Best Parks in London
Becoming more active is a walk in the park... literally. Whether you're visiting from afar or a London local, England's capital city has so much green space that it would be rude not to visit each and every one. We take you through some of our favourites below.
A zoo, a riverside walk, and plenty of green space... what more could you want from a park? Oh, and it has its very own art gallery. Battersea Park has something for everyone, and is just a stone's throw away from plenty of trendy places to eat across the river.
Crystal Palace Park
Famous for its dinosaurs, Crystal Palace Park leaves you with a year-round Easter Egg hunt, if the Easter Eggs were pre-historic reptiles. The remnants of a Victorian theme park, Crystal Palace Park is also home to an abandoned subway (spooky) and a walkway from the era that can only be accessed three times a year.
The views from the top of the hill at Greenwich Park are some of the best in London. It's hard to believe that this slice of greenery is just minutes from the city, yet Greenwich has the feel of the suburbs that can fool many of us that we're walking through the countryside. In fact, Mudchute Farm is just 10 minutes away on the DLR, if you really fancy feeling rural.
Less manicured than most of London's parks, Hampstead Heath is the perfect spot for a picnic. It's also home to men and women's swimming ponds, although be prepared for a chilly dip even in the height of summer. And if you're into wildlife - look out for muntjac deer and parakeets amongst the foliage.
Nestled amongst mansions, getting to Holland Park is half the fun. With its very own Kyoto Garden (featuring Koi Carp) this is one of the finest parks in London to truly unwind, and in the summer it even stages its own open-air shows.
Of course it made the list. One of London's best known parks, this gargantuan green space touches the corners of some of the city's most famous neighbourhoods. Whether you're looking to swim, sunbathe, or practice some acrobatics, Hyde Park has it all - and in the winter it's worth visiting Winter Wonderland during off-peak hours to get a whiff of that Christmas spirit.
St James's Park
With Buckingham Palace on one side, and Trafalgar Square on the other, it's difficult to avoid St James's Park on a trip through London. Particularly beautiful first thing in the morning, this park is home to some fantastic wildfowl, including a famous family of pelicans.
410 acres of gorgeous rose-gardens, London Zoo itself, and an open-air theatre, Regent's Park offers so much to its visitors, from tennis courts to ice cream stands. If you find yourself in Camden, follow the canal through to Regent's Park for a breath away from busy crowds and a step into nature.
One of the biggest parks in London, Richmond Park is home to hundreds of red and fallow deer that will roam right up to your picnic blanket(!). Wildlife in its natural habitat is always super exciting, no matter how old you are, and from the park's highest point you can even see St Paul's Cathedral, a whole 12 miles away.
Where are your favourite parks? If you'd like your home town to be featured on Sunday Sanctuary, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org