Embracing Winter Charm: A Delightful Visit to Dorking
As winter blankets the picturesque hidden gem of the Surrey Hills, our quaint streets come alive with the hustle and bustle of the traditional market town of Dorking.
Our independent shops really know how to decorate their shopfronts and and bring the proverbial goods. Filled to the brim with wonderfully hand-selected gifting for those who are sustainably minded or who just fancy the fabulous and quirky, there are special goodies you'll only find it here in Dorking. Or whether you're here for the top-notch football, a luxurious spa getaway, or an unparalleled outdoor adventure, our town punches well above its weight. Nestled in the heart of Surrey, Dorking offers a unique and enchanting experience for those seeking a winter getaway. From historic landmarks to cosy cafes, here's a guide to discovering the charm of Dorking during the wintertime months.
Dorking's Winter Wonderland
Dorking transforms into a winter wonderland during the colder months, offering visitors a magical atmosphere. Whether you love being outdoors or enjoying Dorking's cultural and art scene, you're in luck. Nestled in an area of outstanding natural beauty, Dorking has a wealth of outdoor spots to (literally) take your breath away -- from hiking trails and cycling paths for all skill levels. The town is also renowned for its buzzing local art scene, and it has gained a reputation as a hub of artists, ideas, people and creators. This independent spirit has helped build the town we know and love, and there’s no better way to reveal the true depths of a place than meeting the creators themselves and the galleries that host them. Be sure to visit our weekend, day, artist and independent spirit itineraries for inspiration.
Explore Denbies Wine Estate
Despite the chill in the air, a visit to Denbies Wine Estate promises warmth and relaxation. Embark on a guided tour of the winery, where you can learn about the winemaking process and indulge in tastings of their exquisite wines - we love the sparkling wine. Afterward, take a hike through Dorking's amazing countryside and enjoy the many winter walks in the exquisite Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Winter Walks in the Surrey Hills
Dorking is surrounded by the stunning landscapes of the Surrey Hills, and wintertime unveils a different kind of beauty. Lace up your boots and embark on a scenic winter walk, discovering the hidden gems of the North Downs. Box Hill, with its panoramic views, is particularly enchanting when dusted with a layer of snow, providing a perfect backdrop for capturing the magic of winter. Don't miss the rail to ramble hikes, a great way to sustainably travel to Dorking and also hike from Dorking to Betchworth and Gomshall to Dorking.
Dorking's nightlife is unlike any other
After your hike (or trek), check out Dorking's unique evening scene. We are a true market town and during the winter months, this means crackling fireplaces, often-times locally brewed ales and always stellar food; playing darts and board games in cosy pubs and inns, filled with friendly people, live music and good times. Other cities have their own terms for their brand of cosy-ness: hygge, gezellig, lykke...for us, it is quite simply Corking Dorking. Join us and find your place in our excellent town. We think you will find that you’ll be very welcome.
Historic Charms at Dorking Museum
Escape the winter chill by delving into the town's rich history at the volunteer-led and award-winning Dorking Museum. The museum showcases artefacts, photographs, (even dinosaur bones), and exhibits that bring the past to life. Explore the charming exhibits and gain insight into Dorking's evolution, providing a deeper connection to the town's heritage. To learn more about current exhibitions and events, visit the Museum website or follow along on social media.
Children of all ages love the Dorking Museum, as well as the new Silvermere soft play and Meadowbank Park just a stone's throw from the Museum.
Cultural and Culinary Delights in Dorking
Did you hear that Dorking is voted amongst the most romantic town in the world? We don't think it is either, but why not make it a destination for a truly fabulous Valentine's break?
Winter is the perfect time to indulge in hearty and comforting meals, and Dorking boasts a diverse culinary scene. Not only is Dorking Halls hosting top-notch shows -- to include Educating Rita, Grease and the Leith Hill Music Festival -- but there will also be half-term activities for children of all ages (interactive trail hosted by the BID). We are truly excited to share that The White Horse is opening its doors from the end of February and have opened their our room and dining online bookings from April.
Why not join us and warm up in one of our excellent local cafes or pubs, savouring a hot cup of cocoa or a traditional British roast? Dorking's eateries offer a blend of international cuisines and local delicacies, making every meal a memorable experience. Find your favourites in our suggested itinerary, A Foodie's Escape or in our directory. Dorking is well-known for being the food capital of Surrey, 'giving London a run for its money'.
Visiting Dorking during wintertime is a journey into a world of charm, tranquility and relaxation.
Whether you're exploring historic sites, sipping wine by the fire, or taking a leisurely stroll through the Surrey Hills, Dorking offers a winter escape that will leave you wanting to come back for more. Let the warmth of Dorking's hospitality make your winter getaway truly special.
How to get to Dorking
Dorking is under an hour from London and the coast with easy access from Gatwick and the M25. It is served by three rail stations: Dorking Station and Dorking Deepdene Station are a 10 minute walk to town from the east and Dorking West is about a 15 minute walk to town. For more rail information, please visit the National Rail website.
For information on bus timetables, please visit the Surrey County Council website.
Exit from Junction 9 of the M25, and then continue on to the A24 towards Dorking, turn right at the junction of the A24/A25 into town.
Alternatively, exit from Junction 10 of the M25 and then continue on the A25 towards Dorking, going straight over the A24/A25 junction into town.
From Guildford, use the A25 and from Gatwick use the A217 and A25.