Ten Things To Do In Crystal Palace: We spent a lovely Saturday exploring Crystal Palace last weekend. There is so much to do from enjoying the sprawling park with dinosaurs to getting lost in the maze. Browsing the antique shops and dining at one of the eateries in the Crystal Place Triangle will keep you busy. Everything is in walking distance from the station, so it’s an accessible place to visit at the weekend. Saturday is the best day when the Food Market is on. Read my Ten Things To Do In Crystal Palace so you can plan the perfect day in South East London, SE19, SE20 and SE26.

ten things to do in crystal palace transmitter

Sphinx and Transmitter Crystal Palace Park

Ten Things To Do In Crystal Palace List

10 Things To Do In Crystal Palace

1. Marvel at the first dinosaur statues in the world at the Crystal Palace Dinosaur Park
2. Stroll around the impressive open green space of Crystal Palace Park
3. Delve into the history of the area at the Crystal Palace Museum
4. Discover a treasure at one of the Crystal Palace antique and vintage shops
5. Browse the independent shops in the Crystal Place Triangle
6. Buy something tasty for your dinner from the Saturday Food Market
7. Tuck into weekend brunch at one of the independent restaurants, pubs and cafes
8. Bag a bargain at the Crystal Palace Boot
9. Admire the impressive views across London from one of the hills
10. Look up at the landmark Crystal Palace Transmitter and take a picture

Ten Things To Do In Crystal Palace Details

1. Crystal Palace Dinosaur Park: Inside Crystal Palace Park you will find an impressive collection of 30+ Grade 1 listed dinosaur sculptures dating back to 1854. The statues were made in a bid to make full-scale models of extinct animals. Leading scientist Richard Owen and artist Benjamin Hawkins were commissioned to create life-size model dinosaurs. By today’s standards, the designs are inaccurate but they still look incredible. The sculptures stand in a lovely landscape with water designed by Joseph Paxton.

ten things to do in crystal palace dinosaurs

Dinosaur Court, Crystal Palace Park, Thicket Road, SE20 8DT

2. Crystal Palace Park: Aside from the dinosaurs, this park has so much to do and see. Get lost in the largest maze in the country. Visit the Chapel Manor Urban Farm to see pigs, horses and lizards. Watch the skateboarders doing tricks in the Skatepark. Take a boat out on the lake. Get fit at the National Sports Centre. Walk around and admire the views from the Italian Terraces. Stop off at the Brown and Green Life café for refreshments. The park was built by Sir Joseph Paxton (Crystal Palace Company) between 1852-1854 to be the setting for the relocated Crystal Palace which was designed for the Great Exhibition at Hyde Park in 1851. A fire destroyed the Crystal Palace in 1936. Over the years the park has been used as a motor racing circuit and military vehicle dismantling during WW2. Regeneration started with the sports park and restoration when the London Borough of Bromley took ownership in 1986. For more information read my Amazing Crystal Palace Park Attractions article.

ten things to do in crystal palace boating lake

Crystal Palace Park, Thicket Road, SE20 8DT

3. Crystal Palace Museum: On the edge of the park is a museum where you can find out more about the Hyde Park and Sydenham Crystal Palaces – a cast iron and plate glass structure built in Hyde Park to house the Great Exhibition of 1851. The museum is inside an original building by the Crystal Palace Company built circa 1880. The museum opens on Sundays from 11 am until 4 pm in the summer and 3 pm in the winter. Entrance is free, but please donate if you can because this is a registered charity. On the first Sunday of every month from noon from April to October, the museum gives guided tours of the Crystal Palace site.

ten things to do in crystal palace museum

Crystal Palace Museum, Anerley Hill, SE19 2BA

4. Crystal Palace Antique and Vintage Shops: Crystal Palace Antiques, on Jasper Road, is a former Victorian textile warehouse with four floors of antique and vintage gems. Buy furniture, lighting, decorative objects and more spanning Victorian, Art Deco and Mid-Century Modern eras. If you’re visiting the Saturday Food Market, you will find an enchanting courtyard with antique and secondhand shops open at Haynes Lane. Church Road has a collection of vintage and secondhand furniture shops including Cartwright’s and Bambino.

ten things to do in crystal palace antique warehouse

Crystal Palace Antiques, Imperial House, Jasper Road, SE19 1SG

5. Crystal Palace Triangle Shops: There are some fabulous shops on Westow Street, Westow Hill and Church Road, which is known as The Triangle. My favourites include interior stores Do South and Mrs Robinson. Brave Girl Gifts, The Indigo Tree and Coconut Trading Ltd, are perfect for finding gorgeous gifts. Buy high-quality handmade objects by artists and designer-makers from A L’etage 2. At Cooper’s Yard Studio (off Westow Hill) you will find a collection of artists and designer-makers and other creative people. Keep an eye open for their open day. The Bookseller Crow stocks an exciting selection of modern fiction and children’s books.

ten things to do in crystal palace do south shop

Do South Shop, 2 Westow Street, SE19 3AH

6. Crystal Palace Saturday Food Market: Buy fish, meat, veg, fruit, bread, pastries and pies from the cute food market. Specialities often include raw milk, biodynamic fruit, Sardinian cheese, oysters and more. Bring your own containers so you can buy organic unpackaged grains, cereals and dried fruits from The Store Cupboard.

ten things to do in crystal palace food market

Food Market, Haynes Lane, SE19 3AP

7. Crystal Palace Restaurants, Pubs and Cafes: In the Crystal Palace Triangle you will find a good selection of eateries to enjoy a weekend brunch such as Joanna’s (Read my Joanna’s Restaurant Review) or Green and Brown. If you fancy pub grub pop into The Alma, Sparrow Hawk or Westow House. Stop off for a coffee at Four Boroughs and Roasted Bean.

ten things to do in crystal palace joannas

Joanna’s Restaurant, 56 Westow Hill, London SE19 1RX

8. Crystal Palace Boot: If you’re in the area on Wednesdays it’s worth checking out the Car Boot Sale. You can buy household goods, antiques, vintage pieces, electrical goods, curiosities, jewellery, clothing and anything else the previous owner no longer wants. The Boot Sale used to be open Saturdays which is temporarily closed at the moment so check the website before you go. There is a small entrance fee to pay between £1-3 depending on the time you arrive. The opening time is from 7 am until 1 pm. In the event of adverse weather check online if the Car Boot has been cancelled.

ten things to do in crystal palace car boot sale

Crystal Palace Boot, Crystal Palace Coach Park South Terraces Gate, Anerley Hill Entrance, SE19 2GA

9. Crystal Palace Views: You get some fantastic views across London when you are in the park and exploring the Crystal Palace Triangle. Westow Hill and the top of Gypsy Hill are great places to take photographs.

ten things to do in crystal palace views

Crystal Palace Views

10. Crystal Palace Transmitter: The landmark broadcasting transmitter, officially called the Arqiva Crystal, is 219 meters tall. The former television station and transmitter on the same site were operated by John Logie Baird from 1933. Find out how vital this transmitter is for London by reading the Wikipedia page.

ten things to do in crystal palace park and transmitter

Crystal Palace Transmitter, Crystal Palace Parade, SE19 1UE

Also, worth mentioning is the Crystal Palace Victorian Subway which is being restored at the moment. It is stunning and worth viewing should you get the opportunity.

Ten Things To Do In Crystal Palace Information

Until the 19th century, the area was an oak forest. Crystal Palace is named after the Crystal Palace Exhibition building which stood in the area (1854-1936) until it burnt down in 1936. Travel to Crystal Palace via the Overground or Southern Railway. Both stations are close to the park. The Brown and Green café in the station is cute and worth popping in for a coffee and cake.  Take a look at my Love Crystal Palace Pinterest Board to see pictures of the area. I hope you enjoy your visit to this beautiful part of London.

Author: Homegirl London. Photographs: Homegirl London. Thanks: Homeboy for visiting with me.

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  • Last modified: February 21, 2020