Once known as the 'Garden of London', Richmond has more green space than any other part of the city. Although it's only 25 minutes from the centre, the area has a distinctive character and history, and for centuries was a country retreat for Royalty. Read more below about our favourite Richmond places.
Laid out by Charles I in 1625, Richmond is the largest of London’s eight Royal Parks and we often go there to walk, practise speaking English and spot its wildlife, including its world famous herd of deer. If the walking makes us hungry, then we usually stop for a traditional English Cream Tea at Pembroke Lodge, a large mansion in the park.
The Thames Path
Running184 miles from the river source in the west of England all the way to the Thames Barrier, the Thames path is a great way to explore London and its surroundings. Every year in Spring, our teachers and students (and a quarter of a million other spectators) line the path to watch 'The Boat Race', when teams from Oxford and Cambridge compete against each other in a rowing race, and it's always a very enjoyable day out.
Richmond Town and Riverside
With its quaint side streets and elegant Georgian town houses on 'The Green', Richmond sometimes feels more like the home counties than London. The Riverside quarter is always lively, with bustling pubs, cafes, and small craft businesses. If you're feeling adventurous, you can hire a rowing boat, take a pleasure cruise or even have a go at stand up paddle boarding.
A short walk down the Thames Path, Kew has the most diverse plant collection in the world, as well as a vast Chinese Pagoda, iconic glasshouses and Kew Palace, smallest but most perfectly formed of all Royal Palaces, and refuge to George III, "the mad King who lost America". Kew is most famous as a world class scientific establishment, with around 350 full-time scientists and a mission to protect life on Earth.
Barnes is 10 minutes from the school and has a traditional village feel, complete with ducks and geese on the pond, and it can be difficult to believe how close you are to central London. It's also home to The Olympic Sound Studios, now a cinema and restaurant, which used to be one of London's most important music studios, where artists like The Rolling Stones and Jimi Hendrix recorded songs.
Hampton Court Palace
Visit the amazing Kitchens, State Rooms, gardens and famous maze at Hampton Court, the Palace once owned by Henry VIII, the larger than life King who married 6 times and separated England from Rome. You can also go to one of its many cultural events, such as the Hampton Court Palace Music Festival in June, and there is an ice skating rink in winter.