Woking is the other large town in Surrey apart from Guildford. Built around its large train station, it grew up in the Victorian era, but experienced a boom in the post war period when modern buildings, car parks and large retail outlets were constructed in the town centre.

In the original version of HG Wells' War of the Worlds, not the recent Hollywood movie, the woodland area north east of the town known as the 'Sandpits' (due to the presence of beach-like areas of golden sands on Horsell Common) was the location for the aliens' attacks on Earth!

Get in

By train

Woking railway station is served by fast trains from London Waterloo (24 minute direct service from London Waterloo) and is on the line to Waterloo from Exeter St. Davids, Weymouth and Portsmouth Harbour.

By car

Woking is situated about six miles (9.6 km) off the M25 (Junction 11/ Wisley Interchange) and the same distance from the A3. Travelling northbound on the A3, turn off at either Painshill and follow the signs through Byfleet and West Byfleet, Burnt Common near Ripley and follow the signs through Send and Old Woking or further south at Burpham or Stoke both in Guildford.

By plane

Woking is well connected to both Gatwick and Heathrow airports: Woking Station runs a twice hourly RailAir coaches from the Main entrance (on the non- town side) to Heathrow taking between 45 to 50 minutes depending on traffic. Gatwick airport can be reached via the Gatwick express; however this requires travel to London Victoria station which can be reached by changing at Clapham Junction. Trains leave London Victoria every 15 minutes reaching Gatwick in under 45 minutes.

Get around

Woking town centre is very compact, and is nearly completely pedestrianised with several small walkways and passages such as Church Path which has several bijou establishments. Woking is reasonably well served by buses to the surrounding villages and districts with buses leaving from Woking Station and Cawsey Way outside the Toys'r'us and Wolsey Place shopping centre. Areas with large areas of housing rather than traditional high streets such as Brookwood and Goldsworth Park are particularly well catered for.

The two main shopping centres; the Peacocks Centre and Wolsey Place both converge on the town square considered to be one of several 'central locations'. The others being the Bandstand on Cawsey Way and Commercial Way, a pedestrianised street that runs nearly 1,300 ft (400 m) to the Chertsey Road


Alien invaders chose Woking for their attacks in HG Wells' War of the Worlds



Woking has a large shopping area which consists of the Peacock Centre and the Wolsey Place shopping malls, as well as adajcent pedestrianised shopping streets. Most stores are chains: there is little that is distinctively local; for a less 'clone town' shopping experience, head to Guildford.

The town has three cycle shops, Switchback Cycles, Evans and the Raleigh Cycle centre.


Woking is not a fine dining destination. More gastronomic choice can be found in Guildford, or by fast train to central London.

The predominant local cuisines are Indian and Italian, and numerous examples of these can be found in the town centre. The town's restaurants are located primarily on Chertsey Road, where there is KFC, Nandos, Pizza Hut, several Indian restaurants, an Italian restaurant, McDonalds, and Roosters Peri Peri (a cross between KFC & Nandos). In addition, the High Street/Broadway has Sang Thai restaurant, kebab shops, some Chinese and pizza takeaways, more Indian restaurants. On Commercial Way is a Chinese Buffet (eat as much as you like).

A second dining/drinking location is Goldsworth Road. Restaurants here include Pizza Express and Zizzis.

The town centre chain pubs all offer cheap, low-quality food, for as little as £2.


Woking's major drinking spot is based on Chertsey Road with several pub chains such as Wetherspoons operating pubs. Eight pubs and bars can be found on this street alone, with two or three others situated on the south and west side of the town. However drunkenness and bad behaviour can all too often be found here due to increased alcohol intake on 'pub crawls' and 'benders'. This has improved in the past five years with increased policing and ID requesting though the fault rests entirely with the young adult drinking population.

Woking's clubs include Chameleon, a small bar with a packed dance floor, playing mainly pop and hip-hop music, Chameleon (also known as Chavmeleon) is seen as the trendier bar by many and as a right dump by others. The bouncers are reported to be violent. On the other side of the block is Quake. A larger establishment, with three floors of space plays mainly classic pop music and hip-hop though occasionally it is used more appropriately with outside DJ's visiting, something which hopefully will grow in future years.

RSVP bar plays mostly urban and is popular with Wokings' Asian and newly growing African and Caribbean populations.

The Bed on Church Path is an chic restaurant, night club and bar, which is newly refurbished.


There are bed and breakfasts dotted around some of the villages though these are hard to find.

Go next

Woking also has fine countryside and is extensively wooded with forests and copses beginning within 1–2 miles of the town centre. Woking Park to the south east has two large greens, flower beds and a miniature golf course as well as tennis and cricket facilities. There is also Horsell Moors, the Hoe Stream, and the Basingstoke Navigaton System which reaches the villages of St Johns, Brookwood, Woodham, Sheerwater and New Haw

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