Sports and Relaxation Spots in London

When it comes to green open spaces, there are perhaps only are a few cities in the world that can compete with London. It has an astonishing 35,000 acres of green open spaces, including public parks and gardens. This makes it one of the most eco-friendly destinations to spend a relaxed holiday.

If you’re looking for accommodation away from the hustle and bustle of central London, there are a number of Shoreditch hotels just half an hour’s drive away. They’re well connected to the city and its suburbs, with a wide variety of public transport modes available.

One of the best places to stay in the area is the M hotel by Montcalm in Shoreditch London Tech City, which offers luxury and top-notch facilities at an affordable price. It also offers easy access to some of the best spots for sports and leisure in London that include the following:

Hampstead Ponds

It certainly cannot be for those who prefer a warm, snug place indoors in winter, but Hampstead Ponds is ideal to cool off in the mid of summer within the heart of the city. Visitors have the option to either share mixed ponds or single-gender as per their preference. The Hampstead Pond itself is mixed, with the Highgate Pond used only by men and the Kenwood Ladies Pond is exclusively for female-use only. Although it isn’t free, the rates are very reasonable, considering their magnificent settings. Whether you plan to bear the chill and go for a dip on a New Year swim, or just enjoy a swim in the summer, the Hampstead Ponds are a great spot to visit in London.

Richmond Park

It’s the largest of the eight Royal Parks of the city, and it’s a great place to explore on a warm sunny day. A popular venue with Londoners, there’s plenty of wildlife too, including deer, and the park offers plenty of activities to visitors. There are cycle routes for mountain bikers and road bikers, but visitors can hire one if they don’t have one of their own. With a circuit spread over seven miles it makes for a great workout.  

The Undercroft at the Southbank Centre

The skate park at the Southbank Centre has been the focal point for BMX racing and London skateboarding for more than four decades. It has also been the hub where some of the city’s best graffiti artists hone their skills. The result is a constantly changing visual scene, and the centre for subterranean sports and culture in the city—no other place even comes close. If skateboarding isn’t your cup of tea, no problem. It’s worth visiting the place to appreciate the skaters and artists who display their unique skills. A protracted legal battle to save the skate park was finally won in September 2014, thus saving it from being redeveloped and its longevity secured for further generations to enjoy this unique cultural hotspot.

London Fields Table Tennis Association

Some of the most striking features of the London Fields Table Tennis Association at Hackney are its location amidst amazing natural beauty and its outstanding service to the community. It was formed in 2010 when a few members of the local community started it, with the association being linked to the Pub on the Park. There are local competitions, social events, and hitting sessions organised to cater to players of all levels. Visitors always have the option to play at no charge when a table is free. While there are free table tennis tables all over the city, it’s the community that makes this one special.

The Thames

The lifeline of London, the Thames River is very popular with Londoners and visitors alike, providing ample opportunities for boating and kayaking. If you don’t own either, the Ahoy Centre in Deptford offers lessons at no cost in return for work as a volunteer. The organisation aims to cater to at-risk youths and the disadvantaged through sailing and rowing activities. Apart from being a fun sport, it also offers an opportunity to contribute to society.

Great Outdoor Gyms

There are quite a few people in London who are reluctant to visit a gym in the city because of the prohibitive fees—most of the top gyms do indeed charge a hefty sum. Thankfully, there are other options. With places like The Great Outdoor Gym Company Ltd.,  there are close to 20 boroughs in the city that now have trendy outdoor gyms that offer basic but effective resistance-based training and cardio workouts. So, if you feel like pedalling on a fixed bike for 45 minutes or use a bench press, you can do it all for free. It makes for a great outdoor workout and a good enough reason to get out of bed early in the morning.

The Doodle Bar

The Doodle Bar, Credit Pinterest

The Doodle Bar is a rather nondescript-looking place, but a visit to this bar-cum-exhibition space is definitely recommended. Whether you prefer to play at the free table tennis table, doodle on its large chalk walls, or just sit down and nurse your drinks, you’ll enjoy spending time at this pretty cool place. While it certainly isn’t a high-performance sporting venue, it’s rather more of a space to show off your skills to the public, with a drink in hand. The table is placed in the outdoor area where there’s also terrific street food on offer—it’s simply another great location to hang out with your mates in London.

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