- 1 hour 15 minutes
- Product Type
- Audio Guide
- Changing of the Guard, Buckingham Palace, and St James's Park
For the best experience, we recommend starting the tour at 10:15am so you can synchronize your walk with the ceremonial movements.
Starting outside St. James‘ Park, you‘ll see the iconic guards in their bright red jackets and black bearskin helmets, supported by their regimental bands which provide a tuneful backdrop to your walk. As you witness the ceremony, you’ll learn to identify the different guards, by looking at the feathers in their caps and the buttons on their jackets. You‘ll also walk in the footsteps of Charles I on his way to being executed, and see a statue of the famous French General, Charles De Gaulle, in the very square where he set up his government while in exile during World War II. The tour ends with a visit to the Household Cavalry where you‘ll be able to get up close to the guards and their stunning black horses. You’ll also find out what the requirements are for a horse to join the cavalry!
Along the way, you‘ll:
• Hear about the centuries of history that unfolded in the heart of London
• View the movements of the royal guards up close
• Learn to spot and decipher differences between the uniforms
• Find out the best times to view the emblematic ceremony
• Stand on the Mall, where the world comes to get a grandstand view of royal events like weddings, coronations, and funerals
• Listen to the stories behind the George VI, Duke of York and National Police memorials
• Take in the impressive Buckingham Palace and St James‘s Palace
By the end of this hour-long tour, you‘ll have witnessed the Changing of the Guard from a different perspective, and gained a new appreciation for the ceremony.
Since leaving university in 1982, Sean has lived and worked across the globe in a nearly 30-year career as a senior executive in financial services. He put his skills and knowledge to work in the Charity Sector in the UK for 7 years but decided life was too short to not focus entirely on his passions for people, history, art and architecture. When not guiding, Sean is restoring a Georgian House and serving as a Parish Councillor. He is a freeman of the City of London and a freeman of the City Livery company of Clockmakers. He lives in London and Wiltshire.