Located in Kensington Gardens and next to Princess Diana’s Kensington Palace home, the Diana Memorial Playground was created by the Diana Memorial Fund and opened on 30th June 2000 in her memory. It is open to children 12 and under, and designed so less able and able-bodies children can play together.
Inspired by the stories of Peter Pan, the playground features plenty of creative touches throughout, with play sculptures, a trio of teepees, tree-houses and little pathways tucked away in the greenery for children to explore.
And of course there’s the fantastic wooden pirate ship on a sandy beach, with thick rope bridges and ladders providing access and once aboard, a crow’s nest to climb up to and a lower deck to explore.
It truly feels like an adventure as you wander around, discovering other play areas hidden among the trees and clever landscaping.
There’s an area for under 3s that features small wooden playhouses, a seesaw and a large wooden trailer and cart that was very popular with the little ones.
Cross through the trees and you’ll find a sandy area perfect for toddlers, with a slide, wooden boats to sit on and move the rudder back and forth and a sieve and chute to put sand through.
The playground is securely fenced, with only one gate that is manned by an attendant in a booth who ensures that no unaccompanied adult enters and that no unaccompanied child leaves.
There is a café on-site serving tea, coffee, juices and sandwiches, salads and pizza. There is seating outside the playground gates (shown below) and more tables and a counter to take orders within the gates just by the entrance.
After a morning of exploring and a flatbread pizza lunch from the café, it was time for us to head home. But first, a walk through the park, enjoying a bit of sunshine and admiring the first signs of autumn as the trees are just beginning to change colors.
Overall, the Diana, Princess of Wales’ Memorial Playground is a beautiful tribute to Princess Diana and a fantastic, cleverly designed place – it’s no wonder it’s so popular and sees over 1 million visitors each year! It has so much to offer for children of all ages and simply a pleasure to wander around, with always something new and different to discover around the corner. We spent a good two hours there and we still didn’t see everything!
Diana, Princess of Wales’ Memorial Playground
Kensington Gardens, London W2 2UH
Opening Hours: Open every day of the year except Christmas Day, from 10am. Closing times vary depending on time of year, check website for current opening hours.
Good to Know:
- The Diana Memorial Playground is free to enter and for children 12 and under. Only adults supervising children will be admitted and if an adult carer leaves the playground with the intention of returning, he/she needs to let the playground staff know as there may be problems regaining access. Unaccompanied adults interested in visiting the playground can do so before opening hours, from 0930 to 1000.
- On busy days, particularly during the summer holidays or on sunny weekend afternoons, the playground operates at capacity and once the playground is full, the staff will put a queue in place and waiting times can range between 15 minutes up to one hour.
- There is a café onsite that serves fresh salads, pizzas, sandwiches and drinks. The day we visited the children’s menu consisted of a meal deal for a pizza, drink and fruit for £4.50.
- There are toilets on site, including disabled and baby change facilities.
- Do bring a change of clothes just in case – and a pail and bucket to play with the sand.