Kensington Palace
London
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Kensington Palace tickets and tours

Yesterday the house of Charles and Diana, now the dwelling of William and Kate. Kensington Palace has been one of the British royals’ residences since...

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The inside story

Yesterday the house of Charles and Diana, now the dwelling of William and Kate. Kensington Palace has been one of the British royals’ residences since the seventeenth century. Built in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in London and originally known as Nottingham House, the building was purchased by King William III in 1689 to escape the damp and gray rooms of Whitehall Palace, the official residence of the court at the time.

Kensington Palace was later extended by Sir Christopher Wren, the architect famous for his role in the rebuilding of London after the Great Fire of 1666. Appreciated by other monarchs, the residence has been renovated several times, making Kensington Palace the jewel that can be seen today. In fact several areas of the building are open to the public. Walk in the footsteps of royalty as you explore the magnificent State Apartments, the rooms where Queen Victoria grew up and the Jewel Room.

You will see the rooms dedicated to Queen Victoria, who lived here from her birth (1819) to her coronation (1837), before moving to Buckingham Palace. The King's State Apartments have the grandeur worthy of a royal palace. Do not miss the decorated Cupola Room, as well as the "Luminous Lace", a sculpture in the center of the building with over 4 kilometres of bright threads embellished with 12,000 Swarovski crystals!

The rooms of the Queen Mary II, wife of William III, come alive again thanks to actors in costume, leading visitors to discover the history of the building and its sophisticated tenants. At the end of the visit, do not forget to take a stroll in the beautiful gardens surrounding Kensington Palace.

Kensington Palace is easily accessible by public transport, the nearest tube stations are Queensway, Bayswater and High Street Kensington.

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How to get there

Kensington Palace Kensington Gardens, London W8 4PX, UK London