3 Mar 20 / Wimbledon
24 Hours in Wimbledon
Most of us associate Wimbledon with the world-famous tennis tournament. But there’s much more to this village-esque district. From glorious parks to great museums, designer outlets to Buddhist temples, we've offered our favourites things to do in Wimbledon. Plus, if you want to stay for longer, we've included further recommendations so you can extend your stay.
Visit the Windmill Museum
Opening in March for the summer season, the museum tells the story of the iconic English windmill. Told through models, machinery and videos, the history and development of the generator is brought up to date for all to enjoy.
There are also exhibits on rural life and local history, and children can have a go at grinding corn the traditional way themselves. As the museum is run entirely by volunteers, entry to the Windmill is free.
Stroll on Wimbledon Common
One of London’s great green expanses worth waking up early for. Perfect for cycling and walking, visitors can follow trails across the stunning heathlands, woodlands and grasslands.
Home to The Wombles, the children’s BBC show, the Common is a fantastic to visit on crisp winter mornings or bright summer days.
There is a route that starts at the windmill and follows tracks around the golf course. On the way, you will pass the pretty Queen's Mere and King's Mere which are surrounded by woodland paths.
Boarding the common lies Wimbledon Village, a cosy neighbourhood where town meets country. For fashion lovers, there are rich pickings with high street stores as well as top designer brands.
Visitors can also browse fine art galleries and independent antique shops, all set amongst striking historical buildings and period architecture.
Wimbledon Village Stables
After a morning on your feet, wander over to Wimbledon Village Stables for an idyllic ride.
The stables offer a unique experience, combining well-schooled horses with an expert team of professional instructors. Whether you’re a new rider or experienced equestrian, riders can hack across the common, or even in nearby Richmond Park, enjoying the countryside and wildlife from the saddle.
Deen City Farm
Alternatively, you could make a short journey by public transport to see some farmyard favourites. Part of The National Trust’s Morden Hall Park, visitors can meet cows, sheep and pigs, as well as small residents including guinea pigs and rabbits.
Deen City Farm's shop sells second-hand children’s’ books, animal feed and bedding, plus locally sourced gifts. Entrance is free and children can interact with the furry friends during their visit.
Wimbledon is the surprising home to a stunning Buddhist monastery. A couple of streets east of the Common, The Buddhapadipa Temple is affiliated to the Royal Thai Embassy in London and remains home to monks and nuns. Visitors are welcome to visit the magnificent temple and its wooded grounds, provided they are respectful and adhere to rules of etiquette.
Polka Children’s Theatre
Another for those travelling with children, this treasured theatre dates to 1967, moving into its permanent home on the Broadway in 1979. Performances are staged for children up to 13 years in the auditorium, with productions for babies, toddlers and smaller children shown in a smaller studio space.
Be sure to check out their website for details on their shows, workshops, storytelling and much more.
Wimbledon’s Arthouse Cinema
This secret spot is hidden away above the HMV store near the railway station. With three intimate screens and plush, comfortable seats, the Curzon Wimbledon plays host to foreign, indie and the occasional mainstream movie.
Special events include live showings of performances at the Royal Opera House, National Theatre and the Met. There are also question and answer sessions with actors and directors, completing a perfect evening in Wimbledon for the film fanatic.
New Wimbledon Theatre
Standing proudly on the Broadway, the Grade II New Wimbledon Theatre hosts prominent stand-up comedians, touring plays and musicals fresh from the West End. If you’re visiting in the winter months, its Pantomine boasts an all-star line-up popular with locals and tourists.
As you’re walking down the high street, look out for the gold statue of the Roman goddess of gaiety, Laetitia, on the dome above the entrance.
When you are ready to relax in an armchair with a bottle of well-chosen wine (don't worry, there are sommeliers on hand to help you make your selection), do head to the Bar at Hotel du Vin. It’s time to relax and reflect on the day as the sun sets over Cannizaro Park.
IF YOU CAN STAY LONGER
If you can extend your time in Wimbledon, the area is perfectly situated to take advantage of some of the top attractions London has to offer.
The District line links Wimbledon to national treasures including the National History museum in South Kensington, the Saatchi Gallery in Sloane Square and St. James’s Park for Buckingham Palace. Trips are under 45 minutes and transport you to some of the most iconic landmarks in London.
Chelsea Flower Show
Running for 5 days in May, the Chelsea Flower Show is guaranteed to dazzle with its colourful flowers, innovative garden designs and amazing exhibits.
If you haven’t secured a ticket to the main show, you can still soak up the atmosphere around the streets of Chelsea with ‘Chelsea in Bloom’ displays and activities for all to enjoy.
Open to the public between July and October, visitors can explore the grand residence of the royal family where Queen Elizabeth II currently resides. Tickets give guests access to the State Rooms and Buckingham Palace, with slightly more expensive tickets including a visit to the Royal Mews and The Queen’s Gallery.
All year round, the Changing of the Guard takes place in the forecourt of the palace. A historical ceremony well-worth seeing, the Changing of the Guard usually takes place at 11am on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Sunday and Mondays.
WHERE TO STAY
With so many things to see and do in Wimbledon, why not make an overnight stay of it. Cannizaro House is a 19th Century house bursting with character and historic charm. Our Wimbledon Hotel has been lovingly converted to create 50 luxury hotel rooms and suites, each with an emphasis on comfort and individuality. Check the offers and come and relax in a signature du Vin roll-top bath.
Bistro du Vin Wimbledon has a French-influenced menu laced with British flair. Stop for lunch or dinner and remember to slow down to enjoy afternoon tea too. After a busy day sightseeing, or an evening at the theatre, the Hotel du Vin Bar has a fantastic cocktail list. And when the weather is fine, there is al fresco dining available on the terrace overlooking Cannizaro Park.