2 September 2013

Holland Park

London, for all it's grey concrete is surprisingly green (and slightly slimy at times, but we won't go into that). With bouts of 'donkey on the edge' syndrome occurring (or should it be 'Kiwi on a Skyscraper'?) this summer we have been exploring many of London's Royal Parks and gardens in a more in-depth manner than just wandering through them on-route to a pub.

We've explored Kew Gardens, Bushey Park, Battersea Park (in a fashion) and of course the Queen's backyard recently which I've loved sharing, but as I can't get enough of this summer's heat and fine weather, so...


Having visited Hammersmith, with the sun shining it's heart out over the weekend what more excuse did I need to join a walking tour around Holland Park with my London tour Guide friend @ypldn? The Holland family and the stunningly manicured Japanese gardens are Yannick's specialty on this walk, and I loved every minute.

I even made a new friend, but it may have been because of the biscuits, who knows!

The park seems to have little pockets of delicious areas; the woodland groves, the formally designed Japanese gardens, the rose gardens, Napoleons garden with modern art installations, the Dutch Garden (formerly the Portuguese Garden until they fell out of political favour) and the many lovely spaces in-between.



"Holland Park is about 22 hectares (54 acres) in area and is considered one of the most romantic and peaceful parks of West London. The northern half or so of the park is semi-wild woodland, the central section around the ruins of Holland House is more formal with several garden areas, and the southernmost section is used for sport." Wiki

Doesn't this glade just look like a fairy dell?

In the heart of Holland Park lies the Kyoto & Fukishima Gardens, the largest designed-by-Japanese-Designers garden in England.



The full sunshine does no justice to photos of gardens, but let me reassure you that these are delicious. From the sound of running water to the softly striated boulders lining the waterfall, every aspect has been calculated for maximum beauty and tranquillity.


Taken autumn last year.

 Can you see the turtle?

I'm not going to spoil the tour details, but in order to fully appreciate the gardens, I really do recommend Yannicks walking tour (normally held on Wednesdays and Saturdays). As with going to any new country or place, sometimes it takes a person that knows the area to really help you appreciate the best nooks and crannies. The walk is around an hour and a half, chock full of history and really interesting facts about the beautiful gardens.



Did I mention Holland Park also has a gigantic chess board and changing art installations?



I'm not comped in any way, just wanted to share a little of the blog love, bumble-bees and sunshine.
 

13 comments :

  1. I see you did NOT go on the day it was pouring rain!

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    1. Nope, we gave up on that idea - we went to Leighton House instead that day (couldn't take photos though). I had to go back this weekend, but couldn't say with all that sunshine!

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  2. Wow, I've actually never been to this park but it looks like I really should! So pretty!

    Cx
    Cocktails and Caroline

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    1. You definitely should go for a wander, it's gorgeous.

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  3. This is beautiful! I see you mentioned Kew Gardens up there, too. That one is quite close to me (I live in Chiswick), but I haven't yet made it over there. Probably should before everything starts going into dormant-mode for the winter. I really do love how London has so many open green spaces and parks. It makes living in the city more bearable for me! :o)

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    1. Oh, I love Kew - definitely worth the entry fee. Take a picnic though on a nice day. Everything will be going into autumnal colours now.
      I'm exactly the same - we call it 'donkey on the edge' syndrome (from Shrek) because if I don't get out in nature often I start to get antsy...

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  4. Wow thanks for sharing. I never think of London as having any green open spaces, to me it's the Big Smoke. I think I'm going to have to hunt some of the parks down on my annual trip to London in November.

    Phill
    www.lifeandlemons.co.uk

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    1. It's funny how green it actually is, even in the really built up areas and you see determined weeds push their way through.

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  5. Wow - I had no idea that Holland Park existed, let alone was such an awesome space. I live close by in Hammersmith so will definitely be making the trip there soon... hopefully I'll get a day as nice as you did :)

    Jessi

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    1. I've got my fingers crossed for you!

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  6. WOW Such a beautiful place Thanks for sharing :)
    yosemite national park

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  7. This looks like a great park. The peacock looks so friendly (I've been chased by them before so I'm not a huge fan of them!) And I think I found the turtle!

    Thanks for linking up at Flashback Friday:)

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