Barbican Conservatory


The definition of a concrete jungle, this glass-topped conservatory is a surprisingly lush urban rainforest inside the brutalist Barbican, London’s second-largest after Kew Gardens. More than 2000 species of plants, along with fish, birds and terrapins, reside in this space, originally designed to hide the theatre's six-storey-high rigging system. Check the website for dates of gardener-led tours (adult/child £12.50/10) and afternoon teas (£35).

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby London attractions

1. Barbican

0.02 MILES

The architectural value of this sprawling post-WWII brutalist housing estate divides Londoners, but the Barbican remains a sought-after living space as…

2. Curve

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Specially commissioned shows and provocative temporary retrospectives fill this interesting arced gallery in the Barbican.

3. Barbican Art Gallery

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Spread over two levels, the larger of the two art galleries at the Barbican hosts thoughtful temporary exhibitions that change a few times a year. Entry…

4. St Giles' Cripplegate


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5. City Wall

0.19 MILES

Discovered after a WWII bomb razed a 19th-century warehouse, this crumbling collection of brickwork is the remains of a Roman city wall and bastion with…

6. Museum of London

0.21 MILES

Romp through 450,000 years of London history at this entertaining and educational museum, one of the capital's finest. Exhibiting everything from a…

7. Roman Fort & City Wall

0.24 MILES

London’s roots lie in the walled Roman settlement of Londinium, established in 43 CE on the northern bank of the River Thames. Few traces of the 3rd…

8. St Bartholomew the Great


Dating from 1123, St Bartholomew the Great is one of London's oldest churches. The Norman arches and profound sense of history lend this holy space an…