A trip to London will not be complete without seeing the famous Buckingham Palace, home of the Queen and noble monarchy since the early 1800’s. It is considered one of the finest and worthwhile tourist attractions.
Originally, the Buckingham Palace was built for the Duke of Buckingham. This was during the early 1700’s. With three wings and designed in a courtyard, the house had undergone an expansion when George the III bought it.
A majestic ballroom, new guest rooms and other rooms were constructed in the early 1900’s paving the way for major modifications.
Visitors are welcome to see a major portion of the palace everyday. Roughly 40,000 guests and invitees enter the palace every year which is composed of a residential area and offices.
All year round, different areas and rooms of the palace are allowed to be viewed by the public. The palace’s state rooms can also be viewed during the fall season and latter part of summer. As expected of a palace, it contains pieces of luxurious embellishments everywhere and impressive furniture.
Pieces of admirable artworks can be viewed at the Queen’s gallery and Royal Mews. Some of which were originally done by great artists such as Vermeer and Rubens. The artworks displayed at the Royal Mews are constantly being changed. Art lovers will find this part of the palace spectacular.
Another attraction at the Royal Mews which is worth seeing is a 3-ton coach driven by 6 to 8 horses which is meant for royal events and balls.
For a relaxing and soothing feel of nature, a walk at the Royal Garden is a royal treat in itself. It roughly consists of a vast 30 acres of land. Here you will find beautiful flowers and an impressive view of the lake.
Since the 1600’s, the palace had already been protected by guards. The changing of the guards is an event in itself, one that is meticulously rehearsed much to the amazement of the crowd who are gathered to watch. People from all parts of the world come to see this ceremony. It is referred to as the Guard Mount and they are tasked to provide protection to the palace. This event takes place at around the same time each day.
There is a band that performs during the changing of the guards. Four other guards are positioned in the building’s façade. There are only two guards in this post if the Queen is not present.
These guards are strictly trained not be distracted by people. Their attention is focused on their job and although efforts are usually made by people to distract them, they remain undisturbed. Their uniform is a red tunic and animal skin. Guarding the Queen is an honor which is the reason why anybody assigned to this post take pride in his responsibility.
The guard changing ceremony starts at around 11:15 a.m. and usually lasts for about 30 to 45 minutes. It is one of the major highlights and a must-see event for anybody who is visiting London.