London's Hyde Park is one of the greatest city parks in the world. Covering 142 hectares (350 acres) and with over 4,000 trees, a large lake, a meadow and ornamental flower gardens, there’s a good chance you’ll forget you are right in the centre of London.
Greenwich is the oldest enclosed Royal Park, 74 hectares (183 acres) in area, and is home to a small herd of deer. On top of a hill, visitors enjoy sweeping views across the river Thames and Central London.
The Regent’s Park, 166 hectares (410 acres) in area, was designed in 1811 by renowned architect John Nash and includes stunning rose gardens. The Park is the largest outdoor sports area in London catering for football, softball, rugby, and it also has a cricket pitch.
With royal, political and literary associations, St James’s Park is at the heart of London and covers 23 hectares (58 acres). It's also home to the Mall, with many ceremonial parades and events of national celebration. The pelicans are fed every day at 14:30, and there are water birds, plus owls, woodpeckers and bats. There's a children’s playground, and deckchairs from April to September.
Battersea Park Children’s Zoo can be found by the picturesque riverside walk in Battersea Park. Meet monkeys, lemurs, meerkats, otters, farmyard animals and aviaries filled with birds. This exciting animal experience combines a zoo, animal encounters, play area, relaxing café and gift shop.
One of London's largest flat open spaces, Clapham Common is naturally popular with joggers. There is plenty of room to relax in the sun, as well as three ponds, a skate park, cosy pubs, tennis courts, grass pitches and a bandstand to keep South Londoners occupied.
Lee Valley Regional Park stretches 26 miles (42 km) along the River Lee, from East India Docks, past Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and up to Ware in Hertfordshire. This huge park offers green spaces, nature reserves and ample opportunity for sports. If you're not sure where to start, try the guided tour on the first Sunday of every month.
This beautiful Royal Park is famously home to around 650 free roaming deer. Richmond Park covers around 1,000 hectares (2,500 acres) with great cycle paths (from flat to challenging routes), riding stables, two golf courses and power kiting. The views from the top of the hill are so stunning they are protected by an act of Parliament.
Bushy is the second largest Royal Park, with an area of 445 hectares (1,099 acres). Located to the north of Hampton Court Palace, it is home to around 320 free-roaming deer. Cycling is allowed on roads, and horse-riding permitted on rough grass.