One of the highlights of London in May is the chance to visit the Chelsea Flower Show, one of the most fashionable and famous flower shows in the world! The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) hosts their annual spring show on the beautiful grounds of the Royal Hospital in Chelsea for five days each May. If you love gardening or simply admiring floral displays and the latest trends in garden design, then you’ll love the chance to experience the Chelsea Flower Show during your holiday in London. It’s an event we look forward to each spring in London!
With the limited size of the Royal Hospital grounds and the hundreds of thousands of people that attend the show, it can get a bit crowded. Here are our tips and hints for a memorable visit to the Chelsea Flower Show.
1. Book your tickets well in advance!
Garden lovers travel from around the world to see the Chelsea Flower Show, and tickets to the five day event sell out fast. Buy your tickets online as soon as possible to ensure a chance to visit the show during your holiday in London.
2. Plan a full day to enjoy all the gardens and displays
There’s so much to see at the Chelsea Flower Show! The ground is uneven and can be muddy if it’s rained recently, so wear comfortable shoes and plan a long day out, especially if you’re a garden aficionado.
3. Arrive early to beat the crowds
We like to purchase the all day entry tickets to the Chelsea Flower Show and get there right when it opens because the crowds can get massive later in the day.
4. Visit the outdoor garden displays first!
When you arrive, walk past the little stands selling garden tools and head immediately to the outdoor garden displays. These are the garden scenes that get most of the publicity during the show, and they are such a joy to explore. The queues become very long as the crowds grow, so it’s best to hit them first.
5. Then visit the flower and plant displays
After exploring the outdoor gardens, head to the beautiful displays of flowers under the pavilion tent. Be sure to bring a notepad or way to jot down the names of all the plants you love. Or simply take photos of your favorites, which is a great visual way to remember what caught your eye during the flower show. The displays are so creative and whimsical that you’ll want to photograph all of them, too!
6. Don’t miss the garden supply stands
If you’re looking for some supplies for your garden or souvenirs for the garden lovers in your life, visit all the little stands selling gardening tools, conservatories, foundtains and all kinds of garden products.
7. Stay for lunch!
The Chelsea Flower Show has many dining options each year in a variety of restaurants and cafes. Or bring a sandwich and something to drink to enjoy a picnic in the seating areas near the bandstand, on the Plateau in Ranelagh Gardens and near Western Avenue.
8. Infants and strollers are not allowed
When planning your visit to the Chelsea Flower Show, keep in mind that children under five, including infants being carried, and pushchairs or strollers are not allowed into the show.
A Flower Show Fit for Royalty!
The Chelsea Flower Show is a draw also for the British Royal Family, celebrities and movie stars, so you never know who you might spot while you’re at the show. Several members of the Royal Family and the Queen often enjoy a special preview of the Chelsea Flower Show before opening to the public.
Enjoy a Luxurious Stay in a London Perfect Vacation Rental in Chelsea
If you’re planning to visit London for the Chelsea Flower Show, all of our London vacation rentals are centrally located and provide easy walking or Tube access to the Royal Hospital where the Chelsea Flower Show is held each year. If you’d like the luxury of being walking distance, our three bedroom Twain rental is just around the corner from the Royal Hospital grounds.
Located on a quiet residential street in Chelsea just moments from the Chelsea Flower Show and the fabulous shopping along King’s Road, our two bedroom Fleming vacation rental is an ideal home away from home in Chelsea. Or enjoy the charms of Chelsea Green and a short stroll to the flower show in our two bedroom apartment rental near Chelsea Green and Sloane Square.
Visit the Royal Horticultural Society website for all the latest details for the upcoming Chelsea Flower Show when planning your visit to London. Be sure to book your London Perfect vacation rental and purchase your tickets in advance for this popular event as they sell out quickly. Come to London and experience the greatest flower show in the world!