Historic Buildings in London
Learn about London’s heritage at the best historic buildings in London
The City of London dates back to the Roman times so there’s no shortage of historic attractions to visit. One of the most impressive and iconic attractions, and one of the most important London landmarks, is the Tower of London. Dating back to 1066 and the Norman Conquest, this historic fortress is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city as it documents over eight centuries worth of London history from the royal family, to notorious prisoners and politicians. Visit the oldest exhibition in the world, the Line of Kings, to see the armour of the old rulers, as well as the priceless Crown Jewels and Traitor’s Gate. See the legendary ravens hopping around the courtyard, pop into the Jewel Tower and follow a Beefeater Tour to learn of the tales of those who used to live in this historic building.
Just in front of the Tower of London is the Tower Bridge (often mistaken for London Bridge). Tower Bridge is one of London’s most iconic landmarks and has sat astride the River Thames since 1894. This Victorian bascule steam-powered bridge was a feat of industrial engineering in its time. Now, it’s been opened up to the public to take a look into the bowels of the bridge, and also to walk across the top walkways featuring the new Glass Walkways to look down at the river and see the pedestrians walking below. Offering great views up and downstream, it’s a great historic building in London to learn about the city both past and present.
Another famous historic site in London is Westminster Abbey, the stunning Gothic UNESCO World Heritage Site and coronation church since the 11th century. Westminster Abbey is one of the most beautiful and impressive historic buildings in London and is the burial ground of some of England’s legendary authors, scientists and great thinkers, from Charles Darwin to Geoffrey Chaucer. It’s been in the spotlight more recently as it was the site of Kate & Wills’ wedding in 2011 and it’s also open daily for sermons and worship.
If you are a fan of the Royal Family and history of the monarchy, make sure you visit one of the many royal residences in London. The picturesque Kensington Palace in West London was the childhood home of Queen Victoria; then it was the home of the late Princess Diana and now her eldest son, the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William, lives there with Kate and his two children. Kensington Palace also a series of fascinating exhibits on show, opening up its State Rooms to the public, and has an Orangery in the grounds serving traditional Afternoon Tea!
Windsor Castle on the outskirts of London is the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world – and is the Queen’s preferred weekend residence. Set in the small borough of Windsor, this rural town is a great place for a day trip. With the Changing of the Guard, 39 State Rooms and a famous Dolls House, it’s one of England’s most popular royal palaces for both locals and visitors alike. Hampton Court Palace is another historic building outside London where you can learn about King Henry VIII and his life as a Tudor King. Visit the historic hedgerow maze, tennis courts, manicured gardens and Tudor Kitchens. Join in on a tour and learn about the secrets and scandals of life at court and just what went on under King Henry VIIIs rule!
Historic Buildings FREE with a London Pass
The Tower of London is one of the world’s most famous fortresses and has seen service as royal palace, prison, armoury and even a zoo. Normally £22.50
This beautiful gothic church is a UNESCO World Heritage Site popular with many visitors to London. Normally £20.00
Tower Bridge in London has stood over the River Thames since 1894 and is one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world. Normally £9.00
Hampton Court Palace is the former home of the flamboyant King Henry VIII, he extended and developed this grand palace after acquiring it in the 1520's. Normally £19.00
Windsor Castle is the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world, and it's the official residence of her majesty the Queen. Normally £20.00
Kensington Palace has been shaped by generations of royal women from Queen Mary to Victoria and, more recently Diana, Princess of Wales. Normally £16.30
Stand astride the world-famous Meridian Line, with one foot in the east and the other in the west, at the home of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) Normally £9.50
The Royal Albert Hall London is one of the capital’s most prestigious historic buildings and tourist attractions. Normally £13.50
Discover the house where the Romantic poet John Keats wrote his best loved poems. Normally £6.50
One of the finest working stables anywhere in the world and home to the royal collection of historic coaches and carriages, the Royal Mews is still to this day responsible for all road travel arrangements for Her Majesty The Queen. Normally £9.30
The Monument is one of the best ways to enjoy the spectacular views of London. Normally £4.50
Built in 1723, Ranger’s House is an elegant redbrick Georgian villa on the edge of Greenwich Park with the Meridian Line passing through its grounds. Normally £7.60
The Jewel Tower was originally built to house the King’s personal treasures – hence the name – and had a moat dug around it for extra protection. Normally £4.70
Banqueting House is the only complete surviving building of Whitehall Palace, the sovereign’s principal residence from 1530 until 1698 when it was destroyed by fire Normally £6.00
Eltham Palace is an impressive historical site that has been linked with a distinguished line of Royal figures since its construction in the 1300s. Normally £13.60
The residence of Benjamin Franklin in London between 1757 and 1775, during which time this extraordinary man was involved with mediation between America and Britain as well as his groundbreaking scientific studies. Normally £8.00
The Wellington Arch is one of the most viewed London landmarks thanks to its proximity to the busy traffic interchange at Hyde Park Corner. Normally £4.70
Designed by Robert Adam and built between 1771 and 1778, Apsley House on Hyde Park Corner is one of the most magnificent of London’s grand houses. Normally £9.70