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Explore London’s Royal Parks This Summer

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London’s Royal Parks really come alive during the summer. From evening bat hunts in Hyde Park to live jazz bands in Greenwich, there’s always something going on. There are eight Royal Parks in total, covering almost 5,000 acres of land. Each one has a vast array of sightseeing activities to partake in.

Hire a Boat in Hyde Park

Hyde Park and Regent’s Park both contain boathouses and lakes that are open to the public. Rowing boats and pedalos can be hired on an hourly or daily basis. Opening times and dates can vary according to the weather, so make sure you check in advance if you want to make a day of it.

Watch Live Jazz in Greenwich Park

Greenwich Park has recently gone through a major refurbishment, and it’s now more beautiful than ever before. The Royal Observatory café hosts live jazz every Friday from 9th May until the end of August, allowing you to listening to top-quality music while enjoying the stunning view of Canary Wharf.

View London’s Skyline on Primrose Hill

Primrose Hill is the highest peak in London and offers superb views of the city skyline. Located in the Camden area, local residents include celebrities, politicians and even members of the Royal Family – all of which can be seen strolling the walkways during the summer.

Play Golf in Richmond Park

The Richmond Park golf course has just had a multi-million pound refurbishment. The stunning gardens and vast array of wildlife make it the perfect spot if you want to get away from the hustle of bustle of the big city and enjoy a nice quiet game. The new clubhouse doesn’t require membership and contains a coffee shop, bar and restaurant.

royal parks

Watch the Trooping the Colour Parade in St James’s Park

Once per year, on the Sovereign’s official birthday, a military parade will take place in St James’s Park from 10am until 1pm. In addition, there will be a flypast over Buckingham Palace. If you want to see The Queen in all her glory, the Trooping of Colour is a must.

Hire a Boris Bike

Almost all of the Royal Parks have bike lanes and nearby docking stations where you can hire a Boris Bike for just a few pounds per day. The vast greenery provides a particularly pleasant backdrop if you want to break a sweat and enjoy the sunshine.

Play Cricket in Greenwich Park

Throughout the summer Greenwhich Park will be hosting a number of cricket matches. To take part yourself just give Christine Sheffield a call on 0300 061 2380 and get your name on the list. If you’d like to watch, just turn up on the day.

Watch Deer in Richmond Park

Richmond Park has a diverse range of wildlife and is one of the biggest conservation parks in the area. It contains 630 red and fallow deer which roam freely, making it one of the best places in the UK for viewing these magnificent beasts in their natural environment.

With so much to see and do the Royal Parks of London really are the highlight of the city during the summer season. If you’d like to see them from a completely different perspective, take a ride on The London Helicopter.

Celebrate the Queen’s Birthday at the Trooping of the Colour Parade

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The Trooping of the Colour parade dates back to the reign of Charles II, who took to the throne during the 17th century. The colours of the regiment were used in battle to ensure every man could recognize their own soldiers; therefore, in London the foot guards would perform these “tagging” duties as part of their daily routine – thus creating the tradition. In 1760 a parade was ordered to mark the king’s birthday, and from the accession of George IV, they became an annual event.

This highly impressive display of patriotic pageantry is now held on The Queen’s birthday. Up until 1987 she would ride side-saddle while wearing the colours of those being trooped – each year the regiments of the commonwealth would take turns performing in the parade. Nowadays she rides in a horse and cart instead.

Although The Queen was born on 21st April, it’s been a long tradition throughout the British monarchy to celebrate the sovereign’s birthday on a public day during the summer. This is mainly due to the weather. The Trooping of the Colour will, therefore, be held this year on Saturday 13th June. Since her reign the Queen has attended every Trooping of the Colour parade – except in 1955 due to a national rail strike – and this year will be no exception.

queen parade

The Ceremony

During the ceremony The Queen is greeted with a Royal salute at the Tower of London and Green Park. When she arrives at the Mall she carries out an inspection of the troops. Afterwards the band will play music while the Regimental Colour is carried down the ranks. The Foot Guards and Household Cavalry then perform their march past The Queen before she takes a carriage back to Buckingham Palace.

How to Watch

The processions can be viewed from the Mall. The event will be kicking off at roughly 10am, and the fly-past will occur at around 1pm. To get the best possible view of the parade and The Queen, try to stand on the edge of St James’s Park. Seated tickets were available; however, they were allocated by ballot in March. To get tickets to next year’s (2016) event, send your applications to the Brigade Mayor, HQ Household Division by January – details can be found via Tickets for the seated section usually cost around £30.

After the Trooping of the Colour parade the Royal Family will make a balcony appearance while the Air Force performs a fly-past. This usually features the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight team and the Red Arrows. The fly-past marks the end of the event.

The Trooping of the Colour parade is one of the flagship Royal events of the year, and guaranteed to provide a great day out. Thousands of people will congregate in order to get a glimpse of The Queen, so best get there early to secure a decent spot if you’d like to attend. To beat the queues, book a trip on The London Helicopter and see the procession from the sky.

10 Reasons Why You Should Visit London This Summer

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London is a vibrant city all year round; however, there’s nothing like enjoying the sights and sounds while basking in the glorious sunshine. Whether you want to explore world class museums, watch live sporting events or simply relax with a nice refreshing pint, there are always plenty of things to do.


Wimbledon is without a doubt the biggest British sporting event of the year. If you’re ballot entry wasn’t successful there’s no need to worry. You can still soak up the atmosphere and watch the tennis on one of the many pop-up screens around the city.

Greenwich Park

At Greenwich Park you can relax in the sun while overlooking the Canary Wharf skyline. The area not only provides one of the most picturesque views in London, but also some of the most coveted attractions, such as the Maritime Museum and the Royal Observatory.

Urban Street Fest

London truly is the street food capital of the world. Wherever you go you’re bound to find stalls and vans selling cuisine from the furthest reaches of the globe. Throughout the summer the Urban Food Fest in Brick Lane is a constant food-focused party that’s one of the most vibrant spots in the city.

Pop-up Cinemas

During July and August a number of pop-up cinemas will be scattered in and around London. Camden, Richmond, Peckham and Shoreditch all have outdoor screenings during the night showing new theatrical releases.

Camden Beach

Just because you’re in the middle of the city it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a nice seaside break. The Camden Roundhouse Beach contains 900 square metres of makeshift coastline, including over 150 tonnes of sand – and a fully stocked bar of course!

Beer Gardens

If there’s one quintessentially British activity to partake in during the summer, it’s sitting in a pub beer garden with a cold pint. All over London the pubs will be opening terrace bars that overlook the stunning skyline.

london views

London Triathlon

After last year’s successful event, the London Triathlon is back on in 2015. Here top athletes will compete alongside novices on one of the sites of the 2012 Olympics performing various relay to relay activities.

Buckingham Palace Opening

Buckingham Palace opens up to the public during the summer when the Royal Family enjoy their annual holiday. The visitor route includes a 450 metre walk, with views of the palace garden, gallery and various ceremonial rooms.

Notting Hill Carnival

Notting Hill Carnival is Europe’s biggest and best street party. This two day celebration of afro-Caribbean culture is a must for both party goers and families alike and takes place on 30th and 31st August.


Whether you’re a cycling enthusiast or causal rider, RideLondon provides an excellent opportunity to see the city’s sights and burn a few calories in the process. It costs nothing to take part; however, you must register via the RideLondon website.

The summer truly is the best time to visit London. For a unique experience that you’ll never forget, take a trip on The London Helicopter and witness the breath-taking sights from above.

Support London’s Air Ambulance

We are delighted to support London’s Air Ambulance, helping to extend the reach of their lifesaving missions across London. The London Helicopter will match your donation to double its impact.