During the first month we lived in South Kensington, we regularly visited the Royal Parks like Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. Lara loves to run around in the open air, collect beautiful leaves, spot squirrels and feed the birds. But the thing that Lara loves the most is the playground, which you often see in a park. Usually a small field with some sand or rubber tiles, a climbing frame, 2 swings and a seesaw. Around, some benches with parents, grandparents or a nanny. Each with the same goal: keeping an eye on the children. In the meantime they make a short chat with each other.
When I first heard about the Diana Memorial Playground, I suspected a similar playground. Maybe a little bigger, with a work of art on the side. Nothing wrong with that, but when I saw how beautiful it really looked, I was surprised. Hidden in the corner of Kensington Gardens, you find a little piece of land, surrounded with a fence, intended for children who can discover in a safe environment in the world of pirates, Indians and magical gardens.
This playground opened its doors on June 30, 2000, in memory of Princes Diana. Located next to Kensington Palace, where she lived until her death. Diana loved children and believed full in the innocence of the childhood. An appropriate tribute.
Every day groups of children visit the Diana Memorial Playground, where they can discover, explore and play together with all the freedom and safety. The terrain is divided into different areas, which are connected by paths, overgrown with colorful and exotic plants and trees. Completely closed from rushed Kensington you imagine yourself in a magical world full of adventure and fun. Inspired by the stories of Peter Pan.
Eye catcher is the large wooden pirate boat with high mast in the middle of the playground. Where children can climb from every side, playing hide and seek and can experience how it is
to stand behind a real helm.
There are various play areas scattered around the grounds, for every child’s age there is plenty to do. The devices are safe, varied and some invite you to experiment. Like the music garden, where you can play a beautiful sound game with hands and feet.
It is one of the nicer playgrounds that I have seen before. The whole thing in terms of color and material use fits so well within the concept. No screaming colors, no plastic. Very natural and quiet however it does encourage action. Because of the many asphalted paths, the terrain is also accessible for disabled people.
Lara loved to wander through the bushy paths and played happily with the other children. Lovely to see how they let their imagination run free and learn and discover everything in a playful environment. Something that Diana probably had in mind.
At the entrance of the playground you will find a spacious picnic area with an adjoining kiosk where you can buy hot and cold drinks and snacks.
Plans to visit Kensington Gardens with kids and curious about this hidden playground? Keep in mind that there can be a waiting times of 15 minutes to an hour. This can occur in particular during the holiday periods and summer days. For other information, such as household rules and opening times, see the website of the Diana Memorial Playground.