Things to Do in London: Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

If there is one thing that’s a must when in London, it is having some sort of  afternoon tea experience.  Tea time and London are so inextricably linked, I do not believe you can truly experience London without participating in this cultural tradition.  Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace is one of these amazing experiencs you need to have.

Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

As I researched options for our family I found two things:

  1. Afternoon Tea is an expensive experience for a family, especially taking into consideration the exchange rate!
  2. Prices vary WIDELY according to the location and type of experience you are looking for. Prices I found varied from 27-52 pounds per person. ($46-86 per person)

Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

One thing I knew for sure is that we were going to be on the move.  With only 7 full days to see and do everything we could, while I wanted the afternoon tea experience, I also knew I did not want it to burn up half a day.  I also knew that we needed to find some place where it was fine to dress casually and bring kids.  We were sure to be canvasing the city in our jeans and tennis shoes and would need a spot where this attire was perfectly acceptable.  Fortunately, our friend Shannon recommended a family friendly spot that was beautiful and historical, The Orangery at Kensington Palace.  It was a beautiful day when we were there and I felt much less concerned about our attire when I arrived and saw the people on the park benches feeling free to enjoy the sun. 😉

tea at the orangery in london

Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

I had heard the word “Orangery” several times in preparing for our trip, but wasn’t really sure what it was, so, if you are wondering like I was, here’s a little history courtesy of wikipedia:

“An orangery or orangerie was a room or a dedicated building on the grounds of fashionable residences from the 17th to the 19th centuries where orange and other fruit trees were protected during the winter, similar to a greenhouse or conservatory.The orangery provided a luxurious extension of the normal range and season of woody plants.”

The Orangery at Kensington Palace is the only royal palace in London where you can enjoy afternoon tea.  It is a relaxed setting, perfect for us tourists in our jeans and t-shirts, but feels opulent and beautiful.  As a bonus, you can wander around the gorgeous manicured English gardens surrounding the Orangery before or after your tea.

Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

While locals opted to sit outside, it was still a little chilly for us Southern Californians, so we sat inside the gorgeous building and practically had the place to ourselves.

Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Our server recommended the English Orangery Afternoon Tea which included the following:

Egg mayonnaise and cress bridge roll

Smoked salmon and cream cheese mini bagel

Coronation chicken wrap (yum!)

Cucumber and fresh mint sandwich

Orange-scented and currant scones served with Cornish clotted cream ( I know, clotted cream sounds funny, but trust me…eat it!  It is DELICIOUS!)

English strawberry jam

An assortment of tea pastries

Served with a range of loose teas, tisanes or coffee

Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Afternoon Tea at the Orangery at Kensington Palace

Tea at the Orangery was a perfect experience.  Eating on the Queen’s china and tasting authentic English scones with clotted cream on the grounds of a royal palace is something we will never forget.  If you are looking to book your own Orangery Tea, you can find everything you need to know here.

Looking for more help planning a trip to London?  Check out these posts:

Things to do in London: Visit Borough Market

Visiting Notting Hill

Take a Spin on the London Eye

Tips for Using Public Transportation in London

Primrose Hill: Home of Paddington Bear

What it’s like to rent a vacation flat in London

How to Stay Connected While Traveling in Europe

A Walking Tour of London

Visit the Tower of London

If you’re heading to other places in Europe, here are some more posts you don’t want to miss!  You can check out our entire Europe Travel Gallery to see all of our posts and helpful info.

Things to See in Europe

Tea at the Orangery | Riding Trains in Europe | Dublin Travel Guide | Paris Museum Pass | Best Family Hotel in Rome

Things to do in Europe

Visiting Bruges | Staying Connected in Europe | Best View in Paris | Amsterdam Canal House | Borough Market

Happy Travels!



Creative Director at Pink Peppermint Design
Tammy Mitchell is the founder and creative director of lifestyle blog Along with being a homeschooling mom of two kiddos, she is also an in-demand prop and event stylist, photographer, interior and graphic designer. On Pink Peppermint Design, she shares creative DIY projects, easy entertaining and gift ideas, inspiring interiors and events. She lives in Southern California, with her husband and two children.


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