The red buses that populate London's roads aren't confined to the Big Smoke. Some TfL buses begin their routes on the fringes of the city, and wind their way out to the home counties — which got us thinking. What's the furthest that a TfL bus gets from London?
London buses can end up in all sorts of fascinating destinations. Take the epic Slough bus station for example, where the 81 ends up. Or the 142 that goes to Watford. Or even the 233 that goes to the wonderfully named Swanley. Though these places might sound like the end of the world to a zone two-minded Londoner, none of them have the pleasure of receiving London's most distant bus.
That honour goes to Dorking in Surrey, because the 465 from Kingston travels all the way there.
Kingston is an odd addendum to London itself, if you look on the map. It sticks out all pronounced and looks rather phallic, pointing away from the city. As the borough is already so distant from the centre of London, it's hardly surprising that a bus that heads south from here gets the furthest from the city.
The bus starts at the heart of Kingston before making its way down to Surbiton. From there it continues travelling south, through Chessington and down to the village on the edge of London, Malden Rushett. Next it heads through Leatherhead, then goes down to Mickleham, past Box Hill — which all hardcore cyclists know well for its steep climb — before ending up in Dorking. For a full run-through of the trip, check out this write up from the brilliant bloggers 'ladies who bus', although they did the route in reverse and accidentally managed to miss a few stops.
The final bus stop is a lofty 21 miles from the traditional centre of London, Trafalgar Square, where London usually measures from. If you want to take the bus and escape the city, be warned it's an infrequent one, running just twice an hour.
See Also: The Bus I Catch To Escape The City