South Kensington truly represents the finer side of London: the gorgeous cream-coloured town houses, the cultural landmarks, and the glorious green spaces dotted around the area. Not to mention, the locals and the architecture scream ‘affluent’. This is just some of the reasons why this area is a must visit for tourists, and even Londoners who maybe don’t visit the area as often: there’s so many places to see, and you can feel instantly transported into what feels like a much older part of town. If you don’t know where to start, read on to see some of my top picks.
Queens Gate Mews and Kensington Gardens
If you’re looking for your new Instagram hotspot, this is the place: Queens Gate Mews is a beautiful mews located just down the road from the iconic Kensington Gardens. This striking blue pub, also known as The Queen’s Arms will make the perfect backdrop for your next picture, but the mews and the area around it is perfect for quiet stroll (during lockdown anyway), and embracing the beauty of London. Kensington Gardens, is not only a beautiful green space, but also home to The Albert Memorial. What I particularly love about Kensington Gardens is although there’s quite a busy main road outside, the minute you get into the park, it’s almost like the noise disappears and you’re transported to a completely different place.
Perhaps the most famous of the mews (I know I’ve seen it plenty of times on Instagram), but for a great reason. Especially around spring/summer, the mews’ blooms come alive, and it makes for a great photo opportunity. In fact, when we passed it, there was a photoshoot going on! Maybe make sure to get their early if you are looking for that photo, or if you’re not, Kynance mews is great to admire (and as is the mews opposite! Definitely underrated).
Cornwall Mews West
Another beautiful mews that is absolutely worth walking around (or taking photos by, but as with the other mews, please be respectful to the people who live there!). Visiting Cornwall Mews West was actually an accident whilst strolling around the area, but it was the archway that intrigued me in the first place. A great spot to check out along the way.
Now for the more obvious gems of the area, but possibly my favourite areas, are the museums. One thing I absolutely love about London is that the majority of museums are free, which you don’t get in a lot of countries. The Natural History Museum is my personal favourite, which in winter also hosts an ice-skating rink. The other great museums in the area include The Science Museum (amazing for those with young ones), and the V&A Museum, home to all kinds of art and design.
A pretty iconic London park, but for a reason: Hyde Park is 350 acres of pure green-space bliss, and is perfect for picnics, sport activities, or even just walking (running, or cycling) around. If you were planning to go to Kensington Gardens, it may be a nice surprise to know that Kensington Gardens is actually located within Hyde Park, so it’s a two for one here. As mentioned in one of my recent posts, you can also rent a boat out to travel down the lake with. The North East corner of Hyde Park is also home to Speaker’s Corner, in which every Sunday, speakers engage in discussions and debates for all to listen to. Nearby that is Marble Arch (once again, for all you photo opportunists to capture one of London’s landmarks). In winter, Hyde Park is home to the world-renown Winter Wonderland (which I’m praying comes back again!)
I’d love to know if you’ll be visiting South Kensington any time soon, or whether you have some great spots I’ve missed on the list. Thanks for reading!
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