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This 13th-century coaching inn offers oodles of character and charm. Novelist Charles Dickens resided here while writing the Pickwick Papers, as the Dickensian memorabilia in the bar commemorates. Bedrooms are tasteful and the food is largely locally sourced.

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Rooms available from £99 per night

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Your expert reviewer

Kathryn Liston
Travel Writer
A travel writer for more than 40 years, Kathryn has visited more than 100 countries - and has loved every minute of it. Whether she’s cycling down a volcano in Maui (Hawaii), dog sledding in Sweden or cycling along the Rhine, it’s been a fun ride! You’ll find her articles and hotel reviews in national newspapers, such as The Telegraph and Observer, national magazines, online (Silver Travel Advisor) and in the travel trade press.



Slap bang in the centre of Dorking high street where there are plenty of independent cafes and shops to browse; it's ten minutes by car to Dorking railway station, where trains to London take just under an hour. In close proximity are Dorking Halls entertainment venue, Denbies Wine Estate, Box Hill, Polesden Lacey and Leith Hill Tower, plus excellent walking and cycling in the Surrey Hills.

By car: around 1 hour from London, 2 hours 20 minutes from Birmingham and 4 hours from Manchester. Parking is available at £10 per day.

By train: there is a direct line to Dorking station from London Victoria and the ride takes around an hour. From the station the hotel is a 15-minute walk or 3-minute taxi ride. Book trains to Dorking.

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Victoriana meets country cottage with contemporary touches. Staff are dressed in trendy tweed waistcoats, jeans and denim shirts, walls in the lounge are filled with vintage pictures, and fireside sofas are perfect for curling up with a book. Dickens memorabilia and oak beams add a touch of history. The ambience is casual and relaxed.


Friendly, keen and attentive after a sticky start when we had to wait for ages for our order in the bar. There are fireside chairs for lounging, chairs out the front for people-watching and a deli stocking Surrey-made chutneys and coffee.

  • Restaurant
  • On-site coffee house
  • Bar
  • Terrace
  • Pet-friendly

  • Accessible

  • Paid private parking

  • Free Wi-Fi


Choose from rooms in the main building, Pickwick or Stable blocks, all tastefully decorated in greens and blues. Double or king-sized beds come with squishy duck-down and feather duvets, and leather or wood headboards. Bathrooms feature rain-shower cubicles and vanity mirrors. Secondary glazing in front-facing rooms cuts out traffic noise.

Room types: Cosy, Comfy, Spacious, Decadent

Key amenities: ensuite bathroom with shower, double bed, TV, free Wi-Fi


The food in the Dozen restaurant is excellent and reasonably priced. Pub classics, steaks and burgers accompany grilled sea bass and Camembert, Spinach & Thyme Wellington. Breakfast excels: fruit and yoghurt are served in mini bottles and the wild mushrooms, spinach and confit tomatoes with poached eggs is superb. Cocktails are inspired by Dickens - cue A Tale of Two Cities - and the Surrey countryside.

The Dozen: relaxed, local and seasonal produce, modern British cuisine. Open for lunch and dinner. Two course £22.50, three courses £27.50.

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