London may be a concrete jungle but to also has some of the best natural spots in the country. Here’s 15 lovely lakes for the perfect summer getaway.
1. Hampstead Heath
There are 3 different swimming ponds on Hampstead Heath, a mixed pond which is closest to Hampstead Heath Overground Station, a Ladies Pond and a Male Pond, both of which are closer to the Highgate and Kenwood end of Hampstead Heath.
2. Victoria Park
Boasting 86.18 hectares of open space, a boating lake and a Chinese pagoda, Victoria Park was voted the people’s favourite park back in 2014. The park is the largest in Tower Hamlets at 86.18 hectares and has one of the highest visitor numbers of all the London parks with around 9 million visits per year. A wide range of formal and informal sports, sponsored activities, events and festivals take place throughout the year.
3. Hyde Park
4. Regent’s Park
Make use of boat hire in London’s glorious Regent’s Park, which boasts a boating lake that’s home to many species of water birds, including herons nesting on the islands. There’s a separate Regent’s Park boating lake for children that’s open at weekends, bank holidays and school holidays only. Available late March to late October
5. Battersea Park
Rent a rowing boat or a pedalo and spend a leisurely few hours exploring Battersea Park’s boating lake during spring and summer. Make sure to keep an eye out for herons, grebes and cormorants along the way. Available school holidays, public holidays and weekends between Easter and late September
6. Greenwich Park
The Greenwich Centre is an iconic multipurpose facility, located in the heart of East Greenwich. Combining local leisure and library services, we are proud to offer first-class facilities and activities for everyone. So whether you live in the area, or work close by, the centre has everything you need to get fitter and feel better. The facility includes: A stylish gym with the latest, fully accessible fitness technology, a diverse Fitness Class programme, 2 swimming pools including a learner pool for little ones and families!
7. St James’s Park
The park’s famous flower beds at the front of Buckingham Palace are a familiar backdrop to pageants including Trooping the Colour, as well as state visits and other ceremonial occasions.
Enjoy impressive views of the lake and fountain from St James’s Café, watch the resident pelicansat feeding time, or while away a sunny afternoon in a deckchair.
8. Alexandra Palace Boating Lake
Boating Lake open to the public everyday from March to October 11am to 6pm, weather permitting
Take a ride on a Dragon, be elegant with a Swan or race in a car what ever you fancy the boating lake at Ally Pally has it all. But make sure your fit enough to race each other by paddling full steam ahead. Prices from £5.95 ! Don’t forget you can cool off with a tasty snack and drink at the Lakeside cafe.
10. Crystal Palace Park
Situated in South East London, Crystal Palace Park is a welcoming place for all. A place for learning and training, health and well-being, recreation and enjoyment, activities and events. Or you can just bring a book and find a quiet spot.
11. Hollow Ponds
Epping may be a little further out than many of the central London parks and lakes, but it’s definitely worth the journey. Encompassed by the beautiful woodlands of Epping Forest, the Hollow Ponds are a great place to hire a boat and admire the wildlife.
12. Ruislip Lido
Ruislip Lido offers a range of facilities situated around a 60 acre lake and is home to many species of wildlife. The site proves to be very popular during the summer months but has something for everyone all year round. Surrounding Ruislip Lido is Ruislip Woods, a National Nature Reserve, which is well worth a visit, offering its own unique natural beauty and adventures.
13. Burgess Park
Burgess Park boasts some cracking views of the London skyline, it is one of London’s biggest parks. But its significance is due not so much to its size as to its history, and the unusual way it was created. Inspired by the Abercrombie plan and post-war optimism, the park was set up after hundreds of dwellings, factories and churches were demolished, thirty streets were covered over, the Grand Surrey Canal was filled in, and bomb-damaged areas were incorporated and grassed over.
14. Woodbury Wetlands
Woodberry Wetlands was opened by Sir David Attenborough in 2016, having previously been known as Stoke Newington East Reservoir. The wetlands are the result of a proposal by the Trust to enhance the reservoir for wildlife and open it up so people can access a high quality, natural space in a densely built-up environment.
15. Walthamstow Wetlands
A little further down the road, you’ll find Europe’s largest urban wetlands, that opened to the public towards the end of 2017. Few locals know about Walthamstow Wetlands in north London, which opens on Friday. But now they, and nature lovers everywhere, can enjoy this amazing bird reserve for free