Did you know the Barbican Centre is home to the second biggest conservatory in London? Unbelievable, right? Concealed among the brutalist complex lies a dreamlike urban jungle with more than 2000 species of tropical flora. Often overshadowed by the impressive botanical collections at Kew Gardens, many tourists and Londoners are oblivious to the hidden oasis that grows within the heart of the city.
As a true London lover and someone who enjoys exploring the secret corners of my home, it wasn’t long until I added Barbican Conservatory to my Ultimate London Bucket List. I was somehow attracted to the flawless balance between the unnoticeable botanical scenery and its metropolitan surroundings.
Barbican Conservatory plants
A plethora of exotic plant species cover the interiors of the large greenhouse inside the Barbican Centre. Walking among the large collection of flora, you’ll find yourself marvelling at the many palm trees, succulents and cacti dotted among the garden. Or, like me, spend a great time contemplating the koi carps and terrapins! Not to mention the beautiful collection of Birds of Paradise, which we ticked off our list of things to see in Madeira.
There really is something special about the Barbican Conservatory, which is also free to visit with no need to prebook (bonus!). However, plan your visit in advance as it’s only open on selected Sundays and Bank Holidays from 12pm to 4.30pm. There are also sixty minute prepaid guided tours for those interested in knowing more about this tropical jungle!
Barbican Conservatory afternoon tea
Bottomless prosecco afternoon tea is also among the unique experiences you can have at the exotic jungle, which after eating my body weight in finger sandwiches and desserts at Sketch, sounds like my perfect Sunday plan. Ok, maybe not in the sizzling 30 degrees plus we are currently experiencing in the UK. Inevitably, the greenhouse gets especially hot during this time of the year so remember to keep hydrated at all times.
The Barbican Conservatory is one of those romantic locations every Londoner and tourist should visit. I would be lying if I said I’m not obsessed with it!
Have you been to the Barbican Conservatory before? Are there any other unique places in London that you know of? If you really loved our post please leave us a comment and show us some love on social media using the buttons below :).
Barbican Centre | Barbican Centre, Silk St, London EC2Y 8DS
Fancy discovering more hidden gems in London? Then check:
- My Ultimate London Bucket List
- ZSL Zoo Nights – London Zoo After Dark
- Meet the Penguins at ZSL London Zoo
- Sky Garden, The Best Free Views of London
- Afternoon Tea at Sketch, London | REVIEW
This place is absolutely stunning and so are your photos! I’ll be moving to London soon so I’ll have to visit, thanks for the tip.
Awe, that is amazing! London is such an amazing place to live in and there is always something to see! Feel free to check my Ultimate London Bucket List for more inspo 🙂 x
I love conservatories! I feel so peaceful and at one with nature when I’m in one aha! I didn’t know this place existed, might have to check it out next time I’m in London! x
Not a lot of people know about it actually, I was surprised to find out about it myself! x
Wow this is definitely somewhere I need to visit when I eventually plan my trip to London!
Heather | x Highland Beauty
Oh, do so! Plus it’s free, which is always good 🙂
Stunning photos. Place looks stunning also
Thank you 🙂
Oh my god that looks so gorgeous! Really want to go now 😂 thanks for sharing!
Awe thank you! You should definitely visit! x
This looks beautiful, I’m gonna add it to my own London bucket list!
I couldn’t recommend it enough 🙂 But it does get quite hot, so remember to grab a bottle of water beforehand 🙂
This is 100% on m list of places to visit on London it’s gorgeous
It’s beautiful, isn’t it? It’s quite relaxing as well and there is a lot to see 🙂
What a beautiful day out! Your photos are absolutely beautiful and it looks like you had a lovely day out.
Awe thank you, that is so sweet 🙂
Your photos are so beautiful – they’re making me wanna go check this out! Have you been to Kew Gardens for something similar? (I’ve heard lots about both and I wonder which I should go to first?) …Barbican after this post I think! x
Kew Gardens is amazing and HUGE! You can spend a whole day exploring the different greenhouses. They recently reopened the Temperate House after a five-year renovation and it’s said to be absolutely stunning! I need to go back and check it out.The tickets are about £17 but there is a loooooot to see, believe me! Barbican on the other hand is just one big greenhouse and can be seen in about an hour (plus it’s free). You can also explore the Barbican Centre afterwards if you wish :). It just depends on how much time you have really, they are both worth visiting x
I did not know about this place but will definitely visit the next time I am in London. I am amazed that it is free! Your photos are absolutely amazing.Thank you for sharing.
Thank you for the lovely comment 🙂 x
Oh my goodness! Why have I never heard of this place?! It looks amazing, I’m definitely adding that to my list for next time I visit London. Your photos are lovely 😊
It’s great, isn’t it? I was so surprised when I heard about it too! Thanks for the lovely comment 🙂 x
Amazing photography! This looks beautiful!
Thank you! x
Love this, and such amazing pictures! Going to London end of 2019, will definitely visit the beautiful Kew Gardens. Xx
Please do so, you won’t be disappointed! x
Ahh this looks sooo nice!! I recently went to London but unfortunately the sky garden was fully booked – Barbican centre was my next hope, yet got there and apparently it’s only open on Sundays, I was gutted but the outside was still lovely! x x
Awe, sorry to hear that! Sky Garden does get booked quite quickly and you need to be fast to get your hands on the tickets. Barbican doesn’t have that problem, but then again you need to make sure it is open than Sunday! I hope you have the opportunity to visit both, they are such lovely places x
I’ve actually heard of this place before but I’ve never been.
Looks amazing though! Great photos 😊
Love Lozza xo
Thanks Lozza! Make sure you visit, it’s absolutely stunning in person! x
This looks like such a neat place to visit! I love any attraction that’s nature oriented like this and all of the photos you took make it seem so beautiful!
Thank you so much Kristin! x
Oh my gosh, what a stunning place! I had no idea it was even there and I cant wait to try and visit, it’s beautiful!
You absolutely should, it’s such a cool place!
I want to visit London even more with how amazing the Barbican Conservatory looks! It is such a hidden gem considering how much is packed into the little space. Pretty cool that you can learn a lot from the trip. Glad you enjoyed your time there overall!
Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me
Thanks for the comment, Nancy! London is full of hidden treasures, I love it! x
Thank you! I found this from Twitter a Sunday blog swap, I’ve never been but looks incredible fun for a trip out. I love nature and now live in rural London. I’ve been to Sky Garden which is also free but you pre book. Will mention this to husband for sure.
Thanks for the comment Tara! Barbican Conservatory is one of London’s hidden gems for sure – make sure you check the opening times as it’s not always open to the public!
Wow this is so cool! I love your photography all of your photos are really good quality x
Thanks so much Chloe! x
What a beautiful place to visit! I love the sound of the prosecco afternoon tea in here too; would make the visit really special. Your photos are fab, really capture the plants. Must plan a visit here!
Thanks for sharing!
Thanks so much for the comment Aimsy! Afternoon tea surrounded by so many plants sounds like quite the experience, definitely! x
I really want to visit there when I have got the time. It’s such a wonderful place. I even thought about getting married there! Beautiful pictures, it seems like you have had an amazing experience.
Laura / https://www.laustworld.com/
Oh wow! It’s definitely a quirky place to get married at! It also can get really warm in there, especially in hot summer days so it worth checking before visiting 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing this I had absolutely no idea this was there and I’m definitely adding it to my London Bucket List now!! x
This is so lovely, thank you so much Zara! I hope you enjoy! x
This place looks so amazing! Those cacti are just beautiful! I’ll have to visit there sometime 🙂 Lovely post and stunning photos x
Thanks so much Shannen!
I’m just home from London and wish I’d known about this place! It reminds me of the butterflies habitat at London Zoo.
Ash | thisdreamsalive.wordpress.com
Thanks Ash! I hope you get to visit London again and explore the Barbican Conservatory this time!
This is definitely a place i would love to visit should I ever visit London. You described it beautifully.
Thanks so much Frederick!
What a charming place! I love botanical gardens, all those plants and flowers and the heat and humidity. It takes me to some tropical lands and it is nice to have a place close by for some jungle escape. Love the photos!
Thanks Janja! I agree 100%, nature is the best escape! Are there any nice botanical gardens where you live? x
Wow what a fantastic and huge excape in the central London.
The cactuses are so wonderful.
It’s a hidden gem for sure! x
I can’t believe I’ve never been to Barbican Conservatory! It looks so beautiful!
You must visit! It’s such a fun place to visit during the weekend x
Wow, it’s so beautiful! You’re pictures are fantastic as well. What a perfect oasis! Plants have says made me happy. Their diversity amazes me! Thanks for sharing this. ☺️
Hi Clarissa – thank you for leaving a comment! I hope it’s inspired you to visit when you’re in London x
This place is absolutely beautiful! Offered me a remembrance of Singapore flower dome. I love botanical gardens and this looks amazing! ☺
Wow, the Singapore Flower Dome looks amazing! I agree, Botanical gardens are fantastic for learning more about different plants x
Loved the pictures. They’re so beautiful
Thank you! x
Ohhh, this looks like such a gorgeous place! Thanks for sharing, love your pictures. I would love to visit, didn’t know about this one when I visited London for the first time a couple of years ago otherwise I would have gone then. Hopefully things won’t change too much now England is Brexiting, otherwise I probably won’t be able to visit any more. Which would be sad.
Hi Mehsi – thank you for your comment! Hopefully you’ll get the chance to come again soon, London is a beautiful place worth visiting more than once! x
It is breathtaking to see all the plants and flowers. I really love to take a stroll there. Thanks for sharing!
Hi Vinn – thanks for the comment! The Barbican Conservatory is a really peaceful place to discover, I couldn’t recommend it more! x