I Went To The Best Afternoon Tea In London

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As a lover of traditional afternoon tea, I knew I simply had to try out Alice in Wonderland afternoon tea. After hearing so much about it and drooling over pictures on Instagram, it was finally time for my family and I to go down the rabbit hole and experience the themed afternoon tea for ourselves. I booked for my teenage daughter, my husband and myself on the Kidadl app which was so easy. The process was seamless - all I had to do was book a slot at either 14:30 or 16:00 and then show up with an empty stomach!

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The exquisite tea took place in the Taj 51 Buckingham Gate Hotel in St James, just a stone's throw away from Buckingham Palace and what I would now deem one of London’s hidden gems. The hotel itself is magnificent and makes you feel as though you’ve just discovered some kind of luxurious wonderland from the moment you step foot inside the building. I didn’t know what to look at first! From the grand chandeliers to the intricately designed ceilings, the interior was simply magical. As a Londoner, it’s rare that I find myself inside a hotel in central London and I’m so happy that I was able to pay a visit to such a prestigious and beautiful one - I would recommend it to anyone in a heartbeat.

Selection of pastries and cakes on a stand for the Alice in Wonderland Tea at the Taj Hotel

After we’d had time to soak up the incredible surroundings, we were escorted to Kona, one of Taj 51’s many restaurants. What we were greeted with can only be described as our very own whimsical Wonderland. The table was laid with beautiful crockery, quirky Alice memorabilia including pearls and clocks, and stunning, old-fashioned china pieces, which completely and utterly transformed the whole space. Before we had even sat down, my teenager couldn’t help but snap a few shots for the 'gram - I don’t blame her!

Out came the selection of finger sandwiches first - they were all sorts of scrumptious flavours that we tucked into immediately. Each bite was absolutely delicious and they weren’t overly fancy so would suit those who are more fussy when it comes to food. My personal favourite was the smoked salmon - even thinking about it now is making my tummy rumble. Then came the cakes and pastries - my personal highlight of the entire experience and that’s not just because I’ve got a sweet tooth! Each hand-crafted pastry and baked cake was absolutely stunning - almost too good to eat. From the bubblegum flavoured pocket watch macaroons to the ‘Queen of Hearts’ mango tarts - the attention to detail was infallible. I know we should all try and live in the moment but I would definitely make sure that your phone is fully charged because there are some things that simply need capturing! Not to mention the beautiful courtyard adjacent to Kona; a perfect backdrop to all of your family pictures. Following the incredibly indulgent cakes and pastries, of course, came the not-so-traditional scones. Adorned with edible tags that read ‘Eat me’, the scones offered a burst of nostalgia for both my husband and I. They were also accompanied by small strawberry potions with labels that read ‘Drink me’ - a delight to any Alice fan.

Alice in Wonderland inspired afternoon tea at the Taj Hotel

From start to finish, the Alice in Wonderland tea was incredibly magical. The staff were excellent and catered to our every need which topped off the experience. And because I booked with Kidadl, my daughter received an exclusive 150th-anniversary edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland for £10 instead of £12 which meant that we could carry on the magic at home. Speaking of home, we also took an abundance of sweet treats home in a goody bag because we couldn’t finish them - they were as delicious the morning after!

I can’t recommend this experience enough, it is the perfect treat for anyone over the age of six, grandparents, out-of-towners, Londoners and anyone who’s looking for an afternoon tea with a twist.

Sophie Orman
Mum of a 15-year-old girl, Surrey

Sophie is passionate about spending quality time with her family and making amazing memories with them. They love exploring London together - and enjoy regular visits to shows, museums and art galleries along with all things chocolate, food and fashion. Sophie's passion to uncover the very best of family-friendly London led her to co-found the Kidadl platform with fellow mum and family-explorer Hannah Feldman.

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