Country dating albury
For Regency grandeur and royal intrigue, visit nearby Polesden Lacey (01372 452048; uk uk).
The former home of the Hon Ronald and Mrs Greville, it played host to the higher echelons of Edwardian society, including King Edward VII himself.
Take a tasting at Denbies Wine Estate – England’s largest vineyard, near Dorking (01306 876616; uk).
In the town itself, explore the labyrinthine Dorking Caves on a candlelit tour.
For something gentler, take the 20-mile towpath walk along the River Wey – one of the oldest river navigations in the country, dating back to the 17th century (uk).
THE GRAPE AND THE GRAIN The Surrey Hills is said to have a terroir similar to that of the Champagne region in France and the wine industry here is flourishing.
Much of the stone came from the ruins of nearby Waverley Abbey, England’s first Cistercian monastery, dating back to 1128 (uk), and the panelling came from Henry VIII’s palace at Nonsuch.Age- old pathways criss-cross the countryside: including a lost route from London to the Portsmouth coast and the old Pilgrim’s Way, which ran from Winchester to Canterbury and onwards to Rome.On higher ground, the North Downs has long formed a defensive line against invasion from Europe.Fringed by mixed broad-leaved and pine woodlands, the numerous tranquil pools are home to 22 types of darting dragonflies and 25 species of mammal, including fox, deer and the rare water vole.The common is one of the best British sites for insects, too, especially ladybirds, bees, wasps and spiders – 50 per cent of all UK species have been recorded here. High Edser, Ewhurst High Edser is a delightful timber-framed Grade II-listed farmhouse dating from the 16th century on the edge of the pretty village of Ewhurst. Rookery Nook, Shere Shere is a quintessential with plenty of character and comfy beds.