Five Ways to Explore London’s Peaks, Woods and Waterways

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 a boat on the Thames

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 on the River Bus and pick a window seat. 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.

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