5 Of London’s Best: Parks

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1. Richmond Park

Best for: Cycling, Deer.

Richmond Park is home to 630 red and fallow deer and was the notorious location of that Fenton video. It’s also a cyclists’ favourite, boasting a popular 12km route circling the park’s perimeter.

2. Crystal Palace Park

Best for: Families, Dinosaurs (no, really).

Crystal Palace Park is most famous for the full-scale dinosaur statues which were constructed there over 150 years ago. It also houses a children’s play area, maze and farm, and a lake with boats for hire. The health conscious may also be interested in its 50m swimming pool, athletics stadium and beach volleyball facilities.

Crystal Palace Park's very strange dinosaur park. Crystal Palace Park’s very strange dinosaur park.

3. Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

Best for: Kids, West Ham fans.

In between the Aquatics Centre, Velodrome and Olympic Stadium (now home to the Hammers), there’s plenty of space for a leisurely afternoon. They also turned Orbit Tower into the world’s longest tunnel slide – it’s the perfect place to revisit the thrills of youth.

4. Hampstead Heath

Best for: Swimming, getting lost.

Hampstead Heath not only boasts stunning views from Parliament Hill and its famous freshwater ponds, but it also provides a real opportunity to get lost. Its unique sprawl of grass and woodland is a contrast from the prim and proper lawns of London’s Royal Parks.

Hampstead Heath's swimming ponds are a must. Hampstead Heath’s swimming ponds are a must.

5. Victoria Park

Best for: Festivals; Hipsters.

Home to a plethora of festivals in the summer months, Victoria park offers pedalo hire and a whopping 86 hectares of open space.

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