Five London areas to go for a romantic walk this Valentine’s weekend
Like pretty much everything this past year, Valentine’s Day is going to be a little different. Unfortunately there are no restaurants open to go for an intimate meal, the cinemas are shut and some people may not even be able to see their significant other due to national restrictions. However, there is still the reliable British pastime of a good old-fashioned walk, which can be quite romantic when done in the right place. For those who aren’t sure how to spend February 14th, here are five London areas to go for an idyllic stroll.
Located near Hyde Park and a short walk from Marble Arch and Oxford Street, Connaught Village is a luxurious place to go for a wander. The area, known as a leafy haven in the heart of the West End, has also unveiled a brand-new outdoor neon lighting display for Valentine’s Day with led lights fashioned into beautiful red and pink hearts. Connaught Village is also home to great shops to fuel a cosy night in, such as Connaught Cellars for wine and Buchanans for cheese. Amongst other independent retailers is PM Flowers, which sells elegant bouquets suitable for that special someone.
Tucked inside north London’s zone two and less than four miles from the centre sits Hampstead Heath, the park that inspired CS Lewis to write The Chronicles of Narnia. Providing the highest point in inner London – and hence a spectacular view of the city – the heath is a favourite for many people. It’s a wild park of woodland and meadows and is a lovely location for a lazy ramble with someone you love. Sporting 11 ponds, including three for bathing, it’s the capital’s most picturesque park and it will make you forget you are living in a glamorous global metropolis.
Although it’s not possible to fly to Italy at the moment to meander along the canals, there’s the chance to enjoy a little of the Venetian atmosphere in London’s Maida Vale. The famous walk along Regent’s Canal begins in Little Venice and winds alongside beautiful narrowboats, Regent’s park and London Zoo, culminating in the colourful Camden Town.
Richmond Park – one of London’s eight royal parks – is just a stone’s throw away from central London. This diverse and huge gree space (2,500 acres) is a top UK site of ancient trees, has deer roaming throughout and supports a range of rare species. There are the magical gardens of Isabella Plantation as well as the vast Pen Ponds, both providing the perfect location for a romantic amble. It’s also possible to see the London skyline from King Henry’s Mound, which makes for a great view.
Kew Gardens is a botanic garden in south-west London that houses the largest and most diverse botanical and mycological collections in the world. From its huge greenhouses to its vast array of plants, Kew Gardens is a truly beautiful place to get lost in. Due to the pandemic it’s necessary to book a slot and they ask that only those who live locally come and visit.
Photos: David Parry (Connaught Village), Filippo L’Astorina (Hampstead Heath), Avrelian Photography (Little Venice)