Thursday, June 27, 2024

Royal Parks

Greenwich Park and the Royal Obseervatory
The Royal Observatory, Greenwich Park.

London is full of parks and green spaces, both large and small, that offer quiet areas to relax in relative tranquillity, away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

These parks stretch from the City of London out to all Boroughs and come in all shapes and sizes. Some are well known, while others are only known by those in the know.

St Dunstan-in-the-East
A quiet place for contemplation.

Ruined churches, pocket parks and even cemeteries offer green spaces in which to sit and contemplate your day. Such as, Postman's Park, St Dunstan-in-the-East, Bunhill Fields and 

Holland Park
Holland Park.

Then there are the larger parks like Battersea, Gunnersbury, Holland, Olympic, Southwark or Victoria Parks, with their long and storied histories.

Gunnersbury Park Lake and Orangery
The Orangery and lake, Gunnersbury Park.

Many of these have playgrounds, for children, but others offer just peace and quiet.

However, the best known of these green spaces are the Royal Parks, of which there are eight. These Royal Parks contain memorials, ancient trees, historic buildings, flower gardens, palaces, deer, lakes and much more.

Below are the eight Royal Parks, with a little information about each one.

Bushy Park is the second largest of London’s Royal Parks and is home to wild deer and the Diana Fountain.

  • Location - North of Hampton Court Palace
  • Area -1,100 acres
  • Date - Circa 1500s
  • Open (pedestrians) - 24/7 
  • Open (vehicles) - 06:30-21:00
  • Rail - Hampton, Hampton Court, Hampton Wick, Teddington
The Green Park is a peaceful triangle of mature trees and grasslands and is home to the Bomber Command Memorial. It is here that you can see the Royal Gun Salute, performed by The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery.
  • Location - Next to Buckingham Palace
  • Area - 47 acres
  • Date - 1660
  • Open (pedestrians) - 05:00-00:00
  • Open (vehicles) - n/a
  • Rail - Green Park
King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery
A Royal Gun Salute in Green Park.

Greenwich Park is part of the UNESCO Greenwich Maritime World Heritage Site. A mix of 17th-century landscape, stunning gardens and expansive views over London, plus it is home to the Old Royal Naval College, Meridian Line, National Maritime Museum, the queen's House and the Royal Observatory.
  • Location - South of the Old Royal Naval College
  • Area - 184 acres
  • Date - 1433
  • Open (pedestrians) - 06:00-21:30
  • Open (vehicles) - n/a
  • Rail - Greenwich, Maze Hill, Greenwich Pier
London from Greenwich Park
An impressive view of London, from Greenwich Park.

Hyde Park is home to a variety of gardens, children’s playgrounds, sports facilities and historic monuments. It is also where you will find the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, Speaker's Corner and the Royal Parks Shop.
  • Location - Northwest of Buckingham Palace
  • Area - 350 acres
  • Date - 1637
  • Open (pedestrians) - 05:00-00:00
  • Open (vehicles) - n//a
  • Rail - Hyde Park Corner, Knightsbridge, Lancaster Gate, Marble Arch
The Serpentine in Hyde Park
The Serpentine, Hyde Park.

Kensington Gardens has old and new park and green spaces and stretches from Kensington Palace to Hyde Park. Home to the Albert Memorial, Diana Memorial Playground, Italian Gardens, the Peter Pan statue and the Serpentine Galleries.
  • Location - East of Kensington Palace
  • Area - 265 acres
  • Date - 1536
  • Open (pedestrians) - 06:00-09:45
  • Open (vehicles) - n/a
  • Rail - Lancaster Gate, Queensway
Italian Water Gardens
Italian Water Gardens, Kensington Park.

The Regent's Park & Primrose Hill is home to a large wetland area, gardens, children’s playgrounds, sports facilities and home to London Zoo. 
  • Location - North of Marylebone
  • Area - 410 acres
  • Date - Circa 1810s
  • Open (pedestrians) - 05:00-21:30
  • Open (vehicles) - 07:00-00:00
  • Rail - Baker Street, Great Portland Street, Marylebone, Regent's Park, Warren Street
Regent's Park Flower Gardens
Flower Gardens, Regent's Park.

Primrose Hill offers fantastic views out over London.
  • Location - North of The Regent's Canal
  • Area - 62 acres
  • Date - 1842
  • Open (pedestrians) - 05:00-21:30
  • Open (vehicles) - 07:00-00:00
  • Rail - Chalk Farm, Swiss Cottage
Richmond Park is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and is home to ancient trees, herds of red and fallow deer and the Isabella Plantation. King Henry's Mound offers views across to St Paul's Cathedral.
  • Location - South of Richmond
  • Area - 2,360 acres
  • Date - 1625
  • Open (pedestrians) - 24/7
  • Open (vehicles) - 07:00-21:00
  • Rail - Norbiton, North Sheen, Richmond
St James's Park is the oldest Royal Park at the heart of ceremonial London. Enjoy great views of the lake and Buckingham Palace.
  • Location - East of Buckingham Palace
  • Area - 57 acres
  • Date - 1603
  • Open (pedestrians) - 05:00-00:00
  • Open (vehicles) - n/a
  • Rail - St James's Park
St James's Park
St James's Park Lake, looking towards Whitehall.

The Royal Parks are patrolled by the Parks Police, who are part of the Metropolitan Police, and operate from a building in Hyde Park.

Parks Police
A Parks Police car.

For more information on the Royal Parks, click the link below.

All information was correct at the time of publishing, but it is worth checking
 the Royal Parks website for any changes.

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