Parks, Gardens & Zoos
Hyde Park: This breathtaking royal park is right on the door of Space Apart Hotelnecessitating only a short stroll to access all that it has to offer. Visitors can enjoy a range of activities including; horse riding, kite flying, swimming, paddling, jogging, fishing and mountain bike riding to name but a few. With 350 acres to ramble through, there truly is something for everyone in Hyde Park.
London Zoo: This internationally renowned zoological centre is a must see for anyone who has children, is a child at heart or just loves to learn about the wonders of the animal, amphibian and reptilian kingdoms. Nowadays the Zoo has placed “Reintroduction” at the heart of all that it does ensuring through this successful technique a high rate of conservation among the world’s endangered species.
Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew: This botanical treasure trove lies on the South bank of the River Thames between Richmond and Kew and is nothing short of a botanist’s dream. The gardens were originally part of two separate estates, Kew Estate and Richmond Estate. The two were eventually combined to form the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew or Kew Gardens as they are more commonly referred to. The gardens are very highly regarded worldwide and hold 1 in 8 of every known plant species in the world. A short journey via tube on the southbound branch of the District line will take you from Bayswater (Space Apart Hotel’s nearest tube station) straight to this gardener’s paradise.
Regent’s Park: This impressive royal park boasts the largest open sports area in London. It is also home to London Zoo, an open air theatre and a vast number of cafes and restaurants. Although originally appropriated by Henry VIII for his beloved sport of hunting, the park as we know it today was designed by the famous architect John Nash for his friend the Prince Regent.
Camley Street Natural Park: This is a nature reserve on the banks of Regents Canal in the busy Kings Cross area of London. A most unexpected place to encounter meadows and ponds. Regent’s Canal provides a natural environment filled with wildlife. This is a perfect way of retreating to the delights of country life without ever leaving central London.
St James’s Park: Home to the famous Mall leading directly up to the gates of Buckingham Palace, St James Park is famous for its royal, political and literary associations. It is often the focal point for national gatherings as was seen during the Queen’s golden jubilee year. Situated at the very heart of London the park encompasses 23 hectares (58 acres). It has a lake with ducks, geese and pelicans.
Holland Park: First opened in 1952 this picturesque park owes its name to Sir Henry, Earl of Holland a former resident of Holland House. The park lies to the South of what was once the spacious grounds of Holland House though sadly today much of the land has been sold off to property developers. This is the smallest of the capital’s public parks but considered by many as the most romantic due to its wooded walkways. There is an adventure playground and during the summer months the park hosts a number of outdoor opera events.
Victoria Embankment and Gardens: Created in the 19th century, this rather narrow public park situated alongside the Thames was created in the latter part of the 19th Century. The park has a number of statues celebrating notable citizens from all over Britain. The statue of the Scottish poet Robert Burns is possibly one of the most notable. In the summer season, the gardens host a number of open air music concerts. The most remarkable historical feature of the gardens is the water gate at its north west corner, built in 1626 commemorating the triumphal entry to the Thames for the Duke of Buckingham. The water gate was part of York House, which once stood on the site, the home to the Archbishops of York, before becoming the Duke’s residence. Although the water gate is in its original position, because of the embankment of the Thames, it is now 330 feet from the edge of the river.
Greenwich Royal Park: This beautiful royal park was the first to be enclosed in 1433. It is one of the largest open green spaces in South East London and forms part of the Greenwich World Heritage site. From the park, visitors can enjoy spectacular views over the River Thames, Isle of Dogs and the City of London. Formerly a hunting park used in the 16th century by King Henry VIII and his courtiers, this breathtaking landscape covers 183 acres. The park opens daily at 6am (for pedestrians) and 7am (for vehicle users) and closes at sunset.