Things to do in Richmond - where to eat, shop and visit
From its stunning deer park and beautiful riverside to its great shopping, Richmond has much to recommend it
The park covers a wide area, but for mobile GPS devices, use postcode TW10 5HS
The largest of London’s eight Royal Parks, there are over 2,000 acres to explore at Richmond Park. As well as being a National Nature Reserve, the park is also a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Special Area of Conservation. Originally created in the 17th century by Charles I as a deer park, there are still around 650 red deer to be seen grazing. Don’t go too near though – a few have some vicious looking antlers you won’t want to tangle with.
Ham Street, Ham, Richmond TW10 7RS
Now owned by The National Trust, Ham House is a 17th century Stuart house set on the banks of the River Thames. This magnificent building has a superb collection of paintings, furniture and textiles collected by the Duchess of Lauderdale, no less. Also, don’t be put off by this but the house has the reputation of being the most haunted in Britain, so if you’re a bit of a ghost hunter this is a must.
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The Green, Richmond TW9 1QJ
Built in 1899 as the Theatre Royal and Opera House, this beautiful theatre is renowned for being one of the most successful in the country. Following a refurbishment in 1991, the venue showcases almost 50 productions a year.
The Lass O’ Richmond Hill
8 Queen’s Road, Richmond TW10 6JJ
If you’re looking for a bite to eat after that brisk walk around Richmond Park (and being chased by those deer) then try The Lass O’ Richmond Hill. Situated just around the corner from the Richmond Gate leading out of the park, you’ll find this traditional British pub, which offers a huge menu with something for most tastes. Choices include everything from Angus rib-eye and sea bass to even wild boar.
Richard Burton’s Tomb
St Mary Magdalen Church, 61 North Walpole Way, Mortlake SW14 8PR
So, hands up if you thought we meant Richard Burton the actor? Sorry, this one is the great 19th century explorer Sir Richard Burton. Described as having a “passionate curiosity about life in the Arab world”, he persuaded the Royal Geographic Society to fund his wild adventures. Be sure to visit the mausoleum where he is buried in the churchyard – it is in the shape of an Arab tent with a window at the back where you can see the coffins of the great man and his wife. Easily spotted then...
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Richmond TW9 3AB
Richmond is simply stuffed full of history and here is another place you cannot miss. Founded in 1759, the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew spans some 300 acres and showcases literally thousands of different species. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the gardens provide the perfect setting for a winter stroll.
Richmond TW9 1EJ
With restaurants, bars, shops, businesses and homes, this vibrant area encircles the old Town Hall and runs along the banks of the Thames. Familiar names such as Cote Bistro, Giraffe and Wagamama rub shoulders with a range of interesting shops and boutiques. At Noble Jones, they have your next pair of Armani jeans in stock, so hurry along…!
Petersham Road, Richmond TW10 7AG
Carved out of the grounds of Petersham House, this vibrant nursery has grown into an amazing centre of horticultural and gastronomic excellence. The café is so popular that it can count Jerry Hall and Richard E Grant among its regular satisfied diners. There are all sorts of regular events that take place there too.
River Thames, Orleans Road, Richmond TW1 3BL
Located next to Marble Hill House, the ferry will take you on a short cruise between the northern bank of the Thames and the southern bank near Ham House. Open daily between February and October, adults pay just £1 and kids 50p. If you fancy a bit more time on the river, you could always try Westminster Passenger Services (tel: 0207 930 2062 / web: wpsa.co.uk) who can take you on a trip from Richmond and Hampton Court Palace to Westminster (and back of course…).
Merry Pedaller Bike Tours
Starts from Richmond Train Station, Kew Road, Richmond TW9 2NA
The perfect way to get a proper overview of the town, what could be more fun than becoming acquainted with the area on two wheels – if you’re fit enough, that is. The Richmond Royal Park Bike Tour sets off from Richmond train station, takes you through the deer park, a ferry trip over the Thames and includes historic houses and riverside delights – promising a ‘very British bike tour’.