Today, I wanted to showcase a classic London walk – ideal for nature-starved city dwellers or those looking to see a greener side of London.
This Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill circular walk is roughly 4 miles and good for all skill levels. You’ll wander through Regent’s Park and up to Primrose Hill for spectacular views of the London skyline, before strolling back through Regent’s Park via the Boating Lake and the gorgeous flower gardens.
The walk should take about 2 hours, as you’ll no doubt stop frequently to admire the scenery at Primrose Hill and Regent’s Park landscaped gardens. You could even make a whole afternoon of it if you wanted, as there are plenty of cafes to enjoy and expanses of grass to relax on.
Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill Circular Walk map and logistics
Start/Finish: Regent’s Park Station
How to get there: Regent’s Park station is on the Bakerloo underground line.
Distance: 4.2 miles.
Time: 2 hours.
Difficulty: Easy; simple to navigate with flat topography (except for the short walk up Primrose Hill).
Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill Circular Walk
Step 1: Regent’s Park East Side
You’ll begin your walk by crossing the road from Regent’s Park Station to Park Square Gardens, and entering the east side of Regent’s Park itself. This is one of London’s most popular open spaces, covering 410 acres in north-west London!
As you walk north through the park, you’ll be flanked by open expanses of grass. You’ll also walk past London Zoo, so keep your ears open for the sounds of exotic animals.
Just past the zoo, you’ll reach a road which you’ll need to cross via Saint Mark’s Bridge. You’ll then turn left and continue up the road a short way until you reach the entrance for Primrose Hill. It’s fairly simple to follow and well signposted so you shouldn’t get lost.
Step 2: Primrose Hill
Primrose Hill found eternal fame when it was featured in the classic 101 Dalmatians movie. Pongo and Perdita lived in Regent Park’s Outer Circle and often walked on Primrose Hill! It’s now a highly desirable place to live, with celebrities such as Jude Law, Kate Moss, Boris Johnson and Sylvia Plath having lived (or still live) there.
By walking to the top of Primrose Hill, you can enjoy views over London from 63 metres above sea level. This isn’t super high, but it’s high enough to provide a nice view of the skyline – you’ll be able to see landmarks such as the London Eye, the Shard and the BT Tower.
On a warm day, Primrose Hill is full of Londoners enjoying the sunshine, so if it’s nice, why not sit and admire the view for a while?
Step 3: Regent’s Park West Side (Boating Lake and Inner Circle)
When you exit Primrose Hill and cross into the west side of Regent’s Park via Primrose Hill bridge, you’ll be in eyeshot of London Zoo’s okapi and warthog enclosures. You won’t have the best view from here, but you’ll be able to catch a glimpse!
As you continue walking south through the park, you’ll soon come to what I would call the ‘heart’ of Regent’s Park. Here, you’ll find the Boating Lake and the Inner Circle gardens.
The Boating Lake is a scenic lake where you’ll see tourists out enjoying the water on pedalos. It’s here where you’ll also see the most birdlife. Geese, ducks and swans are everywhere, but you’re also likely to spot grey herons. You might be surprised to learn that birds of prey such as peregrine falcons, kestrels, little owls, buzzards and ospreys also frequent Regent’s Park, as do species like flycatchers, woodpeckers and warblers. Keep your eyes peeled!
The Inner Circle is one of the most beautiful parts of Regent’s Park, as there are some gorgeous gardens dedicated to different types of flora. The Japanese Garden is perhaps my favourite, as it’s sat on its own little island, adorned with Japanese aesthetics and a little waterfall. I recommend deviating from the main path here to cross the bridge and explore the island.
The Rose Garden is stunning too, showcasing 12,000 landscaped rose bushes on landscaped grounds.
After you’ve explored the Boating Lake and walked around the Inner Circle Gardens, your Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill Circular Walk will have come to an end! You can head back to Regent’s Park station by walking east along the Outer Circle and then crossing back through Park Square Gardens.
To learn more about Regent’s Park, Primrose Hill and things to do in the area, visit the Royal Parks website.
More London walks:
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