A train from London Waterloo will go to destinations in the South West and South Coast of the UK. Waterloo is the busiest station in the UK with more than 90 million entries and exits a year. 90 Million! That’s a lot.
Popular destinations from London Waterloo vary depending on whether you are a commuter or a day tripper/holidaymaker.
The top three destinations out of London Waterloo are:
Other destinations from Waterloo include:
Salisbury Windsor Portsmouth Ascot Epsom Reading
Guildford Staines Woking Basingstoke Winchester
Exeter Yeovil Shepperton Kingston Weymouth
Hampton Court Chessington Sunningdale
Teddington Brookwood Wimbledon Byfleet & New Haw
Waterloo to Southampton
Southampton is also a port, and ferries leave Southampton and go to the Isle of Wight with Red Funnel Ferries and the Hythe Pier on the Hythe Ferry. Trains take roughly 1hr 20mins – 1hr 40mins. There is a free shuttle bus every 15 minutes from the train station that takes 7 mins to get to the ferry terminal.
Waterloo to Poole
I always think of the waterpark when I think of poole. A pool in Poole, imagine that. Very popular with little ones. 2hrs to 3hrs 20 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Bournemouth
Bournemouth has a lovely long beach and so is a popular UK seaside destination, but is also home to Bournemouth University, which has a varied list of arts courses including Scriptwriting for Film and Television. Many students can also get a third off rail travel by using a Young Persons Railcard. 2hrs from Waterloo. 2hrs – 2hrs 15 mins from Waterloo.
And the rest…
Waterloo to Salisbury
Salisbury has Salisbury Cathedral, which is very grand indeed and has a modern font which behaves like a water feature. It is set in grassy grounds with lots of quaint little cafes nearby. It is 1 hr 30mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Windsor
Windsor is home to Windsor Castle and Legoland. It is just under 1 hr to Windsor & Eton Riverside from Waterloo. The castle is not far from the station and Legoland is served by a shuttle bus that picks up from both stations. Shuttle buses cost £4.80 for an adult return and £2.40 for a child return, information can be found here.
Waterloo to Portsmouth
Portsmouth is a port, so lots of ferries leave from Portsmouth and go with Direct Ferries to; St Malo, Caen, Cherbourg and Le Havre in France, Bilbao and Santander in Spain, Fishbourne in the UK and Guernsey and Jersey which are islands off the coast of, and belonging to, the UK. The train from Waterloo to Portsmouth takes 1hr 30mins – 2hrs. Portsmouth & Southsea station is closer to the ferry terminal than Portsmouth Harbour but shuttle buses operate from both. Allow 45 minutes to get from the train station to the ferry terminal to be on the safe side.
Waterloo to Ascot
Ascot has Royal Ascot, the famous annual horse races – where a lot of women wear a lot of hats. (One each for the most part). The racecourse is a seven minute walk from the railway station and trains from Waterloo take just under 1hr.
Waterloo to Epsom
Epsom has the Epsom Derby. The racecourse is usually served by a bus that takes 10 mins from the station, but during the festivals shuttle buses are laid on between the station and the racecourse these cost £3 one way or £5 return, regardless of your age. Otherwise its a 1/2 a mile walk from Tattenham Corner Station or 1 mile walk from Epsom Downs Station. Trains to Epsom take 35-40 mins.
Waterloo to Reading
Reading is a commuter city and station at which many journeys are split to save money. It is on the outskirts of the Network Rail area. There are lots of willow trees that hang over the river at Reading and it also has the Reading Festival, which can be seen from the train tracks that run alongside the festival area right by the station. Trains take 1hr 20mins from Waterloo to Reading.
Or you can hop on the Underground at Waterloo and get the train from London Paddington to Reading instead, which is a shorter journey.
Waterloo to Guildford
Guildford is another commuter destination in Surrey and, ‘luxury shopping capital of the UK.’ There is a castle you can visit for £3. Guildford is 40mins from Waterloo. 40mins to 1hr 15mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Staines
Staines, also a commuter destination and now actually called Staines-upon-Thames is also the closest train station to Thorpe Park, the fantastic water-based theme park loved by so many brits for so much more than its log flume. 30 – 50 mins from Waterloo and the 950 shuttle bus runs from the station to Thorpe Park every 15 mins.
Waterloo to Woking
Woking is a commuter town. 25-50 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Basingstoke
Basingstoke is also a commuter town. 45 mins – 1 hr 20 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Winchester
Winchester has Winchester Cathedral which costs to get into but is impressive even from the outside. The once capital of England is quite a charming little city with many old Tudor buildings. Ordinary chain shops and restaurants have found homes in these beautiful wooden-beamed buildings. Approximately 1hr from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Exeter
Exeter, gateway to Devon… Exeter is a university town but also has Exeter Cathedral and a 14th century labyrinth of underground passageways and Exeter’s Historic Quayside. 2 hrs 45 mins to 3hrs 25 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Yeovil
Yeovil is not only the gateway railway station for those wanting to visit Glastonbury with its lovely town centre, Abbey and Tor, it also has a Railway Centre with steam trains. Lucky you. 2 hrs 20 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Weymouth
Weymouth – the sea, the sea! 2 hrs 40 mins – 2 hrs 55 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Hampton Court
To me Hampton Court Palace is significant because the ghost of Hernry VIII’s wife is said to haunt it. Catherine Howard purportedly runs screaming yet headless through the halls. Hampton Court is 30 – 36 mins from Waterloo. The palace is 200m across the bridge from the station.
Waterloo to Chessington
Home to Chessington World of Adventures. 10 mins walk from Chessington South rail station. 34 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Kingston
Kingston is served by Shepperton station too. 28 – 43 mins to Kingston from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Sunningdale
Sunningdale is a commuter destination and wealthy residential area. 47 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Teddington
Teddington is a commuter destination which has a lock you can visit. There’s some info here. 33-37 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Brookwood
Brookwood is of particular interest to me because of the Necropolis railway that once ran from central London to the cemetery. A private railway line was used to transport coffins and mourners. Sometimes twice daily. The station was sadly bombed in the war and never rebuilt and so the railway line was ripped up. But you can still go on guided walks of the route for a suggested donation of £3. An in-depth Fortean Times article can be found here. 35-45 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Wimbledon
Wimbledon, tennis dahling. 16 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Byfleet & New Haw
Byfleet & New Haw – Mercedes-Benz World is here, if cars are your thing. There are exhibitions about the history of Mercedes-Benz and they offer guided tours and driving experiences too. 35 – 40 mins from Waterloo.
Waterloo to Strawberry Hill
A commuter town in Twickenham home to Strawberry Hill, Horace Walpole’s Gothic Castle, a Gothic Revival building commissioned by the son of Britain’s first Prime Minister. It’s five to ten minutes walk from the station and is sign-posted. 35- 45 mins from Waterloo.
So whether you’re a commuter or day-tripper, Waterloo provides a gateway to some excellent cities, towns and attractions. If you think this guide is missing something, do let me know…