15 Best Walks in London (Hikes & Nice Walks)

15 Best Walks in London (Hikes & Nice Walks)

By will

London is a vibrant and beautiful city, with endless opportunities to explore.

Whether you’re looking for an active hike or a leisurely stroll, this incredible city has something to suit everyone.

Here we present the 15 best walks in London, from easy-going hikes to stunning coastal views.

1. St James’s Park, London’s Oldest Royal Park

St James's Park, London's Oldest Royal Park
Photo by Lewis Clarke

St James’s Park, London’s oldest royal park, is a breath of fresh air in the bustling city.

Located at the heart of Westminster, it’s a place visitors can escape to for a peaceful stroll and admire the scenery.

Its meandering pathways make you feel like you’re in a different world from the busy streets nearby.

You’ll find plenty of wildlife here too – from swans to ducks, geese to pelicans, and even some rare varieties of waterfowl.

The lush greenery provides a tranquil atmosphere for anyone looking for relaxation or an outdoor adventure.

And with its picturesque lake and impressive views of the Palace of Westminster, it makes for one of London’s best walks.

Plus, its central location means you can easily fit in a visit while exploring other nearby attractions.

So why not take some time out to enjoy this beautiful park?

2. South Bank Stroll: Tate Modern To Jubilee Gardens

Jubilee Gardens, London
Photo by Alan Hunt

Leaving the serenity of St James’s Park, why not take a stroll along the banks of the Thames to explore the eclectic mix of attractions on offer?

Starting at Tate Modern, the world-famous modern art gallery, you can wander through its vast hallways and be inspired by some of the best contemporary art from around the globe.

From there, head towards Jubilee Gardens, taking in all that South Bank has to offer on your way: street performers, independent markets, and a vibrant atmosphere.

There’s something for everyone.

And as you walk along the river, enjoy stunning views of London across the water.

When you arrive at Jubilee Gardens you can take a moment to relax and soak up all it has to offer – beautiful flowers, green spaces, and plenty of outdoor seating for when you need a break.

Don’t forget to complete your journey with a few photos taken against this iconic backdrop before heading back home – after all, it’s not every day that you can get such spectacular views!

3. Parkland Walk

View along Parkland Walk, looking west
Photo by Dr Neil Clifton

The Parkland Walk is a beautiful and unique walk in London.

It’s one of the capital’s longest nature trails, stretching 4.5 miles along an abandoned railway line from Finsbury Park to Alexandra Palace.

Along the route, you’ll find lush green spaces, wildflower meadows, and plenty of wildlife to admire.

The sights and sounds will make you forget the hustle and bustle of London life for a while.

The Parkland Walk has something for everyone – whether you’re into bird watching or just want some time away from the city.

There are plenty of benches where you can stop and take in your surroundings, as well as interesting points of interest like old bridges and viaducts which have been turned into art galleries and cafes.

And if you’re feeling adventurous, why not try out one of the guided walks run by local groups?

They’re sure to give you an insight into this hidden corner of London.

No matter what type of walker you are, exploring the Parkland Walk will leave you feeling refreshed and invigorated.

Lose yourself for a few hours among the trees, wildflowers, and wildlife – it’s a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of urban life for a while!

4. Hampstead Circular Walk

Next up on our list of the best walks in London is the Hampstead Circular Walk.

This winding route takes you through some of the loveliest parts of Hampstead Heath, as well as past some of its most iconic sights.

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It’s a great way to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, whilst still being close to home.

The walk begins by taking you along the High Street, where you’ll find an array of boutique stores and eateries.

From here, you’ll make your way to Parliament Hill Fields – a tranquil spot with stunning views over London – before heading down the hill toward Golders Green Station.

Here, you can enjoy a stroll through one of Hampstead Heath’s many woodlands before crossing over to Kenwood House.

The house itself has beautiful grounds which are definitely worth exploring before making your way back down to Hampstead Village for some refreshments!

On this circular walk, you’ll be able to take in a range of scenery within easy reach from central London – from fields and woodlands to grand houses and buzzing high streets.

Whether it’s a leisurely Sunday stroll or an invigorating hike, this route will provide plenty of opportunity for adventure and exploration!

5. The Jubilee Greenway

The Jubilee Greenway is an 18-mile route in London, following the River Thames between Hampton Court Palace and the Olympic Park.

Starting at the iconic Hampton Court Palace, which was built for Henry VIII, you can take a leisurely stroll along the riverside path, passing through some of London’s most beautiful areas including Richmond Park, Putney Bridge, and the Tate Modern.

Along the way, you’ll come across many interesting sights such as historical landmarks, parks, and gardens.

You can also enjoy a variety of activities such as bird watching, cycling or simply taking in the stunning views of the river.

The route follows mainly flat paths and offers some great places to stop off for refreshments or a picnic.

For those looking for something a bit more energetic, there are plenty of opportunities to go running or even take part in water sports on some sections of the route.

No matter how you choose to explore it, The Jubilee Greenway is sure to provide an unforgettable experience for anyone looking for a nice walk in London.

From its fascinating history to its amazing wildlife – this route is one that should not be missed!

6. Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

Leaving the Jubilee Greenway behind, the next destination on any London walking enthusiast’s list should be Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

This area of east London is home to iconic sites like the 2012 Olympic Stadium, as well as an array of lush green spaces.

The park’s collection of gardens, waterways, and wetlands make it a great place to while away a few hours in nature.

Plus, you’ll get a fantastic view of the city skyline from the top of the ArcelorMittal Orbit – a 114.5-meter-high sculpture that stands proudly in the middle of it all.

The park covers an impressive 560 acres – so there’s plenty to explore.

You can take a leisurely stroll around its grounds and spot wildlife like kingfishers and herons in its wetlands.

Or if you’re feeling energetic, why not take a run or cycle along one of its 20km trails?

There are also regular events taking place here throughout the year, bringing together people from all walks of life.

So why not join in and make some new friends?

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is truly one of London’s greatest gems – taking visitors on an unforgettable journey through history and nature.

Whether you’d prefer a relaxing stroll or something more energetic, you’ll find it here!

7. Battersea Park

Battersea Park is one of London’s most beautiful green spaces.

Stretching along the south bank of the Thames, this 200-acre park offers a variety of activities and attractions for visitors.

Whether you’re looking for a peaceful stroll or an energetic hike, Battersea Park has something to offer.

The park is filled with lush greenery and stunning views of the river.

There are plenty of paths and trails winding through the park so you can take your time exploring its many delights.

There’s also a lake where you can take in some bird watching or try your hand at fishing.

And if that’s not enough, there are plenty of other attractions such as an adventure playground, cycling routes, tennis courts, and a boating lake.

For those seeking some peace and quiet, Battersea Park is the perfect place to relax and unwind.

You can find solace among its leafy trees and serene gardens while taking in the sights and sounds of nature all around you.

No matter what kind of adventure you’re looking for, Battersea Park will provide an unforgettable experience.

8. The Wandle Trail, South London

Leaving the vibrant greenery of Battersea Park, we now venture to the Wandle Trail in South London.

This winding trail is a perfect way to escape hustle and bustle of city life and explore nature at its finest.

The river Wandle is one of the most important tributaries of the Thames, and it flows through some of south London’s most unique green spaces.

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The path begins at the National Trust’s Merton Abbey Mills and stretches across five miles towards Croydon, passing through lush parks and woodland.

Along the way, you’ll spot wildflowers, birds, butterflies, geese, and ducks as well as many other species.

You’ll also pass by intriguing historical sites such as Morden Hall Park and Honeywood Museum.

All along this trail, there are plenty of spots for picnics or just simply to take in stunning views.

Whether you’re looking for an afternoon stroll or a longer hike, The Wandle Trail offers something for everyone seeking a little bit of peace from London’s busy streets.

From its tranquil riverside paths to its vibrant birdlife, this walk is sure to provide an unforgettable experience in nature’s playground.

What better way to explore south London than taking a leisurely walk along this beautiful river?

9. The Line, East/South London

Stretching from the Thames to the Olympic Park, The Line is a 7-mile walking route through East and South London.

It’s filled with surprises, from historic sites to modern urban art installations.

You’ll find plenty of places for a break or a picnic along the way, giving you time to relax and enjoy the scenery.

The Line starts in Stratford at London’s iconic Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Here you can explore the world-class sporting venues and take in views of the City skyline. Make sure to check out “The Orbit” – a sculpture that towers over the park – before you set off on your journey.

Next up is Victoria Park, one of East London’s most popular green spaces.

Here you can wander around flowerbeds, lakes, and nature reserves while taking in sweeping views of London’s skyline.

If you’re feeling adventurous you can even try to stand-up paddle boarding on one of two ponds!

From here it’s onwards towards Limehouse Basin Marina where there are more public art installations and plenty of interesting wildlife to observe.

As you make your way back towards Stratford along The Line, look out for some hidden gems such as Nature Grotto – an underground space filled with colorful sculptures – or even an abandoned Victorian swimming pool!

With so many surprises scattered along this path, it’s easy to see why The Line is one of London’s best walks.

10. Westminster Walk

Starting from the iconic Westminster Bridge, this walk takes you through some of London’s most stunning and historic spots.

With the River Thames running alongside, you can take in the breathtaking view of Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament.

As you wander down Whitehall and Horse Guards Parade, you’ll be surrounded by some of Britain’s most important monuments and institutions.

Continue along your journey past Downing Street and Trafalgar Square, where Nelson’s Column stands tall, before making your way to St. James’ Park.

Here, you can observe a variety of wildlife around its picturesque lake or simply relax on one of its benches while admiring Buckingham Palace in the distance.

This stroll is a great way to take in London’s sights while feeling free to explore at your own pace and discover something new around every corner.

11. Regent’S Canal – Camden Lock To Little Venice

Beginning your journey at Camden Lock, you’ll find yourself in the heart of North London.

Here, the cobbled streets are bustling with life and activity.

As you meander along Regent’s Canal, you’ll be encircled by a captivating landscape of canalside pubs and winding towpaths that draw in crowds from around the world.

The 8-mile path is dotted with canal boats and barges, decorated with flowers spilling over the sides.

Plus, there are plenty of opportunities to take a break – indulge in a quaint cafe or have a picnic lunch by the riverbank.

As you continue your journey southward, you’ll pass through Kensal Green and Paddington before arriving at Little Venice – a charming pocket of London where two canals meet.

With its Italianate architecture, tranquil waterside cafes, and delightful houseboats, it guarantees an idyllic spot to rest before heading back home.

This scenic stroll offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of city life – perfect for anyone looking for an adventure off the beaten track!

Take time to explore all that Regent’s Canal has to offer – from taking part in watersports activities to admiring its stunning artworks, it’s sure to provide an unforgettable experience.

12. Limehouse Basin – Bethnal Green To Wapping

Continuing the exploration of London’s canals, Limehouse Basin is a must-see destination for any walker.

Stretching from Bethnal Green to Wapping, it’s a great place to wander and take in the sights.

The basin was created in 1820 so that ships could access the Regent’s Canal, and later became an important port for goods from around the world.

The path along Limehouse Basin takes you past some of London’s most iconic landmarks, including Tower Bridge, HMS Belfast, and Canary Wharf.

Take your time admiring these architectural wonders and spot some wildlife along the way – this area is known for its array of waterfowl!

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To top off an already memorable experience, you can enjoy a drink or bite to eat at one of the many pubs or restaurants dotted along the route.

This stroll through London’s history is not only rewarding but also a great way to relax.

Whether you’re looking for an afternoon escape or a leisurely weekend adventure, Limehouse Basin proves why London remains one of the best cities in which to explore on foot.

13. Thames Path East – London Bridge To Rotherhithe

Starting at London Bridge and walking along the Thames Path East is a great way to explore some of London’s most iconic sights.

You’ll get to stroll past the Tower of London, HMS Belfast, and City Hall, all while getting a unique perspective of the city.

You can even take a break and enjoy some refreshments or a picnic at one of the many pubs or restaurants along the way.

Along this route, you’ll also have the chance to explore some of London’s hidden gems – quiet parks, peaceful riverside areas, and stunning views across the river.

The Thames Path East offers something for everyone; from those looking for a leisurely stroll with plenty of photo opportunities to more experienced hikers wanting to take on more challenging terrain.

Whichever you choose, you’re sure to find something that tickles your fancy.

Plus, you can make it as short or as long as you like by taking advantage of public transport links along the route.

So why not grab your shoes and head out – no matter if it’s for an hour or a whole day – for an adventure that will leave you feeling recharged and refreshed?

14. Erith Riverside To Old Bexley Village

Leaving the hustle and bustle of London Bridge behind, the next leg of this Thames Path walk takes you from Erith Riverside to Old Bexley Village.

This stretch offers a peaceful escape from the city, with plenty of wildlife to spot along the way.

The path runs along the edge of Lesnes Abbey Woods and takes you through some truly idyllic countryside.

You’ll be able to see plenty of birds and other wildlife as you go, so don’t forget your binoculars!

Along this section, you’ll also get views across London’s docklands and out onto the Thames Estuary.

It’s a great spot for birdwatching, with many species present all year round.

As you reach Old Bexley Village, there are plenty more sights to explore.

Take in the historical architecture and wander around the old buildings before heading back into central London or further along the Thames Path.

Enjoy discovering what this beautiful area has to offer!

15. Clissold Park To Springfield Park

Starting at Clissold Park, this walk takes you on a journey through lush greenery and peaceful waters.

You’ll wander through meandering paths lined with towering trees and plenty of wildlife.

Along the way, you’ll find tranquil ponds filled with ducks, geese, and swans.

The park also offers a great opportunity to learn more about nature as it’s home to a variety of plants, birds, and animals.

The next stop is Springfield Park which is located right next to the River Lea.

This ancient body of water has seen many changes over the centuries but remains an integral part of London’s landscape.

When you arrive at Springfield Park, you’ll be greeted by vast expanses of grassland dotted with wildflowers and trees.

Here you can sit back and soak up some much-needed peace and quiet or take in the views from one of the park’s many viewpoints.

There are also plenty of picnic tables and benches for those who want to enjoy a bite to eat in nature’s embrace.

No matter what your reasons for visiting these two parks may be, they both offer something special that will leave you feeling refreshed and inspired after even just a short visit.

So take your time exploring these enchanting spots – there will always be something new to discover!

Best Walks in London – Final Thoughts

As you can see, London has a variety of walks to offer.

From the classic park routes of St James’s and Clissold Park to the more adventurous Thames Path East and Limehouse Basin, there is sure to be something for everyone.

Whether you’re looking for a gentle stroll or an invigorating hike, London has something suitable.

The walks I’ve mentioned here are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to exploring the city on foot.

There are plenty more hidden gems out there waiting to be discovered – all you need to do is lace up your shoes and go!

So why not take a walk around one of London’s many beautiful parks today? You won’t regret it.

From grand, historic parks such as St James’s Park to exciting new green spaces like Jubilee Gardens, these 15 best walks in London will give you plenty of ideas for your next outing in England’s capital city.

With so much to explore, there’s no excuse not to get out and about!

FAQs

What are some easy walks in London?

Some easy walks in London are Goring Gap and the Thames Path, Epping Forest’s Oak Trail, and Box Hill.

What are the best circular walks in London?

Some of the best circular walks in London are Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, South Bank, and Battersea Park.

What are some good family walks in London?

Some good family walks in London are Hampstead Heath and Kenwood, Primrose Hill, Regent’s Park, and Alexandra Palace

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About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.