Saturday, April 14, 2007

The Forgotten Palace

Having decided to make the most of the Easter Weekend with Mr B, the first day of my holiday saw us getting up nice and early on Good Friday in order to make the most of a day at Kew Gardens. I hadn’t been to Kew since I was in secondary school but had seen it a lot in the press last year as they had opened Kew Palace for the first time ever to the public. I also remembered going into some sort of huge greenhouse with a tropical forest in it. So I was excited to see if everything lived up to memory or was better or worse.

I always thought that Kew was miles and miles away (well with London Transport you can get to town in years and years) so I wasn’t looking forward to the trek. The journey only took 40 minutes from Tooting I was quite impressed. I did however have a near miss of bumping into my ex in Wimbledon. He didn’t clock me but I clocked him. I should have gone over and said hello in hindsight, I just felt so weird even seeing him. It’s not that I am in love with him still, but when you are with someone for so long there’s awkwardness and I am not past that yet, but give me time.

Anyway on to the adventures in Kew. It was brilliant. There are loads and loads of different things to do. It is like a big park and a lot more expensive but you don’t get all the different landscapes that they have created there. You can walk through the deserts of America, Australia and then be in the deepest parts of the jungle (via the amazing greenhouses).

Sadly the pagoda isn’t open this year but Kew Palace more than made up for that. If you haven’t heard of it don’t be surprised. Her majesty only opened it to the public last year and its not really been touched since it was closed a few hundred years ago. This to me was amazing you can wander round and see how the walls are made and how decay affects the building over time.

All this fascinated me and Mr B had never been in a palace before so he was enthralled. For me the best part was on the second floor where they have found the old furniture in the attic and two amazing old relics. One is the coat that King George wore through his final months before he died and still has the stains of sick and blood from his ‘madness’ fits. The other was the chair in which Queen Charlotte died which held my morbid fascination for a little too long.

So if you fancy a day in the sun with lots to see, lots to eat (I recommend the Fish and Chips followed by Lavender Ice Cream) and some of the most stunning plant life, tree’s and flowers then this is the place for you. Plus I have even managed to get a bit of a tan!

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