In London, when you cast your eyes skyward you can trace the familiar lines of some of the world’s most iconic buildings with your gaze. Have you ever fancied finding out what those same buildings look like from the top down? If the answer’s yes then today is your lucky day…
Rumour has it that when planners sought permission to build the ‘Walkie Talkie’ in the early 2000s they were told they could only do so on the proviso that the garden which already existed must remain so they simply elevated it 35 floors. Now, several staff members at Sky Garden told me this and as it’s a nice story I shall choose to believe it even if subsequent research leads me to think it might just be a myth.
The views from the top three floors of the building are undoubtedly impressive and Mama and I enjoyed spotting all the familiar sights from the higher vantage point. We were lucky enough to get out on the terrace before inclement weather (i.e.: a heck of a draught, see crazy hair pics below) led to its closure.
The Sky Garden is free to visit though very popular so you must book in advance and visits are limited to one hour though this doesn’t appear to be monitored too closely. However, the site is only partially wheelchair accessible. You can catch the elevator up the 35 floors and get out onto the terrace or have a cocktail inside but the garden element is organised on tiers spanning the building’s top two floors. It is possible there may be another step free way to access the botany but do check before you book just to be sure.
As you can probably imagine visitors are something of a captive audience so refreshments come with a hefty price tag – £10.50 for a cocktail! However, it’s a great spot to come for a special treat and if you’re feeling really flush there’s a restaurant overlooking the lush greenery and cityscape as well.
The general colour scheme is green, green and more green with different shades and textures vying for space. There are a few little pops of contrasting colours dotted throughout but think manicured jungle and you’ll be on the right track.
One of the things I love about London is the abundance of little green spaces, no matter how built up an area can seem to be. It’s so important for young people to learn to love nature and the Sky Garden offers the perfect opportunity for curious wee ones to touch and sniff and play among the plants while mum and dad can enjoy the space at the same time. If you’re hoping to see something akin to Kew Gardens here you will be disappointed. But go along with an open mind and you may be pleasantly surprised.
If you’d like to take in the views at height you can book your free visit to Sky Garden here. Spaces are released 3 weeks prior to the date you’d like to visit but be warned, they are snapped up very quickly!
Until next time,