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The Hive

The critically acclaimed structure The Hive encapsulates the story of the honey bee and the important role of pollination, through an immersive sound and visual experience.

What is The Hive?

The Hive is a unique structure, inspired by scientific research into the health of bees. Designed by UK based artist Wolfgang Buttress, it was originally created as the centrepiece of the UK Pavilion at the 2015 Milan Expo.

The installation is made from thousands of pieces of aluminium which create a lattice effect and is fitted with hundreds of LED lights that glow and fade as a unique soundtrack hums and buzzes around you.

These multi-sensory elements of the Hive are in fact responding to the real-time activity of bees in a beehive behind the scenes at Kew. The sound and light intensity within the space changes as the energy levels in the real beehive surge, giving visitors an insight into life inside a bee colony. 

Read more about the link to the beehive

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Telling the story of pollination

The multi award-winning Hive was inspired by scientific research into the health of honeybees and has become a visual symbol of the pollinators’ role in feeding the planet and the challenges facing bees today. 

With a wildflower meadow leading the way to The Hive, it will be a truly immersive, multi-sensory experience taking visitors on a journey, exploring the vital role of bees and other pollinators in feeding the planet.

At 17 metres high it has been the spectacular centrepiece at the 2015 Milan Expo and is now a captivating addition to Kew’s already impressive range of iconic buildings. 

Find out more about The Hive events and activities

The Hive on social media

See pictures and updates from Kew and our visitors on Twitter and Instgram, and share your own pictures of The Hive using the hashtag #KewHive



The Hive is now open to visitors. Sign up to emails or follow us on social media to keep up to date. Links below.

The Hive opens and closes each day at the same time as the Gardens. 

Gardens opening times


Please note that The Hive is an open-air attraction. We may have to close The Hive if we deem it necessary in particularly bad weather, but will endeavour to open it as soon as possible once weather improves.


Entry to The Hive is included in a day admission ticket to Kew. Save when you book online. Tickets bought online are valid for entry into the Gardens (including The Hive) on any one day within 30 days of date selected. Friends of Kew enter free.

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Ticket prices

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Due to the restricted width of the paths and interior space within The Hive we are unable to accommodate mobility scooters. 

The path to The Hive is designed to be fully accessible but due to the nature of the site the gradient may feel steep in parts to self-propelled wheelchair users. 

Stay up to date

Sign up for email updates about The Hive and other Kew attractions and events.

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