Exploring London's Best Parks and Green Spaces

Discover some of London's best parks & green spaces from Richmond Park & Bushy Park to Kyoto Garden & Hampstead Heath.

Exploring London's Best Parks and Green Spaces

London is a city of parks and green spaces, from the royal parks to the hidden gems. From Richmond Park to Bushy Park, Kyoto Garden to Hampstead Heath, Trent Country Park to Regent's Canal, Hainault Forest Country Park to Hyde Park, Greenwich Park to Chiswick Park, and Bushy Park to Brockwell Park, there are plenty of places to explore and enjoy the outdoors in London. Richmond Park is one of the eight royal parks in London. It has 1,012 hectares of forests, meadows and green areas crossed by trails and ponds, making it the perfect place for a leisurely stroll.

Stop at the Petersham Nurseries café just outside the park's north-west border and then follow the path along the River Thames to Ham House and Garden. The 17th century estate was built by a friend of King Charles I and can be visited with an advance booking. Bushy Park is another royal park located behind Hampton Court Palace in Hampton, near Richmond. The 445-hectare space is less well known than Richmond Park but is home to 320 red deer and fallow deer.

Watching deer compete for females during the breeding season in fall is an incredible sight. Holland Park's Kyoto Garden is what's left of the estate of an early 17th century private house. Once you've walked through its formal gardens, wander through the forest in the north of the park. The trail guides you through the grounds and to the Kyoto Garden.

Hampstead Heath in Hampstead Heath is a 320-hectare forest that was once a hunting ground for King Henry VIII. It has since become a popular place for recreation with its mud in wellies trails. Trent Country Park is larger than London's Regent's Park, giving visitors enough space to get lost in it. A 3.8 km trail guides you through the best spots, from an avenue of lime trees next to the main entrance to lakes, meadows and forests.

Look for the muntjac, partridge and pheasant that hide among oak and sycamore trees. Regent's Canal was designed by John Nash, the architect of Buckingham Palace, and opened in 1816 connecting the Grand Union Canal in west London with the River Thames in east London. The Hainault Forest Country Park is what remains of the 12th-century Essex Forest. The 113-hectare estate is located in Redbridge in North East London.

Hyde Park is the most centrally located historic park in London running through some of the most densely populated areas in the city center. It is home to works of contemporary art in Serpentine Gallery, Round Pond where you can feed ducks and geese, Kensington Gardens where you can follow in Diana's footsteps or listen to soap operas at Speaker's Corner. Greenwich Park is located in the heart of Greenwich neighborhood protecting south-east corner of London. It has stunning views of Thames, London and Hampstead Heath as well as Royal Naval College and Maritime Museum that document area's proud maritime history, James Thornhill's masterful Painted Hall with impressive frescoes and Royal Observatory designed by Christopher Wren with planetarium and interesting instruments that document history of astronomy. Chiswick Park was designed by William Kent as first English landscape garden in world when he was commissioned to design grounds of Neopalladian Chiswick House in 1720s.

It has trees and hedges, wildflowers and gleaming ponds recreating lush gardens of ancient times. Bushy Park is located just north of Hampton Court Palace extending across leafy Richmond-upon-Thames district with its large number of hawthorn shrubs within its boundaries as well as herds of red deer and fallow deer. Brockwell Park has been home to Grade II listed Art Deco Lido since 1930s. Hyde Park is known as beating heart of London where people come to express themselves: demonstrate, protest or share excitement of big events such as Rolling Stones concerts or Winter Wonderland amusement park. Kensington Gardens were equipped by Queen Caroline with landscaped gardens when she took approximately half of Hyde Park (number 2) in 1728 with its avenues of intersecting limes and elegant formal plantation firmly behind black fussy bars.