London is one of the world’s oldest cities and with such a rich and long history to draw upon, visitors can be assured they will find all manner of historic attractions to enjoy during their stay.
From beautiful architectural attractions to places of significant cultural importance, visitors to the English capital will always be able to find an historic attraction that is both a delight to the mind and the senses.
Here are some of the city’s best-loved historic places of interest and sights to see. Enjoy!
The official London residence of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Buckingham Palace has been home to the ruling British monarch since 1837.
One of the most impressive buildings in the whole of the city, the palace features 19 state rooms, 52 Royal and guest bedrooms, 188 staff bedrooms, 92 offices and 78 bathrooms. It is among the finest examples of Georgian architecture in the UK and was designed by acclaimed architects John Nash and Edward Blore.
Visitors can enjoy the spectacle of daily events including the Changing of the Guard, while tours take place throughout the year for those eager to learn more about the history of the British royal family and this stunning property.
Steeped in more than 1,000 years of history, Westminster Abbey was created in the tenth century as the home of London’s Benedictine Monks. In the millennium that followed, it has become a site of special importance to the British people and has been the venue for coronations since the time of William the Conqueror.
Also the resting place for thousands of individuals of significant cultural importance, the Abbey is the final resting place of such luminaries of their time as Geoffrey Chaucer, Clement Attlee, Aphra Behn and many more.
One of the finest examples of Gothic architecture, Westminster Abbey is a treasure trove of artefacts and antiques, stained glass, textiles and friezes dating as far back as the age of the city itself.
St Paul’s Cathedral
Designed by the esteemed Sir Christopher Wren, St Paul’s Cathedral is the seat of the Bishop of London and the home of the Anglican church. It was built in the English Baroque style and to this day remains a hub of religious activities in the Church of England.
Constructed between 1675 and 1711, the cathedral was consecrated in 1697 and has played host to some of the most important events in British history. From the funerals of Lord Nelson, Sir Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher, through to the jubilee celebrations of Queen Victoria, the cathedral offers a wealth of cultural history for visitors to explore.
Palace of Westminster
Home to the seat of British parliament, at the Palace of Westminster can be found both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. It is here that the nation’s MPs and peers meet to discuss national policy and the matters of the day.
It is also one of the most impressive and beautiful buildings in the whole of London, with its design by Sir Charles Barry barely surviving the Great Fire of London of 1834.
Today, the palace is open for tours and provides a glimpse into the rich heritage of the English capital and the workings of one of the oldest Western democracies.
One of London’s eight royal parks, Hyde Park stretches across 350 acres of central London and is home to some of the city’s most famous landmarks, including Speakers’ Corner, the Serpentine Lake and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain.
Created by King Henry VIII in 1536 as an area to hunt wild deer, the park was opened to the general public in 1637. Ever since, it has been a place for rest and relaxation for locals and visitors alike, with a rich history that includes an array of national celebrations, as well as providing a welcome refuge for the masses during the Great Plague of 1665.
In 1835, Hyde Park played host to the Great Exhibition and in 1977 it was the venue for Queen Elizabeth II’s Silver Jubilee.
Royal Albert Hall
A venue for some of London’s most iconic cultural attractions, the Royal Albert Hall is home to the acclaimed Proms and dates back to 1871 and the reign of Queen Victoria.
Hosting almost 400 shows and events every year, the hall is a hub of activity and witnesses concerts from some of the world’s leading performers. It is also a centre for arts and science, with the dedicated to these lofty pursuits by Victoria in memory of her late husband and consort, Prince Albert.
The Royal Albert Hall is among London’s most treasured cultural attractions and remains a venue that attracts wonder and delight in equal measure for all who are lucky enough to visit.