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  • Address: Westminster
  • Hours: Daily when parliament is in session
  • Admission: £14-£16.50 (adults)

London ATTRACTIONS See all

Houses of Parliament & Big Ben

Travelers to London simply can't visit the city without a glimpse of Big Ben, the iconic clock tower that stands at the east end of the Houses of Parliament. More than just an unmistakable postcard image, the historic monument has long served as a symbol of London, with its riverside location making it the striking centerpiece of the Thames waterfront.

The most exciting ways to see Big Ben are from a capsule on the nearby London Eye Ferris wheel or gliding by on a Thames River cruise, both of which offer magnificent views of the 315-foot (96-meter) clock tower and the Neo-Gothic Palace of Westminster, the home of the Houses of Parliament. The landmark can also be experienced at its most atmospheric on a night tour of London, when it's dramatically illuminated. In addition, holiday travelers can join the crowds to watch the city's legendary New Year's Eve fireworks, which take place right in front of Big Ben. 

Those wanting to learn more about British politics, with its complex system of monarchs, lords and elected members of parliament, can arrange a tour of the Houses of Parliament or even watch a debate from the public galleries. Big Ben, however, is off-limits to everyone except UK residents, who still have to request permission from their local member of parliament to visit. For everyone else, the clock tower is best admired from afar.

Did You Know? Big Ben is actually the nickname of the bell inside the famous clock tower—the tower itself is called the Elizabeth Tower, renamed in 2012 in honor of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Before 2012, the official name was simply Clock Tower.

Practical Info

Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament are located in Westminster on the north bank of London's River Thames. The nearest tube station is Westminster, reachable on the Circle, District and Jubilee lines. On foot, it's a short walk across the bridge from the London Eye. The public galleries of the Houses of Parliament are open to visitors when Parliament is in session, while guided tours run most Saturdays. Big Ben can be visited only by UK residents.

Tours & Tickets

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Private Tour: Sightseeing Walking Tour of London, London, null
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Private Tour: Sightseeing Walking Tour of London

During this tour you will see the best places of central London such as Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, the Houses of Parliament and more. You ...  Read more

Location: London, United Kingdom
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $252.44
The Original London Sightseeing Tour: Hop-on Hop-off, London, Private Sightseeing Tours
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The Original London Sightseeing Tour: Hop-on Hop-off

4.5 star rating: Recommended 2450 Reviews

Discover top London attractions at your leisure on this flexible open dated hop-on hop-off sightseeing tour of London. With three family-friendly routes and ...  Read more

Location: London, United Kingdom
Duration: 1 day (approx.)

From USD $35.01
London in One Day Sightseeing Tour including Tower of London Entrance and Changing of the Guard, ... 
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London in One Day Sightseeing Tour including Tower of London Entrance and Changing of the Guard

4.5 star rating: Recommended 765 Reviews

See London in one day on a full-day sightseeing tour of the city, led by an expert local guide. Hear the history of top London attractions like Westminster ...  Read more

Location: London, United Kingdom
Duration: 8.5 - 9 hours

From USD $129.25
London Night Sightseeing Tour, London, Bus & Minivan Tours
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London Night Sightseeing Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 189 Reviews

Discover London after dark on a 1.5-hour night tour of the city. Traveling by double decker, see top London attractions lit up, including Big Ben, Westminster ...  Read more

Location: London, United Kingdom
Duration: 90 minutes (approx.)

From USD $24.23
Inside the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey Tour in London, London, Night Tours
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Inside the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey Tour in London

4.5 star rating: Recommended 27 Reviews

Get to grips with Britain’s royal and political history on this 4-hour tour of Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament. Step inside the famous Gothic ...  Read more

Location: London, United Kingdom
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $148.10

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