London Blog

St James's Park Lake – East from the Blue Bridge - 2012-10-06
St James's Park Lake – East from the Blue Bridge - 2012-10-06

Parks & Rec: London’s best open spaces

Some may be surprised that a heavily built-up city like London offers vast amounts of lush open spaces to explore. Whether you want to find a picnic-perfect spot, unkempt terrain, or replicate a countryside stroll, you won’t be short of choices in the capital.

Many renters prefer a location close to a park when searching for a property, which is why we’ve put together our favourite open spaces in London, along with a few hidden gems.

Hyde Park

The grandaddy of them all, Hyde Park is one of the eight Royal Parks in London and offers over 350 acres of open space. Sitting right on the fringes of the West End, Hyde Park was created by King Henry VII as a grounds for hunting deer. Today, it’s one of the capital’s main tourist attractions and features a 27-acre Serpentine, local horse riding and boating activities.

Living close to a premium park means you have to pay top prices. One bedroom properties start from around £2,090 per month, which is around 72% above the London average. Still, if you can afford it, there aren’t too many better places to live in London than around Hyde Park.

Hampstead Heath

Hampstead Heath offers over 790 acres of open space to explore, including unkempt woodlands, picturesque ponds that you can swim in, hilltops affording views of the London skyline, and tonnes of local wildlife.

The heath is located within proximity to popular north London areas Hampstead and Highgate, where average rents for two bedroom properties start from £1,690 and £1,510 per month respectively.

Richmond Park

Another Royal Park, Richmond Park is located on the borders of south west London and is famous for the deer that roams its open spaces. It’s also the largest of London’s eight Royal Parks and is a National Nature Reserve.

Richmond is a highly popular area with families, thanks to stylish shops, tree-lined streets and the park itself. A three bedroom property here will cost you around £3,090 per month.

Regent’s Park

Regent’s Park covers over 395 acres of space and features Queen Mary’s Gardens, where there are more than 12,000 roses of 400 varieties. It’s also the location of London Zoo, the world’s oldest scientific zoo and home to 756 different species of animals.

The park also hosts an open air theatre and is located near by the popular north west London area of Primrose Hill, where the average rental for a two bedroom property is around £2,700 per month.

Greenwich Park

By now you can probably see a theme developing here: London’s Royal Parks dominate the list. Greenwich Park is the oldest of the Royal Parks and enjoys stunning views of the River Thames. Other benefits include direct access to the Royal Observatory, and selection of cafes to enjoy a beverage in if you want to take a break from your scenic stroll.

As well as the park, Greenwich is well-known for its Maritime tradition, including the Cutty Sark. One bedroom properties average around £1,285 per month.

Victoria Park

Victoria Park, known as ‘Vicky Park’ to the locals, borders on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and shares many sporting similarities to its neighbour. There are tennis courts and sports ground for fitness enthusiasts, and pretty canals and ponds add to the tranquillity of the park

The nearby area of Bow has become increasingly popular with people moving to London, thanks to much of the east London regeneration around the Olympics. One bed properties average around £1,265 per month.

Crystal Palace Park

If you like mazes, dinosaurs, and old ruins of what was once a beautiful palace, then Crystal Palace park is the open space for you. The National Sports Centre, located in the park, is known as the training ground for some of London’s finest athletes, including gold medalist Christine Ohuruogu.

Average rents in Crystal Palace start from around £1,085 per month for a one bedroom, while two bedrooms average £1,390, and three bedrooms will set you back £1,885

Hidden gems

As well as the main attractions, there are more than a few hidden gems in London including St George’s Gardens which is located near Bloomsbury and was initially created as an open-air sitting room for the poor; Camley Street Natural Park is a nature reserve moments away from King’s Cross Station; and Keats House Gardens is another Hampstead delight located on the grounds of the house owned by the famous poet, John Keats.

September 14, 2016 rentonomy London Living