Known to many as the “Stockbroker Belt” for its many high-income residents, Surrey has been a fancy sort of place for much longer.
After the Battle of Hastings in 1066 William the Conqueror gifted large tracts of what is now Surrey to his closest companions.
In Runnymede the Magna Carta was sealed in 1215, while later on Guildford became a crucial hub of southern England’s horse-drawn stagecoach network.
Now you have lots of market towns to uncover, each with a different background and personality, regal country estates and some of the south’s most stirring landscapes in the Surrey Hills.
This market town is in the Surrey Hills and has rambling country estates all around.
There are six manor houses minutes from Dorking, all built in the Georgian and Victorian periods and intended to make the most of the beautiful views afforded by the area’s lush chalk downs.
These hills are covered with yew forest and fields scattered with wildflowers in early-summer.
Box Hill at 224 metres was where the road cycling race took place for the 2012 Olympics, and offers one of southern England’s most joyous rural panoramas.
Dorking is also known for rearing the Dorking Cockerel, noted for its extra toe, and at the local heritage centre there’s a informative little section on this breed.