Hidden Gems of London Series: Richmond Park

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Despite its fast-paced, metropolitan vibe, London has an array of parks that whisk you away amongst nature, which can come as a bit of a relief to those who find themselves overwhelmed with the rush and rapidity of the big city.

One such park is Richmond Park, which is based in West London and is a mere stone’s throw from central London. Covering an area of 2,500 acres, it is one of the eight royal parks of London and enjoys a special protected status for wildlife. Enjoyed by locals and travellers alike, it is the perfect place to go for a romantic stroll or walk your dog, or, particularly in the summer, enjoy a picnic out in the sun while watching the wildlife around you. Richmond Park is particularly famed for its deer herd and visitors will catch stags, does and fawns grazing on the grass as they walk or drive by.

Wildlife enthusiasts will be particularly enthralled to learn that Richmond park is one of the top places in the UK that preserves ancient trees and rare species of bats, birds and wildflowers, to name a few. You can easily spend a whole day exploring this beautiful greenery, and for anyone who gets hungry there are a selection of cafes where you can sit and enjoy the view, as well as a hearty meal. Pembroke Lodge is a Georgian mansion which offers English refreshments, while the Roehampton Café offers a wide variety of hot food, sandwiches, ice cream, tea and coffee.  Furthermore, Richard Park has several ‘refreshment points’ scattered around, where you can grab hot and cold snacks, including bacon sandwiches and fresh, brewed coffee.

During winter time, both tourists and Londoners are delighted to learn that horse carriage rides are available. There is nothing more magnificent than viewing this historic park from the carriage while the horse clip-clops its way down the road. You’ll feel as if you’ve stepped back in time several hundred years ago, so if you have plans to do this, you may want to dress for the occasion and don your best Georgian outfit!

There is a lot of history to Richmond Park and one of its most endearing hot spots is King Henry’s Mound. Here, it is said that King Henry VIII stood in 1536 to watch a rocket fire from the Tower of London. The rocket was a signal to show that his second wife, Anne Boleyn, had been beheaded for treason. The views from King Henry’s Mound are quite spectacular, where you can see London for miles around.

Whether it’s a pleasant stroll you seek, an adventurous wander through the woods or sitting peacefully by the pond watching the swans, Richmond Park has something for everyone. Couple and families are particularly drawn to it and the park itself has such a peaceful aura about it that people find themselves returning again and again to experience to wonder of this royal park of West London.

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