Ultimate Guide to Buckingham Palace: Tours, Tips, and Fascinating Facts (2024)
An activity that every visitor to London loves is Exploring the Buckingham Palace. Buckingham Palace, the British Royal Family’s iconic abode, is a heritage charm. Don’t settle for a glimpse from afar; venture inside to experience its regal allure firsthand. Navigating your visit can be tricky, but fear not; our comprehensive guide to Buckingham Palace will help you.
Join us as we unravel information on Buckingham Palaces’ tickets, tours, must-see attractions, and its’ fascinating history. From the full-mast flag signaling the monarch’s presence to its status as a working residence, this majestic landmark is a must-visit for all travelers, especially Americans. Continue reading to learn it all.
Buckingham Palace, an Introduction
Buckingham Palace is an exquisite emblem of the British monarchy nestled in the heart of London. Built in 1703, in Neoclassicism style, this magnificent edifice has evolved throughout the years. Initially, it was a townhouse built for the Duke of Buckingham. It was later in 1761 when King George III purchased the building and transformed it into a regal dwelling which now is the opulent residence of the British Royal Family.
Buckingham Palace boasts an architectural style that blends classical and neoclassical elements. The structure has a notable contribution from renowned architects such as John Nash and Edward Blore. The iconic balcony, where the royal family graces the public on special occasions, was added during Queen Victoria’s reign.
Presently the grandeur of Buckingham Palace is a symbol of timeless elegance. This must-visit destination in London serves for royal celebrations and official functions and is popular as a tourist attraction and historical landmark. Read On…
Buckingham Palace | Visitor Information At A Glance
From 14th July to 31st August- 9:30 am to 7:30 pm (Last Admission- 5:15 pm)
From 1st to 24th September- 9:30 am to 6:30 pm (Last Admission- 6:15 pm)
Exclusive Guided Tours during Spring and Winter (From November to May)
On Fridays at 4:00 pm and 4:30 pm
On Saturday & Sunday at 11:00 am, 11:30 am, 1:30 pm, 2:00 pm and 2:30 pm.
*Every tour lasts for 90 minutes.
Buckingham Palace Address And Location
Buckingham Palace is located in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom.
Official Address: Buckingham Palace London SW1A 1AA United Kingdom
Buckingham Palace sits at the end of The Mall, a grand boulevard that stretches from Trafalgar Square to the palace’s main gate. Surrounding the Palace are spacious gardens, aka the Buckingham Palace Gardens. The Palace is easily accessible by public transportation, with several tube stations and bus stops nearby, making it a popular destination for visitors from all over the world.
Buckingham Palace Tickets and Admission
Tickets During Summers:
Adult (18+): £30.00
Young Person (18-24): £19.50
Child (5-17): £16.50
Under 5: Free
Adult (18+): £33.00
Young Person (18-24): £21.50
Child (5-17): £18.00
Under 5: Free
Exclusive Guided Tours during Winter and Spring: £90.00/Person
Special Family Guided Tour option with discounted prices for children (ages 5-17) at £49.50, and children under 5 are free.
Family discount of up to £25.00 when booking directly.
*Get your ticket stamped by the warden while leaving, and it will turn into an annual pass.
How to reach the Buckingham Palace in London?
Since Buckingham Palace is located in the heart of London, it is accessible by various transport modes. Here are all details about the same:
- London Underground (Tube): The closest Tube stations to Buckingham Palace are Victoria, Green Park, and Hyde Park Corner. All three stations are served by multiple lines, making it convenient to reach the palace from different parts of London.
- Bus: There are several bus routes that stop near Buckingham Palace. You can use the London bus network to get to the palace from various locations around the city.
- Train: If you’re arriving by train, London Victoria Station is the closest mainline station to Buckingham Palace. From there, it’s a short walk to the palace.
- Walking: Depending on your location in central London, you can walk to Buckingham Palace if you’re in the vicinity. It’s a pleasant walk, especially from nearby attractions like Trafalgar Square or Green Park.
- Bicycle: London offers cycle routes throughout the city, and you can cycle to Buckingham Palace if you prefer eco-friendly transportation.
- Car: While driving to Buckingham Palace is possible, parking in central London can be challenging. It’s often more convenient to use public transportation.
- Ride-hailing services and taxis: You can use ride-hailing apps or traditional London black cabs to reach Buckingham Palace.
A Day at Buckingham Palace
- The Changing of the Guard: This iconic event is a must-see ceremony at Buckingham Palace. The activity takes place daily during the warmer months and on alternate days during the rest of the year. The Changing of the Guard typically involves the replacement of the old guard with the new guard. It is a ceremony of precision and pageantry where guards are dressed in their distinctive red tunics and bearskin hats. As guards march to the rhythm of military music, it creates an impressive spectacle. From a tourism perspective, it is the best experience at Buckingham Palace.
- The Throne Room: It is one of the State Rooms that visitors can explore during the Summer Opening. This grand and opulent space is used for ceremonial occasions, including the reception of foreign dignitaries and state banquets. The throne Room is popular for its elaborate decorations, including impressive chandeliers and paintings. The highlight of this place is the thrones of the monarch and their consort.
- The Queen’s Gallery: This exhibition space at Buckingham Palace is all about exhibiting parts of the Royal Collection. It displays a rotating selection of artworks, treasures, and historical artefacts owned by the Royal Family. Visitors can explore a diverse range of exhibits, including paintings, sculptures, furniture, and decorative arts.
- The White Drawing Room: Another of the State Rooms, White Drawing Room opens for public viewing during the Summer Season. This elegant and ornate room serves as a venue for receiving guests and holding private audiences. It is decorated with white and gold furnishings, fine artwork, and luxurious fabrics.
- The Palace Garden: The Buckingham Palace Gardens is a stunning oasis in the heart of London. The area covers more than 39 acres, is meticulously maintained and features lush lawns, beautiful flowerbeds, and serene lakes. During the Summer Opening, visitors can explore a portion of the garden while taking in the picturesque scenery.
- Treasures of the Palace: As part of the Summer Opening, visitors can witness an impressive collection of royal treasures on display. The exhibition may include historical artefacts, valuable jewels, and gifts from foreign dignitaries, providing a glimpse into the rich history of the Royal Family.
- The Ballroom: It is one of the largest and most grandiose State Rooms in Buckingham Palace. It serves as the venue for lavish state banquets and other significant events. The room features stunning chandeliers, intricate decorations, and an impressive ceiling adorned with a mural depicting the Greek gods.
- The Gold State Coach: The Gold State Coach is an exquisite and iconic carriage used for various ceremonial occasions, including royal weddings and coronations. The coach is gilded with gold and intricately decorated, making it a symbol of regal splendour.
- The Diamond Jubilee State Coach: Another spectacular carriage on display is the Diamond Jubilee State Coach. It was created to mark Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012 and is occasionally used for state events.
- The Grand Staircase: The Grand Staircase is a stunning architectural feature of Buckingham Palace. For years and centuries, it is impressing visitors with its sweeping design and luxurious decor. The staircase serves as an impressive entrance for guests attending state banquets and other formal events.
Interesting Facts of Buckingham Palace
- Buckingham Palace has its own post office, where staff members sort and process mail sent to the Royal Family.
- The palace’s ballroom is so vast that it measures about 36 meters in length and can hold up to 1,500 guests during state banquets.
- Hidden beneath the palace’s gardens is a secret tunnel used by royals to discreetly access nearby Clarence House.
- The Queen’s Gallery is home to one of the most extensive collections of Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings in the world, and Buckingham Palace proudly owns it.
- In 1982, a man famously broke into Buckingham Palace, made himself a sandwich, and was later found sleeping in the Queen’s bedroom.
- Buckingham Palace’s front gates weigh a whopping 2.5 tons each and are adorned with intricate golden detail.
- The palace has its own cinema. It is where the Royal Family can enjoy private screenings of movies and documentaries.
- During World War II, the palace suffered nine direct hits from German bombs, but miraculously, no significant damage occurred.
- The grand chandelier in the Throne Room is so massive that it requires a team of specialists to clean and maintain it.
- Buckingham Palace is not only a royal residence but also the administrative headquarters for the monarchy. It is home to offices for various royal staff and officials.
That was all. We hope you will have an entertaining and memorable day at Buckingham Palace, London.