Why not go for a walk during your lunch break? All of our suggested walks start from the College's South Kensington campus.
To go shopping
15 minutes to get there, 10 minutes back on the bus
Exit past 170 Queens' Gate. Go down Elvaston Place and when you reach Gloucester Road turn right. Cross the road at the zebra crossing opposite oddbins. Take the next left (Victoria Grove), and admire the pretty buildings as you carry on past the Launceston (Michelin starred restaurant). Turn into St Albans Grove past the American university (on your right). When you see the Builders Arms pub turn right and go past the small shops. Turn left onto Thackery Street into a delightful square with cafes. Take the right hand side of the square and go up the road to Kensington High Street. You’ll come out by Whole Foods Market. To get back to College, turn right and walk past Topshop and TK Max and catch the bus outside the hotel (left hand side of the road). Get off at the Royal Albert Hall, and follow the path round then down the steps. If you turn right you reach the gates at the back of the Sherfield Building.
See the shopping route map
For some art
10 – 15 minutes to get there
Exit the back of the Sherfield Building and walk up to Prince Consort road. Turn right past the Beit Quad, and when you reach the steps of the Royal Albert Hall turn left and go up them. When you reach the Hall take the left hand road round it. You’ll see the Organists' Hall (used as Mr Selfridges House in the TV series), and as you approach Kensington Gore, you will see the Royal College of Arts on your left (they have lots of free exhibitions so sign up to their newsletter). Cross the main road and enter the park and head up to the Albert Memorial. When you have walked past it take the right hand path and head diagonally right. You will see a low white building further on, this is the Serpentine Gallery. Their exhibitions are mostly free, so head on in.
See the art route map.
For some culture
Walk down Exhibition Road past the Science Museum. Cross the road and enter the side entrance of the Victoria and Albert Museum, where you will go straight into the sculpture gallery. When you have finished in there, turn right through the shop (brilliant for jewellery), and exit toward the main road (Cromwell Road). Turn right towards the junction and turn left down towards the station. At the cross roads turn left (keeping le Pain Quotidien on your left), and follow the road round past the Brompton Market (quaint foodies shop with a café), and round to Le Cave Au Fromage (excellent cheese). When you get to the junction cross the road diagonally right, so that Pret a Manger and the car show room are on your left. Follow the road down for 5 minutes and on the left you will see Christies, (you can go in and view the items on sale for the next auction, and they often have exhibitions which Imperial staff get special invites to). On your way back, cross the road, and turn left down Bute Street. You are now in little France and will see many of the Lycee students hanging around outside the cafes (the fishmonger is worth a look too). Walk to the end of Bute Street , turn left then right down Queensberry Place, and follow the road round to the left keeping the Natural History Museum on your right. Walk back up to imperial along Queens' Gate.
See the culture route map
For a break from it all
Exit the college through the College's main entrance. Cross the road and turn right then left, entering into Prince's Gardens. Walk diagonally left across the garden and then turn right along Ennismore Gardens. This is a lovely square to walk around, but the best route is to take the second right hand turn which has the name Ennismore Gardens. Walk Straight down until you reach a wall at the end. On your right you will see a row of sugar coloured mews houses (walk down and have a look). Go under the pillars and take the footpath diagonally to your left. You can either enter the park (Brompton Oratory Gardens) and enjoy the peace, or walk down the foot path to the church itself. If you walk to the right across the car park, you will see the entrance to the park, and you can walk back through here towards Ennismore Gardens Mews. Walk along the mews taking in the sugar coloured houses, and at the end of the road you will be back in Prince's Gardens.