Westminster Updated: 6 months ago

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Westminster is one of London’s most historically significant and politically important areas. It lies on the north bank of the River Thames and is at the heart of the city's government and royal heritage.

It lies on the north bank of the River Thames and is at the heart of the city’s government and royal heritage. The City of Westminster covers a lot of Central London. Still, for this area guide, we’ll use the commonly used definition around the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, between St James’s in the north, Trafalgar Square in the east, Thames to the south and Pimlico and Victoria in the West.

As mentioned, Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, perhaps the most iconic sights in London, are located here. Big Ben is the name of the biggest bell inside the Elizabeth Tower. On the same square, you’ll find Westminster Abbey, the Gothic church founded in the 10th century, where all coronations have taken place since 1066, including the coronation of William the Conqueror.

Whitehall is a broad street lined with government buildings, one of which is 10 Downing Street, where the prime minister resides. Close to Downing Street, you’ll find some royal horse guards in front of a building through which you can get to the Horse Guards Parade. Horse Guards Parade is a ceremonial parade ground where the annual Trooping the Colour ceremony takes place, and you can witness the guards change daily.

Behind the parade grounds, you’ll find St. James’s Park, one of London’s eight Royal Parks, perhaps the most beautiful of them, with a great view towards the London Eye and the Horse Guards Parade in one direction and Buckingham Palace on the other. You can get to Buckingham Palace by walking through the park, a route we can definitely recommend.

Another place to visit is Churchill War Rooms, which is part of the Imperial War Museum. This underground complex was the strategic centre for the British High Command during World War II.

Westminster has a lot to offer. We also must mention Westminster Bridge, a popular tourist spot providing spectacular views of the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye. It’s a great place to take pictures in both directions.

Westminster is a political hub and a testament to Britain’s rich history and heritage. It’s essential for anyone visiting London for its modern significance and historical depth.

Getting there

Several tube stops around Westminster can be used for easy access. The one closest to Big Ben is the Westminster station. You’ll also find Embankment and Charing Cross stations on the west side, St. James’s Park in the south and Green Park in the north. There is also the option of getting a Thames Clipper to the Westminster Pier.

Nearest Stations

St James's Park - 5 min

District Circle London Underground Zone: 1

Victoria - 6 min

District Circle Victoria London Underground Zone: 1

Westminster - 12 min

District Circle Jubilee London Underground Zone: 1

Activities from Get Your Guide