Reaching half-term, our nannies have been chatting to each other about where to take the kids in a Covid world. Yes, it’s a total pain that we can’t all meet up indoors but have you seen those beautiful autumn trees this year?
So, here are our nannies’ top picks for places to go outside with kids. Whether you’re in North, East, South or West London we’ve got you covered.
Stephens House and Gardens, Finchley N3
Entry is free to these landscaped gardens, full of wildlife, and there’s a lovely cafe with plenty of outdoor seating. There’s also a sizeable playground with a fantastic sandpit which is great for the little ones. Stephens House and Gardens has lots of space for some socially distanced fun with picturesque views!
Islington Boat Club, Islington N1
The Islington Boat Club does kids sessions on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. They offer loads of exciting outdoor activities such as: kayaking, swimming, narrow boating, bell boating, power boating and mountain biking.
It’s a brilliant place for children to push their boundaries and meet new friends. Staff are qualified instructors, who are always supportive and encouraging of any kids or adults who are attending sessions. Youth sessions are recommended for 9-16 year olds.
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Lordship Recreation Ground, Tottenham N17
Lordship Recreation Ground offers some outdoor fun and fresh air in the heart of Haringey. Its main feature is its 'Model Traffic Area', a scaled-down road network where children can bring along their bikes and scooters, designed to teach them about road traffic in a safe environment.
The children's play area has a variety of play options from climbing boards, a play train, swings and slides. There's also a pond, where you will find ducks and turtles. The grass field was well maintained and always seems inviting to just relax on or have a picnic.
Jubilee Park, Leyton E10
This is one for pirate lovers. Jubilee Park itself isn’t too original, but the playground features a HUGE wooden pirate ship, and there’s a small cafe too to grab some food and a hot drink. If you fancy exploring, there’s a bridge over the railway (spot the Eurostar trains!) straight onto Hackney Marshes.
Mudchute Farm, Isle of Dogs E14
Mudchute is a family friendly farm hidden within 32 acres of countryside within London, and with gorgeous views of the Canary Wharf skyline. It’s a tranquil place to spend the day and the sheep are very friendly! There’s a restaurant and a bar as well in the park, plus a space dedicated just for dogs to run free incase you’re planning to bring along a furry friend.
Woodberry Wetlands, Stoke Newington N16
Woodberry Wetlands is a family-friendly haven for wildlife lovers, with 11 hectares of reed-fringed ponds it’s a wonderful escape from city life whilst staying in the heart of London. You can even view the unusual contrast between the nearby London tower blocks, and gorgeous wild wetland habitat. What’s more, the wetlands are free to visit every day, so if you’re looking for an inexpensive, fun and educational day out, head to Woodberry Wetlands.
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Horniman Gardens, Forest Hill SE23
Horniman Gardens is a beautiful space filled with animals and even musical instruments for children to play with! With lots of different gardens full of wonderful greenery and wildlife, there’s plenty of space to run around and play imaginative games within. On the grounds is also a museum which is well worth a visit if you're able to. If not, the gardens are a great space to enjoy with kids this half-term.
One Tree Hill, Honour Oak SE23
One Tree Hill is a great South London haven, boasting amazing city views and lush landscapes to enjoy – it’s a hidden gem! The space is perfect to visit with bikes and scooters with the kids. Plus, because it’s tucked away, One Tree Hill should hopefully be a little less busy than some of the other parks around London this half-term. It’s an idyllic spot for some afternoon fun.
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Beckenham Place Park, Beckenham BR3
Beckenham Place Park is a great spot for kids and dogs, covering a mighty 98 hectares. Although its outdoor swimming lake is hibernating for winter, it still makes a gorgeous landscape to walk through. The park also holds a beautiful mansion which operates as a community centre and cafe. So wrap up warm, grab a hot chocolate from the cafe, take your camera and enjoy a stroll through nature.
Oxleas Wood, Greenwich SE18
If you’re based in South London, you may have exhausted Greenwich Park, but likely haven't Oxleas Wood. Set within Oxleas Meadows, the wood is full of dens, rope swings and "secret" gardens for kids to enjoy – plus big open areas for picnics if you catch some great weather, overlooking great views of London. If you don’t fancy packing a picnic, you’ll find a lovely little cafe. Oh, and there’s free parking!
Deen City Farm, Morden SW19
Deen City Farm is free to visit and hidden off a busy road – a piece of serenity in Greater London. With many types of animals and a small park, it’s a great way to spend time with the family. They have all sorts of farm animals from the usual cows, pigs and sheep, to the more unusual alpaca, ferrets and owls (and more). It’s a day out you and the kids really won’t forget! If you’re looking to get even more stuck in with some animal friends, they also have a riding school to book some horse and pony riding lessons with.
Wandsworth Common, Wandsworth SW12
Wandsworth Common has ponds, looking beautifully autumnal surrounded by trees at the moment, where you can feed the ducks and unwind. There’s also a new playground where you’ll find a caged football pitch with a synthetic surface – perfect for kids looking to practice their footy skills while school is off.
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Battersea Park, Battersea SW11
Battersea Park, located right by the river Thames, has everything you would want and more from a park. Set within 200 acres, the Victorian park has loads to do from a boating lake, children’s zoo, running track, kids tennis, riverside promenade, ecological areas to explore, playgrounds and even a Go Ape for the more adventurous. This park is a whole day out or more by itself!
Diana Memorial Playground, Kensington W2
The Diana Memorial Playground has been stated by our nannies as, "just amazing". The pirate ship and sand are the main attractions, but there’s also a boating lake and a Will to Win tennis centre with kids classes if you're looking for something active for them to do over the holiday.
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