbey) in National Geographic Traveler‘s latest issueNational Geographic Traveler‘s latest issue.
What’s your go-to escape destination when you want to get away from the city? Tell us in the comments section below for a chance to appear in the next issue of Traveler magazine!