8 London parks you can barbecue in this summer

Sun’s out, buns out. We pick the London hotspots where you’ve got a green light to grill
London Fields

Come summer, cooking dinner on a grill in the great outdoors is one of life’s simple pleasures, and you don’t need to head out of the city to indulge in a barbecue. Just mind not to scorch the grass and put your rubbish in the bin when you’re done, okay?

Most of London’s lush green spaces are reserved for picnics only, but there are some major parks and local gardens where you’re officially allowed to fire up the BBQ. Here are the best spots in London where it’s totally chill to grill. 

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London's best BBQ spots

Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Holborn
© Duncan C:flickr

Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Holborn

Central London parks aren’t just for stuffing sarnies into your face at lunchtime. You can barbecue in most Camden parks and this huge flame-friendly public square (the biggest in London, no less) is no exception. Work off the meat with a post-picnic tennis match. 

Nearest tube: Holborn

Image: Duncan C/flickr

London Fields
Flickr / Nick Sarebi

London Fields, Hackney

Come summer time, London Fields is inundated with bearded barbecuers in search of a charred-meat fix. There’s a designated cooking area near the south of the park, so check your spot before you spark, and remember that it's reusable BBQ's only (disposable barbies are a no-go now because of London's litterbugs). Be warned: on a balmy day, it can get packed and seriously smoky.

Nearest station: London Fields Overground

Image: Flickr/Nick Sarebi

Waterlow Park, Highgate

Waterlow Park, Highgate

Grill the day away on this gentle grassy slope. Dubbed a ‘garden for gardenless Londoners’, this scenic north London park welcomes fair-weather feasting. Drool over your barbecued banquet, while enjoying views of the city skyline.

Nearest tube: Archway

Caledonian Park, Holloway

Caledonian Park, Holloway

Get your alfresco flame on in this petite patch of green. The Islington park is home to community gardens and an imposing Grade II-listed clocktower. Handy for keeping an eye on those Linda McCartneys. There’s nothing worse than burnt bangers.

Nearest tube, Caledonian Rd

Image: middleway/flickr


Highbury Fields, Islington

The sound of sizzling sausages fills the air at Highbury Fields whenever the weather allows. For fancy barbecue fare and punchy marinades, stock up at Godfreys butchers just north of the park.

Nearest tube: Highbury & Islington

Image: Alamy

Russell Square, Bloomsbury
© Gordon Rainsford

Russell Square, Bloomsbury

Russell Square might be better known for lost tourists and academics on their lunchbreaks than baps and burgers, but it’s also a prime central spot for summer-time smouldering. If it’s too busy, the smaller Bloomsbury Square nearby also welcomes skewerers. 

Nearest tube: Russell Square

Image: Gordon Rainsford

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Burgess Park, Southwark

Sausages with a view of The Shard? Yes please! Burgess Park is a grand green space stretching from Camberwell and Walworth to Peckham and the Old Kent Road, with scenic lakeside barbecue areas. Always grill responsibly – scorched grass and litter isn’t a good look. 

Nearest tube: Kennington


Cantelowes Gardens, Camden

Cantelowes Gardens is a secret suntrap away from the Camden crowds. There’s a skatepark, play area and plenty of grass for firing up the barbie. If you need supplies, look no further than Phoenicia, an amazing Mediterranean food hall,  for healthy barbecue inspiration.

Nearest tube: Kentish Town

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