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22 must-go places in South Kensington

Londoners spill the beans on their favourite things to eat, drink, see and do in the South Kensington neighbourhood

By Time Out Tastemakers
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You’ll find three of the world’s best museums in posh old SW7 – and that’s not all. Get the inside track with local tips from Time Out Tastemakers…

Best cheap eat

Oriental Canteen for good, cheap Chinese food.’ Paula Kanesanathan

La Cave à Fromage prepares the best cheese sandwiches in all London.’ Lise Mathon

Squirrel! Healthy, huge salads and great soups in recyclable takeaway bowls.’ Natalie Manni

Best dinner

‘Hands down, Rocca. It’s got a homey vibe and the pizza and pasta is legit.’ LeeLee Seah

Comptoir Libanais for fab Lebanese food.’ Paula Kanesanathan

Gu Yuan’s hidden private dining room is a total insider secret for the best Chinese banquet.’ Angela Lau

‘I love The Kensington Creperie for authentic crêpes and savoury galettes.’ Edelyn Brawidjojo

Daquise for authentic Polish food in a charming little restaurant. The pierogi are a must-have. Make sure you reserve a table!’ Chelsey Campbell

Best pub

The Queens Arms is a superb little hidden pub in a mews and does great pub grub.’ Gemma Harris

The Anglesea Arms for good food and a buzzy atmosphere!’ Ioanna Laskari

Best bar

‘Beneath Wright Brothers there’s a beautiful and sultry cocktail bar, The Mermaid.’ Georgie Pursey

Best thing to do

‘Go and feel old in the Science Museum seeing exhibits that were futuristic when you were young and are now museum pieces!’ Julie Ramsden

‘Take a behind-the-scenes spirit collection tour at the Natural History Museum.’ Laura Brett

‘Tale a class at Divertimenti Cookery School – whether it’s patisserie or Middle Eastern food, canapés or ideas for leftovers. The cookshop is an absolute treasure trove too.’ Alexandra Boyle

Best place to shop

The Conran Shop in the historic Michelin House is a haven for furniture, homeware and gifts – a great place to get lost for a while.’ Gemma Harris

‘I love Oddono’s Gelato on Bute Street: try the bacio and pistachio gelati.’ Edelyn Brawidjojo

Best place for coffee

Raison d’Etre for a well-deserved café au lait and freshly baked croissant after visiting the Natural History Museum and V&A.’ Lise Mathon

Brown & Rosie has some amazing coffees, like a taro latte.’ Jane Glaubius

The V&A Café is the oldest museum café in the world, with stunning Victorian interiors partly designed by William Morris! It’s definitely Instagram-worthy.’ Iza Kawecka

Best place for a date

‘Ice skating at the Natural History Museum is perfect for date night, with a beautiful backdrop and a café to grab a mulled wine after you hang up your skates.’ Gemma Harris

‘I love the Lates at all the museums – a great, fun and often drunken way to see the exhibits!’ Paula Kanesanathan

Best place for culture

The French Institute and Ciné Lumière for the best of French-English cross-cultural exchange, films, festivals, concerts and talks.’ Lise Mathon

Your essential guide to South Kensington

South Kensington area guide

Things to do

South Kensington is one of the most visited parts of London, and for good reason: it’s home to the Natural History, Science and V&A museums, iconic institutions and more.

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