Finsbury Park Boats - Finsbury Park Boating Lake, London N4 1EE

Open Weekends in Autumn from 12 noon
(weather permitting)
Weather Check 07905 924282

Put your oar into the duck-speckled waters of Finsbury Park Boating Lake with this boat hire service for all ages. Boats hold up to four people and you can take a watery turn around the island for just £8 per half hour between you. Don't get any grand ideas about boat-based acrobatics, though; no standing up is allowed and you can't get out anywhere but the boat landing you started from. Those under 16 must be accompanied by an adult, and under-twelves must wear one of the life vests provided. From noon-3pm on Saturday all rowers dressed as pirates will pay just £5 per boat. Opening times are noon-6pm daily from Easter to early October then weekends only in autumn (always weather permitting).
Time Out, June 2014
It was my husband's birthday this week, on a gloriously sunny day, and so I thought it would be nice to take him out for a little row in our local park. I was right. :)

Now, we've been on boat trips all over the world - along the Yangtze River in China, the Mekong in Laos and Thailand, through the backwaters of Kerala, island hopping in the Philippines, wildlife watching in Kinabatangan, Borneo... all sorts. With that it mind, little old Finsbury Park Boating Lake around the corner might have been a let-down.

But but but, we'd never been on Finsbury Park Boating Lake and my husband isn't from the UK, so we kinda were exploring a foreign land, which is always jolly good fun. I also find that you sometimes have the most fun when a place isn't perfect. And I rather liked the imperfections of this lake - particularly the scummy, pervasive green weeds (please see photies). And the orangutans, proboscis monkeys and exotic birds we'd seen on other boat trips were replaced with duckies, moor hens, swans and geese. Just as exciting, no? And here you're allowed to feed the birds, stirring them up into a frenzy. We had great fun leading the quack-quacks a merry dance around the lake with our bird-feed.

And if you come on a Saturday 1200-1500, dressed as a pirate (aaaargh!), you get a reduced price of £5 for your boat hire. Nice.

Other than that, the fella working on the lake was very friendly indeed. We likey.

Thoroughly recommend a row-row-row-your-boat in Finsbury Park...
August 2014

Really great time, enjoyed it immensely. The boat was a bit wobbly but we got the hang of it.
Facebook Review

History of the Park
The park was landscaped on the northeastern extremity of what was originally a woodland area in the Manor or Prebend of Brownswood. It was part of a large expanse of woodland called Hornsey Wood that was cut further and further back for use as grazing land during the Middle Ages. In the mid-18th century a tea room had opened on the knoll of land on which Finsbury Park is situated. Londoners would travel north to escape the smoke of the capital and enjoy the last remains of the old Hornsey Wood. Around 1800 the tea rooms were developed into a larger building which became known as the Hornsey Wood House/Tavern. A lake was also built on the top of the knoll with water pumped up from the nearby New River. There was boating, a shooting and archery range, and probably cock fighting and other blood sports. The Hornsey Wood Tavern was destroyed in the process of making the area into a park, but the lake was enlarged.

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