Despite the Tower of London's grim reputation as a place of torture and death, within these walls you will also discover the history of a royal palace, an armoury and a powerful fortress. Don't miss Royal Beasts and learn about the wild and wonderous animals that have inhabited the Tower, making it the first London Zoo.
Discover the priceless Crown Jewels, join an iconic Beefeater on a tour and hear their bloody tales, stand where famous heads have rolled, learn the legend of the Tower's ravens, storm the battlements, get to grips with swords and armour, and much more!
The Houses of Parliament's iconic clock tower is one of London's most famous landmarks!
The Houses of Parliament and Elizabeth Tower, commonly called Big Ben, are among London's most iconic landmarks and must-see London attractions. Technically, Big Ben is the name given to the massive bell inside the clock tower, which weighs more than 13 tons (13,760 kg). The clock tower looks spectacular at night when the four clock faces are illuminated.
Elizabeth Tower stands at more than 96 metres tall, with 334 steps to climb up to the belfry and 399 steps to the Ayrton Light at the very top of the tower.
It is not possible for overseas visitors to tour the clock tower. Instead, join a talk on the Elizabeth Tower or take a tour of the Houses of Parliament next to The Elizabeth Tower. Alternatively, watch this behind-the-scenes video of Big Ben in action.
Although now far inland, Bramber Castle was originally situated on the coast where the River Adur meets the sea. Built by the de Braose family it was confiscated by King John whose harsh treatment of Lady de Braose and her two sons led to the rebellion that culminated in Magna Carta.
The striking chequerboard flint and Caen limestone facade is part of one of the oldest Norman buildings in Sussex. The museum tells the story of Shoreham’s maritime and local history from prehistoric to medieval times.
Founded in 1753, the British Museum’s remarkable collection spans over two million years of human history. Enjoy a unique comparison of the treasures of world cultures under one roof, centred around the magnificent Great Court.
World-famous objects such as the Rosetta Stone, Parthenon sculptures, and Egyptian mummies are visited by up to six million visitors per year. In addition to the vast permanent collection, the museum’s special exhibitions, displays and events are all designed to advance understanding of the collection and cultures they represent.
Visit a Buckingham Palace for a glimpse inside one of the few working royal palaces remaining in the world today.
During the summer, you can tour the 19 spectacular State Rooms. These magnificent rooms are decorated with some of the greatest treasures from the Royal Collection, including paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens and Van Dyck.
Outside of the summer opening, you can still see the iconic exterior of the palace and watch the famous Changing the Guard.
Kensington Palace, a palace of secret stories and public lives, has been influenced by generations of royal women.
Experience life as an 18th-century royal courtier whilst making your way through the magnificent King's and Queen's State Apartments adorned with remarkable paintings from the Royal Collection. Victoria Revealed, set within the rooms Queen Victoria lived in as a child, is an exhibition that explores her life and reign as wife, mother, Queen and Empress.
Diana: Her Fashion Story - Kensington Palace’s newest exhibition - traces the evolution of Diana’s style; from the demure, romantic outfits of her first public appearances to the glamour, elegance and confidence of her later life. Highlights include the pink blouse worn for Diana’s engagement portrait in 1981 and the ink blue velvet gown, worn when the princess danced with John Travolta.
The Science Museum is the most visited science and technology museum in Europe. There are over 15,000 objects on display, including world-famous objects such as the Apollo 10 command capsule and Stephenson’s Rocket.
With 14 interactive areas, Madame Tussauds London combines glitz, glamour and incredible history with more than 300 stunning wax figures.
Walk down the red carpet with Benedict Cumberbatch and Johnny Depp, before exploring our sports zone alongside Usain Bolt and David Beckham. Enjoy an audience with Her Majesty The Queen and Will and Kate before stepping on stage with music icons including Miley Cyrus. Then, after a behind-the-scenes look at how our sculptors work, ride in a taxi and relive the rich history of London.
Set right in the heart of London, Hyde Park offers both world-class events and concerts together with plenty of quiet places to relax and unwind.
Dip your toes in the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, brave an open water swim in the Serpentine, or just admire the views across the lake from a waterside café.
Have a go at boating, tennis, horse riding, or join the many joggers, walkers and cyclists enjoying the open air.
Hyde Park has a long history as a site of protest, and still hosts rallies and marches today. Visit Speakers’ Corner on a Sunday morning to hear people from all walks of life share their views. Hyde Park is one of London’s eight Royal Parks and covers an area of 350 acres.
The Coca-Cola London Eye is centrally located in the heart of the capital, gracefully rotating over the River Thames opposite the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. At 135 metres, the Coca-Cola London Eye is the world's tallest cantilevered observation wheel; a feat of design and engineering it has become the modern symbol representing the capital and a global icon. The experience showcases breathtaking 360 degree views of the capital and its famous landmarks and has been the number one visitor experience in the city for the past decade.
The gradual rotation in one of the 32 high-tech glass capsules takes approximately 30 minutes and gives you an ever-changing perspective of London. Within each capsule, interactive guides allow you to explore the capital's iconic landmarks in several languages.
An experience on the Coca-Cola London Eye will lift you high enough to see up to 40 kilometres on a clear day and keep you close enough to see the spectacular details of the city unfolding beneath you.
Would you like to go on a fascinating journey from the coastline to the depths of the ocean? Discover a magical underwater world filled with a dazzling array of creatures! With thousands of sea creatures, from rays to rare green sea turtles; you can see them swimming majestically above you with an Ocean Tunnel. The Shark Walk will have you walking across glass with seven species of stunning shark in the Shark Reef Encounter display below you.
Seen by many as the birthplace of modern democracy, this picturesque open landscape beside the Thames was witness to King John's historic sealing of the Magna Carta on 15 June 1215.
Today Runnymede is the perfect place to relax outdoors or to pause and reflect on the history of the struggle for freedom. As well as a monument to the democratic legacy of the Magna Carta, you'll find further memorials to John F. Kennedy and the Commonwealth Air Forces.
There are two art installations to be discovered in the meadows. The Jurors by Hew Locke is a collection of 12 bronze chairs sat in the meadow, each intricately decorated with designs depicting current and past struggles relating to democracy and freedom.
Writ in Water is a major architectural artwork by Mark Wallinger, in collaboration with Studio Octopi. The large scale circular building features a labyrinth style entrance leading to a central chamber, where a pool sits below a central opening, reflecting in light from the outside. Celebrating the enduring significance of Magna Carta, this unique piece of artwork offers space for reflection and contemplation.
Set amidst the extensive Home Park of Windsor Castle, Frogmore House is surrounded by fine and picturesque gardens.
The house dates from the 1680s and was purchased for Queen Charlotte in 1792. Here the Queen was able to indulge her love of botany and laid out the garden with many rare and unusual plants.
At one time the house was the home of Queen Victoria's mother, the Duchess of Kent. After her death, her son-in-law, Prince Albert, commissioned the building of an elegant mausoleum to hold her remains. Queen Victoria was particularly fond of Frogmore's peaceful ambience and it became her favourite retreat.
Victoria and Albert's love of Frogmore lead them to break with tradition and build themselves a much larger and grander mausoleum for themselves. Favoured also by King George V and Queen Mary, they used Frogmore for entertaining during Ascot Week. Today, with its handsome house and tranquil gardens, it is easy to imagine the love Frogmore inspired in its former residents.
Take in the splendour of St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, the setting for the marriages of Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle and HRH Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank in 2018, the burial place of 10 monarchs including Henry VIII and Charles I and one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in England.
St George’s Chapel is regarded as one of the most beautiful ecclesiastical buildings in England and is characterised by large windows and tall, slender pillars giving the impression of grace and elegance. The chapel features remarkable examples of medieval woodwork and ironwork. The magnificent Sovereign’s Stall, used by The Queen today, dates from the late eighteenth century.
The Savill Garden is one of Britain’s greatest ornamental gardens. It never fails to charm visitors who come to explore its 35 acres of contemporary and classically designed gardens and exotic woodland.
Developed under the patronage of Kings and Queens, The Savill Garden was created in the 1930s by Sir Eric Savill.
The Savill Garden is a place of constant discovery, and of interlocking gardens, containing distinctive areas such as Spring Wood, The Summer Wood, The Hidden Gardens, The Summer Gardens, The Glades, Autumn Wood, The Azalea Walks and The New Zealand Garden.
The Savill Garden mixes native and exotic species and has bred many important garden hybrids. Each ‘garden within a garden’ has its own attractions, and the gardens are ever-changing with every season bringing new colour and interest to delight the visitor.
The Rose Garden takes a fresh and contemporary approach to display roses. The design creates an intense sensory experience with roses especially chosen for their scent, strong colours and repeats flowering. Visitors enjoy the perfume at its best, together with stunning views, from a walkway which appears to ‘float’ above the Rose Garden.
Windsor Great Park covers 4,800 acres, parts of which are open to the public. Its present area was determined in the 1360s and was popular with Saxon kings as a hunting forest. The park is shrouded in mystery and legend and for over 1,000 years the story of Herne the Hunter has been told. His ghost still appears wearing the antlers of a stag, riding a phantom black stallion at the head of a pack of black hounds. He appears to warn of times of trouble and gallops through Windsor Great Park only to disappear into thin air.
The park today is the perfect place for picnics, eating, shopping, running, walking, cycling, horse riding and fishing. Families will love the children's play area near The Savill Garden.
Dorney Court is one of England’s finest stately homes. It is a Grade 1 listed building, renowned for its architectural importance and historical significance, and any visit is a fascinating and unique experience. Built in the 15th century, the Tudor Manor House has been lived in by the Palmer family for more than 450 years – this remarkable and characterful building has been passed from father to son over thirteen generations. “Dorney” is the ancient Saxon word for “island of bees” and the estate remains famous for its honey which is still produced to this day. The very first pineapple to be raised in England was grown at Dorney Court and presented to Charles II in 1661 and the spectre of a bald lady haunts the wood-panelled hallways.
Dorney Court is very much a family home and visitors will find that the House and Grounds have an easy charm and a warmth of welcome that reflect continuing family use and the passion and love of everyone involved with the Estate.
Dorney Court has been used as a film and TV location since the 1970s. The House and Grounds have featured in a wide range of productions including Elizabeth: The Golden Age, The Other Boleyn Girl, Inspector Morse and Poirot. When you visit Dorney Court, you will find rooms full of history. Oak and beautiful lacquer furniture compete for space with family portraits and treasures collected over six centuries.
Take part in a variety of water sports at Bray Lake! Enjoy Stand Up Paddle Boarding, Windsurfing, Kayaking, Dinghy Sailing and Open Water Swimming. The Centre is open 7 days a week and offers equipment hire, holiday courses and private tuition.
A rare surviving 13th-century house belonging to the Knights Templar - an order of soldiers established in the crusading period to protect the holy lands and the pilgrims who travelled to them.
Its original purpose was to provide lodgings and fresh horses for members of this order on their way to and from the crusades.
The stone building that exists today once formed part of a larger range of buildings which included a hall, kitchens, barns and stables. Remains of 13th-century wall plaster can still be seen.
The Stanley Spencer Gallery is situated in the heart of Cookham, the picturesque ‘village in heaven’ where Spencer was born and painted for most of his life. Established in 1962 the building was transformed ten years ago into a magnificent modern art museum, home to the world’s largest collection of Spencer paintings, drawings, personal letters, photographs, press cuttings and books.
Visitor attractions: film and audio guide; exhibition catalogue; self-guided walk pamphlet; free children’s activity booklet; gift shop.
Based at Braywick Nature Centre, the Royal Borough's Countryside Service promotes awareness of the natural environment through our programme of events, walks and talks, and providing education sessions and advice to schools and other groups.
The Rochester Guildhall was built in 1687 and is one of the finest 17th-century civic buildings in Kent. Its staircase and main hall have magnificent plaster ceilings, given in 1695 by Admiral Sir Cloudsley Shovell, who was the Member of Parliament for the city of Rochester at the time.
Experience a spiritual moment in Rochester Cathedral and visit a church that has been celebrating Christian worship since 604AD. The history and heritage of Rochester Cathedral is boasted in its stunning architecture. Its walls hum with the prayer of thousands of years.
Britain’s very first museum of Huguenot history has opened its doors to the public.
Following a £1.5 million development project, Rochester’s museum tells the dramatic story of the Huguenots, their persecution in France, escape to Britain and the trades, crafts and skills they brought with them that has since contributed to the formation of modern Britain.
Alongside beautiful new galleries displaying objects never seen by the public before, the museum also has a vibrant and engaging learning space. Here visitors will be able to further their learning either through a craft workshop, talk, lecture, film screening or cross-curricular schools session.
A Tudor charity house founded by the Elizabethan MP Richard Watts to provide board and lodgings for six poor travellers and continued to do so right up to the Second World War.
The house and charity are immortalised in Dickens' Christmas short story entitled The Seven Poor Travellers.
A courtyard and herb garden attracts many visitors in the summer.
Fabled city mansion, stayed in by Charles II on eve of his restoration and the Satis House of Great Expectations.
Superbly poetic interiors with a wonderful collection of English furniture and paintings, including several Gainsboroughs and Reynolds and rare Constable portraits. A good collection of English pottery and treen. The deliciously maintained twin-walled gardens of an acre now complemented by the ongoing restoration of monumental renaissance garden.
Once the family home of Sir Peter Buck, a senior officer at the Royal Tudor Dockyard, the house has also been a Victorian boarding school, a hostel, a museum and an inspiration to the great author Charles Dickens.
As part of a £2.2million Heritage Lottery Funded project, Eastgate House has undergone major refurbishment works and is now open to the public.
Many of the building's original features and decorative schemes have been carefully restored, and new heating and lighting have been installed. Access has been greatly improved with a new lift at the back of the building, and the second floor of the house is open to visitors for the first time in more than 40 years.
Visitors to the house can explore the amazing rooms of the house while learning the remarkable story of those who lived, worked and played here throughout the centuries.
No trip to Windsor could possibly be complete without a visit to amazing Windsor Castle, the family home to British kings and queens for over 1,000 years.
The size of the Castle (5.3 hectares/13 acres) is breathtaking, in fact, it is the largest and oldest occupied castle in the world and it’s where Her Majesty The Queen chooses to spend most of her private weekends. You might even time your visit when she is in residence! Look at the flag flying from the Castle’s Round Tower; if it’s the Royal Standard The Queen will be there too.
Over the past few years, the Royal Collection Trust has been busy transforming the experience of visiting Windsor Castle, and visitors are already enjoying many improvements to the visitor experience.
The Moat Room, a new introductory space, now tells the story of the Castle’s 1,000 years of history. Windsor Castle’s Inner Hall, created by George IV in the 1820s as a space to receive official guests, has been restored and opened to the public. Now, for the first time since its closure by George’s niece, Queen Victoria, the Inner Hall serves its original purpose as a magnificent welcome area for visitors to the Castle. The medieval Undercroft has now been transformed into the Castle's first permanent café.
Situated on the banks of the River Medway, this attractive turreted castle is set in a picturesque village area backed by rolling, wooded hills.
Upnor Castle was originally built on the orders of Queen Elizabeth I in 1559 as a gun fort to defend her warships at anchor in the reaches of the Medway and Chatham Dockyard.
Although the castle was an important link in the defence line, it was not well maintained and proved ineffective when the Dutch, under the command of Admiral de Ruyter, sailed up the Medway in June 1667 to attack the dockyard. The enemy fleet met very little resistance and when it left two days later, it had destroyed or captured a large number of the Royal Navy ships anchored at Chatham.
You will find something for all the family in Kent's only Designated museum. Exhibits of national and international importance are housed in the Museum's galleries, which tell the story of how the Royal Engineers have helped the British Army live, move and fight since the time of William the Conqueror.
See the diverse collection with highlights including Wellington's map from Waterloo, Zulu War weapons, a Harrier Jump Jet, 25 Victoria Crosses and an enormous V2 Rocket. Discover why a large section of the Berlin Wall now lives in the Museum and how one soldier gained the respect of the Chinese emperor.
There really is something for everyone at this unique museum.
Wysing Arts Centre is a registered charity that provides a range of programmes for artists and ongoing exhibitions, public events, activity for young people, families and schools. Our large rural site near Cambridge includes a gallery, educational facilities, artists studios, a recording studio and ceramics studio, a 17th century farmhouse, outdoor sculpture, and café.
Since its opening in 1846, Cambridge University Botanic Garden (CUBG) has been an inspiration for gardeners, an exciting introduction to the natural world for families and an oasis for all its visitors.
Supporting leading scientific research and welcoming 300,000 visitors a year, CUBG is one of the largest University-owned botanic gardens in the world. The Garden’s living plant collection of over 8,000 species is spread across 40 acres of landscaped gardens. The collection, which includes iconic, threatened and endangered trees and plants, supports University research which focusses on meeting many of the world’s greatest future challenges (such as food security, climate change and medicine). The Garden also inspires schools, the local community and visitors from around the world about the importance of plants and plant science, horticulture and the joy of gardening.
With over half a million incredible artworks in its collection, the Fitzwilliam Museum is one of the most impressive regional museums in Europe, presenting world history and art from as far back as 2500 BC to the present day.
The Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Cambridge displays world-class collections of art and artefacts from all over the world. Objects ranging from stone tools and pots to sculptures and paintings represent cultures and histories over millennia, and great recent and contemporary works reflect the diversity of peoples worldwide. MAA’s collections span nearly two million years of human history, on all six inhabited continents, and together with rich documentary and photographic collections, they reveal much about not only archaeology and anthropology, but also about world art and world history.
The Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences is the oldest of the University of Cambridge museums, having been established in 1728 as the Woodwardian Museum. Since then the collection has grown from about 10,000 fossils, minerals and rocks, to at least 2 million. A walk through the museum will take you on a 4.5 billion year journey through time, from the meteoritic building blocks of planets, to the thousands of fossils of animals and plants that illustrate the evolution of life in the oceans, on land and in the air. Also a major teaching and research resource in the Department of Earth Sciences, the Sedgwick Museum collections are a national treasure.
The University of Cambridge has 8 museums and the Cambridge University Botanic Garden, which when combined, has the country's highest concentration of internationally important collections outside of London.
A thriving regional showcase, Cambridge Arts Theatre is an outstanding theatre, a beacon for the development of arts professionals and a much-loved regional and national institution, whose history is rooted in the city of Cambridge. The Theatre is the only high-quality presenting theatre within 60 miles serving the population of Cambridgeshire and the surrounding area.
Founded in 1936 by the economist and founder member of the Arts Council, John Maynard Keynes, The Theatre has helped launch the careers of theatrical luminaries such as Ian McKellen, Derek Jacobi, Emma Thompson and Stephen Fry.
Today Cambridge Arts Theatre is the venue of choice for all scale-appropriate drama, dance and opera in both the subsidised and commercial sectors, building strong and mutually beneficial relationships with the cream of the country’s touring producers and bringing productions to the region that diversify and enrich the city’s cultural offering.
Contemporary gallery Byard Art is located in the historic centre of Cambridge, opposite King’s College Chapel. Its innovative exhibition programme of solo and mixed shows by contemporary artists offers a unique selection of two and three-dimensional work, all in a friendly and welcoming environment. All of Byard Art artwork is original, and varies in medium, scale and price.
Neo-gothic covered bridge linking the new court of St. John's with the older original college buildings. Built in the 19th Century and named after the covered bridge in Venice, on which prisoners would sigh as they were escourted to their cells.
Christ Church is located in the heart of the city centre and is one of the colleges belonging to the University of Oxford. It is also home to the legendary Christ Church Cathedral, which was built in the 12th century. Today, Christ Church is a visitor favourite, well-known for its impressive architecture, entertaining evening choirs and the War Memorial Garden. Christ Church is also a popular film location with famous examples such as Harry Potter.
Christ Church has been a site of religious worship since the seventh century. The present cathedral was built in the twelfth century and contains the shrine and tomb of St Frideswide, Oxford’s patron saint.
The bridge is often referred to as the Bridge of Sighs because of its supposed similarity to the famous Bridge of Sighs in Venice. However, Hertford Bridge was never intended to be a replica of the Venetian bridge, and instead it bears a closer resemblance to the Rialto Bridge in the same city.