10 charming country pubs near London
Country pubs are perfect for eating, drinking and relaxing while exploring the beauty of the English countryside.
With sun-soaked pub gardens surrounded by nature in the summer, and roaring fires to keep you cosy inside in the winter, the characterful, and often historic, country pubs in England’s rural areas make excellent destinations all year round.
For lovers of nature, rolling hills, great food and beer, below is a list of great country pubs within an hour or two on London, which are well worth visiting next you want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
Below are some of the best country pubs South England has to offer, including great pubs in Hampshire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Surrey – all of which are within easy reach of London.
The Bat & Ball, Hampshire
Right between the villages of Clanfield and Hambledon, The Bat & Ball is set in some of the south's most beautiful countryside. With a roaring fire in the winter and al fresco dining in summer, the country pub is perfect for all seasons, and has stunning views over rolling farmland.
The Bat & Ball is located on Hyden Farm Lane in Hambledon, Hampshire, PO8 0UB. Visit The Bat & Ball’s website for more information.
The Bell, Surrey
The Bell is a rural English pub in Outwood Lane, surrounded by National Trust walks and stunning landscapes. Enjoy fresh seasonal food and choose your favourite tipple from its extensive drinks’ menu – from craft beer and cask ale to artisan soft drinks – enjoyed either inside the traditional pub or outside in the garden.
There are plenty of attractions nearby to make a day of it – including Hever Castle, Outwood Windmill, High Beeches Gardens and the British Wildlife Centre.
The Bell is located on Outwood Lane in Outwood, Redhill, Surrey, RH1 5PN. Visit The Bell for more information.
The Bull Inn, Berkshire
The Bull Inn is a historic Grade II listed timber-framed pub with rooms in the picturesque village of Sonning-on-Thames. The gorgeous country pub serves some of the best pub food in town and has seven boutique hotel rooms. It was famously featured in Three Men in a Boat, in which Jerome described The Bull as the “veritable picture of an old country inn”.
The pub, just a few minutes’ walk from the River Thames is an ideal base for exploring Reading. It also has a hidden garden and outdoor terrace which is a popular spot for soaking up the sun in the warmer months.
The Bull Inn is located on High Street, Sonning-on-Thames, Berkshire, RG4 6UP. Visit The Bull Inn for more information and to book a room or a table.
The Red Lion, Chalton
The Red Lion is a beautiful country pub in Hampshire, just south of Petersfield in the village of Chalton. Expect delicious pub classics from a seasonal menu washed down by perfectly poured pints – which can be enjoyed either inside by the fire, or outside in the garden with stunning views of the sunset.
The area surrounding The Red Lion is a haven for walkers, with trails criss-crossing the countryside all over the place. The Queen Elizabeth Country Park is nearby and if you're feeling adventurous, the rewarding stroll up Butser Hill is an excellent way to work up an appetite for a hearty dinner from the pub’s restaurant.
The Red Lion is located on South Lane in Chalton, Waterlooville, Hampshire, PO8 0BG. Visit The Red Lion Chalton for more information.
The Six Bells, Oxfordshire
Pretty as a picture both inside and out, The Six Bells is the quintessential country pub in the leafy Oxfordshire town of Thame. Think roaring fires, a lush pub garden, real cask ale, and superb pub food.
Nearby attractions include Phoenix trail, Thame museum, St Mary’s Church, Notley Abbey, Chiltern Hills and of course the famous city of Oxford. Easily accessed from the M40, and with a free car park, The Six Bells is the perfect country pub to stop at on a road trip.
The Six Bells is located at 44 Lower High Street in Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 2AD. Visit The Six Bells for more information.
The White Buck, Burley, Hampshire
The White Buck is a charming country house in Burley with a pub, restaurant, and boutique hotel rooms to stay in, providing the perfect New Forest retreat.
The restaurant is highly acclaimed for its premium food, the large beer garden and terrace is perfectly positioned for soaking up the sunshine, and the rooms are beautifully decorated for a romantic break in the heart of the New Forest.
The White Buck is in Bisterne Close, off Bennetts Lane in Burley, Hampshire, BH24 4AZ. Visit The White Buck Burley for more information and to make a booking.
The White Hart, Stockbridge
The White Hart in Stockbridge is a pub with rooms set in some of Hampshire’s most beautiful countryside. Expect the finest fresh food and drink in the pub which has a stunning dining room, with blazing fireplaces in the winter, or enjoy the lush garden which gets all day sun in the summer. Which, combined with its charming hotel rooms, adds up to a blissful country escape.
The pub is located just a stone’s throw from the River Test, offering a wealth of options for fishing, walking and cycling, making it the perfect place for outdoor lovers to spend a weekend away with the family.
The White Hart is located on High Street in Stockbridge, Hampshire, SO20 6HF. Visit The White Hart's website for more information.
The Mill at Elstead, Surrey
One of Surrey's best country pubs, the unique converted mill at Elstead is steeped in history and surrounded with beauty. Picture premium quality food and drink in blissful surroundings, while watching the swans and ducks swim by on the River Wey.
The Mill at Elstead enjoys a picturesque countryside location, just a few miles from the towns of Farnham and Godalming. It’s a relatively remote spot, surrounded by green and pleasant land but it’s also easily accessible thanks to the nearby A3, and the surrounding Surrey countryside is ideal for family walks and bike rides.
The Mill at Elstead is located on Farnham Road, Elstead, Surrey, GU8 6LE. Visit The Mill at Elstead for more information and to make a booking.
The Alice Lisle, New Forest
The Alice Lisle is a rural haven right in the heart of the New Forest National Park which is known for its delicious food and charming location.
The pub’s award-winning chefs produce locally-sourced dishes perfectly accompanied by its wide range of drinks, and its rural location makes it an ideal spot for lunch if you're walking or cycling through the New Forest and. With views of several lakes, it’s the perfect country pub for nature lovers, too.
The Alice Lisle is located at Rockford Green in Ringwood, Hampshire, BH24 3NA. Visit The Alice Lisle for more information and to make a booking.
The Oak Inn, Lyndhurst
Right on the edge of the New Forest National Park and just outside the village of Lyndhurst sits The Oak Inn – traditional family-friendly and dog-friendly pub that is a popular stop for walkers, cyclists and explorers.
Serving great food and drinks and steeped in history, the building has been a pub for more than 150 years. During WW2 it was a popular meeting place for foreign and allied servicemen who were based at military sites in the area, and the pub’s low-beamed ceilings, bare floorboards and open fireplace adds to its historic feel.
Aside from the stunning New Forest, with its walking, rambling, cycling and horse-riding trails, the pub is also close to Poulton’s Park, the Beaulieu National Motor Museum, and the New Forest Reptile Centre.
The Oak Inn is located on Pinkney Lane, Bank, Lyndhurst, Hampshire, SO43 7FD. Visit The Oak Inn Lyndhurst for more information and make a booking.
Head to the countryside
The country pubs mentioned in this list are situated an hour or two out of London and are great destinations surrounded by the beautiful English countryside for eating, drinking, relaxing and exploring.
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