Fairly West Sussex city with “finest afternoon tea ever” and probably the greatest nation walks, simply 90 minutes from London


There are many famous afternoon tea spots in London.

The Ritz, the Savoy and the Langham all come to mind as traditional, sophisticated places for a tiered feast.

But there are less expensive ways to enjoy crisp afternoon tea, and one of the best is reputedly just outside of London.

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Steyning is a town in West Sussex on the edge of the South Downs National Park.

It’s perfect for a day out of the capital and there is plenty to do.

Sussex Steam Shows is an exhibition of vintage cars and steam trains.

There are a number of classic cars to admire at the Sussex Steam Shows

It’s in a field and there are buses, tractors, cars, trucks, military vehicles, bicycles, and motorbikes scattered all over the place.

Every year they hold the Wiston Steam Rally to show off the vehicles and visitors say it’s “a great day”.

If you’d rather explore South Downs National Park, there are hiking trails from Steyning.

South Downs Way is a seven mile loop trail that takes you through forests, fields and streams.

There are some breathtaking views on the South Downs Way

TripAdvisor reviews say this walk is “The Best Walk in the Southeast”.

The Steyning Tea Rooms are the right place for you to recharge your batteries after your adventures.

Located in the heart of Steyning, the tea rooms seem inconspicuous enough – a white building with some outdoor seating and occasional window decorations can all be seen.

But behind the simple facade hides a cozy interior, in which Steyning’s most popular scones and tea are served in delicate porcelain cups.

They have homemade food and drinks like curry sweet potato and coconut soup and freshly baked cakes.

The owner Kim is also known for her rhubarb scones and the locals say “you ARE lucky”.

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Reviewers rave about the afternoon tea, one calling it “breathtaking”, another saying it was “the best afternoon tea in Sussex” and a third saying it was “the best cream tea I’ve ever had”.

How to get there

The drive to Steyning takes about 75 minutes and your drive takes you through Croydon and Crawley before reaching Steyning.

You can get to Shoreham-by-Sea in 75 minutes by train and need to take a 10-minute taxi for the final leg of your journey. Well worth it for scones!

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