Kensington Palace has been the private residence of the Royal family since 1689. The current members of the Royal family who reside here include the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge along with their children – Prince George and Princess Charlotte, the Duke and Duchess of Kent, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent and Prince Harry. The State Apartments are open to the public.
One of London’s most distinctive and treasure buildings, the Royal Albert Hall was opened in 1871 in the memory of Prince Albert, the Prince Consort of Queen Victoria. As one of UK’s most popular concert halls, the Royal Albert Hall is the venue for numerous musical concerts and other events. The Hall is a registered charity with no public funding. Besides the events, the Hall also offers an extensive education and outreach programme.
Admission free The Victoria and Albert Museum (aka the V&A) is part of a complex of museums in South Kensington that includes the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. Founded in 1852, it moved to its present location in 1909 bringing with it its extensive collections. Today, the V&A covers nearly 13 acres and contains 145 galleries spanning some 5,000 years of art.
Admission Free The Science Museum was founded in 1857 as part of the South Kensington Museum. The Museum was separated administratively from the Victoria & Albert Museum (which the South Kensington Museum was renamed as) in 1909. The Science Museum’s collection of 300,000 objects showcases the history of Western Science, Technology and Medicine since 1700.
Admission Free The Natural History Museum is a world-class visitor attraction and leading science research centre and is near the Burns Hotel. The museum houses 80 million specimens spanning billions of years and welcome over 5 million visitors per year. Originally opened in 1881, it was known as the British Museum and displayed the natural history collection.
Spread over 54 acres, Holland Park is a district and public park in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The facilities on offer at Holland Park are suitable for people of all ages and walks of life. Besides children’s play facilities, sports areas, dining options, the park also has large woodland areas abundant with wildlife. Two Japanese gardens – the Kyoto Gardens (1992) and the Fukushima Memorial Garden (2012) are also located inside Holland Park.
London’s oldest botanic garden, founded in 1673, is dedicated to the study of medicinal effects of plants and is a celebration of the beauty and importance of plants.
Kensington Park was originally a part of Hyde Park, which was officially separated by Queen Caroline in 1728 by creating the Serpentine and the Long Water. Spread over 275 acres, the Kensington Gardens are the setting for Kensington Palace.
Spread over 350 acres, Hyde Park is one of the largest parks in London and is also one of the Royal Parks of London along with Kensington Gardens. It was opened to the public in 1635.
Portobello Road is one of the most famous street markets in the world. You can find food stalls, bric-a-brac and clothes being sold in the Market from Monday to Friday every week. However, on Saturdays, the Market transforms into the world’s largest antiques market with over a 1000 dealers selling every kind of antiques and collectibles, thus making it the most extensive selection of antiques in Britain.
London’s famous nightlife is best experienced at the West End. You can take the tube or hail a cab from the Burns Hotel and head to the West End theatres in Piccadilly Circus, Shaftesbury Avenue, the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden or Leicester Square. The narrow streets of Soho offer visitors the option of pubs, bars and countless restaurants.
The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea has many high-end shopping areas like Knightsbridge, Sloane Street, Kings Road, Kensington High Street and Brompton Road to name a few. Harrods and Harvey Nichols are located on Sloane Street whereas the traditionally English department store, Peter Jones, is located on King’s Road. The Portobello Market is ideal if you are looking for vintage clothing and accessories as well as bargains on new fashion.