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Christmas at Kew returns in November: here's everything you need to know

·4-min read
Photo credit: RBG Kew
Photo credit: RBG Kew

Christmas at Kew is back this November for its ninth year. The much-loved Kew Gardens Christmas event will be another enchanting trail of firm seasonal favourites alongside pioneering new light installations, poised to illuminate Kew Gardens' UNESCO World Heritage landscape with vibrant bursts of colour and over a million twinkling lights.

Kew Gardens Christmas, 2021/2022 Dates

Christmas at Kew runs from Wednesday 17 November 2021 to Sunday 9 January 2022.

  • Weds 17 Nov 2021 – Sunday 21 Nov 2021

  • Wednesday 24 Nov 2021 – Sunday 28 Nov 2021

  • Tuesday 30 Nov 2021 – Sunday 5 Dec 2021

  • Tuesday 7 Dec 2021 – Sunday 12 Dec 2021

  • Tuesday 14 Dec 2021 – Fri 24 Dec 2021

  • Sunday 26 Dec 2021 – Sunday 9 Jan 2022

Christmas at Kew is open 4-10pm with timed entry slots. The last entry is 8pm.

Tickets

Tickets are on sale now via kew.org/christmas.

For advance prices, adults are from £21.50; family from £65; children 4 – 16 from £14; and under 4s are free. Concessions are available. Please note, for all tickets a transaction fee applies.

Photo credit: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS - Getty Images
Photo credit: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS - Getty Images

Highlights

• New installations feature innovative video design and scenescapes inspired by Kew collections.

• There's a 12 Days of Christmas tree installation, the much-loved Cathedral of Light, and LED light spheres illuminating the night sky 200 metres overhead.

• Keep warm with seasonal street food, mulled wine, and hot chocolate, or enjoy a Christmas dinner at The Botanical restaurant.

Photo credit: Hollie Adams - Getty Images
Photo credit: Hollie Adams - Getty Images

New installations for 2021

Spectacular new shows will light the iconic Temperate House and Palm House, plus there's a first-time collaboration with Novak, the innovative video design studio. Using a selection of spectacular trees from Kew's arboretum as their canvas, Novak will combine video design, projection mapping and light to bring Kew's archived botanical illustrations to life, alongside a host of heart-warming festive imagery.

Also new is Spheric, a brand new installation by acclaimed creative house Mandylights. Set to a synchronised music track, there will be a 15-metre-wide dome of light covered in over 2,000 individually controlled LED pixels, sitting on a reflective water pool.

We'll also see the return of sound and light artists, Ithaca, who will create Aurora; a new and ambitious installation for Holly Walk which will illuminate the night sky for over 200 metres overhead, replicating the enchanting visual phenomenon of the Aurora Borealis.

Photo credit: Chris Jackson - Getty Images
Photo credit: Chris Jackson - Getty Images

Festive favourites

As soon as you enter the welcome wreath archway you'll encounter a botanical world filled with seasonal cheer and mood-boosting bursts of colour. The much-loved Cathedral of Light returns for 2021, providing the perfect opportunity to capture this quintessential Christmas moment on camera.

There will also be singing neon trees, sprawling branches illuminated with stars and seasonal festive projections illuminating Kew's heritage trees. Plus, botanical treasures from Kew's living collections will be accentuated along the route.

Photo credit: Jim Dyson - Getty Images
Photo credit: Jim Dyson - Getty Images

The 12 Days of Christmas will be brought to life with a vibrant rainbow tree illumination running along Syon Vista, and a spectacular Meadow of Light will burst into vivid life.

The ever-popular Fire Garden returns this year, alongside On the Wings of Freedom, a technicolour LED installation inspired by the unique transformative ability of butterflies. The final stop of the trail, the panoramic Palm House finale, will display a series of stunning projections across the historic glasshouse and adjacent lake, set to a memorable soundtrack of much-loved Christmas classics.

Photo credit: RBG Kew
Photo credit: RBG Kew

To enjoy a truly festive Christmas at Kew experience, you can book a delicious traditional Christmas dinner at The Botanical restaurant, or simply pick up a treat from a selection of independent street food vendors along the route. For a very merry Christmas you can indulge in spiced cider, waffles, mulled wine, or hot chocolate to keep warm.

Covid-19

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, said in a statement: 'The safety and wellbeing of our visitors is of the upmost importance to us and we are continually monitoring and responding to the Covid-19 pandemic. We are adhering to government advice in our planning to ensure visitors and staff remain safe while enjoying at Christmas at Kew.'

Christmas at Kew location and entrances

Kew Gardens is located in Kew, the London borough of Richmond upon Thames.

For Christmas at Kew, the main entrance is via Victoria Gate, Brentford Gate if you book a ticket with reserved parking, or Lion Gate for guests travelling from Richmond.

If you are travelling by London Underground, the nearest tube station is Kew Gardens station — which is 500m from Victoria Gate. It is served by the District Line (Richmond branch) and London Overground.

Address:
Kew
Richmond, London
TW9 3AE

Visit Kew Gardens for more upcoming events

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