London is one of my favourite cities, I love exploring all the different areas. Back in the Summer I took a walk through Shoreditch, but I’ve decided to switch East for West. Kensington isn’t an area of London that I am familiar with, so I decided to go and explore. Home to many museums, parks, restaurants, bars and even a Royal home, it has it all. Only two stops on the tube from Victoria, and 5 from Paddington it means that it is the ideal area to explore the city from. You can find many hotels near Kensington. This post is a collaboration with Hotels.com and the spending money was gifted by Hotels.com, but all views are my own.
If you are looking for free things to do then the museums are perfect. The Natural History Museum, Science Museum and V&A Museum are all within walking distance from South Kensington tube station. There is a tunnel leading from the tube to the museums and they are all sign posted so it’s extremely easy to find your way to them. All are free to enter, however some of the exhibitions do cost extra. At the time of our visit the Natural History museum had The Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition on. They were also setting up the ice rink in the gardens, which will be open at the end of October until Christmas.
You could easily spend all day at the museums, there is so much to see and do. However if you want something a bit more royal, then Kensington Palace & Gardens are the place to go. The palace is the official residence of Prince William and Kate, and Prince Harry and Meghan. To enter the palace you need to buy a ticket, it’s cheaper if you buy online before you go. However to enter the gardens it is free. The palace is open every day apart from 24th-26th December.
Kensington is also home to The Royal Albert Hall, and Holland Park. The park is home to children’s play facilities, sports areas, a cafeteria and large areas of woodland abundant with wildlife. Contained within the park is the beautiful Kyoto Garden, a Japanese garden built-in 1992.
The surrounding areas are also worth exploring, to the north is Notting Hill and Portobello Road. The Portobello Road market is a must visit, although it is quieter on a weekday. Notting Hill is filled with colourful houses, antique shops and restaurants.
When it comes to food Kensington has it all. Be it breakfast, brunch, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner you can find somewhere for everything. Just a few minutes from the tube and The Royal Albert Hall is Ceru, serving Levantine food, this place is a must visit. Featuring a completely gluten-free menu, apart from the greek pita, the food features spices and herbs from the southeastern corner of the Mediterranean. Vibrant, colourful and tasty it’s perfect for lunch or dinner.
Keeping with spice, Dishoom, has been on my must eat at list for some time now. Open from 8am/9am until 11pm you can get breakfast, lunch or dinner here. It’s always busy so booking is recommended. They also have a children’s menu so this isn’t just for adults. If afternoon tea is more your thing then The Ampersand Hotel offers a science inspired experience. Sampling jellies served in petri dishes, chocolate spacemen and not-so-ancient edible fossils, they also offer one that is perfect for children.
Once you’ve finished eating, then why not take a walk around the area. You will find beautiful rows of mews houses tucked away between Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian houses. We even stumbled across a fashion shoot that was taking place down one of them! Hyde Park is also pretty close, and you can even walk to Harrods and Knightsbridge if you fancy a bit of shopping.
There is no bad time to visit London, you can always find something to do whatever the weather. Do you have a favourite area of London? I always thought East was mine, but West is pretty good as well.