Garden tours

Garden tours

The Royal College of Physicians' garden isn't your typical garden. It is unique in that almost every one of the 1000+ species of plant here has a link to medicine.


The myriad of stories they tell come from diverse cultures, different countries and from every age in recorded history. The real joy of the garden is in its unique and bespoke collection of plants that offer living examples of the history of medicine from ancient Egypt to the life-saving prescription drugs of today. 

Admission to our museum and gardens is free. On arrival please sign in at our reception desk where you will be given directions and details of available rooms and exhibitions.

Groups of six or more can visit the RCP but they must be led by one of our authorised guides. For a building and history tour please contact us at history@rcp.ac.uk to make any arrangements. For garden tours please see the details below.

Dr Henry Oakeley, giving a tour of the RCP medical garden
Dr Henry Oakeley, giving a tour of the RCP medical garden

Book a garden tour

Visits to the garden are welcome in 2021 subject to the government guidelines.

Open tours of the Medicinal Garden are given by senior physicians from the RCP on the first Wednesday of the month at 2pm (June–October). To book, please call: +44(0)20 3075 1649 (ask for reception).

Organised group tours can also be arranged. To book, please email: garden@rcp.ac.uk with the subject ‘Garden tour’. No charge is made for any of these tours; however, donations towards the Garden’s upkeep are gratefully received.

Visitors who wish to see the Medicinal Garden on their own are welcome to visit 9am–5pm weekdays. 

Find out more about our Medicinal Garden

Henry Oakley
Dr Henry Oakley

There are also plants in our unique garden with names that commemorate physicians such as Rudbeck, Dahl, Fuchs, Kniphof and Zinn and a descendant of the tree under which Hippocrates taught medical students 2,400 years ago. Many of the plants have no current medical use but they offer an illuminating window into the history, beliefs and culture of medicine through the ages.

Patrice Moor: life and death in the garden - paintings inspired by the RCP Medicinal Garden
The medicinal garden of the Royal College of Physicians