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Kew Gardens in London

Kew Gardens – Art and Nature in the Sun

Trip Over to London

Kew Gardens is very easy to get to from the centre of London. The District Line on the tube takes you straight there. For us, this meant a lovely walk down through St James’s Park to St James’s Park Tube Station. Here you need to make sure you get on the correct train, as there are also Circle Line trains and District Line trains to Ealing Broadway. The train you need to get to Kew Gardens is the District Line train to Richmond, Kew Gardens is the second last station on this line, just before Richmond. Once you get off the train there are signs to show you the direction to Kew Gardens, just a few hundred meters away along a dead straight, flat road that leads you right to Victoria Gate, the main entrance to the Gardens.

Entering at the Victoria Gate, there was a queue for tickets (Should have bought them online!!) but it moved quickly, and we got a 10% discount as we had become members of the Historic Royal Palaces. This membership gives you unlimited entry to Kensington Palace, The Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, and Banqueting House, along with the 10% discount on the Kew Gardens ticket, all for less than the price of single tickets to each of these places. If you lived near Kew Gardens I am sure you would become a member of Kew Gardens so you had unlimited use of beautiful gardens and the many other benefits that come with membership.

First we went on the Kew Explorer, a hop-on hop-off ‘train’ that takes you on a huge lap of the Gardens, with very interesting commentary, from here you can see a lot of what the Gardens have, and you can decide what to walk back to. The tree that was used to make a mould for one of the trees in one of the Harry Potter movies was pointed out to us, I think I am one of the only people in the world who is not a big fan of Harry Potter and I have never seen any of the movies, but the tree was amazing. Do you think we could find it again???? Kew Gardens really needs several visits to do it justice, so if you only have one day, make it worth it!

The Great Pagoda is quite stunning, bringing a bit of Oriental flair to that area of the Gardens. It was completed in 1762 as a gift for Princess Augusta, George lll’s mum, the founder of the Gardens. If you are feeling fit (I wasn’t!!) you can climb the 253 steps to the top, I understand it offers amazing views of London and the River Thames.

Fortunately when we were there, there was an exhibition of Dale Chihuly art works, one of the world’s most celebrated glass artists. The magnificent glass sculptures are placed throughout the Gardens, and inside the glass houses. They both blend in with and stand out in all environments. Dale Chihuly has worked with glass artists from all over the world and put on amazing outdoor exhibitions of his stunning works. I would have loved to have seen the one he did in Venice some years ago with chandelier like creations hanging over the canals.




Many of the permanent sculptures in the Gardens were gifts, or moved there from other parts of England and the rest of the world. The bronze sculpture of Hercules wrestling a serpent stands in the lake in front of the Botanical Restaurant, it was on the North Terrace at Windsor Castle in the 1800s, then did a short stint and Hampton Court from 1957 to 1961, when it was moved to Kew Gardens. The pair of white Oriental lions on the edge of the lake looking over the Palm House were presented in 1958, they possibly date back to the Ming period from the 1300s to the 1600s.

Strolling on through the Gardens searching for some of the things spotted from the ‘train’ was really lovely, the lakes, flower beds, trellis arrangements and buildings make for a great day trip away from the hustle and bustle of central London. Bringing a picnic would have been a good idea – maybe next time……

Eventually we came to Kew Palace, the summer home of George lll and Queen Charlotte, and their 15 children!!! That is way above the call of duty – Charlotte was clearly an over achiever! The Dutch looking building dates back to the early 1600s, sitting on the banks of the River Thames and surrounded by its own beautifully manicured gardens. It was offered to Princess Victoria and her mother to live in in the late 1800s, but was deemed to be ‘quite unsuitable for the future Queen of England’ by her mother. Sometime later it was opened to the public until it went through a major restoration starting in 1996, then re-opened in 2006 after Prince Charles had hosted the Queen’s 80th birthday bash there.

Kew Gardens and the surrounding areas are really lovely, with such handy links directly to London. There is even a pub on the platform at the station called ‘Tap on the Line’, what more can you ask for? I’m sure Kew would be a great place to live, but it is on the flight path to Heathrow Airport…………the planes are still high enough not to be too noisy, but there is one flying overhead every few minutes……….when flying into London if this is the approach to the airport that day, it was when I flew in and I had views over Westminster, St James’s Park, Green Park, Buckingham Palace then over Kew Gardens before touching down at Heathrow – a great start to the holiday, it really got me in the London mood.

While in London you might like to take a walk from Camden Town along Regent’s Canal, or be part of London’s amazing history at the Tower of London, or if you are in London at the right time of year, visiting the Chelsea Flower Show is very inspirational, even for a non-gardener like me!

If you feel like a long walk through London’s History or for a leisurely day out, catch a boat up the Thames to Hampton Court

Read the PostCards I wrote on my recent Trip Over to London, shorter stories and pictures of places I visited.

Book a tour on your Trip Over to London

Itinerary for my Trip Over to London

Flew from Sydney to London Heathrow via Singapore, with Qantas on QF1, then QF2 to come home.

Stayed at the Royal Overseas League in St James’s.

Picked up at Heathrow by Naz from Black Lane Limos.

Travelled around London using a Visitor Oyster Card.

The elephant sculptures by Gillie and Marc at Spitalfields Market in London, The Herd of Hope is raising awareness of the plight the elephants face due to poaching and habitat destruction. Go to my website to read more about them, see more pictures and read about my long walk in London. Link in the bio. . . #herdofhope #herdofhopelondon #spitalfields #spitalfieldsmarket #gillieandmarcart #gillieandmarc #artinthestreets #artinpublicplaces #sculptureart #sculptureoftheday #elephantsofinstagram #elephantfamily #londontrip #londontravel #londonwalks #selfguidedwalk #solotravelinlondon #explorelondon #london #traveladdict
The Alfresco Emporium at the QVB, all Christmas ready 🎄!! . . . . #alfrescoemporium #alfrescoemporiumqvb #alfrescoemporiumchristmas #queenvictoriabuilding #christmastrees #christmasinsydney #christmasdecorations #shoppinginsydney #windowshopping #sydneyaustralia #sydneylocal #sydney #sydneylife #seetheworldthroughmylens
This looks like it is upside down, but no, these flowers are all hanging from the ceiling in David Jones Elizabeth Street store at the Spring Flower Show. . . #davidjonesflowershow #davidjones #elizabethstreetstore #flowersontheceiling #whiteflowers #pinkflowers #sydneylife #sydney #sydneyshopping #sydneylocal #sydneyinspring #sydneylunchtime #springflowershow #sydneycbd #seetheworldthroughmylens
The next place I came across was London Museum, but sadly it was "temporarily closed", but this horse sculpture was outside. Oh well, keep walking to see what's around the next corner.....see the map of my walk and read about all the places I found along the way by clicking the link in the bio. . . . #londontravel #londonmuseum #london #londonwalks #londonlife #londontrip #londoncalling #horsesculpture #artinpublicspaces #neverstopexploring #solotravelinlondon #solotravel #londonart #seekandyoushallfind #seeeverythingdoeverything #seetheworldthroughmyeyes #traveladdict #travellerau #traveltheworldwithme
St Bartholomew the Great church founded in 1123, London's oldest surviving church. It survived the Great Fire and both World wars. See more photos and read about all the places I discovered on my walk around the south west area of the East End by clicking the link to my website in the bio. . #stbartholomewthegreat #clothfair #historicchurch #historicbuildingsenrichourlives #londontravel #londontrip #londonlife #london #londonhistory #londonwalks #londoncalling #londonsoldestchurch #traveltheworldwithme #seekandyoushallfind #seetheworldthroughmylens
The Christmas tree in the QVB is in place rising up into the dome. . . . . #qvb #queenvictoriabuilding #christmastree #christmasdecorations #christmasdecorationseverywhere #sydneylife #sydneyaustralia #sydneycbd #sydneyhistoricalbuildings #sydneychristmas #shoppinginsydney #christmasready #sydney #sydneylocal #seekandyoushallfind
Happy New Year, above Sydney Harbour!!! Hope 2024 is a good one 🥂🤗 . . #happynewyear #sydneyfireworks #bringon2024
Looking across Sydney Harbour from Cremorne Point on Sydney's North Shore. . . #sydneynorthshore #sydneyharbour #sydneyharbourwalks #sydneyferries #sydneyoperahouse #sydneyharbourbridge #fortdenison #sydneycbd #sydneyweekend #sydneybythesea #sydneylocal #sydneyinsummertime #sydney #sydneywalks #cremornepointwalk #cremornepoint
Postman's Park, just up St Martin's le Grand from St Paul's Cathedral, was a lovely diversion on my long rambling walk through London's south west east end! It was previously the London GPO, and burial grounds of some of the surrounding churches. It is now home to the Memorial to Heroic Self-Sacrifice, remembering people who died saving others. Read more about this and the rest of my walk by clicking the link to my website in the bio. . . . #postmanspark #postmansparklondon #postmansparkmemorial #londonwalk #walkinthepark #parkbench #historiclondon #london #londonlife #londoncalling #londonhistory #londonparks #londonsights #londontimes #londontravel #londontrip #seetheworldthroughmyeyes #seekandyoushallfind #seetheworldthroughmylens #londonisalwaysagoodidea
Sydney Harbour Bridge doing it's thing!!🥂 . . #happynewyear #bringon2024 #sydneyharbourbridge #sydneyharbour
An old gnarly tangled mess of tree roots on a tree along the walk around Cremorne Point on Sydney's North Shore. . . . #cremornepointwalk #cremornepoint #gnarlytreesarethebest #gnarlytrees #treerootsgonewild #sydneylife #sydney #sydneylocal #sydneywalks #sydneyharbourwalks #walkinthepark #sydneynorthshore #sydneybythesea #sydneyinsummertime #seekandyoushallfind
Bronze sculpture of Maktao, an orphaned elephant, by Gillie and Marc. He's playing with the rest of his herd at Spitalfields Market in London. Click on my website link in the bio to find out about all my finds on my long walk in London. . . . #maktao #theherdofhope #herdofhope #herdofhopelondon #londonwalks #spitalfields #spitalfieldsmarket #london #londonlife #ifoundparadise #londontravel #londontrip #londonhistory #londoncalling #londonisalwaysagoodidea #londonstreets #londonsbest #seekandyoushallfind #seetheworldthroughmyeyes #traveltheworldwithme
Vivid colours on the walk around Cremorne Point on Sydney's North Shore. . . . #cremornepointwalk #cremornepoint #australiannativeplants #sydneyharbourwalks #harboursidewalks #sydneywalks #orangeflowers #pinkflowers #freshairandsunshine #sydneyweekend #sydneybythesea #sydneylocal #myhometown #seekandyoushallfind #seetheworldthroughmylens #sydneynativeplants
On the harbour side walkway near Luna Park looking at all the Sydney icons, Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney Opera House and Sydney Ferries. . . . #sydneyharbourbridge #sydneyoperahouse #sydneyferries #milsonspoint #sydneyharbourwalks #sydneynorthshore #sydneyharbour #sydney #sydneyaustralia #sydneyweekend #sydneybythesea #sydneylocal #sydneylife #traveltheworldwithme #traveladdict #travellerau #seetheworldthroughmylens
One of the beautiful gardens on the harbourside walk around Cremorne Point. . . . #cremornepointwalk #cremornepoint #palm #palmtree #australiannativeplants #rockwall #gardenideas #federationhousesofaustralia #harboursidewalks #sydneyweekend #sydneynorthshore #sydneybythesea #sydneylocal #sydneylife #sydneyaustralia #sydney #sydneyinsummertime #sydneyharbourwalks #seekandyoushallfind #seetheworldthroughmyeyes
The Martin Place Christmas tree is set up, but I am so over seeing it every year with the red and green beach ball look, surely we can have something different occasionally. Looks great for visitors, but if you live here........same old, same old...... . . . #martinplace #martinplacechristmastree #sydneycbd #sydneylife #sydney #sydneyhistoricalbuildings #sydneylocal #christmasinsydney #christmasiscoming #sydneylunchtime #fullertonhotelsydney #seetheworldthroughmylens
Sydney on weekdays - beautiful blue sky, blue water, I'm settling back into Sydney after returning from London, walked home from work across Sydney Harbour Bridge, I then cheat and catch the bus up the hill from here!!🤣🌞 . . #sydneyharbour #sydneyferries #sydneylife #sydneyaustralia #sydneycbd #sydneylocal #sydney #sydneyinspring #sydneywalks #walkinghomefromwork #bluewater #bluesky #waitingforthebus #perfectday #seetheworldthroughmyeyes #traveltheworldwithme #myhometown #travellerau
Happy New Year Sydney!!🥂 . . . #happynewyear #sydneyharbourbridge #sydneyharbour #bringon2024
David Jones Spring Flower Show, at the Elizabeth St store in Sydney CBD. . . #davidjonesflowershow #davidjones #elizabethstreet #orchids #yellowflowers #pinkflowers #celine #dior #pinkdress #sydneylife #sydneyshopping #sydneyaustralia #sydneycbd #seekandyoushallfind #sydneylocal #sydneyinspring #neverstopexploring #explorethecityyoulivein #lunchtimewalks #seetheworldthroughmylens
On a walk around Cremorne Point the water looked so inviting, apart from the jagged shells on the rocks on the shoreline..... . . . #cremornepointwalk #cremornepoint #northshore #sydneyweekend #sydneybythesea #sydneylife #sydneylocal #sydneynorthshore #sydneybythesea #sydneyinsummertime #sydneywalks #sydneywaterways #sydneyaustralia #sydneynativeplants #sydneyharbourwalks #seetheworldthroughmylens
All Christmas ready in the Strand Arcade in Sydney!! . . . #strandarcade #strandarcadesydney #christmasinsydney #christmasdecorationseverywhere #christmasdecorations #christmasiscoming #startingtolookalotlikechristmas #shoppinginsydney #sydneyhistoricalbuildings #sydneylocal #myhometown #sydneylife #sydneyaustralia #sydneycbd #sydneyshopping #sydney #sydney_insta #seekandyoushallfind
David Jones Spring Flower Show in the Elizabeth Street store in the Sydney CBD. . . . #davidjones #davidjonesflowershow @davidjonesstore #chanelbag #orchids #pinkflowers #yellowflowers #notchelseaflowershow #sydneyinspring #shoppinginsydney #explorethecityyoulivein #seekandyoushallfind #sydneylife #sydneycbd #sydneyaustralia #sydneylocal
Walking around Kirribilli on the north shore of Sydney Harbour, between storms!! What's going on with the weather these days??? . . . #kirribilli #milsonspoint #sydneyoperahouse #sydneyoperahouseaustralia #sydneyharbour #sydneyharbourwalks #palmtrees #sydneybythesea #sydneylife #northsydneylife #sydneyaustralia #sydneylocal #myhometown #seetheworldthroughmylens #traveltheworldwithme
Looking into the Piccadilly Arcade from the Jermyn Street end, all lit up in its Christmas finery!! . . . #piccadillyarcade #piccadillyarcadelondon #jermynstreetlondon #dandystyle #christmasinlondon #christmaslightseverywhere #christmaslights #christmasready #christmasdecoratingideas #christmasiscoming #london #londonlife #londontravel #londonwalks #londonstyle #traveltheworldwithme
Even this Azalea bush in my front garden wants to get in on the festive Christmas look!! . . . . #azalea #redazalea #redazaleaflowers #festiveplants #christmasinsydney #flowersinthestreets #christmasiscoming #sydneystreets #sydneysuburbs #sydneylocal #myhometown #sydneylife #onthecommute #walktowork #seetheworldthroughmylens
Postman's Park in London was a nice place to sit while I checked the map on my 'make it up as you go' walk. Everything I did this and formulated a plan, I would find something else that led me off to the next place, there was a lot of recalibration that day! Read the story and see my walking map by clicking the link in the bio. . . . #postmansparklondon #postmanspark #postmansparkmemorial #whiteflowers #redflowers #parkbench #londonparks #londonpics #londontimes #londontravel #londoncalling #londontrip #london #londonwalks #londonhistory #londoninautumn #londonisalwaysagoodidea #seekandyoushallfind #traveltheworldwithme
Merry Christmas! . . . #merrychristmas🎄 #martinplacechristmastree #sydneychristmas
Looking down Barrack St, peeking between the Burberry Building and the old Sydney GPO, now the Fullerton Hotel, at Martin Place getting set up for the Christmas markets. . . . #christmastree #christmasmarket #martinplace #barrackstreet #martinplacechristmastree #starontop #sydneycbd #sydneychristmas #sydneylife #sydneyshopping #sydney #sydneyaustralia #sydneylocal #sydneyhistoricalbuildings #seetheworldthroughmylens #australianflag #explorethecityyoulivein
Deep blue hydrangeas at the David Jones Spring Flower Show at the Elizabeth Street store. . . #davidjonesflowershow #davidjones #bluehydrangeas #goldscreen #flowershow #blueflowers #pinkflowers #whiteflowers #sydneylife #sydneyaustralia #sydney_insta #sydneycbd #sydneyshopping #sydneylocal #sydneyinspring #explorethecityyoulivein
David Jones Elizabeth Street Store, Sydney Spring Flower Show always attracts attention. . . . #davidjonesflowershow #davidjones #elizabethstreet #orchids #roses #pinkflowers #yellowflowers #purpleflowers #whiteflowers #sydneycbd #sydneylife #sydneyshopping #sydney #sydneyaustralia #sydneylocal #sydneyinspring #neverstopexploring #seekandyoushallfind #seetheworldthroughmyeyes
Christmas has come to Sydney!! The Strand Arcade always beautiful anyway, now dressed up in it's finest festive kit. . . . #strandarcade #strandarcadesydney #christmasinsydney #christmasiscoming #christmasdecorations #christmasdecorationseverywhere #christmasdecoratingideas #festiveseason #sydneyhistoricalbuildings #historicalbuildingsenrichourlives #shoppinginsydney #sydneylunchtime #sydneylocal #myhometown #traveladdict #seetheworldthroughmylens
Westfield is rolling out Christmas to get everyone in the mood...... . . . . #christmasinsydney #christmasdecorationseverywhere #christmasdecoratingideas #christmasiscoming #christmastrees #christmaslights #christmaslightseverywhere #shoppinginsydney #sydneyshopping #sydneylocal #sydneylunchtime #sydneylife #sydney

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