Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace

Top Tourist Attractions

Kensington Palace is a royal residence set in Kensington Gardens, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London, England. It has been a residence of the British Royal Family since the 17th century, and is currently the official London residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace is a royal residence set in Kensington Gardens, in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London, England. It has been a famous royal residence for over 300 years. Known as Queen Victoria's birthplace, the palace has been home to many royal families and is a must-see destination for those who would like to be closer to the history of this landmark residence and grounds.

History

Kensington Palace was once a small and suburban villa, known as Nottingham House. New monarchs William III and Mary II chose this modest mansion in 1689 to be their country retreat. Over the years, Stuart and Georgian monarchs transformed the palace into a fashionable home for Britain’s young royal families.

Queen Caroline shaped the palace and gardens, and Queen Victoria spent her childhood here. She left to live in Buckingham Palace in 1837. Kensington later became home for minor royals, including her daughter, the talented sculptor Princess Louise.

More recently, the palace has been home to Diana, Princess of Wales, Princess Margaret, and The Duke and Duchess of Sussex. It is also the London home of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their children.

Highlights

The State Rooms

  • The King’s Gallery

Located inside Kensington Palace is the King’s Gallery, which is the longest and largest of all apartments in the residence. The room itself is worth seeing, as it’s been kept almost identical to how King George I decorated it in 1725.

Visitors will also find one of the best collections of royal art in the country.

  • The King’s Staircase

Visit the incredibly opulent state apartments in Kensington Palace. Walk and explore where hundreds of royals, nobles, and important figures met over the years. The apartments consist of seven rooms, which are all specifically designed to host important guests.

  • The King's State Apartments

Designed by William Kent, these bright rooms have a unique feel. Surrounded by statues and tapestries, experience the King's spaces to address his people and imagine what it was like to be there.

  • The Queen's State Apartments

Experience the backdrop that Queen Mary II lived with as she performed her royal duties. Marvel in her collection of stunning porcelain pieces in her drawing-room.

  • Queen Victoria's Childhood Rooms

Discover the story of Princess Victoria, the young girl destined to be queen, in the rooms where she was born and raised at Kensington Palace.

The display includes remarkable objects relating to Victoria's early years – including a poignant scrapbook of mementos created by her German governess, Baroness Lehzen, which goes on public display for the first time, and Victoria's doll house.

The Palace Gardens

The famous Kensington Palace Gardens is one of The Royal Parks of London. With several gardens and art galleries on site, there is much to see. Here are some of the most popular features.

  • The Sunken Garden

Since being opened to the public, the Sunken Garden has remained a source of interest for visitors exploring the elaborate planting, landscaped design, and ornamental pond. In 2021, on what would have been Princess Diana’s 60th birthday, a new memorial was opened to the public by her sons, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex.

  • Serpentine Galleries

Located within Kensington Palace Gardens, the Serpentine Galleries are comprised of the Serpentine South Gallery and the Serpentine North Gallery. Every year an architect is commissioned to design a Serpentine Pavilion for the Gallery lawn, with the new design a draw for those seeking to view the latest architectural innovation in the gardens.

  • Elfin Oak

Garden visitors can also view the Elfin Oak sculpture, which is situated nearby the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Playground.

The Albert Memorial

Located in Kensington Gardens, the Albert Memorial is an impressive monument that features incredible stonemasonry and creative designs. It was built by Queen Victoria in memory of Prince Albert. In the centre is an enormous statue of Prince Albert in gilt bronze, underneath a large chapel-like structure that goes up 176 feet.

At each corner of the monument, there are different allegorical sculptures; four depicting different continents of the world, and four depicting different industries.

Refreshments to enjoy at this stylish royal residence

  • The Café sells a range of hot drinks, refreshments, sandwiches, cakes, and ice cream.
  • Kensington Palace Pavilion and Tea Room offer Breakfast, Lunch, and Afternoon tea.

It is definitely worth a visit, especially to experience the life of royalty and also know the interesting facts related to them.

https://www.hrp.org.uk/kensington-palace/