Best 16 London gardens

Pay a visit to one of London's best gardens, from Chelsea Physic Garden and Kew Gardens to the blooming Buckingham Palace.

London is full of beautiful gardens, from magnificent Royal Parks to smaller green spaces tended to by volunteers.

See the thousands of plants and flowers at Kew Gardens or enjoy quiet walks in some of London's most peaceful places

Royal gardens

Many of the best gardens in London are hosted in magnificent royal palaces with centuries of history. Stroll where the royals used to at these famous London gardens.

1. Buckingham Palace Gardens

Buckingham Palace in the background with the lake and yellow flowers pictured, as part of the Buckingham Palace Garden tour.
Buckingham Palace Garden is open to visitors this summer © Royal Collection Trust/ Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Photo credit: John Campbell.

Enjoy a walk along the south side of Buckingham Palace gardens as part of your ticket to the Buckingham Palace Summer Opening. The palace houses a hidden oasis covering 15 hectares (39 acres), including the famous herbaceous border, wisteria-clad Summer House and the beautiful Rose Garden. Book now to secure your spot on the Buckingham Palace tour

2. Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew

Explore 130 hectares (320 acres) housing more than 30,000 types of plant at Kew Gardens. This verdant garden in south-west London has a 250-year history and is a World Heritage Site.

3. Kensington Palace Gardens

Queen Victoria statue in Kensington Gardens with Kensington Palace in the background on a sunny day.
Explore Kensington Palace and its beautiful gardens © Historic Royal Palaces/Robin Forster. Image courtesy of Historic Royal Palaces/Robin Forster.

Discover a variety of lovely landscapes at Kensington Palace Gardens, including the 19th-century Italian Gardens.

4. Syon House and Gardens

Landscaped by renowned garden innovator Capability Brown, the 16 hectares (40 acres) of stunning outside space at Syon House feature the spectacular Great Conservatory and a host of rare trees and plants.

5. Hampton Court Palace Gardens

A row of trees and a neatly kept lawn in the foreground leads towards the red brick facade of Hampton Court Palace in the background.
Hampton Court Palace and gardens © Shutterstock/St. Nick. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Home to an annual flower show, Hampton Court Palace Gardens were devised by Henry VIII as a magnificent display of opulence and cover more than 24 hectares (60 acres).

London's palace gardens

Travel back in time at these fascinating gardens in former private estates and beautiful London palaces.

6. Charlton House Peace Garden

Among Charlton House's expansive grounds, the original walled garden is dedicated as a Peace Garden in support of Amnesty International's Stop Violence Against Women campaign.

7. Fulham Palace Gardens

An adult and child walk through the knot gardens at Fulham Palace House & Garden.
Fulham Palace Knot Gardens. Image courtesy of Fulham Palace House and Garden. Photo Credit: Marcus-Dawes.

Fulham Palace's spectacular gardens include an 18th-century walled garden and a variety of rare shrubs. Look out for The Bishop's Tree – a spectacular carved cedarwood sculpture.

8. Eltham Palace and Gardens

The grounds of the art deco-inspired Eltham Palace include seven hectares (19 acres) of original medieval gardens, which also feature some unusual art deco elements and one of London's oldest working bridges over the moat.

9. Chiswick House and Grounds

A statue stands beside the grand Chiswick House in Burlington London.
Chiswick House and Gardens. Image courtesy of Luke Bachelor PR

These London gardens were designed in the 18th century by William Kent, whose idealised vision of the Italian countryside transformed British landscape gardening. Chiswick House and Grounds were lovingly restored in 2010, and are well worth a visit.

Roof gardens in London

Soak up amazing views from these sky-high London roof gardens.

10. Queen Elizabeth Hall Roof Garden

Climb the quirky yellow staircase at Queen Elizabeth Hall to find a hidden garden, featuring a wildflower meadow, mini allotments and a woodland garden with spectacular views of the river.

11. Sky Garden

The garden and terrace area inside the Sky Garden at 20 Fenchurch Street. Image courtesy of Sky Garden.
Sky Garden at 20 Fenchurch Street. Image courtesy of Sky Garden.

Discover a lush tropical garden 35 floors up at 20 Fenchurch Street. The Sky Garden, spread across the top three storeys of “The Walkie-Talkie” skyscraper, boasts breathtaking views of the London skyline, plus two restaurants and two bars.

12. The Culpeper

Hidden on the top floor of The Culpeper pub, you’ll find a secret rooftop garden, complete with a greenhouse and a cocktail bar open in the summer. Many of the herbs and plants growing here are used in the pub’s kitchen.

Secret gardens in London

London is also home to many hidden gardens, offering a brief respite from the buzz of London life. Some of the most picturesque include:

13. Kyoto Garden in Holland Park

A garden feature of plants and water at the beautiful Kyoto Garden in Holland Park in London
Kyoto Garden in Holland Park © Shutterstock

Created as a strolling garden in 1991, the Kyoto Garden in Holland Park is a typical Japanese garden, featuring plants which have been carefully selected and maintained with special pruning techniques to reflect its oriental style.

14. The Flanders Fields Memorial Garden

The Flanders Fields Memorial Garden at Wellington Barracks commemorates troops who died in the First World War. Soil used in the garden was taken from battlefields and war cemeteries in Flanders, Belgium.

15. Chelsea Physic Garden

Founded in 1673 for the cultivation of medicinal plants, the peaceful Chelsea Physic Garden contains a Garden of World Medicine and an area dedicated to edible plants.

16. The Garden Museum

Complete your exploration of London gardens by visiting The Garden Museum, which is devoted to British gardening history and has an extraordinary garden of its own.

Take a look at more London gardens and beautiful places in London, from fairytale spots to the allure of old London. Find more inspiration with things to do after lockdown and things to do outdoors in London.

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