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Westminster Abbey

The heart and soul of the nation’s spiritual life is also England’s finest example of ecclesiastic architecture.

Westminster Abbey has played host to 26 royal weddings and 38 coronations. It’s the final resting place for hundreds of Great Britain's legendary figures. 

Outwardly, Westminster Abbey may appear an austere work of architecture, with its twin medieval gothic towers and pointed spires. But step through the North Door and you’ll find yourself immersed in centuries of rich and ornate history. The original structure dates back to 1245 when it was rebuilt over Edward the Confessor’s 1042 abbey. The abbey’s haphazard construction progressed slowly through famine and revolution, culminating in a sacred space where the great ages of humanity come together.

It would be almost sinful to rush through the abbey, so try to set aside at least half a day to explore its many treasures. Visualize the 38 kings and queens who have perched high on the Coronation Chair. Many of them now lie forever in the tombs in the Nave. Reflect on the stirring words of Sir Winston Churchill, whose memorial lies near the West Door. At the poppy-wreathed Grave of the Unknown Warrior, pay your respects to the fallen British soldiers of World War I. Join lovers of literature in Poets’ Corner, where giants of English literature, such as William Shakespeare, T.S. Elliot and Dylan Thomas, are buried. 

Venture into one of the abbey’s oldest areas, the 11th-century vaulted undercroft of St. Peter. Now a museum, its exhibits include royal effigies, death masks and clothing. Afterwards, follow in the footsteps of monks throughout the ages by taking a meditative walk in the College Gardens. 

Attending a service at the abbey can be a memorable highlight of your London visit, however, popular services, such as Christmas, require an advance booking. A free, detailed audio tour is available at the North Door and guided tours are also available. Do remember, photography is not permitted in the abbey and the interior can get very cold in winter.

Westminster Abbey is located in central London, next to Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. The abbey is open to visitors every day except Sundays, when worship services are held. The nearest Underground stations are St. James’s Park and Westminster. 


Guide to Exploring Westminster Abbey


Top Hotel Deals

See all 21,522 Properties near Westminster Abbey
Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London £109
Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London

200 Westminster Bridge Road, London, England
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in London City Centre, this eco-friendly hotel is steps away from Southbank Centre Book Market and Florence Nightingale Museum. St. Thomas' Hospital and Sea Life London Aquarium are also within 5 minutes. Waterloo Underground Station is only a 4-minute walk and Lambeth North Underground Station is 6 minutes.

    The Rubens At The Palace £149
    The Rubens At The Palace

    The Rubens At The Palace

    39 Buckingham Palace Road, London, England
       
      5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Victoria Palace Theatre and Apollo Victoria Theatre. Buckingham Palace and St. James Park are also within 15 minutes. Victoria Underground Station and London Victoria Rail Station are within a 5-minute walk.

      ME London £262
      ME London

      ME London

      336-337 The Strand, London, England
         
        5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is steps away from Lyceum Theatre, The Strand and Aldwych Theatre. Covent Garden Market and Royal Opera House are also within 5 minutes. Temple Underground Station is 5 minutes by foot and Covent Garden Underground Station is 7 minutes.

        The Grand at Trafalgar Square £93
        The Grand at Trafalgar Square

        The Grand at Trafalgar Square

        8 Northumberland Avenue, London, England
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in London City Centre, this boutique hotel is steps away from Charing Cross and The Strand. Trafalgar Square and National Gallery are also within 5 minutes. Charing Cross Underground Station and Embankment Station are within a 5-minute walk.

          Leonardo Royal London St Paul’s £99
          Leonardo Royal London St Paul’s

          Leonardo Royal London St Paul’s

          10 Godliman Street, London, England
             
            4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of St. Paul's Cathedral and Tower of London. Tower Bridge and The British Museum are also within 2 mi (3 km). Blackfriars Underground Station and St. Paul's Underground Station are within a 5-minute walk.

            St. James' Court, A Taj Hotel, London £159
            St. James' Court, A Taj Hotel, London

            St. James' Court, A Taj Hotel, London

            54 Buckingham Gate, London, England
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in London City Centre, this spa hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey. Big Ben and Hyde Park are also within 1 mi (2 km). St. James's Park Underground Station is only a 3-minute walk and Victoria Underground Station is 7 minutes.

              London Marriott Hotel County Hall £220
              London Marriott Hotel County Hall

              London Marriott Hotel County Hall

              London County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, London, England
                 
                5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in London City Centre, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of London Eye and Big Ben. Buckingham Palace and St. Paul's Cathedral are also within 2 mi (3 km). Westminster Underground Station is only a 4-minute walk and Waterloo Underground Station is 6 minutes.

                Club Quarters Hotel, Trafalgar Square £93
                Club Quarters Hotel, Trafalgar Square

                Club Quarters Hotel, Trafalgar Square

                8 Northumberland Ave, (adjacent to Trafalgar Square), London, England
                   
                  4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in London City Centre, this boutique hotel is steps away from Charing Cross and The Strand. Trafalgar Square and National Gallery are also within 5 minutes. Charing Cross Underground Station and Embankment Station are within a 5-minute walk.