I remember it well, the first time I ended up in Holland Park. It was in 2012, during my internship period, and me and a few friends were looking for a quieter alternative to famous London parks like Hyde Park and St James’s. My little eye fell on a description of this London park in my Lonely Planet, and it felt to be like the perfect location to spend a lazy Saturday. Packed with a blanket, Pimms, wine and snacks, we embarked on the Central Line and got off at Holland Park tube station.
With little trouble at first, wirling down the beautiful lanes of the residential area, we finally found the main gate to the park.
Upon entering the park, we were afraid that it wouldn’t be much more than a forest, as we saw trees lined up close to each other (in the heart of London!). We were really looking for an open spot to enjoy the bright spring sunshine.
Luckily for us, the tree line quickly parted and made way for the Kyoto Garden. A completely different sight from the ‘forest’ we encountered at first. Large koi-carp swam around in the pond, and the Japanese trees and flowers in the surrounding area were beautiful.
Not far from the Kyoto Garden and the Belvedere, we found a large open field. In summer months, this would be the setting for the famous opera’s, as we would learn later.
We settled down on the grass, accompanied by other sun-seekers, squirrels and the slightly intimidating peacocks, and enjoyed a wonderful afternoon in Holland Park.
This January I returned by bike and enjoyed a wonderful winter stroll through one of London’s most beautiful parks. Note: All photos in this post are mine and taken in January 2015.