Chelsea Physic Garden

© Peter James
© Britta Jaschinski / Time Out
© Britta Jaschinski / Time Out
© Susie Rea
Ricard Petanque garden party © Debbie Bragg
© Charlie Hopkinson
Catharanthus roseus in the Medicinal Plants garden © Nick Bailey
Family activity day © Charlie Hopkinson
Family activity day © Pia Ostlund
Family activity day © Charlie Hopkinson
Tangerine Cafe © Charlie Hopkinson

Founded in 1673, Chelsea Physic Garden contains the world's oldest rock garden, made from fused bricks and flint, stones from the Tower of London, and Icelandic lava brought up the Thames by ship in 1772. Today the garden is also home to Britain's first garden of ethnobotany (the study of the botany of different ethnic groups and indigenous peoples), and a Garden of Medicinal Plants, tracing the chronology of plant remedies over almost an acre, from ancient Greek herbs to plants that are likely to be used in future medicine. Illustrated information panels explain what you're seeing, but there are also guided tours and walks, talks and workshops throughout the growing season. There's also a shop where visitors can buy unusual plants, and a café serving very good homemade cakes.

New for 2015 is the World Woodland Garden, which celebrates useful and medicinal plants from the Americas, Europe and East Asia. The half-acre garden is home to more than 150 species of plant and visitors can weave through it on a serpentine path or learn more about the collection from garden volunteers in one of the woodland clearings.

See more stunning gardens in the capital

Venue name: Chelsea Physic Garden
Address: 66
Royal Hospital Rd
Opening hours: Nov-Mar: Mon-Fri, 9.30am-4pm. Apr-Oct: Tue-Fri, Sun & Bank Holidays 11am-6pm; July 1-Sept 2 2015: late openings until 10pm on Wed 11am-10pm
Transport: Tube: Sloane Square
Price: £9.90, £6.60 concs, free under-fives

Pick a date

  • Sun April 12th 2015 - Sun October 11th 2015
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    Royal Hospital Rd London London SW3 4HS
  • Wed June 24th 2015 - Wed June 24th 2015
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    Royal Hospital Rd London London SW3 4HS
  • Tue August 4th 2015 - Tue August 4th 2015
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    Royal Hospital Rd London London SW3 4HS
  • Fri September 11th 2015 - Fri September 11th 2015
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    Royal Hospital Rd London London SW3 4HS

Average User Rating

4 / 5

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4 people listening

This is one of the best venues in Chelsea for a summer wedding. My steel drum band ensemble has performed there many times and we also saw Boris there at a fund raising event. The grounds are excellent and the venue is well managed.