West London

by Melanie Waldman  

Kensington Gardens seen from one of London's famous black cabs

Kensington
One of the most densely populated and upscale residential neighborhoods in the city, Kensington features Holland Park and the fashionable Kensington High Street. Staying and/or exploring here provides an ideal compromise between touristy and local London.

Tube stations:
High Street Kensington
South Kensington
Lancaster Gate
Notting Hill Gate
Queensway

Holland Park
Leighton House Museum
18 Stafford Terrace
(Linley Sambourne House)
Royal College of Art
(exhibitions & events)
Royal College of Music
(events)

Hotels in Kensington London
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Part of the Science Museum in South Kensington

South Kensington
One of the most popular neighborhoods for first-time visitors to London, South Kensington is home to three of the city’s most-touristed museums — the Natural History Museum, the Victoria & Albert, and the Science Museum — which are just blocks from Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park. The South Kensington Tube station is a hub for several subway lines, connecting you within 20 minutes to most of the city.
Tube station: South Kensington

Kensington Gardens
Kensington Palace
Diana’s Memorial Playground
Serpentine Gallery
(free to enter, within Kensington Gardens)
Science Museum
Victoria & Albert Museum
Natural History Museum
Brompton Oratory
Royal Albert Hall
Albert Memorial

South Kensington Hotels
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Knightsbridge
Best known as home to Harrods department store, Knightsbridge is one of London’s most exclusive, fashionable neighborhoods. Adjacent to Hyde Park and full of shopping opportunities, this is a great area for walking around but offers few bargains in terms of restaurants or hotel rooms.

Tube station: Knightsbridge

Harrods
Harvey Nichols

Knightsbridge Hotels
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Sir Hans Sloane, physician, collector and namesake of Sloane Square

Chelsea
One of the city’s most fashionable areas, Chelsea offers UK-specific shopping on and around the Kings’ Road, some of the city’s best Italian restaurants and an opportunity to glimpse residential life in London. The Thames, the museums of South Kensington, and Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park are within walking distance.

Tube stations:
South Kensington
Sloane Square

A Brief History of Chelsea
Chelsea Walks
Chelsea Flower Show
(end of May)
Sloane Square
Saatchi Gallery
(free to enter)
Chelsea Physic Garden
King’s Road
Carlyle’s House
Bibendum
Chelsea Old Church
The Royal Hospital Chelsea
Chelsea Embankment

Hotels near Hyde Park
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Diana's Fountain in Hyde Park

Hyde Park
Both a Royal Park and a quiet, upscale neighborhood with a spectacular location, it features Marble Arch, a Cararra-marble monument that stands at the intersection of Oxford Street, Park Lane, and Edgware Road, and the small and often raucous civic arena of Speakers’ Corner.

Tube stations:
Lancaster Gate
South Kensington
Knightsbridge
Hyde Park Corner
Marble Arch

Hyde Park
Speaker’s Corner
Marble Arch
Wellington Arch (three-story museum)
Apsley House

Hotels near Hyde Park
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SEE ALSO

Markets in West London
Kew Gardens
Westfield London

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