When Victoria Park was opened to the public in 1845 it provided greenery for the cramped, impoverished working-class slum areas of the East End. The popularity of Vicky Park (as the locals call it) made it known as ‘The People’s Park’. From festivalgoers to families with kids, the park is still one of the most popular green spaces in East London.
4 things for kids in Victoria Park
Victoria Park is very family-friendly, and you’ll find a good range of activities for toddlers and preschoolers as well as for older kids.
- The V&A Playground: on the west side of the park intended for younger children
- The Main Playground: on the east side is featuring one of the longest slides in London
- Skatepark: which holds London’s only skateboard cradle.
- Splash Pool: in the summer season with fountains and water pumps
The Victoria & Alexandra (V&A) Playground
We first thought the initials stood for Victoria & Albert, like in the V&A Museum of Childhood and V&A Museum in Kensington, but in this case, the old Queen is associated with her daughter-in-law Alexandra!
From a distance, the playground looks a bit like a Gallic village taken straight out of Asterix with lots of wooden structures and play elements. We really liked the natural feel of the playground with its sandpits and water pumps. For toddlers and preschoolers, this is a great place to spend some time.
Victoria Park Main Playground
If your kids like slides, Victoria Park’s main playground is probably one of the best spots in London to let them loose. There are four slides in total, and the biggest one is wide enough for at least two kids to go at the same time which is a lot of fun.
Highlights of Vicky Park
- Summer music festivals
- Great selection of cafes and pubs
- Victoria Park Lake
- Summer-evening cricket matches
- The Bathing Pond, which is popular with London’s anglers.
- The beautiful Victoria Park Village nearby with its Georgian and Victorian terraces.
- The elegant Victorian drinking fountain (so beautiful that it has been awarded Grade II listed status by English Heritage)
Music & Festivals
In the 19th century, Vicky Park became associated with left-wing politics with its Speakers’ corner becoming a hotbed of socialist and reformist debate, an ideological tradition that continued in the 1970s and ’80s when the park would associate left-wing music festivals, featuring performances by artists like The Clash.
The park has continued its association with indie and alternative rock music with the likes of Radiohead having staged huge concerts there in the 21st century, maintaining the park’s status as one the most popular East London attractions.
Is Victoria Park within the congestion zone?
No, it’s outside of the congestion zone.
Is Vicky Park safe?
It’s pretty safe, but like always in London there’s a certain chance of a robbery or phone snatch.
Is Vicky Park good for families?
Yes, the park has several playgrounds and it’s a great place for family picnics in the summer.
What’s the best thing for kids in Victoria Park?
The steep slide in the main playground is a long standing winner among kids in East London.
Is Vicky Park good for parents?
Yes, the playground is safe for children to explore independently and its open space layout makes it easy for parents to keep an eye on their children.
Is Victoria Park open during lockdown?
Yes, Vicky Park is open during lockdown. Check the park website for details.
How are the toilets in Victoria Park?
The public toilets in the park are well maintained.