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Banqueting House

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Address: Whitehall Palace | Horse Guards Avenue, London SW1A 2ER , England
Phone Number: +44 (0)844 482 7777
Website
Today
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Closed now
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Hours:
Mon - Sat 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Description: This revolutionary building, the first in England to be designed in a...
This revolutionary building, the first in England to be designed in a Palladian style by Inigo Jones, was finished in 1622 for James I. Intended for the splendour and exuberance of court masques, the Banqueting House is probably most famous for one real life drama: the execution of Charles I which took place here in 1649 to the ‘dismal, universal groan’ of the crowd. One of Charles’ last sights, as he walked through the Banqueting House to his death, was the magnificent ceiling, painted by Peter Paul Rubens in 1630-4. Banqueting House is the last and only surviving part of Whitehall Palace, once the largest palace in Europe, destroyed by fire in 1698.
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 66
    Excellent
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    Very good
  • 28
    Average
  • 12
    Poor
  • 3
    Terrible
The most chilled museum I'd ever visited.

I wasn't expecting to spend long here as it is basically one room with an interesting painted ceiling, but ended up having a long and relaxing visit. It stared with an... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed March 30, 2015
gr33nsp1der
,
Bangor, United Kingdom
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181 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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English first
Portland, Oregon
Top Contributor
117 reviews 117 reviews
49 attraction reviews
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2015

Before visiting London, I joined Historic Royal Palaces and The Banqueting House is included in the membership. I recommend joining because members don't need to wait in the ticket line and they get a discount on purchases. Since my last visit to London, it seems there has been a push to make the historic properties more appealing and accessible to... More 

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Cheshire.uk
Top Contributor
128 reviews 128 reviews
42 attraction reviews
87 helpful votes 87 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2015

A visit here brings life to one's history lessons of years ago, The Reubens ceiling is magnificent. Easy to find on Whitehall.

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London
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
4 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2015

I feel like a fool that I have lived in London for so long and have never thought to come here, it's amazing and now I have visited regard it as a must see gem of London. There are many reasons I like this attraction and will explain why. First the guard recommends you watch a brief film in the... More 

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Bangor, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
16 attraction reviews
100 helpful votes 100 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2015

I wasn't expecting to spend long here as it is basically one room with an interesting painted ceiling, but ended up having a long and relaxing visit. It stared with an introductory video. I usually hate these but this one explained the history and context without visual gimmicks and without making assumptions about the visitors' prior knowledge. Then you get... More 

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Bude, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
31 attraction reviews
98 helpful votes 98 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2015

The last place on this earth that King Charles 1st saw before he went into history. This place has exceptional historic connections and the film show before you enter the main room was very interesting. The ceiling pictures are so good that you can have a bean bag to lay on and just look up as you listen to the... More 

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tavira
Top Contributor
68 reviews 68 reviews
33 attraction reviews
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2015

Enjoyed the filmshow which set the scene before visiting the main hall. The mirrors reflecting close ups of the ceiling were great. Useful to have floor cushions to view the ceiling in comfort.

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london
Top Contributor
662 reviews 662 reviews
271 attraction reviews
364 helpful votes 364 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2015

I last came here around 30 years ago and of course the Rubens ceiling panels were pretty much the same then. What has improved tremendously is the telling of the story via modern technology. You start off with a video in the 'crypt' that last about 15 minutes and is informative and worthwhile. Once you have viewed this you get... More 

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Brisbane, Queensland
Top Contributor
199 reviews 199 reviews
180 attraction reviews
112 helpful votes 112 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2015

A visit to Banqueting House consists of a short introductory video and then the main hall with the beautiful Rubens ceilings. The beanbags to sit on while craning your neck up to admire the paintings are a welcome addition and it was great to sit for an hour and listen to the audio guide after a long morning of sightseeing.... More 

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Australia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
10 attraction reviews
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2015

I really enjoyed my visit here, however you need to know what you are getting yourself in for otherwise you may be tempted to give the Chief Wiggam response I heard in the foyer as two prior viewers were departing; "nothing to see here." This is not a hall in which banquets were held. The interest is really in the... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Millington, Tennessee
Top Contributor
53 reviews 53 reviews
19 attraction reviews
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2015

I was here on Jan. 30 for a special ceremony. There is currently scaffolding covering the building because major conservation is being done. After the exterior is done, they will start in on the interior. The results should be splendid.

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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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