London History

Hyde Park London – All You Need To Know

A bitesize guide about about central London’s most popular and largest royal park.

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There is a string of royal parks in central London that stretch from Westminster to Kensington.

By name, they are known as St James’s Park, Green Park, Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens.

Hyde Park is the largest of the four and is bounded on the north by Bayswater Road, to the east by Park Lane, and to the south by Knightsbridge.

Bitesize History

The area was once owned by the Westminster Abbey monks who had held it before the Norman Conquest in 1066.

In 1536 King Henry VIII acquired the wooded land and shortly turned it into a private royal hunting ground where it remained so until the end of the Tudor dynasty.

The park’s name comes from the Manor of Hyde, which was the northeast sub-division of the manor of Eia.

Eia was an early Medieval manor in the parish of Westminster, Middlesex and is now a part of Central London.

When King Charles I came to the throne, the nature of the park changed and in 1637 the park was officially opened to the public.

Hyde Park London
Hyde Park London

Things to see and do in Hyde Park

Highlights:

  • The Princess Diana Memorial Fountain
  • The Serpentine Lake
  • The Rose Garden
  • Speaker’s Corner

Hyde Park has an abundance of activities you and your family can take part in, from horse riding to swimming to bike riding and skating.

The Serpentine Lido in Hyde Park is an iconic spot to enjoy a swim during summer days. You can also hire boats and pedalos.

There are also numerous memorials, fountains and statues to see.

The most popular memorial is the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain which was opened by Her Majesty The Queen on 6th July 2004.

Speakers’ Corner is the oldest living free speech platform in the world. Since the early 1800s protests, demonstrations, discussions and speeches have taken place in Hyde Park.

Speakers’ Corner is located in the North-East corner of Hyde Park near Marble Arch underground station.

Hyde Park is also known for holding large annual events which include festivals and fairs.

Visiting Hyde Park

Hyde Park is free to visit and is open from 05:00 am until midnight and is highly accessible by public transport.

London underground stations that surround Hyde Park are:

  • Marble Arch (Central Line)
  • Lancaster Gate (Central Line)
  • Knightsbridge (Picadilly Line)
  • Hyde Park Corner (Picadilly Line)

There are multiple bus routes which serve Hyde Park. Please use the TFL Journey Planner for further information.

Is Hyde Park the largest royal park in London?

Hyde Park is the largest royal park in central London and the fourth-largest in London. There are eight royal parks in total and the largest is Richmond Park.

How many royal parks are there in London?

There are eight royal parks scattered across London which are:

  • Richmond Park
  • Bushy Park
  • Greenwich Park
  • St James’s Park
  • Green Park
  • Hyde Park
  • Kensington Gardens
  • Regent’s Park
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