London Parks and Gardens
(London, England, UK)
London is home to an enormous selection of parks and gardens, many of which are famous the world over and cover literally hundreds of acres, including mature trees, lakes, temples and monuments. When London was laid out, planners certainly had the foresight to allocate swathes of green within the very heart of the city, particularly around Battersea, Clapham, Southwark, and Bayswater.
Many tourists choose to pay a visit to the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, which is to be found in Hyde Park and was opened in the summer of 2004 by Queen Elizabeth II, at the cost of more than £3.5 million. This huge contemporary oval stream comprises 545 separate pieces of granite and is conveniently close to Paddington.
Hyde Park is one of the largest and most frequented parks in the whole of London and is located within easy reach of the Bayswater, Kensington, Knightsbridge, Mayfair and Queensway districts. Close to many major shops and department stores, attractions here include a boating lake, fishing, jogging trails and a well-known statue of Peter Pan. Kensington Gardens, home to the impressive Kensington Palace, can also be found within the grounds of Hyde Park.
Green Park is another particularly popular spot and is close to Piccadilly Circus. Containing the city's most famous attraction, Buckingham Palace, which dates back to the early 18th century, Green Park also features many secluded seating areas, which are highly suitable for picnics.
St. James's Park
St. James's Park can be found close to Buckingham Palace and contains the beautiful St. James's Palace, which is the home of the Duke and Duchess of Kent. Sightseers may like to check out the numerous nearby attractions, which include the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben and the outstanding Westminster Abbey.
Sited on the north-western side of London, Regent's Park is a stunning spot, with landscaped areas of extreme beauty and established planting schemes. Highlights include a large boating lake, sports fields, ancient trees and playground areas for children. Close to the affluent St. John's Wood area and the University of Westminster, Regent's Park is also home to London Zoo.
Alexandra Park offers some of the best views of London, together with an ice-skating rink, seating areas, benches, mature trees and the Alexandra Palace complex.
Hampstead Heath covers just under 800 acres / 325 hectares and lies on the northern side of the city, close to Islington, Camden Town and Fortune Green. Visitors can expect to find a number of pools, mature trees, colourful flower borders and walking trails.
Richmond Park is one of the largest in London and is famous for its large herds of wild deer, many of which are extremely friendly and inquisitive. Richmond also features many important areas of wildlife, large amounts of native flora and fauna, nature trails, picnic spots and picturesque countryside. Worth checking out is King Henry VIII's Mound, where you can view the distant St. Paul's Cathedral.