Houses of Parliament & Big Ben Tours

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Few landmarks epitomize central London as perfectly as Big Ben, the iconic clock tower that stands at the east end of the Houses of Parliament. Heralding the location of Great Britain's political nucleus in Westminster, Big Ben—or the Elizabeth Tower, renamed in honor of the Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee—stands proud as a symbol of London and the striking centerpiece of the Thames waterfront. The Palace of Westminster, the home of the Houses of Parliament, is another historic monument, as behind the grand Gothic facade, politicians have dictated local laws since 1215, when King John's Magna Carta signified the birth of parliament in the United Kingdom.

The Basics
The most exciting ways to see the great clock face are from a capsule on the nearby London Eye Ferris wheel or 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 while allowing you to avoid the crowds that gather at Big Ben's base. The landmarks can be experienced at their most atmospheric on a night tour of London, when Big Ben is dramatically illuminated.

Travelers wanting to learn about British politics, with its complex system of monarchs, lords, and elected members of parliament, can arrange an official tour of the Houses of Parliament or even watch a debate from the public galleries. Big Ben, however, is only accessible to UK residents, who must request permission from their local member of parliament to visit. For everyone else, the clock tower is best admired from afar on a city tour that includes stops at other London attractions, such as Westminster Abbey and the Tower of London.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Big Ben is visited on most half- and full-day tours of London, whether a walking, biking, or bus tour.
  • Take 10 minutes to admire the statues of Parliament Square, all of which depict famous political figures.
  • Guided tours of the Houses of Parliament run most Saturdays, and the public galleries are open when parliament is in session—time your visit wisely to watch opposing political parties in fierce debate.

How to Get to Big Ben
Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament are located on the north bank of the Thames River, easily accessible from the Westminster underground tube station, which is serviced by the Jubilee, Circle, and District lines. Alternatively, hop off at Waterloo station to wander along the vibrant South Bank past the London Eye, then walk across Westminster Bridge to Big Ben.

When to Get There
Holiday travelers can join the crowds to watch London's legendary New Year's Eve fireworks, which take place right in front of Big Ben and ignite the sky in a riot of color. Ensure you book tickets for the firework display well in advance to avoid disappointment and guarantee an unforgettable evening.
Location
Address: Westminster, London SW1A 0AA, England
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Hours: Daily when parliament is in session
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Admission: £14-£16.50 (adults)
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Tour to Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament in London

Get acquainted with two iconic London monuments on a 4-hour tour of Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament. While gaining fascinating insight into the royal history of Great Britain, you’ll absorb the Gothic grandeur of Westminster Abbey’s interior and head inside the Houses of Parliament — home to the renowned Big Ben — to see highlights like the House of Commons and Lord’s Chamber. From your guide, you’ll learn about the United Kingdom’s political system and major historic events while touring the prominent landmarks.
  • Duration: 2 to 4 hrs
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US$73.87
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  • Duration: 2 to 4 hrs
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Private Custom Tour: Day Tour of London

Don’t visit London landmarks and listen to commentary that doesn’t interest you. Set your own itinerary and explore London your way on a private 3.5- or 6.5-hour tour of England’s capital. Tick off all of the attractions on your personal checklist and take advantage of your private guide’s local insight by visiting hidden gems and unknown corners of the city. Choose the start time and meeting point of your tour and receive the undivided attention of your guide throughout. 
  • Duration: 6 hours 30 minutes
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US$324.00
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  • Duration: 6 hours 30 minutes
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3-Hour Guided Private Walking Tour: The Best of London

Marvel over royal monuments, architectural masterpieces and iconic landmarks on this 3-hour walking tour of London. Enjoy the undivided attention of your private guide as you stroll around Covent Garden, Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus; snap photos of Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey and Big Ben; and stand in awe before the magnificent Buckingham Palace. For the full experience, upgrade to include a visit to St Paul’s Cathedral, Tower Bridge and the Tower of London.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$129.60
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$129.60

Private Guided and Chauffered Tour of London

Make like a VIP in London with a private guide, personal chauffeur, and an itinerary tailor-made for you. Choose between a 3- or 6-hour tour and admire landmarks such as Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, and the Tower of London; hit the shops at Harrods or Oxford Street; or explore the local neighborhoods. Hotel pickup and drop-off is included.
  • Duration: 3 to 6 hrs
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US$165.89
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  • Duration: 3 to 6 hrs
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US$165.89

Private Full Day London Walking Tour

Check off all your must-visit sights on a full-day private London walking tour – ideal for first-time visitors or families. Learn about London’s rich history as you pass landmarks like Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Trafalgar Square, pose for photos by Tower Bridge and watch the Changing of The Guard at Buckingham Palace. Customise your tour to suit your interests and enjoy the undivided attention of your guide, with time to see the Tate Modern, St Paul's Cathedral and The Shard, or sample street food at Borough Market.
  • Duration: 5 hours
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US$453.60
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  • Duration: 5 hours
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Half-Day London Tour: Westminster Abbey and Houses of Parliament

Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament are two of London’s most revered historic landmarks and this 3-hour guided tour lets you discover both in one day. Hear about the royal weddings, coronations, and funerals of Westminster Abbey as you follow in the footsteps of Prince William and Kate Middleton, Princess Diana, and Queen Elizabeth, then learn more about British politics with an audio tour of the Houses of Parliament.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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London Walking Tour Including Fast-Track Westminster Abbey Visit and Changing of the Guard

Beat the crowds at Westminster Abbey and the Changing of the Guard on this 2.5-hour walking tour in London. Get fast-track admission to Westminster Abbey, where Britain’s monarchs have been crowned since 1066, and see highlights such as Elizabeth I’s ornate tomb, the Coronation Chair and Poets’ Corner, where some of England’s most famous writers, playwrights and poets are laid to rest. After, continue along the Mall to Buckingham Palace with your guide to see the pomp and pageantry of the Changing of the Guard ceremony.
  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$84.24
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  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$84.24

Private Tour: Chauffeur-Driven Tour of London

Beat the crowds—and see more of London in less time—on this private, half-day tour of the British capital. Meet your driver and guide at your accommodation at the time of your choosing, and set off via comfortable vehicle. The itinerary is flexible, so you can choose what you want to see. Discover Buckingham Palace and witness the Changing of the Guard, see Westminster Abbey and Big Ben, and much more.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$372.60
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$372.60

Private Tour: Sightseeing Walking Tour of London

Make the most of your flexible itinerary and private guide on this 3-hour sightseeing walking tour of London — a great choice for first-time visitors or families. Make your way to Buckingham Palace for the famous Changing of the Guard Ceremony, then enjoy a tour of some of London’s most renowned landmarks. Pass Trafalgar Square, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, admire the architecture of Westminster Abbey and get a glimpse of No.10 Downing Street, home to the British Prime Minister, as you walk up Whitehall.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$243.00
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$243.00

Private Tour: Half Day Sightseeing Tour of London

Don’t visit London landmarks and listen to commentary that doesn’t interest you — set your own itinerary and explore London your way on this private 3.5-hour tour of England’s capital. Tick off all of the attractions of your personal checklist and take advantage of your private guide’s local insight by visiting hidden gems and unknown corners of the city. Choose the start time and meeting point of your tour and receive the undivided attention of your guide throughout.  
  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$324.00
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  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$324.00

Private Tour: London Taxi Photographic Tour

Enjoy a seamless way to explore London when you travel by taxi—and have your trip commemorated by a professional photographer—on this private tour of the city. Choose between several tour lengths, and set off to see the city’s key sights. As you go, learn more about the landmarks from your guide, pose for photos, and stop the car to capture photos of your own. After the tour, you’ll be sent a CD of all the images from your day out.
  • Duration: 6 hours
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US$259.20
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  • Duration: 6 hours
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US$259.20

Private Walking Tour: Highlights of London with a Blue Badge Guide

Explore London’s iconic sights by foot on a 4-hour private tour, with an official UK Blue Badge guide. As you stroll from landmark to landmark, hear intriguing facts about the city’s heritage and culture, and enjoy photo stops at Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey and Big Ben. Learn about London’s medieval history and check out other star turns such as Covent Garden, Horse Guards Parade and the crowning glory, regal Buckingham Palace. If there’s something you want to see more of, talk to your guide about adjusting your itinerary to suit.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$86.83
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  • Duration: 4 hours
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Private Tour: London Walking Tour

See London’s most famous landmarks on a private 3-hour walking tour led by a knowledgeable guide. Stop outside top sights including Buckingham Palace, home to the Royal Family, and the government headquarters at 10 Downing St, which is also the Prime Minister’s residence. Enjoy photo ops of Big Ben, Parliament (Palace of Westminster) and Westminster Abbey. Walk through Trafalgar Square, Covent Garden and Soho, with the option to purchase drinks at a classic pub. You’ll travel with your own private guide who tailors the commentary to your interests.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$401.76
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$401.76

Private Guided Walking Tour: London City Center Westminster

Ideal for history enthusiasts, this private 2.5-hour history tour of London allows you to discover landmarks and legends that have shaped the modern capital. Alongside your guide, you’ll stroll through Covent Garden and Trafalgar Square, and amble past Downing Street and the Houses of Parliament. History-rich commentary will reveal the prosperous, and often turbulent, past of London. Relish the opportunity to customize your itinerary and receive undivided attention from your personal guide on this private tour.
  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$56.77
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  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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London in One Day Sightseeing Tour Including Tower of London, Changing of the Guard with Optional London Eye Upgrade

Get to know London in one day on this sight-packed, full-day tour with a guide. Traveling by air-conditioned coach, see top London attractions such as Big Ben and Westminster Abbey, and enjoy fast-track entry and a guided tour of St Paul's Cathedral. Watch the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace, and then visit the Tower of London. Break for a pub lunch, and receive a ticket for a Thames River sightseeing cruise to use after your tour or another day. For a bird's-eye view of the city, upgrade to include an open-date ticket for the London Eye.
  • Duration: 9 hours
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US$128.30
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  • Duration: 9 hours
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US$128.30

Big Bus London Hop-On Hop-Off Tour

Discover the grandeur of London aboard the open-top, double-decker Big Bus on this hop-on, hop-off sightseeing tour. With your 1-, 2-, or 3-day ticket, design a personal itinerary with dozens of possible stops, including Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and more. Enjoy unobstructed views and onboard commentary as you view the city’s highlights. Hop off to enjoy a free walking tours and a River Thames cruise.
  • Duration: 3 days
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US$43.16
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  • Duration: 3 days
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US$43.16

The Original London Sightseeing Tour: Hop-on Hop-off

See the best of London without the stress of rigid tour times and massive crowds on this hop-on hop-off bus tour. With your flexible, single-day pass, pick any date you’d like to hop aboard the double-decker, open-top bus for a comfortable sightseeing excursion. Great for kids and adults, your pass offers three route options with stops at main attractions like Big Ben, the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace and more. Bonus features include three city walking tours, a River Thames cruise and local discounts.
  • Duration: 24 to 72 hrs
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US$41.47
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  • Duration: 24 to 72 hrs
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US$41.47

The London Showboat Dinner Cruise on the Thames River

Enjoy a memorable evening of food, wine and entertainment on this 3-hour showboat dinner cruise on the Thames River in London. Feast on a 4-course dinner aboard your sightseeing boat as you sail past London attractions such as Big Ben, the London Eye and Tower Bridge, all illuminated at night. While you eat and admire the sights, enjoy live entertainment from a cabaret singer, and, if you wish, take to the dance floor.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$103.68
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  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$103.68

Private Tour: Traditional Black Cab Tour of London’s Christmas Lights

See London’s Christmas lights in style with this private, 2.5-hour tour by black cab. Cruise past top London sights and jump out for a stroll down the city's bustling shopping streets. Marvel at glitzy illuminations, twinkling lights and extravagantly decorated shop windows in upmarket neighborhoods such as Belgravia and Chelsea, and see the iconic Oxford Street Christmas light displays. Receive undivided attention from your guide on this private tour.
  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$291.60
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  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$291.60

Thames River Sightseeing Cruise with Afternoon Tea

While in London, combine an iconic British tradition with a unique sightseeing excursion on an afternoon tea cruise! Spend a luxurious 1.5 hours enjoying a unique dining experience with family and friends on the River Thames. As you cruise from Tower Pier to Westminster, indulge in tea, freshly prepared cakes and sandwiches, and view London’s great landmarks including the Tower of London, the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$41.47
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$41.47

London Vintage Bus Tour with Cream Tea at Harrods

Sightsee in London by vintage double-decker bus and modern catamaran on this half-day tour. As you travel around the city, watch out for top London landmarks like Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. Then, hop out for photos at the Tower of London before taking a cruise along the Thames River. Sparkling wine, cream tea with scones at Harrods, and scones complete the experience.
  • Duration: 4 hours 30 minutes
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US$69.98
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  • Duration: 4 hours 30 minutes
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US$69.98

London Thames River Dinner Cruise

Take to the Thames for a sparkling 2.5-hour river dinner cruise past London’s waterfront sights, with live music included. Choose to sail on the handsome ‘Harmony’ or stunning ‘Symphony’ cruiser at two different departure times, and settle at your table to savor a delectable 4-course gourmet dinner. Admire floodlit city sights such as Tower Bridge, the London Eye and Big Ben as you eat and relax, and enjoy enchanting live jazz from the onboard band. Then, if you wish, wrap up your memorable Thames dinner cruise with after-dinner dancing.
  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$106.27
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  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
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US$106.27

London Night Sightseeing Tour

Experience the enchantment of London after hours on a night sightseeing tour. Aboard a double-decker bus, take a 1.5-hour trip through the city to see illuminated attractions like Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye. Hear fascinating facts about passing sites and insider tips on where to visit in the bustling capital city from your expert guide.  
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$27.22
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
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US$27.22

Christmas Day Traditional Lunch Aboard Thames Sightseeing Cruise

Fill up on Christmas spirit and festive foods on this 3-hour Christmas Day cruise. See London without the crowds as you glide down the Thames River past Big Ben, the London Eye, and the Tower of London. Along the way, sip sparkling wine, sing along to Christmas Carols, and dig into a British-style Christmas lunch of roast turkey with all the trimmings.
  • Duration: 3 hours 9 minutes
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US$162.00
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  • Duration: 3 hours 9 minutes
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US$162.00


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