Homegirl London’s Visit: Kensington Gardens. On Sunday, we visited Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens which was a wonderful day out. There is plenty to do and my favourite things include snooping around Kensington Palace, visiting the Serpentine Galleries, seeing the sensational statues and feeding the wild parakeets.
The Arch by Henry Moore
Ten Things to do in Kensington Gardens
See inside the super stylish Kensington Palace: This palace is currently the London residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The public can take a peek at various apartments and wander through the manicured gardens. Check out the exhibitions while you are there and stop off at the baroque Orangery Café afterwards for refreshments. Open Monday to Sunday from 10am until 6pm. Tickets are £15.50 for 16+ and free for children.
Follow the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Walk: Follow 90 ground plaques along a seven-mile walk. This takes you through a number of Royal Parks and past famous buildings associated with this famous Princess. Pick up the route after you’ve visited Kensington Palace.
Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Walk
Pay your respects to the Queen Victoria Statue: Overlooking Kensington Palace you will see the beautiful marble statue of Queen Victoria looking very regal in her coronation robes. The piece is by Princes Louise which sits inside a round pond of water.
Queen Victoria Statue
Be amazed at The Albert Memorial: Wow, this memorial is breath taking. It’s opulent and grand with glistening gold. It commemorates the death of Prince Albert who passed away in 1861 from typhoid aged 42. Designed by George Gilbert Scott, you will find it situated opposite the Royal Albert Hall on Albert Memorial Road. Warning – you will feel giddy looking up at this statue but it’s well worth it!
The Albert Memorial
Admire art at the Serpentine Galleries: There are two galleries (The Serpentine Gallery and the Serpentine Sackler Gallery) which are a five-minute walk from each other over the Serpentine Bridge. The admission at both galleries is free and you can visit Tuesday to Sunday 10am until 6pm. We saw the Grayson Perry exhibit at The Serpentine Gallery which was thrilling and well worth popping in for a gawp. The Sackler houses the Magazine Restaurant designed by Zaha Hadid which is perfect if you fancy a swanky lunch.
Drink in the view from the Serpentine Bridge: When you’re walking over the bridge take time to stop and drink in those amazing views on both sides.
View from Serpentine Bridge
See through The Arch by Henry Moore: I love this arch which is made from Roman travertine and resides on the north bank of the Long Water. It’s simple, stunning and serene.
The Arch by Henry Moore
Let the parakeets eat out of your hand: When you’re on the east bank of Long Water before Henry Moore’s Arch you’ll notice a group of people looking up whilst holding their hands out. It seems very odd but when you get up close you realise they are waiting patiently for the parakeets to land on their hands and eat seeds or an apple.
Clap your hands at the bandstand: To the south of the Round Pond is a Regency style bandstand. It was designed by J Markham and erected in 1931 with iron columns and an S shaped curve roof which claims to have excellent acoustics.
Relax in the Italian Gardens: Head over to the north side of the park (Lancaster Gate) where you will find a stunning ornamental water garden with impressive statues and urns. The Italian Gardens Café is the perfect spot to enjoy a cup of tea and a slice of cake!
Other Attractions Near Kensington Gardens
Hyde Park is right next door to Kensington Gardens. There are a number of attractions in Hyde Park to explore which include statues, the Rose Garden, Diana Memorial Fountain, Speakers’ Corner, Serpentine Lido and more. Read my Ten Things to do in Hyde Park feature.
Kensington Gardens Information
There is much more to explore so make sure you take a look at the Royal Parks Website before you visit Kensington Gardens. Opening times are 6am until dusk. The general postcode is W2 2UH. You can access the Gardens at several points. Key tube stations are Lancaster Gate (Central Line), Queensway (Central Line), Bayswater (District Line) and High Street Kensington (Circle and District Lines). Enjoy your visit!
Author: Homegirl London. Photographs: Homegirl London. Thanks: Homeboy for visiting with me.