A guide to Hampstead wouldn’t be complete without referencing the village’s most iconic site and one of the best parks in London. While the open space is wholly oversubscribed during the summer months, autumn brings with it different ways to make the most of one of the capital city’s biggest and best green spaces. Two of its swimming ponds (the separate mens’ and women’s ponds further away from the station), are open all year round, and can still be worth a splash until mid-October. For those who aren’t seasoned swimmers (with a desire to submerge in sub-zero waters), the heath is home to one of the best walks in London; take the path starting at Parliament Hill Cafe and wander across the eastern part of the heath to Kenwood House, ending up at Spaniards Inn for a well-earned pint.
Track down some notable historic homes
Taking time to visit the houses of the great minds and creative thinkers who once called this leafy suburb home is a Hampstead activity that shouldn’t be missed. The big hitters include painter John Constable on Well Walk and writer Aldous Huxley in Bracknell Gardens,. but there are plenty of plaques to unearth, so it’s a good idea to take a few hours to weave through the streets in search of the little blue beacons.
Take time to learn the history of psychoanalysis
The Freud Museum in Maresfield Gardens is dedicated to Sigmund Freud, who lived at the house with his family during the final year of his life. See his iconic couch, peer through his personal library (with more than 1,600 books) and cast an eye over a collection of antiquities including treasures from a variety of trips across the Atlantic.
Address: The Freud Museum, 20 Maresfield Gardens, London NW3 5SX
Telephone: + 44 20 7435 2002
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