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No visit to London would be complete without witnessing the age-old tradition of the Changing of the Guard ceremony. However, don’t make the mistake of jostling crowds outside of Buckingham Palace, view the performance from insider vantage points on this 2-hour walking tour. See the royal spectacle, which involves the Queen’s foot soldiers and household cavalry, from Horse Guard’s Parade, St. James’ Palace, and nearby Buckingham Palace in order to avoid the crowds that so often hinder this quintessential British tradition.
At promptly 10am, greet your guide outside of St. James’ underground station and stroll towards Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament. As you gaze at the grand architecture of the attractions, your guide explains the history of the royal family and divulges the origin of the Changing of the Guard ceremony.
Following a short walk to Horseguards Parade, you’ll prepare to witness the most traditional part of the ceremony — the Changing of the Horseguards. Marvel at the gleaming coats and precision of horses and their riders, before proceeding to St. James’ Palace to watch the Footguards’ Ceremony.
During this section, soldiers clad in iconic bear-skin hats and pillar-box red tunics march to the rhythm of a band. After this, head to a secret spot near Buckingham Palace to watch the ceremony’s finale and discuss the British royal family’s illustrious reign.