Westminster Abbey in London is one of the most famous churches in the whole of England. Not only does it stand out for its architectural beauty, but it also has great historical significance, both of which have contributed to gaining its status as a World Heritage Site.
This magnificent abbey has over a thousand years of history and has been the setting for important events throughout time. It is in Westminster Abbey that the coronations of all English monarchs have taken place since that of William the Conqueror in 1066, with just the three exceptions of Jane Grey, Edward V and Edward VIII. In addition to coronations, the Abbey is the traditional venue for royal weddings with the most recent being Prince William and Kate Middleton (The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge) who got married here in 2011.
Other events of recent times include the funeral of Princess Diana of Wales and the 80th birthday celebration of Queen Elizabeth II. But there’s more than just the royal connotation as alongside the former monarchs of England, significant historical figures such as Issaac Newton and Charles Darwin are also buried here.
What to See in Westminster Abbey in London
We usually recommend allowing 1-2 hours for a visit to Westminster Abbey which should give you enough time to explore the interior of the church and admire its beautiful architecture inside and out. Most of the abbey that you can see dates back to 1245 – 1517, whilst the two towers on the front were added in 1745.
Things to look out for on your visit to the Abbey include:
- Henry VIII’s Chapel
- Tomb of St Edward the Confessor
- Lady Chapel
- The Coronation Chair
- Poet’s Corner (in commemoration of famous writers likes Charles Dickens and William Shakespeare)
- College Garden
Westminster Abbey Tickets
Entrance to Westminster Abbey is free if you have the London Pass.
If you don’t have London Pass, we recommend buying tickets online in advance as it will save time having to queue up on the day, plus it’s also cheaper than buying them at the ticket office.
Westminster Abbey Prices
Adults: £20 online / £22 ticket office.
Children 6-16 years: £9
Children 0 – 5 years: Free
Westminster Abbey Opening Times
We recommend visiting in the morning or around midday as it’s often quieter, with shorter queues than later in the afternoon. The abbey is usually open to the public Monday to Saturday from 9.30am to 3.30pm. Sundays and other religious holidays are only open for services.
The cafeteria and gift shop are usually open until 6pm or 6.30pm, depending on the time of year. If you are feeling peckish, we would highly recommend the afternoon tea or a typical British meal in the Cellarium Café, located in the grounds of the Abbey.