One of London’s ‘big three’ parks; and Regent’s Park is definitely big. Plenty of wide, flat open areas to bask in the (infrequent) sunshine. Oddly though in the height of summer it can get quite crowded and hard to find a clear area to camp down in. The grounds are very well kept and despite its size the lawn stays consistently lush. There are plenty of colourful old trees and some classic Victorian garden arrangements (especially in the central area).
Add-Ons (“Beyond The Greenery”)
Being one of the first and main Royal parks of London means Regents Park has plenty of extras as its remit is to be useful and beautiful. There are many sports catered for including basketball, tennis, cricket and football. There are a couple of ponds; though one of them is so large it’s more like a small lake. In the summer it plays host to many events including a couple of music festivals. Cafés are dotted around the park too.
A mixed bag really. The overall design is to create an outer ring road and inner ring road that ends up carving the park up into zones. Some of it is so elegant and tranquil, particularly the inner ring. A lot of it feels a bit ordinary. It doesn’t feel like a park that you escape to or get inspired by, more a high-quality convenience or peaceful break. In it’s design it represents the classic Victorian ‘symmetrical control over nature’ and in that regard stands in complete contrast with Hampstead Heath (one of the other ‘big 3’) which is a more wild and untamed park.
Tips, Tricks & Traps
Once a month the ‘Baker Street Irregular Astronomers’ go late night stargazing in the park. Bring a telescope or enjoy looking through other people’s.