5D/4N Backpacking London Without A Tour – Free & Easy (Part 12) : A Visit to Buckingham Palace, Changing the Guard Ceremony & Green Park

Buckingham Palace, also known as Buckingham House is the next destination my sister and I visited in London, United Kingdom. This popular tourist attraction is the official London residence of the United Kingdom’s sovereigns since 1837 and is the administrative headquarters of the Monarch.

Thousands of visitors flock to the Palace each year to witness the Changing the Guard ceremony, visit the State Rooms and perhaps catch a glimpse of The Queen and/or the Royal Family. Buckingham Palace is located in the City of Westminster, London and is easily accessible via public transport. 😀

 

Getting to Buckingham Palace

There are several ways to get to Buckingham Palace. My sister and I took the London Underground a.k.a London Tube and disembarked at Green Park Station. From there, it was a 10-minute scenic walk across Green Park to Buckingham Palace.

Visitors can also get off at Victoria Station or Hyde Park Corner Station and make their way to Buckingham Palace on foot. If travelling by bus, take bus numbered 11, 211, C1 or C10 and stop at Buckingham Palace Road.

For your info, Victoria Coach Station is a 10-minute walk from Buckingham Palace. It is also possible to walk from Hyde Park, Big Ben clock tower or the Palace of Westminster to Buckingham Palace if you are up for it. My sister and I took the London Underground a.k.a London Tube out of convenience. 😉

 

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Green Park Underground Station, London
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Beautiful shades of autumn reflected in the vines on the wall of Green Park Underground Station, London
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The Ritz London against blue skies in London
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An interesting statue at Green Park, London
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Green Park, London

 

Opening Hours & Admission Tickets

Buckingham Palace is the venue for many official events and receptions held by The Queen. The Palace opens daily from 09:15 to 19:45. The last admission is at 16:15 or 17:15, depending on the season. A typical visit lasts between 2 hours and 2 hours 30 minutes.

Every summer, the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace are open to visitors. Visitors are free to have a look at the Palace from the outside of the gates. However, an admission fee is charged for visits to the State Rooms and Palace Gardens. The admission fees are as follow:

The State Rooms, Buckingham Palace Tour

Ticket

Price

Adult

£21.50

Over 60 / Student (with valid ID)

£19.60

Under 17 / Disabled

£12.30

Under 5

Free

Family ( 2 adults, 3 children under 17s)

£55.30

 

The State Rooms and Garden Highlights Tour

Ticket

Price

Adult

£30.50

Over 60 / Student (with valid ID)

£27.50

Under 17 / Disabled

£18.20

Under 5

Free

Family ( 2 adults, 3 children under 17s)

£79.20

 

A different set of price is charged for group bookings (15+). Do take note that photography, video recording, filming and the use of mobile phones are not allowed inside the State Rooms, but are permitted in the garden at Buckingham Palace. For more info, kindly visit Buckingham Palace’s official website here.

 

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A refreshing sight at Green Park, London
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Erika and Eva took a scenic stroll across Green Park to get to Buckingham Palace, London
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A young boy playing with the fallen leaves at Green Park, London
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Erika at Green Park in autumn, London
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Eva at Green Park in autumn, London
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Late autumn scenery at Green Park, London
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Erika channelling her “Autumn in my heart” moment at Green Park, London <3

 

Changing the Guard Ceremony – Of Iconic Bearskin Caps and Scarlet Tunics

A must see grand activity that takes place at Buckingham Palace is the Changing the Guard a.k.a Changing of the Guard ceremony where the Old Guard hands over responsibility for protecting Buckingham Palace and St. James’s Palace to the New Guard.

Depending on the month of year, the ceremony is held either daily, or on odd (1st, 3rd, 5th) or even dates (2nd, 4th, 6th). The ceremony begins on the forecourt of Buckingham Palace at 11:30 sharp, following a march by a detachment of the Old Guard, with musical support, from St. James’s Palace and the New Guard led by a Regimental Band from Wellington Barracks. 😀

Watching the Changing the Guard requires no tickets and is free of charge. Do take note that poor weather conditions might force the Changing of the Guard ceremony to be cancelled. It is wise to check the schedule for the confirmed dates of the Changing of the Guard ceremony at the Army website here before your visit to Buckingham Palace to avoid any disappointments.

 

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Buckingham Palace, London
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Visitors at Buckingham Palace, London
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The grand entrance/gates of Buckingham Palace, London
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An up-close view of Buckingham Palace, London. The Royal Guards are dressed in grey tunics due to the cold weather/season
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An ornament on the ground of Buckingham Palace, London
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Victoria Memorial stands majestically in front of Buckingham Palace, London
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The famous stretch of road in front of Buckingham Palace, London

 

In a Nutshell

My sister and I arrived at Buckingham Palace late in the afternoon and missed the Changing the Guard ceremony. 🙁 However, we managed to take photos of Buckingham Palace and its beautiful surroundings. Even though we did not get to witness a grand ceremony in procession, we were happy nonetheless to be able to visit Buckingham Palace and see it with our very own eyes.

We will definitely be visiting Buckingham Palace again in the future, this time making sure that we visit the State Rooms and catch the Changing of the Guard as well in summer. 😀

 

Up next: A 3-course Chinese dinner meal at Gourmet Kitchen, Chinatown

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2 Comment

  1. Ollie says: Reply

    Hi, was this taken in August?

    1. Hi Ollie, this was taken during late autumn last year as my sister and I visited London, UK in November. London experiences late summer in the month of August. 🙂

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