Conservatory at The Barbican

Love it or hate it, the Barbican is an icon of Brutalist architecture. But in amongst the concrete jungle, is a glass-bound rainforest – as long as you manage to find the entrance. With a mixture of temperate and arid tropical plants, it is the second largest conservatory in London after Kew Gardens’ Princess of Wales Conservatory.

The Conservatory was originally designed by the architects Chamberlin, Powell and Bon to hide the massive fly tower – where scenery for productions is lowered down six stories to the stage beneath.

Don’t miss the Arid House with its collection of cacti and succulents – and the terrapins outside. These were brought from Hampstead Heath after they had got out of control and were terrorizing the local wildlife.

The current exhibition at the Barbican Conservatory is a tropical art commission by the visual artist, Ranjani Shettar. Her large-scale sculptural installation, ‘Cloud songs on the horizon’ is the artist’s first major show in Europe. The five sculptures are suspended across the Conservatory.

The closest tube station is the Barbican.

Entry is free but you must pre-book a timeslot before your visit – book here. Tickets are released weekly.


Address: London, London, EC2Y 8DS View map Length of visit: 1-2 hours
Dog friendly: No
Cafe: Yes
Car park: No
House open: No
House open - occasionally: No
Family friendly: Yes
Toilets: Yes
Wheelchair - limited: Yes

For information on opening times and to buy tickets: Click here

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