Thursday, 1 December 2016

Christmas at Kew Gardens

Despite having never been there myself, I knew from hear-say (and Instagram) that Kew Gardens is hella beautiful.

I'd been keen to go for yonks but somehow had never made it - it's quite a way out of central London so a bit of a faff - so when I was invited to the launch of Christmas at Kew I was so damn excited.
If Kew Gardens wasn't beautiful enough, it was then going to be Christmassy?! Mad keen.

And I knew exactly who else would share my excitement: my flatmate Maddy, who is just as much of a Christmas nut as me.
We were greeted upon arrival by a choir singing Christmas carols which immediately made us squeal.

And the hype was only to increase by the consumption of mulled wine, mince pies and gingerbread men.

Sugar-loaded and clutching hot cups of wine, we were ready to start the trail.
For Christmas, Kew Gardens has created a magical mile-long trail full of festive fun, and Maddy and I had an absolute ball wandering round.

The hour-long trail flew by - we stopped to marvel at incredibly beautiful and creative light installations, each one different from the last.
The trees were beautifully lit-up as they were, but we LOVED all the Christmas-inspired creations too.

Look at these!
There were fire rings of all the numbers from A Partridge in a Pear Tree (these are obviously the two turtle doves).

As we wandered round, humming along to the various Christmas tunes and carols that seemed to come from nowhere, we were also pleased to find stalls selling mulled beverages and wintry snacks like roasted chestnuts en route.
A word of advice, however: the little stalls only take cash. So take cash.

There were a couple of parts we were less keen on: there was the random elf lady at a slightly tacky jukebox-style stall, blasting out cheesy festive tunes. Somehow it seemed to bring the class-level down a notch.

Towards the end of the trail there's also a little area with children's entertainers - Maddy and I were pretty excited at the prospect of seeing Father Christmas but were dismayed to find the elf ladies totally ignored us. I get that they're mainly catering for children but still. Rude.
Aside from that, the trail was fab. Each part was so different that you never got bored.

The end was particularly fabulous too - the trail finishes with a spectacular light show, projected on to water and the greenhouse, set to Christmas songs. We loved it so much we watched twice.
Maddy and I finished the trail feeling wonderfully tingly, imbued with festive magic (and a couple of mulled wines).

I couldn't recommend Christmas at Kew more, but I would recommend checking the weather forecast, as walking round in the rain would not be fun and let's be real this is London.

But go! Go celebrate the most wonderful time of the year! Go forth and be merry and bright.

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