Posts Tagged 'Kensington'

Open Garden Squares Weekend

Don’t miss open garden squares weekend – it’s on now! A ticket is 8pounds but that gets you entry to all of the gardens Saturday and Sunday. Most of the gardens open are ‘private’ gardens not normally open to the public, which of course makes them well worth checking out! With over 190 gardens open, this one takes some planning, but the best strategy is probably to pick an area or two and just garden hop for a few hours. I think my strategy will be to go out to Kensington and Notting Hill tomorrow, where there are a slew of private gardens open for display (and of course they are all quite nice, given that area!). On the website, click on ‘the gardens’ to peruse by area what’s open, with each area having a helpful little map. See the map for Kensington and the map for Notting Hill area. Be sure to start your journey at a garden with a pound sign – that means you can buy your tickets there. Most gardens appear to be places you can do this.

And the garden I’m definitely going to? Lloyd Square, (click on list of gardens – islington – lloyd square WC1) a private key entry only garden for residents around the square that I walk by every single morning on my way to work and wish I had access to every single morning. And though I the residents take great care of it to be honest I never or hardly ever see anyone in there enjoying themselves. Unlike me, who would be in there reading a paper or some such every morning. So there. No bitterness here, no…

lloyd

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Holland Park

Hidden away enough that A made it almost two years before visiting this west end gem, it’s been a favorite of C’s since discovering it on a literary walk while studying abroad 3 years ago. Incredibly close to the much-beloved (and often crowded) Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens, Holland Park is just big enough and just small enough and frequented mostly by locals.  It’s a quick central London escape into beautifully designed gardens, tree covered paths, and Lord Holland’s old impressive house.

We recommend entering from Holland Park street from Holland Park tube station. It’s just a short walk through iconic white Georgian townhouses built for rich people and still inhabited by rich people. We wish we qualified in this category. Oh well, it’s always free to visit.
Holland Park Street

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This park changes so much you can certainly find a spot to fit your mood.  At this entrance, follow the path and then turn right where the park opens up to wander amongst semi-wildness, with bramble-lined dirt paths and tangles of trees. You’ll encounter others walking dogs but not much else in this corner of the park. Go straight or turn left to explore Lord Holland’s house, the meticulous Japanese Garden, or the Italianate style mini-gardens.

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Be sure to look out for the park’s famed peacocks which you’re almost guaranteed not to miss on nice days.

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Things to do after visiting the park (to be covered in future posts!):
Portobello Road Market
Notting Hill – wander around the neighborhood
Beautiful streets of South Kensington
Hyde Park/Kensington Gardens
Orangery
Shopping on High Street Kensington


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