In addition to being one of London’s most aspirational and sought-after districts, Kensington is also one of its most scenic. Here you’ll discover elegant rows of pretty white Victorian houses, lovely leafy parks and the most charming cafés and high-quality local restaurants. It’s all too easy to enjoy a perfect day in Kensington – yet, should you require some tips to do, here’s an itinerary to follow (or pick and choose from) on a day spent locally while on a short-break at accommodation in Kensington London…
Have a morning stroll
Get up early and enjoy having this beautiful area all to yourself. One of the prettiest streets is Kensington Palace Gardens. Lined with ancient sycamore trees hanging over stately private homes and official embassies, this street is right by Kensington Palace and Kensington Gardens, which is one of the best places to picnic in London.
Wake yourself up… and your inner coffee snob
London is one of Europe’s best coffee capitals. After walking south down Kensington Palace Gardens, stop for a morning coffee at Montparnasse Café. This bijou French café is tucked away on an old street of South Kensington that looks passed over by time. Start your day the Euro way, and order a delightfully French café au lait and pain au chocolat.
Try a proper English breakfast (or brunch)
Around the corner from here, you’ll find The Ivy Kensington Brasserie, which is absolutely perfect for a sampling a full English breakfast – or, if you don’t make it in time – for brunch and, indeed, for all-day-long dining. A sophisticated yet hugely welcoming neighbourhood brasserie, it serves quality British food. And, for an impressively large breakfast, you have to order The Ivy Full English Breakfast – it comes complete with smoked streaky bacon, Cumberland herbed sausage, fried hen’s eggs, black pudding, roast plum tomatoes, a grilled mushroom, baked beans and toast. That said, if you fancy something a little lighter there are lots of healthy options, such as crushed avocado on toast or organic granola.
Are you a culture vulture?
Cool down with a stop at the recently updated Design Museum. It’s located right on Kensington High Street, which is where one of the most useful London bus routes runs. The museum presents exhibits of modern design and inspiring architecture. There are actually a few interesting museums to check out in the area – as well as terrific arts venues (for example, Cadogan Hall and the Royal Court Theatre; located slightly further east in Chelsea; perfect then for a stay at the San Domenico House hotel Chelsea).
Dine out at a delightful restaurant
For a late lunch or early dinner, try Launceston Place. This fine dining restaurant is housed in a former townhouse on a beautiful street. It features refined interiors with big windows and sprigs of fresh flowers. Also, the service is on-point, and though the food is upscale, there are often enticing special promotional menus. It’s open for lunch on Wednesdays through Sundays and also dinner Tuesday through Sundays.
Sample a fine ale in a fine pub
A good night always begins or ends with a stop at the pub. And for a perfect day in Kensington, you can’t go wrong with the Churchill Arms on Kensington Church Street. In the summer, it’s covered with the most amazing assortments of flowers of every colour. In the winter, it’s decorated with miniature Christmas trees. The interiors show off British eccentricity at its finest. Along with great craft and seasonal beers on tap, there’s also a kitchen serving up sensational Thai food for a late-night snack. What a great way to end a day, eh?