Christmas At Kew 2021
Let’s be honest. The last thing you want to do at Christmas is spend it in a queue.
You do, however, want to spend it in a Kew – or at least you will, once you’ve heard how they’ve transformed an entire 2.6km stretch of the grounds into an almost unfeasibly magical, after-hours, mulled-wine toting festive woodland light trail.
This year’s route involves no fewer than a million individual lights, from strings of fairy-lights to giant illuminated flowers; each adorning ancient trees, especially commissioned installations, and Kew’s iconic buildings.
New for this year you can expect a devilishly clever video-projection mapped onto the grounds to bring archived botanical illustrations to virtual, vivd life as if they were really there. Then there’s ‘Spheric’, which is a fifteen-metre-wide dome of light covered in over 2,000 individually controlled LED pixels that sits on a reflective water pool, as well as ‘Aurora’, which will shoot pillars of light directly up into the sky to create a 200m-wide recreation of the aurora borealis.
They’re also bringing back some of the favourites from previous years – you know, like the singing neon trees, or the selfie-baiting Cathedral of Light. You’ll be able to stroll through a flickering fire garden, walls past a meadow of light, and see the 12 Days of Christmas played out on a Rainbow Tree.
It’ll all lead you to the grand finale at Kew’s own stunning Palm House, a sweeping, 19th century wrought-iron and glass palace that houses the more tropical plants of the collection. They’ll be swathing the entire building in kaleidoscopic projections, while a fountain and laser beam show plays out on the lake in front… by which we mean, they’re projecting shadow-puppet style images of snowflakes and reindeer onto a huge spray of water in the middle of the lake.
Magical doesn’t even begin to cover it.
NOTE: Christmas at Kew runs from 17th November – 9th January 2022, and tickets start at £21.50. You can find out more and book on their website HERE.
Christmas at Kew | Royal Botanic Gardens, TW9 3AE
Image credits: Jeff Eden © RBG Kew
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