By Get Active
We all know that being outdoors makes you healthier and happier. It’s been shown to lower stress and blood pressure, while encouraging physical activity and positive mental health. Fortunately, London isn’t short of green spaces. From the stunning Royal Parks, to the well-loved local parks and playgrounds, there are so many places for you explore. We’ve picked some of London’s best parks to get you started.
Mayfair/Westminster, W2 2UH
London’s Hyde Park is one of the best city parks in the world and for good reason. Covering a huge 350 acres and with over 4,000 trees, a meadow, rose garden and a lake, it’s quite easy to forget that you are right in the centre of London. Go on a rowboat or have a swim in the Serpentine, zip around on a bicycle or take a leisurely stroll – there is plenty to see!
Hyde Park is home to several fascinating monuments, such as the Achilles statue and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain. Known for high-profile gigs and open-air events, be sure to check before you visit if you want to avoid large crowds.
Opening times: Open daily from 05:00 – 00:00 all year round.
Nearest tube station: Hyde Park corner, Lancaster Gate, Marble Arch, Knightsbridge.
Gordon House Road, NW5 1QR
Hampstead Heath offers some of the best views over the city. It includes, Golders Hill Park (with a zoo and butterfly house), Parliament Hill’s Lido, athletics track and playgrounds. If you fancy a spot of birdwatching, head over to the conservation area which has plenty of wildlife, especially on the bird sanctuary pond.
Opening times: Open 24 hours.
Nearest tube station: Golders Green, Hampstead, Highgate.
Bow, E3 5TB
As one of London’s oldest public parks, Victoria Park has been visited by millions of Londoners for nearly 170 years as a place of relaxation, recreation and play.
The park is a key link in a green corridor across London and has been recognised in the Green Flag People’s Choice Awards five years in a row. Highlights include their canals, model boating lake and Pavilion Café.
Opening times: Open daily from 07:00 – Dusk.
Nearest tube station: Mile End, Stepney Green, Bethnal Green.
Camden, NW1 4NR
There is a plethora of things to do in Regent’s Park. Hire a rowboat and join the ducks on the lake, see more than 12,000 roses in the beautiful rose gardens, visit the animals at ZSL London Zoo, or take a stroll up Primrose Hill. If you get bored (which is unlikely!), Regent’s Park also has excellent sports facilities.
Opening times: 05:00 – 21:30 in the summer, winter times may vary.
Nearest tube station: Regent’s Park, Camden Town, Baker Street.
Battersea, SW11 4NJ
This 200 acre green space boasts views of the River Thames and is arguably one of London’s most interesting parks.
Battersea Park has an art gallery, a Peace Pagoda which features four large gilded bronze sculptures of Buddha, a family-run zoo, complete with pygmy goats, meerkats and lemurs, and a Henry Moore sculpture. There’s the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home too.
Opening times: 06:30 – 22:30
Nearest tube station: Victoria, Fulham Broadway.
Greenwich, SE10 8QY
This urban sanctuary is home for deer, foxes and over 70 species of bird. Greenwich Park is packed full of history – its part of the Greenwich Maritime World Heritage Site and houses The National Maritime Museum and The Royal Observatory. It also has some Anglo-Saxon and Roman ruins and the Greenwich Meridian Line, which represents the prime meridian.
Opening times: 06:00 – 21:30.
Nearest tube station: North Greenwich, New Cross.