TOP 4 'Let's-Do-One' North London Parks

Written by: Harry Corton

1. Highbury Fields

There’s a nice local, communal feel about this place. A much warmer atmosphere than the parks in Central, that are often filled to the brim with out-of-towners *shakes stick*. Set slap-bang in the middle of North London, this wonderful green space is a worthy locational compromise for you and your crowd. Particularly with its proximity to Highbury & Islington station (a two-minute walk), which will tempt your set of Hackney based pals to this delectable area via the fast and easy Overground line.

On hot days, expect vast gatherings of affable sunbathers, ball game players and plumes of smoke and great smells emanating from multiple BBQ’s, which the council welcome. The field is big enough to not feel cramped, but small enough to make for a sociable, chilled out vibes.

BEST FOR: Grilling meat and halloumi with your best pals on the weekend. Don’t forget the boombox!

Clissold Park, Lake, North London Parks, North London, North Four Magazine

2. Clissold Park

An absolute gem of a discovery. The park’s centrepiece is the old 18th century manor house (which has just undergone a multi-million pound makeover), now home to a wonderful café with seating on the well-kept lawn outside. There’s surely no better spot in North London to enjoy afternoon tea after a stroll.

Gawp at the animals who call the park home (you’re never too old) such as deer, goats, exotic birds and chickens. In 2006 the park was awarded a Green Flag Award, which recognises the best green spaces in the UK.

A vast offering of fun means that everybody’s leisurely desires are well catered for. Equally, the vastness means you could always find a quiet spot to get some work done when it’s just too sunny to be cooped up inside.

BEST FOR: Showing your visiting folks you do actually know some nice cultural spots to take afternoon tea and discuss the referendum.

Hampstead Heath, Parks in North London, North London, North Four Magazine

3. Hampstead Heath

Spread across 800 acres, this is one for the intrepid fun forager inside all of us (often only escaping when the mercury rises). The real novelty of this space is that, when city living is trying your patience and you need a reminder of the countryside you used to inhabit before you upped sticks and moved to the big smoke, this place is your sanctuary… quite literally, as it’s a hub of biodiversity.

It will change your perception of what an adequate amount of activity to fit into Sunday fun-day is. There’s a zoo, a lido, three swimming ponds if you want to go full Bear Grylls (minus the danger as they’re monitored daily by lifeguards), as well as a tonne of organised sporting activities like tennis and cycling.

BEST FOR: Replacing lolling about at home on  a Sunday nursing your hangover (to no avail). Get out, get walking, get fit and clear your head. Earn that roast dinner. Thank us later.

Gas Holder Park, North London Parks, North London, North Four Magazine

4. Gas Holder Park

It’s impossible to forget the urban industrial heritage of the area here, but it’s more of a polite reminder than an overbearing dictation. The gas holder itself has been restored and shiny new columns now line the perimeter making this small space seem ten times bigger. George Clarke eat your heart out!

It’s happily tucked away on the north bank of Regents Canal, with the train tracks on the other bank, providing colourful views and thankfully well away from any dusty roads and stress-inducing traffic noise.

Unfortunately, it currently feels (in fact, is) like it’s in the middle of a building site, with flats being finished (this Xmas) around it. Don’t let that put you off though, as on Bank Holidays and Sundays there’s no work being done, allowing you to enjoy the sacred bliss of the canal-side in peace.

BEST FOR: Impressing that architecture student from Tinder with a bottle of wine one evening, perhaps after a cycle along the canal from Camden Town, under the low bridges.

Highbury Fields Photo: David Holt
Gas Holder Park Photo: Robin Webster

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