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Things to do in Kensington, London: from pretty streets to hidden gems

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Best things to do in Kensington, South Kensington and Kensignton High Street
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Looking for some great day out ideas in London? Look no further! In this post, I’ll focus on the best things to do in Kensington, London: from pretty streets, fun museums and nice restaurants to truly hidden gems only locals know about. Ready to get started?

Before we start with the amazing things to do in Kensington, London, let’s briefly talk about accommodation. Have you booked your hotel in London? Kensington is a fabulous place to stay, so make sure to check these hotels in Kensington out. 

Is Kensington a good area to stay in London?

If you’re wondering if Kensington is a good area to stay in London, well, it’s actually one of the best and most prestigious places to live in London. The house prices are so high that only the richest can afford living there. Moreover, Kensington is a very centrally located area. That means, that you can get to Victoria, Soho and Oxford street almost in no time. However, if you’re staying in Kensington, you don’t need to travel to Central London that often, as Kensington is also still Central London and Kensington has some of London’s best museums. Kensington is also one of the best things to do near Harrods, a famous department store that many tourists come to visit. South Kensington is located a short walking distance from Harrods. 

Kensington occupies quite a large territory. It consists of opulent South Kensington, vibrant Kensington High street and less touristy and more affordable North Kensington & Olympia that won’t be a scope of this post, as there isn’t that much to do. Also, unlike Kensington High Street and South Kensington, I’ve only been to North Kensington twice or three times and that was mainly to visit the French Visa application centre close to Kensington & Olympia. 

London in december

The most popular Kensington attractions

Not mentioning the most popular things to do in Kensington and the popular attractions wouldn’t be fair, as maybe some of you opened this post just for that. Well, Kensington truly has many attractions and some of the top museums in London. Here are the best and the most popular things to do in Kensington, London:

Victoria & Albert Museum, South Kensington

Victoria & Albert Museum or simply V&A is one of my favourite museums in London. It has a beautiful interior and very interesting permanent exposition, where you can look at the best examples of architecture, sculpture, art, fashion and theatre. However, many people also come for temporary expositions, often related to fashion and the history of fashion and art. 

Natural History Museum, South Kensington

Natural History Museum is a paradise for kids. While I found its American counterpart in NYC slightly more impressive (especially after all the Night at the Museum movies, which I loved as a teenager), the exposition in London is also great. Don’t be scared of a large queue (always there) at the entrance – it goes pretty fast!

Activities in Kensington, London

Science Museum, South Kensington

Another amazing museum in South Kensington normally doesn’t have a queue and in my option, it’s way more impressive than the museum of Natural History. If you (and maybe if you also have kids) want to learn more about the space, medicine, science, mathematics and more, head to the Science museum, Both adults and kids can learn a lot there. 

Design Museum, High Street Kensington

The last one of the famous museums in Kensington is the Design Museum. Located in High street Kensington, it’s a paradise for people obsessed with design. The entrance (like to the majority is free, however, there are plenty of amazing temporary exhibitions, for which you need to pay.

Kensington Palace, High Street Kensington 

It wouldn’t be fair to not mention the Kensington Palace – a Royal residence located in Kensington Palace Gardens, a beautiful part of the famous Hyde Park. The staterooms are open to the public and it costs over £15 to enter. 

Lesser-known things to do in Kensington: from pretty streets to hidden gems only locals know about.

Leighton House, High Street Kensington

One of Kensington’s hidden gems is Leighton House – a former house of Lord Leighton, a famous British painter and artist. What makes his house to unusual and unique and the Arab hall and a beautiful garden. The Arab Hall is really beautiful and it’s hard to believe that you’re actually in London when looking at the hall. 

Right now, Leighton House is open on weekends until 5:30 pm and the entrance costs £9. 

Kynance Mews, South Kensington

Another hidden gem in Kensington is Kynance Mews, a picture-perfect mews street that looks fabulous in April when it’s the season of Wisteria and in Autumn when the Boston Ivy turns red. However, in my opinion, it always looks pretty, no matter the time of the year. Kynance Mews is one of the most Instagrammable places in London. Read my Instagram guide to London here >>>

beautiful streets in Kensington. Kynance Mews

Beautiful streets in Kensington

One of my all-time favourite activities in Kensington is just walking around and exploring beautiful streets. Some of my favourite streets in Kensington are Alexander Square, St. Alban’s Grove, Brompton road, Godfrey Street and Cranley Gardens.

Attend a concert in Royal Albert Hall

Royal Albert Hall is one of the nicest venues to go in London for a concert. For some concerts, you need to buy tickets in advance, however, sometimes, there are even same-day tickets available. Check the prices and availability here

Where to eat in Kensington?

Finally, let’s talk about the best places to eat in Kensington, from a coffee and a quick bite to a Michelin-starred dinner. 

If you’re looking for a coffee spot in Kensington, I can recommend Jumo or Wayne’s Coffee.

Maitre Choux makes the best desserts in South Kensington. 

For quick & affordable bites, head to Wasabi or Brompton Food Market

Some of the best restaurants in Kensington include Dishoom (Indian food), Maggie Jones’s (traditional English food) and Ceru (Middle Eastern).

If you’re in for some fine dining, then you will like Kitchen W8 and Claude Bosi at Bibendum

Summary of the best Kensington attractions and hidden gems (Kensington area guide)

I hope you enjoyed this Kensington area guide and added some places to your list of things to do in Kensington. Should you have any questions, write them down in the comment section below!

The spending money for this post was gifted by Hotels. com, but all views are my own (as always). 

Some of other posts you might like:

Best brunch places in London

A photo walk around Notting Hill

Most Instagrammable Places in London

Non-touristy London – the best off-the-beaten-track spots in London

Best tours to take in London

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  1. Joyce says:

    Thank you that’s great information. All photos are AMAZING SCIENCE MUSEUM looking so impressing. Thank you for share beauty of kensington street.

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