40 Surrey pubs with beer gardens to visit this summer
PUBLISHED: 13:40 20 July 2018 | UPDATED: 12:44 18 December 2018
Top row: Percy Arms (Photo: John Powell); King William IV; Mill at Elstead (Photo: Matthew Williams) Middle row: Queen's Head; Cricketers (Photo: Andy Newbold); Refectory (Photo: Matthew Williams) Bottom row: Platform 3; Weyside (Photo: Matthew Williams); White Horse (Photo: Matthew Williams)
From riverside retreats to secret gardens, we’ve got your summer covered with this selection of Surrey pubs that are perfect to enjoy your favourite tipple and a bite to eat in the sunshine
The Abinger Hatch is blessed with a wealth of seating in its large garden as well as an outside bar and kitchen, with wood burning oven. Rubarb for homemade compote is also freshly grown in the garden. The 17th century coaching inn is situated opposite St James’ Church in Abinger Common and is a walker’s dream, with plenty of routes in every direction. The dog-friendly pub has just launched a monthly dog-walking event, where participants can join its resident bulldog, Stella, for a stroll in the Surrey Hills. Bacon butties, croissants and coffee will be served before the walk to keep everyone going. The pub is also home to a boules pitch and regularly hosts croquet matches.
Ideally located on the banks of the river Wey, The Anchor offers the perfect vantage point for watching the colourful canal boats of Pyrford Lock pass by. The beautiful beer garden runs directly alongside the river where visitors can enjoy a menu of traditional pub favourites and libation or two in the open air. There are plenty of attractions nearby, including RHS Wisley, and the pub has even devised its own 3.2 mile walking route, which takes in some beautiful waterside scenery and offers views of the action at Pyrford Golf Club. Then it’s back on to The Anchor to watch the world float by.
Situated in the charming village of Churt, the Bel & The Dragon offers the whole family a chance to enjoy a drink and some British seasonal food al fresco. The historic country inn is decorated in a cosy and classic style and incorporates a spacious bar and restaurant. The large garden is open all year and is home to a wood-fired oven where the inn’s chefs serve up handmade pizzas. The garden also features a play area to keep children entertained, while harangued parents relax. One nearby hidden gem is The Sculpture Park, where visitors can explore 800 modern and contemporary sculptures.
Only minutes off the M25 and yet found in perfect tranquillity, The Black Swan’s beautiful garden is ideal for a little al fresco dining. As well as excellent food and drink, they host a classic car and bike meet every second Sunday of the month too.
Situated on the Titsey Estate in the Surrey Hills, Botley Hill Farmhouse is known for the breathtaking views to be had from its enviable position at the highest point of the North Downs Way. Cyclists and walkers can take a break from their exertions by stopping at the pub’s quaint garden and enjoy its locally sourced menu, including beef from over the fence at Titsey Estate, lamb from Moorhouse Farm and apple juice that has been handmade in Hockwood. Botley Hill Farmhouse even grows its own herbs and helped establish the Titsey Brewing Co micro-brewery, with Gower Wolf, Leveson Buck or Gresham Hopper ales available to order from the bar. There’s also The Sheep Shed, Botley’s very own tea shop.
This stylish place is part of the White Brasserie Company these days and remains one of the area’s prettiest pubs. With 17th century roots it balances old and new and is a top spot for a leisurely pint overlooking Downside Common.
Dating back to the 15th century, The Dog & Pheasant is just about the quintessential English pub: all low-hanging wooden beams, log fires and interesting village characters! The pub is found in a gorgeous location, surrounded by a lovely garden and with a cricket pitch across the road.
This traditional 17th century pub is located in Betchworth, a quintessentially English village, nested in the shadow of the North Downs. The Dolphin prides itself on its friendly hospitality and serves up a menu of freshly cooked food in either its cosy interior during colder climes or large garden in summer. Each month throughout the year, there’s also a dog walk, called Tom’s Trail, which runs around the countryside that surrounds the pub. Participants are even offered free tea, coffee and bacon sandwiches to sustain them on the journey.
The two resident donkeys, Pip and Dusty, are an integral part of the character and history of this old pub, and in the summer months they enjoy being close to the clientele enjoying the pub’s garden and terrace. The great food makes this spot another hidden gem.
Among Albury’s scenic chimney stacks and red brick cottages, the hanging baskets of The Drummond still catch the eye. Found by the River Tillingbourne, it’s blessed with a great garden and conservatory to soak up the rays. They also happen to love hog roasts and BBQs.
With an offering that more than lives up to Chobham’s foodie village reputation, this is a fantastic modern country pub. While the food is mouth-watering, you’re just as likely to find regulars stretching out on the patio with a drink and a few horses tied to hitching posts.
One of Englefield Green’s oldest pubs, dating back to 1780, the Fox and Hounds is found in an idyllic location right next to Windsor Great Park, and a short distance from Guards Polo Club and Virginia Water Lake. With hacking popular in the area, horses are welcome too and can be tied up at the front of the pub.
Perhaps not as famous as some of the racecourse-side pubs, The Jolly Coopers (which is found just outside the town centre) has been making a bit of a name for itself over the past year or two. They also have their very own microbrewery.
The King William IV offers some spectacular views of Mole Valley from its pretty garden terrace, which stays open all year and is the perfect place to enjoy a lazy afternoon. Plus, every Sunday between June and September in 2018 visitors will be treated to live jazz and barbeque’s on the garden terrace. The pub’s home-cooked food and selection of real ales and wine, makes it a great pit stop on one of the many walking routes in the surrounding area. The King William IV is ideally located for walking on Box Hill, Norbury Park or Mickleham Downs. Cherkley Court is also accessible by footpath from the bottom of Byttom Hill.
This pretty family-run pub has long been at the heart of the Kingswood community (since 1898, in fact) and boasts a large garden that’s perfect for catching up over a meal or drinks with friends. Its restaurant is found in the pub’s conservatory, so let there be light.
Situated on Weston Green beside Marney’s Pond, it’s said that Marney’s started life as a hostelry in the mid-1700s as a hunting lodge for Hampton Court Palace. Whatever the origins, it’s a great place for food and drink, and boasts a lovely garden.
The Mill at Elstead is steeped in history, with the site having been occupied by Oliver Cromwell’s roundheads before functioning as a corn mill, a factory that made braid for military uniforms and a hospital during the Second World. The pub’s beautiful waterside garden on the banks of the River Wey at Elstead offers the perfect chance to marvel at The Mill’s architecture and soak up its history while ducks and swans swim by.
One of those pubs that you’d be just as happy at enjoying a local tipple with the Sunday papers, watching jazz with a wine or settling down for a meal with friends and family. There’s a well-stocked bar, a relaxed ambience and a welcoming enclosed courtyard garden that are sure to appeal.
This elegant country pub, set in the village of Chilworth in the heart of the Surrey Hills hides a surprising gourmet secret. The pub specialises in authentic South African cuisine, such as Boerewors sausages, ostrich medallions and Durban style curry, all of which can be enjoyed in its spacious garden. With a stream and spectacular views of St Martha’s Church, the garden is a great place to enjoy the summer weather or ideal starting point for an outdoor adventure. Must see attractions nearby include, Newlands Corner, Chilworth Manor and Loseley Park.
While there are a few micropubs springing up now, Platform 3 has caught the imagination ever since this tiny former cab office by a station was transformed into probably the smallest pub in the UK. It’s also home to Brightwater Brewery.
Another pub that’s home to a microbrewery, they’ve also reopened the village shop next door. After a stroll up Leith Hill, a visit for a pint of their best and a seat in the garden (which has a small kitchen garden at the end) is a must.
A 300-year-old rural retreat, this historic barn turned pub disguises a striking interior. Outside, the garden attracts punters like bees to a honey pot. Geronimo Inns is a group more normally noted for its city establishments, but you can certainly understand what tempted them out to the country air…
Every time you enter Milford’s The Refectory, there’s a tendency to catch your breath, as there aren’t many Surrey pubs like it. A transformed old cattle barn, its interior is huge but, handily, there’s also a well-kept garden to settle back in.
A little like royalty among Reigate’s pubs, The Skim is something of a tradition for many families in the area – often as a convenient excuse to escape the house and walk across the beautiful Reigate Heath or via the local fields and farms. It’s a comfortingly traditional place welcoming drinkers, diners and dogs alike.
A local beer legend, The Surrey Oaks has regularly been named among the best pubs in Surrey and indeed Britain by CAMRA. Surrounded by idyllic countryside, this truly is a quintessentially English pub and the perfect place to unwind. They’re famous for their beer festivals, but the food is great too.
With a picture perfect ‘secret’ summer garden, The Swan is found in the stunning village of Chiddingfold and has a charming swagger to it. As an AA four star inn with a two rosette restaurant, it’s a classy venue that’s still welcoming for a leisurely tipple.
Perched on the banks of the River Thames with its own private mooring, this 16th century hotel has been recently refurbished by Fuller’s. It’s a half hour walk along the towpath to the Runnymede Pleasure Grounds.
If you ever need to explain the joy of an English pub to an overseas visitor, then The Three Horseshoes is probably a decent place to start. You walk into the chocolate box pretty building and straight into a bar that’s often packed with regulars. Then there’s the restaurant, which is hidden around the corner and a real gem, and the secluded garden, which is as lovely as you’d expect from this rural retreat.
Colourfully stylish seating that looks out to the River Wey, makes this Guildford pub’s terraced garden a popular choice for a sunny afternoon’s lunch or after work drinks. Extra touches like offering outdoor drinkers a hot water bottle, welcoming dogs and laying out bread for people to throw to passing ducks have made this watering hole a must visit. The pub’s kitchen dishes up locally-sourced and seasonal food with a focus on seafood. A varied diary of events includes a pub quiz run in partnership with Silent Pool gin and summer parties hosted by Aperol and Estrella Damm.
The green at Esher is its own little world hidden away from the town’s cosmopolitan High Street. Recent years have seen The Wheatsheaf pub, which presides over the tranquil haven, enjoy a new and welcome lease of life.
With a terrace that’s perfect for alfresco dining, The William Bray looks over the beautiful village of Shere. Try a wine from Albury Vineyard, Surrey Hills Brewery’s Shere Drop or how about a classic G&T with Silent Pool Gin?
Probably the only pub in Surrey that offers its own occasional waterskiing entertainment, The Wiremill is found in a converted 15th century mill on the edge of a lake. Don your shades and pretend you’ve flown off to warmer climes on sunny days…
As quintessentially English as it gets, The Withies is a time-capsule and a welcome escape from the pace of modern living. Found just down the road from Loseley Park and Watts Gallery – Artists’ Village, this is a cultured corner of the countryside.