(view of the Serpentine from Serpentine Bridge)
Located in London's beautiful and very popular Hyde Park, you'll find the Serpentine (a.k.a. the Serpentine River). This lake was created in 1730 and covers 40 acres (16 ha), making it one of the earliest known man-made lakes. Serpentine Bridge crosses the body of water and creates an artificial boundary between Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. The water to the east is known as the Serpentine, while that to the west is known as Long Water, although most people call the whole body of water "the Serpentine".
Water feeding the Serpentine was originally diverted from the River Westborne, but today it is pumped from three deep wells located within Hyde Park. The lake has a depth of about 17 feet (5.2 m). Water drains from the lake's eastern end, creating a small decorative waterfall. Water in the lake turns over about 2-3 times a year.
Swimming is popular within the Serpentine, and since 1864 the Serpentine Swimming Club holds a 100 yard race every Christmas morning. The Serpentine was a venue for the men's and women's triathlon and marathon swimming events during the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Boating is very popular on the lake, especially on a nice day, and rentals of paddle boats are available. And there are lots of swans gliding over the water, always looking for a handout, always popular with visitors and photographers....
There are two lakeside restaurants, an art gallery, swimming pool (lido), and various other recreational facilities on the lake shore.
I think the Serpentine is a great addition the park and the city and enjoyed my time exploring it!