Introduction to Kew

Explore Kew Gardens - Virtual Tour

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© Explore Kew Gardens

The Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew and Wakehurst Place are among the most beautiful gardens in the country. But their beauty is more than skin deep. Their collection of more than thirty thousand different kinds of plants is the most diverse collection of living plants in the world ­ one in eight of all flowering plant species grow here.

© Explore Kew Gardens

The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew is a rich historical landscape which has developed through centuries of scientific and cultural evolution. The Gardens are recognised as a global centre of excellence in the study of plant diversity and economic botany. They hold the world's largest documented living and preserved plant and fungal collections of over 8 million specimens and have played a leading role in plant collection and study since the late 18th century.

© Explore Kew Gardens

The site is also an internationally important historic garden landscape illustrating key periods in garden design from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, including work by William Kent, Charles Bridgeman, William Chambers and 'Capability' Brown. The gardens also contain a large number of architecturally important buildings, including the 17th century Kew Palace and two of the world's finest surviving examples of Victorian glasshouse technology; the Palm House and the Temperate House. Kew receives over one million visitors a year who come to enjoy and understand plants, but also to experience the many exciting events and festivals.

All life depends on plants.