When tourists imagine London, there are a number of things that may spring to mind – Buckingham Palace, The London Eye, The Thames, Prince Harry, Paddington Bear, Harrods – the list is endless. What most people probably don’t immediately think of, however, is large outdoor spaces – its parks, fields, forests, lakes, gardens. In reality, however, London is strewn with green spaces perfect for getting your fix of the great outdoors and daily dose of fresh air, exercise and sunshine.
To fix this, we’ve put together a list of some of the most beautiful and interesting parks in London. All easily accessible from LUMA Concept Hotel via Hammersmith’s great transport links, spend a few sunny days exploring and relaxing in some of London’s finest green spaces.
This north London park is made up of 791 acres of rambling and hilly heath covered in wild flowers, ancient woodlands and a few of ponds. Only 6 kilometres from Trafalgar Square, the heath feels a lot further, with a distinctly wild and rural vibe at odds with its proximity to the heart of London.
Spend a day walking through the park and then swimming in the open-air ponds to cool off. Make sure you get to Parliament Hill for its incredible views of the London skyline, and check out the stately Kenwood House on its border to see art from Rembrandt, Gainsborough, Vermeer and Stubbs.
If you’re in the area and a literature fan, stop by Keats House, the old home of John Keats that is now a public museum. The gardens are beautiful and very serene, so be sure to stop by for a few minutes of quiet.
One of London’s most famous parks, a visit to Regent’s Park is basically a right of passage for all London tourists.
Right in the center of the London, it covers 410 acres and is home to an open air theatre, rowing boats, tennis courts, a band stand, rose garden and a Japanese Island complete with paths, ornamental shrubs, willows and a footbridge…Not to mention London Zoo.
The park is also connected to Primrose Hill; a quieter spot whose hilltop provides fantastic views of London.
First opened in 1858, Battersea Park can be found on the south bank of the River, opposite Chelsea.
The park has it all – cricket grounds, tennis courts, a boating lake, bandstand, children’s zoo – the list goes on. Perfect for long walks, end your visit with a trip to the Pump House Gallery in the centre of the park to take in some great art.
This south London park is nestled between Herne Hill and Brixton and is the perfect spot to relax after a few hours spent exploring these areas. Head here on a hot day and take a dip in Brockwell Lido – a stunning Art Deco Grade II listed building and one of London’s few remaining open air pools.
If you’re going on a Sunday, check out Herne Hill Market for loads of fresh local produce and delicious street food – buy your food and walk over to the park to find a patch of grass or a bench.
One of the smaller parks on this list, Dulwich Park is an absolute gem. Nestled in Dulwich in south east London, it is an extremely beautiful piece of London greenery where you can hire bikes and boats, play tennis and enjoy an ice-cream in the sun.
While you’re there, head to Dulwich Picture Gallery; right on the park’s border, this famous gallery holds incredible exhibitions throughout the year as well as late-night events in its Pavilion every weekend over the summer.
Another London landmark, Greenwich is one of the Royal Parks of London and part of a World Heritage Site.
Spanning 180 acres, it boasts a boating lake, tennis courts, cricket pitch, wild deer and a few cafes. You’ll also find the Royal Observatory, which is well worth a visit, plus incredible views of the Isle of Dogs and the City of London.
Located in Hackney, London Fields is a welcome piece of greenery in trendy East London. Splash around in the Olympic sized lido, have a game of ping pong, or relax and watch a game of local cricket – grab some food from the bordering Broadway Market, find a spot on the grass and watch the action unfold.
Otherwise bring your own food and a disposable BBQ and get cooking – London Fields is one of the only parks in London where you can still legally BBQ in certain areas.
Found in the south west borough of Richmond, Richmond Park was originally created by Charles I as a deer park in the 17th century. This legacy still lives on today, as the park is famous for the hundreds of deer you’ll see throughout the area.
The largest Royal Park in London – it is absolutely huge at 955 hectares! It is also an important area for wildlife conservation and home to hundreds of species of flora, fauna and animals.
Hire a bike and spend the afternoon cycling the park and taking in the amazing scenery.
These are just some of the hundreds of parks scattered around London, with many more well-worth visiting. Work your way around the city, one sunny day at a time and drink in all of the variety this beautiful city offers.