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Chelsea Physic Garden – Herbs & Medicinal Plants

Chelsea Physic Garden
Where? Chelsea Physic Garden, 66 Royal Hospital Road, Chelsea · Web: Opening times? 11 AM to 5 PM (Mon-Fri, Sun); Closed (Sat); Last entry 30 mins before closing Visiting hours may change Price? Adults £14.00; Children £10.00 (5-15); Infants free entry (under-5); Family ticket £45.00 Entry charges may change Time required? A typical visit is 1-1½ hours Parking: Nearby car parks Buses: 170 Bus fares Trains: The closest station is Sloane Square Circle District Train fares

Craig’s review… Have you ever visited a garden that can kill you? The first thing I noticed when I stepped through the front door was a sign that said: “Some of these plants are highly poisonous – Do not touch!” But here’s the worrying thing: a lot of the vines and creepers are overhanging the path, like live wires on a construction site, so if you take that warning literally then it’s pretty scary stuff. Obviously I kept my hands in my pockets the whole time just to be safe, because I don’t want to be killed by a flower – that is not how that I want to die.

The Chelsea Physic Garden is a small patch of land surrounded by an old brick wall. Try and imagine a grandmother who lives in the woods, pottering around her kitchen garden feeding the frogs and robins. That is the Chelsea Physic Garden. There aren’t many flowers like you find at Wisley or Kew – it’s pretty much all herbs and vegetables. But there are a couple of ramshackle greenhouses and a lot of rockeries and slate walls all over place, a few nicely raked paths and ponds and a pretty little bamboo garden with some prickly cacti (another plant that is dangerous – what is it with this place!).

Herbs and medicinal plants

There are lots of information boards where you can learn about medicines and perfumes and vitamins and dyes. And you can see how they grow a wide variety of foodstuffs like apricots and tomatoes, wild chillies, beetroots and parsnips. It’s a bit like an open-air greengrocers.

It’s a perfectly pleasant place to walk around but I think it’s definitely one for the adults – adults with white hair and creaking knees. It’s the kind of place where you can come on a Sunday afternoon for a stroll and a sit down, followed by a cup of tea and slice of walnut and banana cake in the cafe.

Worth a visit? Value for money? Good for kids? Easy to get to?

I also recommend… If you enjoy this then try Garden Museum (take a tube journey from Sloane Square to Lambeth North); Kew Gardens (travel from Sloane Square to Kew Gardens by underground); Regent’s Park (take a tube journey from Sloane Square to Regents Park); St. James’s Park (take a tube journey from Sloane Square to St Jamess Park) and Wisley Gardens

London Squire bookThe owns and has spent the last decade reviewing the capital’s landmarks, attractions and hotels. His guidebook is available from Amazon

Your comments and questions

PBrown This area of Chelsea is quite lovely with beautiful little houses around Cheyne Walk and the Royal Hospital, but the Physic Garden is a lovely little haven giving you some peace and tranquility from life outside.

PLarson Hello. Are we allowed to take our dog inside the garden?

Craig Hi PLarson. According to their website they only allow "comfort pets and assistance dogs" -​visit/​accessibility/

Mike What's the closest tube to Chelsea Physic Garden?

Craig Hi Mike. Sloane Square is the nearest station but it's not exactly next-door. It's about a 10-15 min walk away

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