South Kensington is slightly off the beaten track for centrally located tourists in London. It requires either a hefty walk across Hyde Park or a tube journey, something that guests of London hotel deals in the centre of the city might not factor into their visit to London. However, it is an area of the city that should definitely not be overlooked.
With the nearby Kensington Gardens, great travel links and hundreds of years of history, there’s plenty to do in Kensington that could very easily take up a whole week in London. What’s more, guests of meeting room Kensington hotels can simply walk out their door and be faced with some of the city’s most iconic landmarks.
This blog will explore some of the reasons why Kensington should not be ignored as a destination on your London trip.
Kensington – A Little Background
One half of the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea, Kensington history dates back to the 11th century when the Manor of Kensington was established by William the Conqueror for one of his most powerful advisors. Over the years, the manor developed into what would be known as Earl’s Court, a station for which can be found within the district. Due to its links with the crown, many wealthy aristocrats moved to the area, bolstered further by the establishment of Buckingham Palace nearby. Army barracks were formed here in the Victorian era, further cementing the influence of the area. In the modern era, Kensington has become a tourist hub and historic region of the city.
Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum is the oldest of three important museums established in South Kensington’s Exhibition Road, dating back to a previous site in Bloomsbury opened in 1756. The Natural History Museum we know today was opened in 1881 and its importance and popularity can be traced to the collections donated by “father of evolution” Charles Darwin. The museum is free to visit and contains specimens of plants, animals and fossils, as well as studies of earth and solar geology.
The Science Museum is another popular South Kensington museum that exhibits interactive science exhibitions and pieces of technology. As popular with kids as it is with adults, the Science Museum and Natural History Museum combined make for a free and highly exciting day out for families staying at the nearby Park Grand London Kensington.
Victoria & Albert Museum
The largest design museum in the world, the V&A was named after it – and the above two mentioned museums – founder Prince Albert. The collections found here number its artefacts in the millions and focus on design and decorative art from a vast range of cultures and periods. For anyone interested in history, art, design – or all 3 – the V&A is another must-visit on Exhibition Road.
Kensington Palace And Gardens
Though Kensington Palace is only open on specific days of the week and seasons of the year, it is still a popular place for tourists to book tours of. It also includes exhibitions dedicated to the fashion of the royal family through the centuries and examining the history of Queen Victoria’s Childhood.
Alternatively, Kensington Gardens is an unticketed royal park sat beside Kensington Palace. This beautiful palace is one of the best examples of “formal” landscaping from the 18th century, and still boasts a great many landmarks and monuments. Whether for a quick stroll in the morning or for a full day out in the summer, this is a serene and beautiful Royal Park that’s within walking distance of Park Grand Kensington accommodation guests.