Hampstead Heath

Price guide: Free

Hampstead Heath, London, NW3

Price guide: Free

Hampstead Heath - Kenwood House © Nigel Tisdall
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By Nigel Tisdall, your London expert

I write for Marie Claire, The Daily .... Read more
#19 of 30
expert-rated things to do in London
Expert overall rating:3.9 out of 5
Value for money:
Recommended for:
Backpackers / Students, Families with younger children, Mature travellers, Singles, Travellers with pets, Chilling out, Escaping the crowds, Great views / scenery, Nature / wildlife, Relaxation

Best for Escapists - Expert review of Hampstead Heath

Escape to the country in this vast and varied open space.

This huge and much-loved chunk of wild and hilly countryside in the heart of North London is one of the capital's greatest treasures. It's worth visiting any time of the year to walk, relax, picnic and contemplate the very English scene it often presents. At its heart lies Kenwood House (www.english-heritage.org.uk), a splendid 18th-century mansion that's free to enter. The elegant interiors is filled with fine art (including work by Vermeer, Rembrandt and Gainsborough) and alongside stands the Brew House cafe, a good self-service restaurant. I like to approach the Heath by walking west from Highgate Village, or you can enter from the north (Hampstead Lane). In  the south, Parliament Hill is a panoramic spot popular with kite-fliers, where you can enjoy a superb view over central London.

Expert tips: 
Fancy a dip? The Heath has three open-air bathing ponds for male, female and mixed swimming, plus a Lido.
While you're in the area pay a visit to Keats House (www.keatshouse.cityoflondon.gov.uk) where the Romantic poet John Keats lived from 1818-20.

More information on Hampstead Heath:

Price guide:
Park / garden, Swimming pool, Viewpoint
Hampstead Heath, London, NW3
Months open:
All year round

Have you been to Hampstead Heath? Would you recommended it?