You’ll find The Diana Memorial Playground just next to Princess Diana’s former London home, Kensington Palace. Inspired by the stories of Peter Pan, this is a beautiful but busy playground for children up to the age of 12.
The centrepiece of the park is a massive pirate ship surrounded by a sand and water play area. Inspired by Peter Pan, this is a dream come true for kids getting to climb and explore an abandoned ship. This is also the busiest part of the park where most families end up. The ship and surrounding area is designed cleverly, giving older kids a challenge climbing the ropes and masts, younger kids on the main deck, while toddlers and babies can play in peace on the sandy beach. This works pretty well, but when it gets crowded children must be properly looked after to avoid injuries, especially when older kids, toddlers and babies mix up.
Besides the pirate ship
The different areas are divided by hedges and bushes, which is one way is good because families with toddlers and babies get shielded without the risk of being run over by older kids. The downside is that you need to be on the alert since it’s very easy to lose track of your child exploring different areas (read: running away). Some of the vegetation seemed overgrown, so definitely room to make the grounds more open while still keeping the separation.
A few of the areas also seemed to be in a need of an upgrade such as the Indian teepees that we didn’t find engaging, as well as some of the play sculptures that needed maintenance.
Is the Diana Playground worth a visit?
All in all Diana Memorial Playground is fabulous when not crowded. Families with young kids might want to avoid the area around the pirate ship at the busiest times, but other than that it’s a great free offer smack in the centre of London.
If you are a tourist planning a trip to London I wouldn’t necessarily prioritise this playground over other London sights. However, it does offer a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the city, especially for younger kids fed up with sitting in a pushchair.
The park is staffed and will restrict access when reaching full capacity. From the Royal Parks Website:
Admission and queue management at the Diana Playground
To ensure the safety and security of children, only adults supervising children up to the age of 12 will be admitted.
Children should not be allowed to enter or leave the playground without an adult carer.
On busy days when playground reaches full capacity, queue management will be in place. This is dictated by Health and Safety reasons.
On warm, sunny days the queue can start as early as 10:30 am and last until the last admission time.
Waiting times can range between 15 minutes up to one hour
What is the age recommendation for Diana Memorial Playground?
You’ll find a mix of play equipment for children up to 12 years old.
In which park is princess Diana playground located?
The playground is located in Kensington Gardens in Central London.
Is the playground free of charge?
Yes, the playground is completely free of charge.
Is the Diana playground gated?
Yes, the playground is gated.
When is the playground most crowded?
The playground is located in a very popular area of London, and will become crowded during weekends and school holidays.
Is there a cafe?
Yes, there is a cafe just outside the main gate of the playground.
Is the playground baby friendly?
Yes, there are areas great for babies and toddlers. There are also baby changing facilities.
Is there usually a queue?
During peak hours during weekends and school holidays you can expect to be queueing up for around 15 minutes.
Are dogs allowed?
No, dogs are not allowed in the playground.
What’s the coolest thing about the playground?
Older kids kids usually enjoy climbing the big pirate ship.