10 Parks In London, UK With The Most Instagrammable Views To Visit At Least Once
When we think of "the great outdoors," most of us think of mountainous regions that are lush with trees and far from major cities. Personally, I certainly don't think of London, United Kingdom — but, maybe I should. The metropolitan city is home to the Spice Girls, my personal queen/the official Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle, and a significant amount of parks — so many, in fact, that the city was recently named the first "National Park City" in the world. It helps that most of the London parks are super Instagrammable, making them gorgeous destinations for any tourist or local looking to take in nature and get a great photo for their 'gram grid.
According to the National Park City Foundation, 33 percent of London is made up of green space. When the energy of the city becomes too overwhelming, residents and tourists can seek refuge in outdoor spaces for a healthy balance of city life and country life. When a train ride to the country isn't possible, you'll still be able to relish in fresh air and stare at something green — or maybe even catch a glimpse of the city's majestic population of antlered deer.
The UK city became the first National Park City in July 2019 after starting its campaign to be six years ago. “Everybody can benefit and contribute everyday by starting to think of the place they live as part of the National Park City and doing simple things like making a balcony or garden better for nature, walking more or going kayaking on the Thames,” Daniel Raven-Ellison, who started the campaign, told the National Park City Foundation.
Urban spaces can be green spaces too. Visit one of these London's parks, at least once, to gather inspiration for your next trip or your own city's green makeover.
St Dunstan’s In The East
History lesson! The Church of St. Dunstan was bombed in the Blitz of 1941, and the church was never rebuilt. Instead, the ruins became a public garden where vines grow through arched windows. Can you say Holy lunch break?
Greenwich Park is the oldest enclosed Royal Park in London. It spans 183 acres and is home to a small herd of deer. Daydream on a bench under cherry blossoms or stroll through, for hours, tuning out the hustle of the city.
You don't have to identify as Goth to find a cemetery hauntingly beautiful. The Victorian tombs in north London stun as visitors stroll through the grounds. "A romantic profusion of trees, memorials and wildlife flourish," according to the official website.
Sometimes you have to remove yourself from a city to appreciate it. Thankfully you don't have to go far to do that in London. Hampstead Heath is four miles from Trafalgar Square in Central London, and offers awe-worthy views of the city. Grab a picnic and gawk at the city as it moves below you.
This 2,500 acre park is practically a nature reserve. In a city. Richmond Park is the largest Royal Park in London and features antlered deer, ancient tress, butterflies, woodlands, and basically everything fairytales are made of. Go for the Instagram, stay for relishing in the peaceful environment.
Kyoto Gardens Holland Park
West London is home to this Japanese garden featuring tiered waterfalls that flow into the koi pond below. Rumor has it that you might even stumble across a peacock.
Live your best What A Girl Wants life at the London markets and then find refuge along the Regent’s Canal. The shopping hub is nestled against the peaceful canal freckled with enchanting weeping willows so you get a nature moment and a city moment in the span of a few footsteps.
Your trip to London can not be complete without a visit to the spectacular Kew Gardens. Not only is it a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it's home to a diverse array of plants and flowers. You need to literally stop and smell the flowers.
St Katherine’s Dock
Need a spot to take in the sun as it sets over the hustle and bustle of London? Head to St. Katherine's Dock, a marina and shopping center. It's the perfect kind of park for a true urbanite.
Eltham Palace is part Medieval palace, part Art Deco mansion, and features award winning gardens. It's also home to London's oldest working bridge, so that can be an additional thrill should you choose to cross it and test the ancient durability. This is the park where you can both smell the roses and drool over interior decor.