Fulham Palace continues to attract hundreds of visitors every year that are eager to experience the splendour of this former residence of the Bishop of London, which dates back to the medieval era.
Visitors can take part in a range of guided tours around the palace grounds and interior, experiencing the full grandeur of the place and soaking up the weight of history that has been seen within the palace and its grounds over the centuries.
History to be experienced at Fulham Palace
Occupied until 1975 and today a place of history and culture, the palace can date its history back as far as 704 AD and has been a property of great repute in the area for more than 1,300 years.
Bought by the Bishop of London Waldhere around 700 AD, the Manor of Fulham covered the whole of what is now Hammersmith and Fulham, Ealing, Acton and Finchley at the time.
Fulham Palace was built by the bishop to act as his primary residence – and for those that would subsequently follow him in the position. The Bishop of London is one of the most senior figures in the Church of England, sitting below the Archbishops of Canterbury and York in the ecclesiastical pecking order.
Now open to members of the public, the vast heritage that can be drawn upon by the residents of Fulham Palace is laid out for all to see during their time exploring the many exquisitely maintained grounds and rooms.
A museum and art gallery can also both be found within the palace grounds, offering visitors the chance to get up close and personal with the many artifacts and curios that help tell the story of Fulham Palace and the surrounding area for more than a millennium.
Opening times for the palace grounds, museum, galleries and shop are as follows:
- Summer – Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays 12pm to 5pm, Monday to Thursday 12.30pm to 4.30pm
- Winter – Sundays 12pm to 4pm, Monday to Thursday 12.30pm to 3.30pm
Outdoor attractions at Fulham Palace
The gardens at Fulham Palace are truly a sight to behold and offer a great deal of exquisite attractions that visitors will not want to miss during their time here.
Home to many rare blooms and horticultural delights, the palace gardens today cover an area of 13 acres (having shrank from the original 36 acres that made up the gardens when they were first planted by Bishop Terrick in the 1760s).
The gardens are not just a delight for the senses though, as they have incorporated an essential household function in years gone by, serving to produce fruits and vegetables for the palace residents throughout the year.
Now less agricultural in their nature, the botanical gardens remain a popular place for visitors to explore. It offers numerous displays of exotic and interesting blooms throughout the year, as well as offering a wealth of history itself.
Indeed, the first magnolia in Europe was grown at the palace’s botanical gardens, which was among the most famous producers of exotic breeds of flower during the 17th and 18th centuries.
Meanwhile, one of the most impressive trees in the garden is the palace’s Great Tree of London, which is believed to more than 450 years of age. Believed to have been planted by Bishop Grindal in the mid-16th century, it is one of the oldest trees in the whole of the English capital.
Other attractions of the palace gardens include the Bishop’s Tree – a sculpture by Andrew Frost – as well as the Walled Garden; now offering the original 1830s knot design of walkways and bedding after undergoing a recent restoration.
Travel options for Fulham Palace guests
Visitors to Fulham Palace can make use of a wide variety of travel options when planning a trip to Fulham Palace.
Visitors hoping to drive during their time in the English capital can make us of several nearby parking facilities in the area, although motorists are reminded that traffic volumes can be high in the busy central London area (especially during the morning and evening rush hours).
It can therefore be prudent for travellers to plan their journeys in advance and to pre-book parking when possible before setting off.
For those keen to make use of local public transport services, there are a number of bus routes that ferry passengers to Fulham Road – a few minutes’ walk from Fulham Palace itself. These services include the 14, 74, 220, 414, 430 and N74.
In addition, overground rail services can be reached at the nearby Putney (0.9 miles) and West Brompton (1.7 miles) National Rail stations.
Local Underground links
Visitors planning journeys to this busy part of London might like to take as much of the stress out of their travel plans as possible by making use of the English capital’s world famous Underground Tube network.
An array of nearby stations can be found in the vicinity of Fulham Palace, including:
- Putney Bridge (District line)
- Parsons Green (District line)
- Fulham Broadway (District line)
- Barons Court (District and Piccadilly lines)
- East Putney (District line)
- Hammersmith (Circle, District, Hammersmith & City and Piccadilly lines)
Full details of station opening times, service timetables and potential disruptions in the Underground network can be found by visiting the official Transport for London website. Details of other local public transport options can also be found here.
Other nearby attractions for London visitors
Meanwhile, it is not just Fulham Palace that attracts thousands of visitors every year to this bustling part of London. A wide range of great things to see and do can be found in the local area, with some of the best examples including:
- Bishop’s Park (0.1 miles, three minutes’ travel time on foot/via public transport)
- Craven Cottage (0.3 miles, six minutes)
- Hurlingham Park (0.7 miles, 13 minutes)
- Kensington Gardens (3.2 miles, 30 minutes)
- Hyde Park (3.3 miles, 41 minutes)
- National Trust – Carlyle’s House (2.7 miles, 24 minutes)
- National Army Museum (3.1 miles, 28 minutes)
- WWT London Wetland Centre (1.9 miles, 26 minutes)
- Battersea Park (2.9 miles, 36 minutes)
- Stamford Bridge (1.5 miles, 18 minutes)
- Earls Court Exhibition Centre (1.8 miles, 20 minutes)
- Wimbledon Common (2.7 miles, 35 minutes)
- Natural History Museum (2.8 miles, 23 minutes)
- Victoria and Albert Museum (2.9 miles, 26 minutes)
- Harrods (3.4 miles, 29 minutes)
- Buckingham Palace (4.4 miles, 40 minutes)
- Westminster Cathedral (4.2 miles, 35 minutes)
- Vincent Square (4.5 miles, 41 minutes)
- Leighton House Museum (4.6 miles, 38 minutes)
- Kew Palace (4.7 miles, 43 minutes)