Regent’s Park: A brief history and where to live nearby

A slice of green heaven in Inner North West London, Regent’s Park is one of the most admired and visited parks in the capital. If you’re looking to buy or rent in North London and want easy access to some outstanding green spaces, then this should be the starting point for your search. Let’s have a quick glimpse of what makes Regent’s Park so special, and what kind of neighbourhoods surround it.

Regent’s Park – named for the Playboy Prince

Originally the land that mostly makes up Regent’s Park today was owned by the very wealthy monastic order of Barking Abbey. However, in the 1530s, King Henry VIII embarked on a very one-sided wealth redistribution campaign called the dissolution of the monasteries. After appropriating the land, it was set up as a hunting and forestry park in much the same way as many of London’s famous parks.

Fast forward to the 1810s, and genius architect John Nash was already drawing up plans for a new park. By this time, Nash had caught the eye of the Prince Regent (later King George IV). The prince appreciated his work greatly, and Nash worked almost exclusively for him. Often known as the ‘Playboy Prince’, George was keen to reshape parts of London. The park was originally his idea, one that he commissioned Nash to bring to life. This is how the park got its formal name – The Regent’s Park.

Today, Regent’s Park is run by The Royal Parks. This charity is responsible for eight royal parks across London. While the freehold for the parkland itself is owned by the Crown Estate.

Regent’s Park layout and main attractions

Spread over 395 acres, Regent’s park is nestled between Camden Town, St John’s Wood and Marylebone. This means it’s split administratively between the City of Westminster and the London Borough of Camden.

It’s a beloved spot for walks, picnics, boating, dogwalking and entertaining young children with its many attractions. These include:

Queen Mark’s Rose Garden [Image credit: Kotomi]

London Zoo: Carefully set within the grounds of the park, ZSL London Zoo is the world’s oldest scientific zoo. It was opened in 1828. Today, you can find and interact with 755 species of animals here.

Queen Mary’s Rose Gardens: Breathe in the sweet scent of over 12,000 roses of every colour, spanning 85 varieties. To see them at their best, visit during the first two weeks of June.

Avenue Gardens: Set near the Broad Walk, the park’s gardeners tend these exquisite flowerbeds all year round. Every season offers something new and delightful to see.

Open Air Theatre: This award-winning theatre is one of the largest in London, boasting 1240 seats. It hosts everything from Shakespeare and Greek Tragedy to the musicals of Legally Blonde and 101 Dalmatians.

Boat and pedalo hire: Fancy a relaxing time on the lake? Then you can hire a rowboat or pedalo for 30 or 60 minutes. There are concessions available for families, students and OAPs, and children under 3 can go for free!

Where to live near Regent’s Park

Camden Town

Anyone who has lived in Camden Town for a while will remember its punky, grungy roots. However, today it’s a much more balanced affair. It sports all the hallmarks of a sophisticated London postcode – artisanal bakeries and coffee shops, mini art galleries and boutique clothes shops. But Camden Town still definitely knows how to have fun and retains its bit of ‘edge’. Whether you’re young and single, looking for a cool London lifestyle, or a seasoned professional or family wanting to settle down a bit, Camden Town has the right mix of properties, amenities and attractions for you.

St John’s Wood

Home of the world-famous cricket ground Lord’s, St John’s Wood is an incredibly upmarket London spot with a tranquil village feel. Oozing an easy elegance with its grand villas, red-and-white-brick apartment blocks, smart shops and bars, this is the home of well-heeled professionals, young families and more than a few renowned celebrities. There are plenty of outstanding schooling options for those with school-aged children. Plus, having Regent’s Park sweeping along one side of the area doesn’t hurt either.

The Holme, villa in Regent’s Park [Image Credit: David Hagood]


If you want to ‘square the circle’ and have easy access to London’s action with a quiet home life, then Marylebone is for out. It’s a well-kept, characterful but upwardly mobile residential area, suitable for almost any mid-to-upper-tier buyer’s budget. The high street is a haven for foodies, and the artistic scene (particularly among musicians) gives Marylebone plenty of cultural flavour.


Despite the uber-posh-sounding name, Fitzrovia is also a mixed bag area. Among the apartment blocks and terraced houses, you’ll find a hotchpotch of mansions, commercial areas, medical outbuildings and schools. There’s a sizeable student population here, attracted by the range of rental options and the characterful charm of this historic district. Well worth digging into, Fitzrovia is a great place to walk around and let everything seep in.

The best new property developments near Regent’s Park

The areas surrounding Regent’s Park provide a mixture of new and historic property to choose from. If you’re interested in finding the best new build properties within easy reach of this beloved London park, take a look at our list of the best-rated in the area below. As always, the developments are rated according to verified resident reviews on HomeViews.

Fitzroy Place is a mixed-use development built on the site of the old Middlesex Hospital in the heart of London’s West End. It features 200 residential units – one, two and three-bedroom apartments and penthouses – and a number of commercial outlets. Residents enjoy first-class transport links around London, thanks to nearby Goodge Street and Oxford Circus, which provide […] Read reviews and details of Fitzroy Place, W1

Triton Building is a British Land residential development comprising of 162 one, two and three-bedroom apartments in the borough of Camden. The development is centrally located and lies between Warren Street and Great Portland Street Underground Stations that offer Victoria and Northern line services over London. Read reviews and details of The Triton Building, NW1

Camden Courtyards is a Barratt development that’s home to a selection of 164 residential apartments. There are one, two and three-bedrooms and duplexes available here. Convenient transport links are on the doorstep – the development is adjacent to Camden Road Station and just an eight-minute walk from Camden Town tube station. Read reviews and details of Camden Courtyards, NW1

We hope that this brief guide to Regent’s Park and its surrounding areas will help you with your search. If you want to know more about what North London has to offer, check out our guide below.

Welcome to North London, home to some of the most popular postcodes in the capital. This place fuses charming village centres with architectural gems and fashionable high streets, so it’s easy to see why half of London’s eight million-strong population have laid down roots Read more about North London

HomeViews provides verified resident reviews of the UK’s housing developments. We’re working with developers, landlords and the Government to recognise high performers and help to improve standards in the built environment.