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Changing of the Guard

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Westminster
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Address: Buckingham Palace, London, England
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Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Fee: No
Description: A must see in London, outside Buckingham Palace, but check out the...
A must see in London, outside Buckingham Palace, but check out the schedule as it only happens daily from May to July, otherwise on alternate days
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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    Terrible
Come early!!

You definitely need to arrive at least an hour early, maybe 2hrs before it starts. This place fills up very quickly but the event was very nice. I won't give too much away with my... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed September 3, 2015
Slaz88
,
New York City, New York

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New York City, New York
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2015 NEW

You definitely need to arrive at least an hour early, maybe 2hrs before it starts. This place fills up very quickly but the event was very nice. I won't give too much away with my pictures

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Christchurch, New Zealand
Level Contributor
67 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2015 NEW

There were large crowds and it was impossible to get a decent view even though we arrived an hour before it started. While it was colourful and had the bands and very smart soldiers it was not worth the effort of trying to peer around the crowds in front and the time spent. We left after 15 minutes and would... More 

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Level Contributor
14 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2015 NEW

Not the first time I have experienced this lovely changing of the guards, and most definitely won't be the last. This is my favourite thing to do in London!

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Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2015 NEW

We took our ten year old daughter to see Buckingham Palace and was lucky enough to go on a day when the guards were parading, we got there thirty minutes before they arrived and found thousands had beaten us to the best spots. If you can get onto the Queen Victoria Monument you will have a good view of everything... More 

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Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
19 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2015

Everyone who has not been to London should see the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace; it's something that doesn't happen elsewhere and it's loaded with pomp and circumstance. Here's the problem: everyone and their dog is trying to see it along with you. The crowds can be pushy. Here's my advice: get there by 10am (yes, that's 1.5... More 

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San Diego, California
Level Contributor
20 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015

do not pay for a tour!!! Best place to be is high near the statue of queen Victoria just outside of the palace. If you want to be up close, stand outside the gate, but you need to be there by 7am. You won't see the procession but you will see the show of the guard changing. In the square.... More 

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Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2015

I've seen the changeover twice now and it is really not that interesting. Not unless you arrive a minimum of 2 hours early and stand there reserving your spot. I have only ever arrived 15 minutes before the changeover and to be honest.... if you're not interested in taking any pictures this is fine. You can hear the music, you... More 

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Boerne, Texas
Level Contributor
87 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2015

We went to this because we happen to be there on the day and time that this occurred,so why not? The crowd got very very large very quickly so I would suggest getting there early and grabbing a spot against the fences. I'm not sure what I was expecting but the ceremony was rather uneventful. It was however fairly interesting... More 

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Level Contributor
46 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2015

You need make a choice between standing close to the palace or further away. Arrive early. We got there 45 minutes early and were in the 3rd row. Looks like the best area may be on the monument steps facing the palace. Be prepared to be tight with your neighbors. This one German child had to be reminded not to... More 

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Level Contributor
548 reviews
127 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 219 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2015

This is the best advice you are ever going to get concerning the Changing of the Guard. I have watched this ceremony a half dozen times. Avoid the huge crowds and confusion at the Palace. Go instead to Wellington Barracks across from St. James Park. You can watch and listen to the New Guard get organized, rehearse, and undergo inspection... More 

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Staying in Westminster

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Westminster
If you only had an afternoon to experience London on a grand scale, Westminster would be a wise place to start. The ornate Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey sit adjacent at a corner of Parliament Square, and a short stroll along The Mall leads to Buckingham Palace. Trafalgar Square and Nelson's Column are just up the road as well. As captivating as the architecture is, the wonders of Mother Nature are highlights of the area too. St James's Park (arguably London's loveliest), the expansive Green Park, and pedestrian friendly tree lined paths along the river showcase the exquisite manicure provided by English gardeners. Just beyond the landmarks and the gorgeous outdoor spaces, quiet residential squares and age old local pubs offer a more subdued take on this global seat of power in the heart of London.
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