A few weekends ago I visited Kew Gardens to see the Orchid Festival. It was amazing – the orchids were absolutely beautiful and as always I felt so at peace in the gardens – Kew really is a fabulous place to spend an afternoon.
I had a post planned out in my head for this trip. I wanted to talk everyone through the brilliant sunshine and stunning arrays of flowers – each arrangement more breathtaking than the last. But between that day and writing this post I have had a massive upheaval in my life, and it’s no longer appropriate to write about it in the way I wanted. That said I took many photos and as photography and flowers are both a huge passion of mine it felt a waste not to share them. So todays post is a photography post. I hope you enjoy the images I took that day.
I have wanted to visit Kew Gardens for a good few years now but have always put it off for some reason or the other. However, my current job permits me free entry and the weekend before last (with the sunny weather) was the perfect opportunity to finally make that trip. It’s taken me a little while to get around to blogging about it, mostly because of how many pictures I took (and therefore had to edit- lazy, sorry!)
We drove down to Kew Gardens in the car – there isn’t really a specific car park or parking – you can park along outside the walls of the garden. Not ideal and we have read this gets busy very quickly. Luckily we arrived early, around ten and we managed to park okay- so if you’re planning on driving to Kew Gardens I’d recommend getting there nice and early!
When we arrived it was lovely and sunny and the air was unexpectedly warm for late March. Both my partner and I were able to enter for free which was a lovely perk. Upon entering these vast gardens we were met with an appealing sight for the eyes, a beautiful lake and carefully arranged beds of flowers.
By the lake there was a big glass structure- a tropical house filled with exotic palms and greenery. Inside was really hot and steamy, with water dripping from plant tendrils and thick air fogging up my camera lens. Because of this all of my pictures are a little foggy! I think it illustrates perfectly what it was like to be inside though.
Rambling through the greenhouse it felt like we were exploring some exotic forest. Among all the lush green foliage was an array of unusual plants and seed pods which were all very interesting to observe.
From here we walked past the lake and through to another large glass building – the structure much like a greenhouse. This was divided up in to sections, such as ‘desert’. We wandered through cacti patches (my favourites) and beautiful lush ferns. At the centre of the greenhouse was a large pond filled with darting fish and lillie pads.
After our stroll through the green house we were decidedly hungry and set out in search of a cafe. Walking through Kew Gardens you get to see some really beautiful scenery – tall trees and carpets of flowers.
At the cafe (which I believe is reasonably priced) we stopped for lunch. This was a fantastic cafe with a great selection of hot food as well as freshly prepared cakes, packed lunches and more. Gareth had sausage and chips whilst I had the child’s packed lunch! Don’t be fooled though, the packed lunch was filled with delicious goodies and I was quite full after eating it!
After lunch we strolled through the gardens with no real plan set in mind – just soaking up the sunshine and our beautiful surroundings. We were fortunate enough to spot a beautiful woodpecker.
Eventually we came to a bamboo garden. This, as you can imagine – was filled with bamboo – The Minka House – which is a traditional Japanese farmhouse – also stands here.
From here we crossed the river. Looking at our map we decided to head towards the treetop walk where we would get a lovely view of the entire gardens.
As you can see, the tree top walk (pictured above) is pretty high up. Once at the top I was a lot less interested in the view than I had anticipated and concerned myself more with keeping my balance! I never really thought I had a problem with heights, but the metal flooring is pretty rickety (albeit very safe and secure I’m sure) I wussed out! And whilst I did make it the whole way round I certainly wasn’t snapping any pictures OR letting go of the railing!
Back on solid ground we rested a little before heading to yet another green house. There are many of these dotted about, but the largest one of all was closed during our visit. The main attraction of this green house was the big pond in the centre, and the lillie pads and flowers that grew there.
Back outside again I snapped every flower I could possibly find as we walked. There were a great many trees laden with blossom which was beautiful to see swaying in the breeze. Flower beds were all neatly manicured and the colours were very pretty and spring appropriate.
The last port of call for us was the rock garden. Upon entering this part of Kew Gardens we were greeted by a brilliant blue peacock sunning itself on a rock! Being a bird person, this was particularly exciting for me to see.
The rock garden was filled with lovely plants, flowers and shrubs as well as tumbling water features. Towards the end of the garden a small green house sits. Inside are beautiful plants – some potted, some growing in the earth.
After this we decided to call it a day as we were both really tired from all the walking we had done! I had a wonderful time at Kew Gardens and can’t recommend it enough. We didn’t even get around half of the gardens so we’ll definitely be back to see the rest of it when the weather is warmer and the flowers are fully in bloom. Spring at Kew is beautiful however so I definitely think it’s worth a visit this time of year. If you’re planning a visit make sure you set aside a whole day to explore – the Gardens are really large and there’s a lot to see!