Tuesday, 14, May 2019
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Tranquil London: best places in London to find your zen
To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, we’ve rounded up the most serene spots in the capital to recharge and unwind
From bustling high streets to vibrant cocktail bars, world-class theatre to iconic landmarks – London is adrift with people, events and moments that makes it hard to get bored. Silence in the city however, is more difficult to find, and sometimes we all need moments of calm to reflect and reconnect with the now.
From the outside, the Barbican Centre doesn’t look like the most appealing place to unwind. Set in a brutalist concrete structure and located in the busy City of London, the exterior is difficult to ignore, and very grey. However, looks can be deceiving: the centre itself is full of peaceful places to enjoy some you-time. High walkways lead you from exhibition centre to theatre, and the music library offers a wealth of interesting and insightful presentations to browse. The highlight of the visit for anyone looking to find a taste of the tropics in the heart of the city is the sprawling Barbican Conservatory. Home to a menagerie of exotic fish and over 2,000 species of tropical plants and trees, the conservatory is an aesthetic delight, as well as providing a beautiful spot to relax and read a book or ponder your thoughts away from the hustle and bustle.
via the Barbican
Looking for a break in the capital that offers the chance to relax as well as a prime location to explore? Look no further than The Marylebone. Set in the heart of charming Marylebone Village and just ten minutes from the West End, the hotel offers stunning suites (including the iconic terrace suites, with a beautiful outdoor space and brilliant views of the city), the exquisite 108 Brasserie and Pantry and the tranquil Third Space Spa. An urban sanctuary, Third Space features the latest gym facilities plus a redeveloped spa with pool, sauna and steam room, as well as luxurious treatments by Elemis, Murad, Jessica, Xen Tan and Lycon.
Appreciating the quiet at Holland Park’s beautiful Kyoto Garden is a given. From the moment you enter, there is a sign asking visitors to respect the tranquillity of the space, promising a calm and freeing stroll through the eclectic garden. The unique, Japanese-style landscape is perfect for quiet reflection and relaxation, with tiered waterfalls and serene ponds of koi carp adding to the chilled-out atmosphere. Look out for peacocks too, who can often be spotted wondering through the lush area.
Located just around the corner from The Kensington is the iconic Victoria and Albert Museum. As a favourite with tourists visiting the city, the entrance hall is often packed and loud, but look a little further and you’ll discover plenty of quiet halls and areas to find a space to pause. Head to the top floor Study Areas and admire the different rooms. Spend some time in the Silver Study area with its decadent stained glass windows and shining silverware, or the National Art Library with its floor to ceiling books and antique wooden desks. Joyful spaces to reflect and enjoy a quiet moment.
via the V&A
If you’re searching for a truly quiet place in London to really have a think and escape the noise of the city, then The British Library should be at the top of your list. Home to the world’s largest collection of books and containing over 150 million items from all over the world, it’s a treasure trove of stories and history, and a brilliant spot to reflect on times gone by. Choose a book and find a secluded spot to spend an hour in literary bliss.