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HOLLAND PARK Central Line,  LONDON TUBE RAMBLES WALK
Station closed for refurb. till August 2016. You can go instead to High St. Kensington (Circle and District lines) and walk west to the park)


If you go to Holland Park on a sunny day in April/May you may be lucky enough to see bluebells in the woodland, glorious tulips in full glow and, to crown it all, a parading peacock displaying his tail feathers to admiring visitors - but there's lots to see all through the year.
To get to there, cross Holland Park Avenue at the lights just outside the Tube station, walk left and take the first right, Holland Park. Soon you will see a small archway in a whitewashed wall – pass through this to enter a different  world.
Any path ahead will take you past a fenced-in wild area and soon you will see the east wing of Jacobean Holland House.  The house was badly bombed in WW2, and the open-air stage used by Opera Holland Park obscures the little that does remain of the original frontage. In the 1950's the east wing was made into a youth hostel. Turn into the hostel entrance to get a closer view of the house (through railings).

 
The park itself was first opened to the public in 1952, and is a fascinating place, full of surprises. The Dutch Garden is superbly maintained, with wisteria clad walls and a huge chess set at the end. 
As well as sports facilities and an excellent children’s playground, there is an ice house (now an art gallery), a café and, of course, opera during the summer months. The up-market Belvedere restaurant is housed in a charming building at the end of the orangery (another art gallery) This was formerly a summer ballroom in Victorian times when Holland House became a centre for intellectuals who enjoyed the beautiful surroundings and the third Lord Holland’s lavish hospitality. Vast sums were spent by his son and heir on remodelling parts of the house and grounds in fashionable Italian style – modern murals in a nearby brick arcade capture the atmosphere of an elegant garden party in the 1870's.
 
For something completely different, visit the Japanese Kyoto garden created in 1991. It's a peaceful area, with waterfall, pool, bridge and stone lanterns in eastern style.

If you wander through the park towards Kensington High Street you will see on the way the large bulk of the new Design Museum currently under construction. From here it is under ten minutes' walk (left) to the Tube station.



MAP of the area 
Photos (click on the image to enlarge it)
East wing of Holland House
Peacock
Dutch Garden 
The Orangery/Chess Pieces
Ice House Art Gallery/Mural next to Orangery
Kyoto Garden

www.londontuberambles.co.uk 
Holland Park is just one walk from the many to be found at London Tube Rambles. There are architectural gems, beautiful country views, historic places and quirky buildings even in the most unpromising areas covered by the outer London Underground stations. Usually the discoveries are within a mile of the Tube - often only five minutes walk away. If you reached this as an individual page via a search engine, you might like to click on the link above and see the other destinations explored. You'll be amazed at what's out there!
© DR