A green walk in London's parks

New York has Central Park and London has... a whole host of parks and gardens! With over 170 square kilometres of green space, London is one of the greenest cities in the world. Scattered throughout the city, these green spaces offer a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the city. The green lungs of the British capital, they attract many tourists and Londoners in search of nature and tranquillity. London's parks offer something for everyone: for a jog, a picnic, a punt or just a stroll, everyone can visit them at their own pace. In fine weather, it's great to do nothing in the sun, stroll by the lakes and meet the park's permanent inhabitants - squirrels, swans and ducks. A welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the city. A short tour of London's must-see parks!

© Ingus Kruklitis / Shutterstock

1. Regent's Park and Primrose Hill

A 166-hectare park, an oak grove, a rose garden with more than 400 varieties of roses, playing fields, a lake for canoeing and pedal-boat excursions and even London Zoo... That's Regents Park! Here you'll find all the typical features of London's green spaces: English-style gardens, flower beds, lawns planted with trees and lined with benches. Walkers come here to nap, picnic, read or work away from the noise of the city. Local sports clubs and schools play cricket, rugby and football here.

Regent's Park en automne.

- © I Wei Huang / Shutterstock

Right next door, Primrose Hill is one of London's highest points. Standing 63 metres high, the hill looks out over the Thames. It's hard to see the river, but London's skyscrapers are clearly visible, from Canary Wharf in the east to the towers of the West End, including the London Eye, the Ferris wheel built for the year 2000. Primrose Hill is in the heart of the capital, yet from the top of the hill you can see the city from afar. Astonishing!

How do I get to Regent's Park?

  • Regent's Park station: Bakerloo line (brown)
  • Great Portland Street station: Hammersmith & City (pink), Circle (red) and Metropolitan (purple) lines
  • Baker Street station: Hammersmith & City, Circle, Jubilee (grey), Metropolitan and Bakerloo lines.

⭐ Where to sleep near Regent's Park?

Danubius Hotel Regents Park 4* London

Danubius Hotel Regents Park 4*

With its luxurious rooms and great restaurant, this 4-star hotel promises a delightful stay in London!
£204 / night

2. Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens

Around June, when the sun comes out, Londoners flock to the park's impeccable lawns. Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens together form an immense 250-hectare rectangle of greenery in central London, their only 'border' being the artificial lake known as the Serpentine. It's a bit like an English New York, the lungs of the city. You can also attend open-air concerts here, watching the crowds invade the lawns and listening to the music take over from the calm of the day.

Hyde Park, London.

- © I Wei Huang / Shutterstock

On the way to Kensington Gardens, don't miss the Flower Walk, the Albert Memorial, the bronze statue of Peter Pan and the Elf Oak!

How do I get to Hyde Park?

  • Lancaster Gate, Marble Arc and Queensway stations: Central line (red)
  • Hyde Park Corner and Knightsbridge stations: Piccadilly line (dark blue)

⭐ Where to sleep near Hyde Park?

The Crescent Hyde Park 4* London

The Crescent Hyde Park 4*

The modern rooms at this 4-star hotel are very comfortable and will suit couples and families travelling to London.
£116 / night

3. Green Park

This is one of London's most exclusive parks. Bordered by Piccadilly and Buckingham Palace, it has a special place in the hearts of Londoners. With a surface area of 21 hectares, it is a great place to relax in the middle of the city and take a break between two London shopping sprees. The famous shops of Bond Street are just around the corner, as are the refurbished pedestrian lanes around Christopher Place.

Moment de détente à Green Park.

- © Paolo Paradiso / Shutterstock

Picnics are allowed on the grass (as in all London parks): make the most of it! From March to October, deckchairs are even available for hire.

How do I get to Green Park?

  • Green Park station: Jubilee (grey), Piccadilly (dark blue) and Victoria (light blue) lines

⭐ Where to sleep near Green Park?

The Resident Victoria 4* - London London

The Resident Victoria 4* - London

Right in the heart of London, this 4-star hotel is the ideal base for visiting the city.
£173 / night

4. Saint James Park

Saint James Park is the place to see pelicans in the wild. The pelicans are not shy, and are happy to pose for a souvenir photo, either with a group of pelicans or with a human by their side. To see them feasting on fresh fish, come at 3pm: it's time for their daily meal.

Buckingham Palace seen from Saint James Park.

- © I Wei Huang / Shutterstock

Pelicans are not the only creatures to inhabit Saint James Park. There are also ducks, moorhens, great crested grebes... not forgetting the ever-present squirrels, who don't hesitate to eat out of tourists' hands! Located right next to Green Park, there are also great views of Buckingham Palace.

How do I get to Saint James Park?

  • St. James's Park station: District (green) and Circle (red) lines
  • Westminster station: Jubilee (grey), District and Circle lines

⭐ Where to sleep near Saint James Park?

The Sanctuary House Hotel 3* - London London

The Sanctuary House Hotel 3* - London

This 3-star hotel with its typically London decor is sure to charm visitors!
£150 / night

Other London parks worth a visit

  • To the west of the city, Greenwich Park is London's largest green space. Formerly the hunting ground of King Henry VIII, Roman remains were found here in 1902.
  • To the east of London, rather far from the city centre, Richmond Park is home to hundreds of deer and hinds roaming freely.
  • Battersea Park is a three-hectare nature reserve, home to wild animals and a variety of plants.
  • Victoria Park plays host to numerous outdoor music festivals during the summer.
  • In South London, Crystal Palace Park boasts one of the largest mazes in the UK.
by Faustine PEREZ
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