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Kew Gardens Glow Wild 2022
Photograph: OGE Group / Kew Gardens

Kew Gardens’ Sussex outpost will have the UK's tallest Christmas tree this winter

Wakehurst’s ‘Glow Wild 2022’ will feature 11 spectacular light installations and a 37m tree

India Lawrence
Written by India Lawrence

The UK's tallest Christmas tree, an immersive mossy tunnel and a display of bioluminescent plants over a mysterious black pond are just some of the things you’ll be able to see this winter at Wakehurst in Sussex, the country outpost of London’s Kew Gardens. The botanical bosses have announced that winter spectacular ‘Glow Wild’ will return this November, featuring 11 fantastical light installations, and loads more. 

This year’s theme will explore the kaleidoscopic colour spectrum of nature. When you arrive, you’ll grab your own light and follow a technicolour trail of more than 1,000 handcrafted lanterns that light up a shadowy forest path.

Keep an eye out for creatures following you on your adventure. One installation will be emulating infra-red rays, invisible to the human eye, but particularly good at attracting Wakehurst’s bats, so if you’re lucky you might spot some. 

You’ll get up close and personal with all of Mother Nature’s elements, as the installations will touch on air, earth, water and fire. It’s guaranteed to be a treat for all the senses as more than 300 points of fire will transform the dim woodland path, backed by a specially commissioned soundscape.

The brand new route will lead visitors to interactive activities like lantern-making, and spectacles including a parade of giant peacock puppets, and the aforementioned massive 37m-high Christmas tree, bedecked with a borderline-blinding 1,800 energy-saving bulbs. 

Kew has collaborated with artists to create the installations, and you’ll see work from the likes of illustrator Kerith Ogden, sculptor Michelle Dufaur and Young Artist of the Year nominee Malgorzata Lisiecka.

For those of you who are averse to the sights and sounds of children having fun, there will also be adults-only sessions that are perfect for taking along someone you fancy or, failing that, your pals. 

Glow Wild 2022. Wakehurst, Haywards Heath, Sussex. Nov 23-Jan 1 2023. £14-£17 adults, £11 children. 

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