One Tree Hill is popular with locals and visitors, and for one particular reason – the views from the top are simply incredible.
Nestled in Honor Oak Park in South London and offering views over the city, this is the place to come to during the summertime with friends and family.
But apart from the views, there’s a lot more to know about One Tree Hill in London – From how to get there to the history of the hill, we’ll leave no stone unturned.
Let’s not wait any longer; let’s learn more about One Tree Hill in this ultimate guide.
The History of One Tree Hill
One Tree Hill has a long and unclear history, but some known events include it being part of the Great North Wood and becoming the property of the Crown after the dissolution of monasteries.
Also, the majestic Oak of Honour was once the Southern border’s demarcation to Norman Honour of Gloucester.
In medieval times, One Tree Hill was part of the Great North Wood that expanded from South Norwood to Deptford.
Apart from that, One Tree Hill’s history remains unclear and unproven, but we nonetheless have some historical facts and legends.
Queen Elizabeth I rested under an oak in One Tree Hill back in 1602 before she visited Lewisham, according to an urban legend.
Before the end of the eighteenth century, the East India Company built a semaphore station on the hilltop to signal when ships were seen in the Channel. This station was a warning point used during the Napoleonic Wars by the Admiralty.
More recently, in 1957, John Betjeman, an English Poet, described the views from One Tree Hill as “better than that from Parliament Hill.”
Getting to One Tree Hill
One Tree Hill is located in southeast London, in the borough of Lewisham. The best way to get there is by taking public transit; you can catch a bus to Honor Oak Park, and from there, it’s just a short walk to the hill.
Alternatively, you can take the Southern or Overground Tube lines to Honor Oak Park, and you’ll be steps away from One Tree Hill.
Once you arrive, you’ll be greeted by expansive green space – perfect for a picnic lunch or a game of frisbee. Be sure to bring your camera, as you’ll want to snap some pictures of the stunning view from the top of the hill. On a clear day, you can see all the way to Canary Wharf and beyond.
What to Expect at One Tree Hill
London is a vibrant city with plenty of things to do to keep you busy. If you’re looking for an exciting, fun-filled vacation spot, One Tree Hill should definitely be at the top of your list. Here’s what you can expect when you visit.
The path is narrow and steep, but with a little effort and time available, you’ll make it up without too much trouble.
There are lots of steps to climb, so get ready for it, but you can get to the top in about 10 minutes. Bonus point if you come walking your dog, as the terrain is very nice for them.
St Augustine Church is located right at the bottom of One Tree Hill and is always open on Saturday morning and in the summer afternoon months.
Built between 1870 and 1900, the ChurchChurch represents the perfect stop before resuming the hike up, with stunning, preserved architecture and stained glass.
Once you make the trek up One Tree Hill, you’ll be rewarded with some of the best views of London around. On a clear day, you can see all the way from St Paul’s Cathedral to the Shard and The City. It’s truly a sight to behold.
But that’s not all – One Tree Hill is also home to some incredible trees. In fact, the hill gets its name from a 250-year-old oak tree that used to stand at its summit.
The Oak of Honour
While you’ll see endless trees on the way up, one that you can’t miss is the Oak of Honour – a spectacular, massive tree that you shouldn’t forget your camera for. As highlighted previously, the once Southern border’s demarcation to Norman Honour of Gloucester.
Located at the summit, it’s been an essential part of history for centuries, so important that it gave Honor Oak Park its name.
Queen Elizabeth I, according to legend, rested under the oak in 1602. However, the current oak was planted in 1905 and is the third consecutive one in One Tree Hill.
Flora and Fauna
As a fan of trees, you’ll love One Tree Hill. In addition to the aforementioned oak tree, there are also wild service trees, midland hawthorns, birds, and squirrels. Needless to say, despite being popular for the views or for walking your dog, One Tree Hill in London is a fantastic place to take children and have fun while learning about nature.
There is free parking where you can safely park your car for an hour or more while you make your way up and come back. You’ll find several parking spots available so staying here longer than expected isn’t an issue.
If you’re looking for a relaxing day out in nature with an incredible view, look no further than One Tree Hill.
Located just outside of central London, this spot is perfect for picnicking, flying a kite, or simply taking in breathtaking views. So grab your camera and head on over – you won’t be disappointed!