The National Park was originally part of the sugar estate Plantation Thomas. In 1823, 57 acres of land from that Plantation was established as the Demerara Golf Club. This site would later be developed as a park in 1965 and named the Queen Elisabeth II National Park; declared open by Queen Elisabeth II herself during her visit to Guyana that same year. Upon receiving independence in May, 1966, the park served as the site where the Union Jack was lowered and the Golden Arrow Head was first hoisted as a mark of Guyana’s birth. At this time the name of the park was changed to the “National Park”.
The National Park is a popular urban green space used by the public for a myriad of purposes from health and wellness, family and culture, and for entertainment. People use the park to play a variety of sports – football, tennis, volleyball and ruby. Families and groups also gather for picnics and other family-oriented activities. Children come to learn and practice dancing and karate within the boundaries of the park; and people can be seen doing yoga, jogging, walking and doing various forms of exercise along the almost 1-mile path around the National Park. The feeding of the manatees is a popular pastime engrained in our local urban culture.
In March 2000 the National Park became home to the Children’s Millennium Monument. The monument was designed by Mr. Michael Hahn and it symbolizes the development, strength and growth of children of all races in Guyana. It joins the symbolic Bell, located at Carifesta Avenue entrance, the children’s play park “Play Land”, and the stadium used to facilitate cultural and social/entertainment programs.
In 2011 with the passing of the Protected Areas Act 2011 the National Park was included as a member of the National Protected Areas System.
National Park, Thomas Lands,