Kensington, London Travel Guide

Kensington Summary

Pros

  • A historic, upscale area
  • Numerous top-notch restaurants and shops
  • Many museums, including V&A Museum, Natural History Museum, and the Science Museum
  • Beautiful Holland Park
  • Kensington Royal Gardens
  • Nice shopping on High Street
  • Near Notting Hill and Chelsea

Cons

  • An expensive area

What It's Like

An upscale neighborhood to the west of Hyde Park, Kensington has been home to wealthy families since King William III built Kensington Palace as his country home in 1689. Numerous historic homes from the 17th century remain today, and the area maintains it's old-time charm, particularly along "Billionaire's Row," where the streets are still lined by gas lamps.

Many visitors to London stay in Kensington due to it's plethora of top-notch restaurants, shops, and museums. The Victoria and Albert Museum, the Science Museum, and the Museum of Natural History are all clustered together, and sites such as Royal Albert Hall, a concert hall, and the Kensington Royal Gardens, are in the same area. High-end shopping can be found along High Street, but those looking for a bargain may want to check out Portobello Road's famous market in nearby Notting Hill.

Where to Stay

There are many hotels in Kensington, but most are pricey. Good deals can be found, however, especially by those who book far in advance. The majority of the museums in the area are clustered in South Kensington, while staying in the northern region puts visitors close to Notting Hill. Chelsea is towards the southeast.

 

View all Kensington Hotels

Facts

Languages: English
Airports: Heathrow Airport
Peak: April - June
Visa: Yes, for nationalities included in the Visa nationals list
Vaccines: No
Currency: British pound
Electricity: 230 V, 50 Hz
Tipping: Not expected, but 10-15% is appreciated for good service

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