Join the Inspiral adventure and do something unique by exploring the whole of London as a National Park by following any section of this spiral walk in and out of the city centre.

InspiralLondon is a new artist-designed metropolitan trail – a collective on the ground mapping – that provides a new walking experience in and out of London. An anti-clockwise spiral walk from Kings Cross, unwinding from its centre; crossing the Thames by bridge, foot tunnel, cable car and ferry ten times to end and begin again at Gravesend.

InspiralLondon creates 300-miles of path way, divided into 36 segments all easily accessible by public transport, allowing anyone – strollers, walkers, urban explorers, excursionists, urban ecologists – to experience the city and its environs as one vast art space in which to re-imagine the built, artificial and natural environments.

From 2018-2020 InspiralLondon continues to broaden its work, providing a platform for events, festivals and walks; alongside the publication of pamphlets, booklets, maps and books, offering a unique range of responses to the experience of being in and exploring the Metropole and its expanding hinterlands. The Inspiral Trail, coordinated by InspiralLondon CIC, is an original idea conceived by counterproductions in 2013.

See https://www.inspirallondon.com/

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London is one of the greenest cities in the world for its size.

Besides 8.6 million people, London is home to more than 8.3 million trees and 14,000 species of wildlife.

Let’s think of London not just as a political, cultural and financial centre, but as an ecological centre too.

 

Green and Blue

  • 47% green* - parks, gardens, woodlands…
  • 2.5% blue* - ponds, puddles, canals, rivers, lakes
  • And only 9-10% of London is domestic buildings.
  • London has lots of roads but put together they make up just 12% of London space.
  • London has 3.8 million gardens cover 24% of the capital. Gardens are where Londoners have very real power to protect, conserve and create life.

* Statistics by Greenspace Information for Greater London.

 

London is truly remarkable

  • 1,572 km2 in area                            
  • 3.8 million gardens                          
  • 8.6 million people
  • 8.3 million trees                               
  • 14,000 species
  • 30,000 allotments                            
  • 3,000 parks
  • 300 farms                                         
  • 50+ canoe clubs
  • 1,000kms of signed footpaths          
  • 850kms of rivers, canals and streams
  • 14,000 wildlife species                     
  • 2 Special Protection Areas
  • 3 Special Areas of Conservation     
  • 4 UNESCO sites
  • 37 SSSIs                                          
  • 142 Local Nature Reserves
  • 1,400 Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation
  • 2 National Nature Reserves – Richmond Park and Ruislip Woods

 

 

 

JoshuaLetter

 

This page was kindly illustrated by Joshua, aged 9.5 who picked making London a National Park City as his homework project. The Yr4 children at Alexandra School in Kingston, London were asked to research a UK city and share their findings in any way that they chose! As a long term supporter of the London National Park City, attending many of our events with his mother Maria Sprostranova (one of Kingston's own Green Heroes @MSprostranova), Joshua dedicated his homework piece to sharing our amazing news and green stats with the rest of his school! 

Perhaps you too could have a go at a poster celebrating London National Park City in numbers? We'd love to see them at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on Twitter at @LondonNPC.

 

Set yourself some challenges to explore London in new ways. You'll get to see London in a different light. Invite friends and family along too!

Why not grab one of our maps of the London National Park City and head out!

Climb London's Highest Peaks

You can walk to the top of some great lookouts in London, with spectacular views across the city. Try climbing one for dawn, and another for sunset. You'll find the highest and best peaks marked on our map - go and bag them!

Walk the woods

Forests, woods, copses - there is so much woodland across the National Park City. We reckon a quarter of 14 year olds have never been in one. Let's change that stat! Any season can be a great time to visit. Autumn has changing colours and the rustle of leaves under foot. Winter has stark detail, evergreens and seasonal berries. Spring is the season of growth, luminous greens, buds and bursting into life. Summer's rays of sunshine are ideal for dappled shade, picnics and sunsets. There are signed paths in many, but don't be too afraid to wander off and get temporarily lost (if you have a phone or map in your pocket).

Ride TfL's River Bus

London wouldn't exist without the River Thames and floating along it is one of the best ways to see the capital. Pay with your Oyster or contactless card and pick a window seat on the high speed Thames Clipper catamarans. Other services run upstream (west) to Hampton Court and as far downstream as Woolwich Royal Arsenal in the east. Westminster is a great hub where lots of boats connect and the return tour boat leaves from there.

Circumnavigate the capital

Enjoy some circular walks. Start small and grow your aspirations. A bench on Victoria Embankment near Temple Station is London's geographic centroid. You could do a lap in under a minute! But you can plot any circuitous route you like - just be sure to plan where to stop each leg of a big ring so you can easily return for the next leg. London's transport system is great for getting you to your starting points. The Capital Ring has some hidden treasures, and the London Outer Orbital Path (LOOP) is an epic way to see the fringe of the National Park City. You could even trace Iain Sinclair's passage alongside the M25 London Orbital.

Discover nearby landscapes

There are three Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty to explore across London. The Kent Downs, Surrey Hills and Chilterns are London's closest protected landscapes and are easily accessible by train. You can get to the Chilterns with your Oyster card. Go a little further to discover the capital's nearest National Parks. Within two hours you could be strolling in the South Downs or mountain biking in the New Forest. Look at the edges of our map for directions to all of the UK's 15 National Parks.

Share your pictures of exploring and enjoying London's great outdoors on social media using #NationalParkCity

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