St. James’s Park is one of the oldest Royal Parks of London. The Buckingham Palace lies to the west of St. James’s Park, The Mall to and St. James’s Palace to the north, Horse Guards to the east and Birdcage Walk to the south. The park has a beautiful lake. This beautiful lake is home to 15 different species of waterfowl, including pelicans, who were introduced to the park during the mid 1600s. A varied range of fauna is also to be found here. Throughout centuries the park has served the purpose of the Royal Zoo.
The land on which the park sits today was purchased by Henry VIII from Eton College in 1532. In late 17th and early 18th century cows were grazed on the park. Milk could be brought fresh at the “Lactarian”. With time many other changes took place. The part of the canal for Horse Guards Parade was reclaimed. The 1761 purchase of Buckingham House (now Buckingham Palace) was also reclaimed.
In 1826, Prince Regent (later George V) ordered that the park should be further remodeled. The whole work was done under the supervision of architect and landscaper John Nash. The canal was converted into a natural-shaped lake and the formal avenues were rerouted to winding pathways, in order to give them a romantic feel.
St. James’s Park is located in the very heart of London, near White Hall and Downing Street. The other attractions nearby are Horse Guards, Trafalgar Square and Westminster Abbey. The park welcomes over 5.5 million visitors every year. To add on to it, the film industry has popularized it all the more.