Picture the scene: it's a Saturday morning in London, around late spring, early summer, and the sun is out. The kids are restless, the flowers are blooming and you have the whole day ahead of you.
In short, it's the perfect day for a picnic!
For centuries, people across the English capital have packed up sandwiches, snacks and other foodstuffs into their hampers and headed for the beautiful parks that dot the city for some tasty food, good conversation and well-deserved sunbathing.
As spring gets into full swing and the weather starts improving, we thought we'd celebrate by giving you a neat list of the best parks and green spaces in London for a picnic. Read on to discover your dream picnic spot for the next sunny spring day!
Close to the centre of London and around the corner from Royal Warwick Square, Hyde Park is a great choice for a picnic spot. With its rolling stretches of grass, spotted with trees and stretch of water, Hyde Park is a big green area with 250 acres of space for you to find your own little area for you and your family to spread out your picnic blanket. Hyde Park is one of London's famous Royal Parks, originally set out by Henry VIII as a hunting ground in the 16th century before being opened up to everyone else in 1637. It also famously hosted the 1851 Great Exhibition which saw the iconic Crystal Palace erected within the park's boundaries. These days, Hyde Park is known for its summer concerts, open air theatres and other events.
Home to the Royal Observatory and the origins of Greenwich Mean Time, Greenwich Park is a beautiful collection of parklands that rise up along a hill, just across the river from our South Quay Plaza development. Thanks to its elevated height, Greenwich offers commanding panoramas across Canary Wharf and the Thames, providing picnickers with sweeping views while they tuck into their packed lunches. Visitors also have access to a wealth of history in the buildings and landscape here - Greenwich Park is another of the Royal Parks, and similarly to Hyde Park, it was initially used as hunting grounds. The Queen's House and Royal Maritime Museums are well worth visiting once you've finished your picnic, as is the Old Royal Naval College, where films like Thor 2, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Cinderella and Skyfall were filmed.
Just a short distance from our Camden Goods Yard properties, Hampstead Heath, or the Heath to locals, is another picnic spot that offers spectacular views across the London skyline. Featuring its own small zoo and a kaleidoscopic butterfly house, Hampstead Heath has a lot to enjoy and many more attractions to help you work up an appetite before you get stuck into your picnic. You could bring your swimming gear for a fresh dip in any of the outdoor swimming spots or your tennis racket perhaps for a quick game. The heath is also a great place to bring your kids too, with a sprawling stretch of woodland to explore and some excellent playgrounds to keep them busy while you soak in the sun and pour yourself some tea from your flask.
Famed for its magnificent floral displays, featuring all kinds of different plants for all kinds of different countries and biomes, Kew Gardens is resplendent in the spring, summer and even in the autumn as the flowers and trees bloom, flower and then turn to reds and golds. While you do need to pay for entry, the various fascinating displays, beautiful old buildings and detailed exhibition of this iconic botanic garden make the price worth the money. You'll have access to a range of picnic spots throughout the gardens, with each one tastefully placed among the flowers and greenhouses that make up this elegant parkland. From pagodas to temples, herbariums to palaces, and galleries to ancient gateways, there is so much to see here between picnic bites.
Less busy than other parks on this list, Battersea Park is nevertheless a charming spot for a summer's picnic. Close to our Prince of Wales Drive development, this Grade II-listed Victorian-style park is sat on the banks of the River Thames and features manicured gardens, a central bandstand and the famous Peace Pagoda. With a relaxed atmosphere, and plenty to soak in mid-and-post picnic, Battersea Park is a small oasis at the heart of London with plenty to offer families and individuals alike. It has a children's zoo, sports areas and a gallery, and plenty of events make up a fun-filled calendar of activities all year round.
Wherever you live in London, you're sure to be close to beautiful green space to whisk your family and your friends away on a tasty, nostalgic and cheerful picnic that celebrates everything that's great about the capital's wonderful parks.
If you're thinking of moving to London and are looking for somewhere close to an idyllic picnic spot, be sure to visit our London developments page, full of modern and well-appointed apartments and homes for all kinds of buyers.