5 Reasons You Should Visit the Royal Mews (London)

The Royal Mews is where Queen Elizabeth II houses some of her horses and carriages. It is a working stable to this day even though it has been in use for decades.

I went to London a dozen times before I visited the Royal Mews. I thought it wasn’t going to be anything special, and I wasn’t keen on seeing horses. But was I ever wrong! The Royal Mews was a great experience, and I am genuinely happy I decided to tour them.

I’m going to try to convince you to visit the Royal Mews with this post! These five reasons will hopefully sway you to visit the Royal Mews and enjoy all they have to offer! They are a pretty unique thing to do while in London.

The Royal Mews London

1. You Can Visit The Royal Mews as Part of the Royal Day Out Package

The Royal Day Out package is a combination ticket you can purchase that allows you to tour Buckingham Palace, The Queen’s Gallery, and the Royal Mews all in one day.

The combination ticket gives you a slightly reduced fare compared to what you would pay if you purchased all of the tickets separately. It is with this ticket that I finally visited the Royal Mews.

The Royal Day Out ticket is great because you are able to see three amazing London attractions at a reduced price, and they are all in the same area! The attractions are within blocks of one another, so you don’t have to worry about navigating the London Underground (don’t forget to pick up an Oyster card if you do plan on using the Underground though)!

Please be aware that the Royal Day Out combination ticket is only available when Buckingham Palace is open to the public. The Palace is open every year in the summer when the Queen is in Scotland. You can find the opening times for Buckingham Palace here.

2. You Get to See the Gold Stage Coach

The Gold Stage Coach is without a doubt the most impressive part of the Royal Mews tour. It is an extravagant coach that members of the royal family use during special occasions.

This coach is normally reserved for coronations but is used from time to time for other very special functions. The Gold Stage Coach was last used in 2002 by Prince Philip during Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee.

It is impossible to describe how grand the Gold Stage Coach is, but it is a sight that should definitely be seen!

The coach is housed in the last area of the tour, and it is staged with horses and a driver in order to give viewers the full effect of the coach. You are able to walk around the entire coach and get a decently close view of it. You get a better view of this coach than the other coaches because of the way it is staged.

If you’re not sure on whether you want to go to the Royal Mews or not, the Gold Stage Coach should help convince you to visit.

Gold Stage Coach Royal Mews

3. It is a Working Stable

The Royal Mews is still a fully-working stable. Employees groom the horses, train them, feed them, and clean up after them. The horses are taken out for exercise every morning.

The tour starts with a quick peak into the horse stables. You can take pictures of the horses and admire them. If you’re lucky, there will be an employee grooming or feeding the horses, and you can ask them questions about the horses or their job.

It is a bit unusual for a working stable to be in the heart of a major city, so it makes for a pretty cool experience. If you’re travelling with children, this makes for a great experience!

One of the reasons I waited for long to visit the Royal Mews was because I was reluctant to spend money on seeing horses in captivity. It just felt unsettling to me, but it ended up not being a worry.

There are only a few horses you can look at, and they are very well looked after. The majority of the tour involves looking at the coaches rather than the horses.

4. It is a Fun Way to Learn Royal History

As mentioned above, the majority of the tour is spent looking at the different coaches that are on display. Each coach has a lengthy description that tells you the history of the coach and other interesting facts.

Touring the Royal Mews is a great way to learn about a part of royal and British history that isn’t always spoken about. You learn about the origins of the coaches, during what occasions they are used, and oftentimes told about a modern historic moment that they were used.

It is really interesting to learn all about the coaches and their history! The Royal Mews is the perfect attraction for an hard-core royal fan.

The Royal Mews also makes it fun for children to learn. They can put on costumes to look like the drivers, sit in a coach, and learn how to dress a wooden horse. The curators made it extremely easy for children to engage in the exhibit and learn from it.

There is a complimentary audio guide that is included in the price of admission. It is very well done and contains a lot of information while not being too dry. I really think the entire exhibit is put together is a way that makes it fun, informative, and accessible to everybody.

The Royal Mews Coach

5. The Royal Mews are Open Nearly All Year Around

The Royal Mews are open to visitors from February to November each year. This means you’re able to visit them basically anytime your visit London unlike Buckingham Palace that is only open during the summer.

The fact that the Royal Mews are open nearly all year around gives you the flexibility to plan your trip to London at whatever time of year works best for you. This means you can snag a good flight deal whenever it pops up and still be able to see a royal attraction.

It is, unsurprisingly, most busy during the summer when Buckingham Palace is open. The Royal Mews are least busy when Buckingham Palace is closed, so if you can go in the spring, fall, or winter, you won’t have to worry about navigating the high crowds.

Being able to go to a royal attraction is a great benefit for royal fans like me!

Conclusion

Are you convinced yet?

You should be! The Royal Mews is an underrated attraction in London and is well worth visiting. I can’t understate how cool it is to see all the coaches. They are incredibly impressive and show you a different side to royal history.

Anytime of the year is a great time to visit! The summer season allows you to purchase the combination ticket and see the Palace, Mews, and Queen’s Gallery all in one day. Visiting outside the summer season will allow you to enjoy the Royal Mews with lower crowd levels.

No matter what time of year you visit you are bound to have a great time! Visiting the Royal Mews only takes 60 to 90 minutes, so you’ll be able to visit a number of other London attractions in the same day.

I highly recommend visiting the Royal Mews while in London. It took me years to finally visit it, but I’m very happy I did. I think you’ll have a great time at the Royal Mews as well!

5 Things to Know Before Your Buckingham Palace Tour

Buckingham Palace is one of the most iconic sights in Europe, and touring it should be on your London bucket list!

It is home to the British Royal Family and has been since 1837. While you normally can only see the outside of the palace, you are able to take a Buckingham Palace tour during the summer. 

The palace is normally open form mid-July to mid-September, and you can find specific dates at the Royal Trust Collection website. You can sometimes take a Buckingham Palace tour in the winter months depending on whether the Queen will be in residence of not. You can find information regarding winter dates on the Royal Trust Collection website. It is open every summer when she is in Scotland though.

Taking a Buckingham Palace tour is exciting! You get a glimpse into how the British Royal Family lives, and it is an experience like no other. It is a super fun way to spend a few hours, but there are some things you should know before you go! These five tips will help you plan your trips, easily get into Buckingham, and follow the rules, so you don’t get kicked out!

1. Book Your Tickets Online in Advance

You should purchase your tickets online in advance. As far in advance as possible! Buckingham Palace tour tickets are extremely popular and normally sell out in advance. 

You are able to select an entrance time when you purchase tickets online. The earlier you purchase tickets, the more likely you are to get an entry time that suits you. You run the risk of getting an entry time that is inconvenient or overlaps with other plans if you do not purchase tickets in advance.

You must arrive for your Buckingham Palace tour at the time listed on your ticket. It is not possible to enter the palace if you’re late, so make sure to be there on time!

I purchased my Buckingham Palace tour tickets five months in advance. My first choice in time slots on the day I was going was sold out, so I had to select my second choice. Obviously it isn’t a big deal to get a ticket for a half hour later, but that was five months in advance! You will have a very limited selection if you purchase only a few weeks before your tour.

Combination Tickets

You have the option of purchasing a combination ticket when you purchase your Buckingham Palace tour ticket. Combination tickets allow you entry to multiple attractions run by the Royal Trust at a slightly reduced fare.

You are able to get a combination ticket for other attractions such as the Royal Mews and The Queen’s Gallery.

You should consider purchasing a combination ticket if you plan on visiting multiple royal attractions. It won’t save you a lot of money, but you will save some!

2. Arrive Early

Since you’re not able to enter the palace if you’re late for your time slot, you want to get to the palace early. It is better to be a bit too early than to be late! It would be horrible to miss your tour and waste your money just because there was a delay in getting to Buckingham Palace.

You have an entry time on your ticket, but you should arrive at Buckingham Palace 15-30 minutes before your entry time. There is always a long queue to scan tickets and a security procedure that takes quite a while.

There are two sides to security in a tent after you scan your ticket. One side is for the current time slot and the other for the next time slot. You will be told what line you should join when your ticket is scanned.

The security guards are well-trained, so as long as you’re there with enough time to spare, you will have no problem getting to the proper security queue or getting into the palace on time.

Buckingham Palace London England  Buckingham Palace Tour

3. The Entrance is on the Right-Hand Side of Buckingham Palace next to the Queen’s Gallery

The entrance for the Buckingham Palace tour is not at the front of the palace where the changing of the guards takes place. If you are facing Buckingham Palace with the Queen Victoria statue at your back, the entrance for the tour is to the right around the corner.

The entrance is part-way down the street when you turn right. If you reach the Queen’s Gallery, you have gone too far.

From my experience, there is normally a long queue of people waiting to enter Buckingham Palace and take their tour. You will likely come across the queue shortly after you turn right at the end of the palace. People often don’t believe the queue is for the Buckingham Palace tour because it is so long, but it is.

There will be a security guard walking up and down the queue occasionally calling for people with specific entry time tickets. If you’re at the back of the queue and you’re time gets called, let the security guard know, and s/he will bring you to the ticket scanning area.

People often show up to the tour way too early for their tour and will stand in the queue even if their tour isn’t for an hour. I guess people think they can get in early if they are there, but they can’t, so they end up standing around waiting for their time slot.

You should only leave the queue if you’re time slot is called, and you’re told to go to the front.

Closest Underground Stations

The London Underground is the most common and efficient way to get to your Buckingham Palace tour. It may be more efficient to walk to Buckingham Palace depending where in London you are staying, but, for the most part, you will likely take the Underground to the palace. Don’t forget to get an Oyster card to make using public transportation in London a breeze!

The 3 Underground stations that are closest to Buckingham Palace are:

  • Victoria
  • Green Park
  • St. James’ Park

They are all relatively close and are less than a 10 minute walk from Buckingham Palace.

The station furtherest from the palace is St. James’ Park, but it has the most scenic walk. You walk through the gardens at St. James’ Park, and it is a very nice way to get into the mood for a royal Buckingham Palace tour. If you have the extra few minutes, I would recommend getting off at St. James’ Park.

London Transportation Big Ben Bus Buckingham Palace

4. Know What You’re Not Allowed to Bring on Your Buckingham Palace Tour

You shouldn’t be surprised to learn that there are quite a few things that you aren’t allowed to bring into Buckingham Palace.

Items You Can’t Bring into Buckingham Palace

  • Liquids
  • Food
  • Luggage
  • Backpacks
  • Scissors
  • Pen Knives

Items that are not allowed into the palace will either be confiscated or checked and returned to you when you exit the palace.

Items such as food and drinks will be confiscated and items like luggage and backpacks need to be checked.

The security process goes a lot quicker if you have already gone through your personal items to ensure there are no banned items inside them. I had a protein bar, and it was confiscated, so the security guards take their job seriously and are through when they inspect your bags.

Other Banned Items

  • You are not allowed to smoke or vape on your Buckingham Palace tour. Being caught smoking in the palace or in the gardens is grounds for removal from the property.
  • I visited Buckingham Palace on a very rainy day. People with large umbrellas were asked to check them and retrieve them when they exited the tour. I had a small umbrella that fit in my purse and had no problems. You should make sure to have a small umbrella that can easily be put inside a small bag, so you don’t have to go through the hassle of checking it and retrieving it when you leave the palace.

5. How the Buckingham Palace Tour Works

The Buckingham Palace tour works the same as all the other Royal Trust tours. You get an audioguide that has in-depth information about the palace, and the tour is self-paced.

The tour is self-guided in the sense that there isn’t a tour guide personally showing you the palace. But there is a designated route you have to follow during the tour, and you can’t deviate from it or go back to another room you have already visited.

There is a lot of information provided on the audioguide, so you will be standing around quite a bit in each room. It is worth listening to all the information and not rushing through the tour. You paid a lot of money for the tour, so you should take advantage of every piece of information they give you!

There are also secondary parts to the audioguide. In every room you have the choice to go more in-depth on a specific item and learn more about it. The items are normally pieces of art or furniture.

You can skip these parts of the audioguide if you’re not interested in it. The core of the information is contained in the main portion of the audioguide.

London England United Kingdom Everything You Need to Know About the Oyster Card

Conclusion

You get to see a very limited number of rooms on the tour. The rooms you get to see are mainly common areas and banquet halls. You don’t get to see any personal rooms so don’t expect to sneak a peak into the Queen’s bedchamber!

The rooms you are allowed to tour are spectacular and well worth the ticket cost.

The Buckingham Palace tour is the perfect option for any royal fan that is visiting London during the summer months. It gives you a small peak into how the royal family lives, and you leave with a lot more information than you had before you entered.

You need to make sure you follow the palace rules and arrive early to make the most out of your tour! You will also have a much more enjoyable tour if you purchase your tickets online months in advance. It would be a shame to not be able to take the tour just because tickets were sold out!

All in all, I would highly recommend the Buckingham Palace tour for any royal fan! It is truly the height of royal tourism and worth every pence you spend on it.

Everything You Need to Know About the Oyster Card

You will undoubtably be taking the Underground and other forms of public transportation when you’re in London. The Oyster card is a pre-paid card you can use to make travelling on London’s public transportation extremely simple.

There are a lot of advantages to getting an Oyster card and not really any disadvantages, so you should pick one up when you’re in London!

I’m going to give you all the information you need to make the most out of your Oyster card while in London. You’ll be using the Oyster card like a pro by the time you’re done reading this post!

Types of Oyster Cards and Where to Get Them

There are two different types of Oyster cards:

  • Standard Card
  • Visitor Card

Standard Oyster Card

The standard card is what locals in London use when travelling on public transportation. You can get the standard Oyster card at any Underground station, at the airport, and at some newsstands throughout the city.

Visitor Oyster Card

The visitor card is specifically designed for tourists. You have to order the card online in advance, and it will be delivered to you home, so you don’t have to worry about getting a card when you get to London.

The visitor Oyster card also has a few added perks like small discounts at tourist shops and restaurants. You can view a list of the perks here.

You should not choose to get the visitor card just because you get special offers because the offers aren’t that great. If you choose to get the visitor card, make sure you get it because it is convenient for you.

London England United Kingdom Everything You Need to Know About the Oyster Card

The Deposit

A £5 deposit is required whether you choose to get a standard card or a visitor card. You will pay the deposit online when ordering your card or at the booth when you purchase your card in London.

You get your deposit back when you return a standard Oyster card, but you do not get the deposit back with a visitor card. This is one of the major differences between the two types of Oyster cards.

You can return your standard Oyster card at any place where you can purchase a card. This includes Heathrow and Gatwick, so you can take the Underground to the airport and return your card there. It is a great system!

It isn’t a lot of money, but if you’re never planning on going back to London and using your Oyster card again, you are probably going to want to get your £5 back.

Getting a Refund

You can get any money you have left on your card back before you leave London. You can get your refund at any automated ticket machines or at any manned ticket booth.

The refund will only be in small bills and coins if you get your refund at a ticket machine. You should go to a ticket booth if you have a lot of money remaining on your card, so you don’t have a lot of pence that you can’t convert back to your home currency when you get back from London.

How to Use Your Oyster Card

It is very simple to use your Oyster card. You simply tap it on the yellow card reader when you enter the metro station and tap it on the same yellow card reader when you leave.

You have to tap it both times so be sure to remember to tap out when you leave!

Your Oyster card automatically deducted the appropriate amount from your card based on how how far you have travelled.

Topping Up

You can easily top up your Oyster card at any station by using the ticket machine. The ticket machines accept cash, credit cards, and debit, so you can top it up with whatever method best suits you.

You choose how much you want to add to your card. You can choose between adding £5, £10, £15, £20, and £50.

I recommend topping up with a smaller amount, so you don’t have to worry about trying to get a refund when you leave. It is easy to top up multiple times if you need to. The process is very quick and takes less than five minutes.

Tower Bridge London England

The Oyster Card Gives You Cheaper Fares

The biggest advantage to the Oyster card is that you pay less per trip than you would if you purchased single tickets. A trip in zone one with a single ticket costs £4.90. The same trip costs just £2.40 with your Oyster.

That adds up to significant savings over the course of your trip. You will likely use the Underground at least twice a day, but you could easily use it more often depending where in London you are staying. If you’re in London for five days, you will save £25 per person! Most people use the Underground more than twice a day, so you can potentially save even more money!

It doesn’t make sense to spend extra money if you don’t have to so make sure you get an Oyster card!

Capped Fares

The maximum fare you can pay per day with the Oyster card is capped at £7! This can lead to a lot of savings for people who use the Underground a lot in one day.

You don’t get to cap your fare if you purchase single tickets, so this is another great advantage of the Oyster card.

The card will automatically stop taking money from your card when you tap out when you have reached the cap. You still need to tap in and out of the station like normal even if you are capped for the day though!

St. James' Park London England

Conclusion

The Oyster card is an essential accessory when you visit London. It saves you both time and money, so it is a no brainer!

You save time because you don’t have to stand in the queue to purchase a single ticket each time you take the Underground. There isn’t normally a line in the smaller stations, but there can be long queues at main statins like Victoria- especially during peak times.

The true advantage of the Oyster is how much money it saves you on your vacation. The savings add up quickly, and it is well worth it to get a card.

The biggest decision you will have to make is whether you want to get the standard Oyster or the visitor Oyster. They both have their advantages, so you will have to decide which one fits your needs.

I personally prefer the standard Oyster card because it gives me the ability to get a refund on my deposit if I ever choose to. I frequent London, so I always keep my Oyster rather than returning it for a refund.

You can’t go wrong with either version of the Oyster card. They will both save you time and money, which is the most important part!

5 Tips to Survive the London Underground

You will use the London Underground when you’re in London. It is incredibly efficient, and makes your trip so easy and efficient.

You can travel basically anywhere in London by using the Underground. If you’re travelling to certain far-away suburbs, you may have to use the Overground, but for the most part, the Underground will serve all of your transportation needs.

Using the London Underground is easy when you know what you are doing. These 5 London Underground tips will help you use the Underground like a local and save time and money in the process!

1. Get an Oyster Card

Getting an Oyster card is essential. This card allows you to tap in and out of the London Underground without having to purchase a ticket each time. You pre-load the card with money, and your card is deduced every time you use the Underground. The card can be re-loaded with money at any station if needed.

You can purchase an Oyster card when you land at the airport, or you can get your Oyster mailed to your home in advance. You have to purchase your Oyster card at a ticket window. But after your initial purchase, you can use the machines to top it up.

There is an option to purchase a Visitor Oyster card. The Visitor card has to be ordered before you leave with enough time for it to be mailed to you. You get a number of discounts if you purchase the visitor Oyster. So you will want to review the discounts to see if pre-buying the visitor Oyster is beneficial to you.

You have to pay a £5 deposit when you get your Oyster card. This is refundable if you return your card when you leave the city. You can get a refund for any money on your card if you return your card when you leave. If you don’t return your card, the money stays on the card, and you are able to use it next time you visit London.

Benefits of using an Oyster card:

  • You don’t need to purchase a ticket for each trip.
  • It save you money by giving you a reduced fee each time your ride. You save £2.50 per ride on average when you use the Oyster card.
  • Your daily fee is capped. After you spend a certain amount of money on the London Underground in a single day, you are not charged anymore.

2. Avoid Peak Hours

It costs more to ride the London Underground during peak hours. You save approximately 50 pence each trip when you ride during off-peak times.

Peak-hours are different depending on whether you have a visitor Oyster card or a regular Oyster card.

For people using the visitor card, peak times are between 6:30 and 9:30am and 4 and 7pm. All day on weekends and Bank holidays are considered peak as well.

Peak times are the same for a regular Oyster card; however, weekends are not considered peak times.

That means you may end up paying more if you choose to get a Visitor card rather than a regular Oyster.

Avoiding the London Underground during peak times will also make for a more comfortable journey. The Underground gets very busy during peak times, so it will be very crowded, and you will have no personal space. It can be an uncomfortable ride- especially if you are going a long distance. You can have a less crowded and more enjoyable ride when you ride the London Underground during non-peak hours.

Tower Bridge London England 5 Tips to Survive the London Underground

3. Know Your Platform

When you go down to the Underground platform, there will be two different platforms to choose from. The platforms have trains going in the opposite direction of one another, so be sure you know what platform you need.

You can tell what platform you need by reading the signs at the entrance to the platforms. These signs list what stations each train stops at. You need to find your station then go to the corresponding platform.

London Underground Bonus Tip:

You will most likely enter the platform in the middle, but you should move all the way down to the end. The end of the platform is always the least busy, so you will have fewer people in your car then you would if you go onto a car in the middle of the platform. This is especially helpful during peak times.

London England United Kingdom 5 Tips to Survive the London Underground

4. Stand on the Right

If you’re going to stand on the escalator, always stand on the right. People walk on the left-hand side of the escalator, and they will ask you to move to the right if you are standing on the left.

London is a fast-paced city, and people regularly walk up the escalator. So please stand on the right in a single-file line. You will make the locals so much happier because you will be one less tourist they need to ask to move.

It can be easy to forgot to stand only on the right if you come from a society where it is acceptable to stand on both sides of the escalator. You should watch what the locals are doing and follow their lead. You may not thing this is a great tip, but it is. Trust me.

St. Paul's Cathedral London England 5 Tips to Survive the London Underground

5. Consider Walking

You should consider walking if you are going from one place in central London to another. The London Underground is great, but it is sometimes quicker to walk than to take the Underground.

I suggest walking if you’re in central London, and the place you are going is less than 3-4 stations away. The distance between stations is often short, so walking the equivalent can mean only having to walk 5 or so blocks.

Westminster station and Leicester Square station look like they are far apart on the London Underground map. However, they are only a 10 minute walk away from one another. You can easily walk from one station to the other in less time than it would take to use the Underground.

You get to see more of London and save money when you walk rather than take the Underground. If you plan your days strategically, you can walk to most places rather than take the Underground from sight to sight.

London England United Kingdom 5 Tips to Survive the London Underground

Conclusion

You will use the London Underground when you are in London. There is no way around using it, so you should know how to ride the Underground efficiently and like a local.

Getting an Oyster card is the most important thing you need to do when riding the London Underground. You also need to know how to save money by walking and not riding at peak times.

If you know where you are going and what platform you need, you have a stress-free experience on the Underground and seamlessly blend in with the locals.

It is easy to ride the London Underground even if you have never used public transportation before. Each station has clearly marked signs, and employees can help you if you have questions.

You should pick up a free paper London Underground map, so you can easily plan your journey before you go down into the station. This will help you easily navigate where you need to go without getting in anybody’s way.

The London Underground is great, and I know you will have no troubles figuring it out!

Westminster Abbey vs St. Paul’s Cathedral

If you’re going to London for the first time, you’re probably considering visit one a London cathedral. The two most popular choices are Westminster Abbey and St. Paul’s Cathedral.

This post will hopefully help you choose which London cathedral you want to visit if you only have the time (and money) to visit one. It can be a difficult choice, so I hope lying out the pros and cons of each will help you make your choice.

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey London England  London Cathedral

Westminster Abbey is filled with centuries of British history. Kings, Queens, poets, scientists, and many other historical figures are buried in the Abbey. It is also a popular venue for royal weddings- it has hosted 17!

Getting There

Westminster Abbey is the most conveniently located London cathedral. It is right in the heart of the City.

If you take the Underground, get off at either Westminster station or St. Jame’s Park station. Westminster is the most convenient stop and can be accessed from the Jubilee, District, and Circle lines. St. Jame’s Park station can be accessed from the District and Circle lines. And don’t forget to use your Oyster card to save money on public transportation in London.

Follow the signs for Westminster Abbey when you get off the Underground, and you will be able to see the cathedral as soon as you get to street level. All you will have to do is walk across the street, and you will be at the Abbey.

Westminster Abbey is centrally located, so you are able to walk to it if you’re in Piccadilly Circus, the West End, or at Buckingham Palace.

It’s location is extremely convenient, and there are lots of tourist sights nearby.

Admission

No matter what London cathedral you go to, entry is expensive. That is one reason people only visit one of the two main London cathedrals while on holiday.

Entry to Westminster Abbey is £20 if you buy tickets in advance. It costs £22 if you buy tickets at the door.

The Abbey is always busy, so buying tickets online is a good idea assuming you know when you want to visit. It will save you money and time standing in line.

What You Get to See

Westminster Abbey has lots of unique things for you to see.

You are able to see the tombs of Charles Darwin, Charles Dickens, Sir Issac Newton, and Queen Elizabeth I. There are over 3,300 people buried or commemorated in the Abbey, so everybody is guaranteed to find someone they are interested in.

You also have the opportunity to view the Coronation Chair that monarchs sit in when being coronated. It is near the exit and definitely a must-see!

You also get to wander through the gardens. They are filled with beautiful flowers and are extremely peaceful. When it isn’t too busy that is.

St. Paul’s Cathedral

St. Paul's Cathedral London England London Cathedrals

St. Paul’s Cathedral is also steeped in history. Martin Luther King once spoke at the cathedral. The Suffragettes even had a plan to blow the cathedral up.

Getting There

You can get off the Underground at the following stops for easy access to St. Paul’s Cathedral: St. Paul’s, Mansion, Blackfriars, and Bank. The most convenient is to take the Central line to St. Paul’s and walk from there.

You will not be able to see the cathedral when you exit the Underground station, so be sure to check a map at street level to make sure you are going the right way. You will not need to walk more than 3 blocks to get to St. Paul’s. If you feel like you’re walking a long ways, you are probably heading in the wrong direction.

St. Paul’s Cathedral is not as centrally-located as Westminster Abbey, but there are still other tourist sights in the area. It is close to The Globe, Monument, and the Tate museum. So there is definitely a day’s worth of sights to see close to St. Paul’s.

Admission

Just like Westminster, it is expensive to visit St. Paul’s Cathedral.

If you buy tickets online in advance, the entrance fee is £17. Same-day tickets purchased at the door are £20.

Entrance to the dome is included in the price of admission.

St. Paul’s Cathedral is normally not as busy as Westminster Abbey, so you are more likely to not have to wait in line if you’re buying your ticket on the day you are visiting the cathedral.

What You Get to See

You get to climb the dome when you go to St. Paul’s. The views from the dome are my favourite in all of London. You will get a unique view of London from the sky from the top of St. Paul’s.

You also get to see the High Alter. It is a particularly stunning piece of architecture. My favourite part of any cathedral or church is the organ, and St. Paul’s has a huge one! Sometimes they are even played while people are wandering through the nave.

Similarities and Differences

St. Paul's Cathedral London England London Cathedral

This is an extremely difficult question to answer because they are both historic sights that deserve to be seen. They do, however, offer two very different experiences.

Similarities

  • Both cathedrals cost basically the same
  • They both have historical significance
  • An audioguide is included in the price of admission at both cathedrals
  • They are both convenient to get to

Differences

  • Westminster Abbey has more royal history
  • You get a bird’s-eye view of London at St. Paul’s Cathedral
  • Westminster Abbey is home to the tombs of some of the most influential people in British history
  • St. Paul’s Cathedral is arguably a better piece of architecture

Trying to decide where to stay in London? Check out this article!

Which London Cathedral Should You Visit?

West Minster Abbey London England London Cathedral

The London Cathedral you choose to visit on your trip is ultimately your choice. I can’t tell you which one you will enjoy more.

If you enjoy royal history and historical figures, you would probably prefer Westminster Abbey.

If you enjoy architecture and seeing London from above, you would probably prefer St. Paul’s Cathedral.

I feel one visit to Westminster Abbey was enough for me. However, I would go back to St. Paul’s Cathedral multiple times. This is due to the viewing area from the dome. You will always be able to see something new from the top of the cathedral. The London skyline is always changing, so every time you went up, you get to see something you didn’t see before.

I enjoyed visiting both cathedrals. They both have something unique and worthwhile to offer.