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Buckingham Palace State Rooms Tour

Buckingham Palace is known worldwide as the residence of The Queen. It is the focal point for national and royal celebrations and is also where the regular Changing of the Guard ceremony takes place. 

Every year, during the Queen's annual holiday to Balmoral, Scotland (from August to September), a few select dates in the winter and spring, the Palace opens its State Rooms to visitors. These rooms are the public spaces in the Palace where The Queen and members of the Royal Family host their guests on State, ceremonial, and official occasions. The rooms are laid out as they would be during State visits.

Buckingham Palace State Rooms Tour | Royal Collection Trust

Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace Open for Public Tours

In 1993, following the fire at Windsor Castle, the Queen opened Buckingham Palace to public tours to help pay for the multi-million dollar repairs. I was fortunate enough to be in London during this time and was able to participate in one of the tours from August to September. I remember waiting in line for hours with hundreds of others, eagerly anticipating our first glimpse inside the historic palace.

The palace houses a total of 19 State Rooms, many of which have a specific purpose to this day. For instance, the Throne Room is used by the Queen for court ceremonies and official entertaining and also serves as the backdrop for the wedding photos of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The grandest of all the State Rooms is the White Drawing Room, which serves as a royal reception room for the Queen and members of the Royal Family to gather before official occasions.

Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace

Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace | Simply Amazing Living

Queen Victoria's Throne, part of the special exhibition ‘Queen Victoria's Palace' at this year's Summer Opening of Buckingham Palace 20 July – 29 September 2019. For use only in connection to the exhibition, not to be archived or sold on. Image credit Royal Collection Trust/ © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2019.

Highlights of the State Room Tour

White Drawing Room

Blue Drawing Room

Green Drawing Room

Throne Room

Picture Gallery


Grand Staircase

Royal Garden

Buckingham Palace | Simply Amazing Living

The State Dining Room at the special exhibition ‘Queen Victoria's Palace', part of a visit to the Summer Opening of the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace.
Credit: Royal Collection Trust / (c) Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2019.

Buckingham Palace | Simply Amazing Living

The State Dining Room at the special exhibition ‘Queen Victoria's Palace', part of a visit to the Summer Opening of the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace.
Credit: Royal Collection Trust / (c) Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2019.


Tourists are not permitted to take photos inside the staterooms during the Buckingham Palace tour. However, they are allowed to take pictures in the Palace Gardens at the end of the tour. One of the highlights of the tour is the backdrop picture of the Royal Family, which visitors can use to take a photo that appears as though they were there with the Royals (well, almost).

Buckhingham Palace | Simply Amazing Living

Photo with the Royals


Choose Love at Buckingham Palace

I take my Choose Love shirts with me wherever I travel. This is outside of Buckingham Palace overlooking the Palace Garden.

Buckingham Palace State Room Tour Tips

Please remember the following information regarding your visit:

  • Upon arrival, you will go through an airport-style security check. Please refrain from bringing large items, and store your personal items in a bin that you can retrieve at the end of the tour.
  • Please allow 2-2½ hours for your visit and wear comfortable shoes as the end of the tour includes a half-mile walk through the Royal Garden to the exit.
  • Your ticket includes an audio guide that provides details about the history of each room. It is recommended to prebook your ticket as there is a timed admission system operating in 15-minute time slots. This is the time you select when purchasing your ticket.
  • Please arrive at the entry time printed on your ticket and not earlier.

Book your tickets for the Buckingham Palace State Room Tour HERE!

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About Royal Collection Trust

Royal Collection Trust looks after the Royal Collection, one of the most important art collections in the world, and manages the public opening of the official residences of Her Majesty The Queen. These include Buckingham Palace, the Royal Mews, Clarence House, and The Queen's Gallery in London; Windsor Castle and Frogmore House in Windsor; the Palace of Holyroodhouse and The Queen's Gallery in Edinburgh.

Through their work, from exhibitions and learning programs to publications and retail products, they aim to ensure that the Royal Collection and Palaces are valued and enjoyed by everyone.

Royal Collection Trust is a registered charity and income generated through admissions and other commercial activity funds the care and conservation of the Royal Collection and the promotion of access to and enjoyment of the Collection through exhibitions, publications, loans, and educational programs.

Their work is undertaken without public funding of any kind.

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Buckingham Palace State Room Tour





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  • I love seeing palaces and castles. I never had the chance to get inside Buckingham when we used to live in London but my mom and dad did. My father, a defence attache then, and they came in to meet the Queen and Prince Charles.

    My mom had such a fascinating story about it because she when the other “ladies” of the delegation rushed forward to meet Prince Charles, he noticed my mom was left at the back and so he said, “And the lady at the back?” HAHAHA. She never really liked him, but she felt like some kind of princess, she said.

  • I’ve been to London so often but never took a Buckingham Palace Tour – just saw it from the outside. Next time I’m going I’ll make sure to join one – it’s definitely something you should do to make your England-trip complete.

  • This is such a beautiful historical place to visit. Thank you for making me visiting this through your post.

  • Kristine Nicole Alessandra
    October 21, 2019 10:33 pm

    How wonderful! I have always been fascinated with the Buckingham Palace and all its pomp and splendor. You were so fortunate to be able to go and tour its state rooms! Thanks for sharing the photos. BTW, love that shirt too!

  • Dalene Ekirapa
    October 23, 2019 7:58 am

    Buckingham Palace is really an astounding travel spot around the world; so a tour sounds just perfect! It’s so amazing that the palace was actually opened to the public- actually that would inspire luxury and edgy living as I love it. The rooms are splendid!

  • Melanie williams
    October 23, 2019 8:50 am

    We have done all the London tourist things…Buck palace is fab. Looks like you had a wonderful time too x

  • Buckingham Palace!!! thank you so much for touring us inside.
    Would definitely visit this place as it is in my bucket list. 🙂

  • Blairvillanueva
    October 23, 2019 2:13 pm

    Thanks for letting us know this worthy tour. When I finally reach London, I will never skip this place. Very opulent!

  • Wow! I had no idea that they open the State Rooms at the Buckingham Palace to visitors. I hope we get lucky to have the opportunity to visit and have an available date that can fit into our schedule. I am really excited to know this. Thank you for sharing.