Visiting during coronavirus
Our gardens at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst are open to those who are able to visit safely. You must book a time slot in advance.
Last updated: 28 May 2020
We’re pleased to be able to reopen the gardens at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst during these difficult times.
With acres of botanic gardens to explore, you can roam and enjoy our magnificent collections.
Whilst we are excited to welcome you back, there is a difference.
To limit and monitor the number of visitors, we have established prebooked entry time slots for the first time in our history.
You must book your time slot online before you visit, otherwise, unfortunately, you will be turned away, even if you’re a member.
For safety, our buildings and structures remain closed, including our glasshouses, restaurants and galleries and the Kew Explorer train. Some outdoor food options and toilets are open. Check before you book:
You must only come to our gardens if you can walk, cycle or drive here safely, and don’t forget that you should only bring people who live with you as your guests.
Importantly, if you are sick or fall into one of the vulnerable groups then you must postpone your visit until it safe and possible to come.
Time slots for everyone
Your safety, and that of our staff, is our highest priority.
That’s why we’ve introduced time slots for everyone, even members. This will help us stagger the entry flow, avoid queues and reduce contact.
During this time all visitors, including members, will need to pre-book a time slot to be allowed into the gardens. We’re sorry, but you won’t be able to come in without it.
When you do arrive, make sure you have proof of your time slot on your phone or on a printout plus any ID required for concessions and members.
If you are a member, don’t worry. You won’t need to pay anything extra. Just book a time slot to visit and bring your membership card and a form of ID with you. No card? Show us a letter or email confirming your membership number.
We hope you appreciate this for your protection and will help us plan for a wider reopening.
You have 45 minutes from your chosen time slot to enter Kew Gardens and 30 minutes to enter Wakehurst; once you're inside, stay as long as you like. Please help keep to social distancing guidelines and don’t arrive earlier than your time.
We expect this to be a popular offer, so do be considerate and avoid booking more than you need. You should only bring people in your household with you and continue to respect the social distancing guidance.
Book time slots for Kew
More information for members
As a member, you will need to book your free time slot before coming to the gardens to help us manage the visitor flow.
You should only visit if you can walk, cycle or drive a safe distance to our gardens.
If you rely on public transport, please delay your visit until Government restrictions on travel are relaxed.
To manage the flow of people at Kew Gardens, only Brentford Gate is open as usual. Elsewhere, we are operating a one way system: Victoria Gate is entrance only and Elizabeth Gate and Lion Gate are exit only.
Please note: parking is extremely limited around Kew Gardens. Parking is prohibited on Kew Road. Read more on getting to Kew Gardens.
At Wakehurst, the car park is open as usual. We have a temporary one-way entrance to the gardens, which is signposted from the car park. Read more on getting to Wakehurst.
Keeping you safe during your visit
We’ve put some things in place to make sure visiting is safe for everyone. We will review our plans every day and adjust and adapt where we need to.
To avoid queues and crowds, we have introduced pre-booked time slots to stagger arrival times.
There will be markers out to guide the 2m social distancing rule outside our gates. Once you’re here, feel free to explore the acres of gorgeous gardens and avoid crowding together.
Our facilities undergo strict cleaning throughout the day:
At Kew Gardens, toilets are open at Victoria Gate and White Peaks. There will also be handwashing stations at each gate and at key locations.
At Wakehurst, toilets and handwashing areas are open at the temporary entrance, Winter Garden and Visitor Centre.
You may need to wait a while to make sure there is enough space between each person. We have soap and towel dispensers, but it’s worth bringing hand sanitiser with you too.
Some staff will be equipped with personal protective equipment (PPE) and be positioned throughout the site to manage any crowding and remind visitors of the 2m rule.
Our horticultural teams are practicing social distancing so will be unable to answer questions. Please avoid approaching them whilst they are working.
We have also gone cashless, so be sure to bring the right payment method with you.
We need your help in following the rules so we can keep the gardens open. Please respect social distancing guidance at all times.
Unfortunately, if we see that these rules are not being observed then we will have to take immediate action, including asking people to leave, or closing the gardens once again entirely.
To protect yourself and others:
Regularly wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are unavailable.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough or sneeze.
Put those tissues straight in the bin and wash your hands afterwards.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
Stand 2m away from anyone not in your household.
Food and drink
You are welcome to bring your own food and drink into the gardens. At Kew Gardens, we have water fountains for you to fill up water bottles.
We are closing all our food and drink outlets to reduce the risk of transmission but there will be a pop-up food and drink stand at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst.
We will no longer be accepting cash at any of our outlets, so please be prepared to pay by contactless.
Postponed or cancelled events
Most of our events are cancelled or postponed to support the UK’s effort to stem the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19)
If your individually ticketed event was cancelled, your ticket provider will be in touch. We have cancelled and refunded all pre-booked day tickets.
School visits are cancelled at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst until 31 August 2020.
If your school has a visit booked during this time, we will be in touch with you.
Unfortunately, our phone lines are closed. We are responding to emails to email@example.com as soon as possible.
Our online learning platform Endeavoour, is available at all times with plenty of resources to support delivering engaging lessons in plant and environmental science.
Take a look at our Learning At Home pages for a range of learning ideas and tools.
Stay part of our community
We know that not everyone will get a chance to visit us right now.
We will continue to share stories, pictures and films that showcase the beauty of our botanic gardens and our world-leading science so that everyone can enjoy a slice of Kew.
We'd love to hear from you.