- Location: Parliament Square, London
- Best time to Visit: The Abbey is open to public sightseeing at specific hours, usually between 9:30 am 1:30 pm or 3:30 pm. It is better to check the timings with your local tour operator before reaching there.
- How to reach: Westminster Abbey is easily accessible from all parts of London using public transports.
- Entry Fee: 10 pounds per adult.
- Nearest International Airport: Heathrow International Airport, London.
- Nearest Railway Station: Waterloo Station or Victoria Station.
- Nearest Underground: Westminster or St. James Park
Death unites us all! Where else can you find a better testimony to the statement than a visit at the Royal Chappell of Westminster Abbey in London? Queen Elizabeth I, one of the biggest architects of the Protestant Empire of England shares the same vault with Mary I — her half-sister, a Catholic. Close by is the tomb of her lifelong rival, Mary Queen of Scots. These tombs are, however, only a part of the many attractions of Westminster Abbey in London.
The abbey is adjacent to the Houses of Parliament in the Westminster neighborhood and is a must-see for any traveler coming to London. The Gothic monastery of Westminster Abbey, formally known as the Collegiate Church of St. Peter, Westminster, is the traditional burial site for English monarchs. Westminster Abbey, rightly in the center of London, welcomes a huge number of visitors coming to explore this astonishing 700-year-old building.
Henry III restored the Abbey to show tribute to the Royal Saint Edward the Confessor, whose memorial and relics were placed in the Sanctuary. The Shrine of St. Edward the Confessor has been the main highlight of pilgrimages to Westminster Abbey since the Middle Ages.
With the oldest parts dating to the year 1050, Westminster Abbey, London features some of the most magnificent medieval architecture in the city. The coronation throne where the monarchs of England have been crowned since the 1300s may also be viewed in the abbey. Those who are admirers of William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens and other stalwarts of literature, will surely enjoy the Poet’s Corner while English history or Christian history buffs will enjoy witnessing the tombs of the Protestant Elizabeth I and Catholic “Bloody” Mary as well as the tombs of David Livingstone and Charles Darwin.
Then you will visit the Westminster Abbey Museum, located in the 11th century vaulted undercroft of St Peter. It displays a unique and precious collection of royal and other funeral effigies, along with other valuable possessions like the 13th-century altarpiece known as the Westminster Retable. Other notable collections which are on exhibition include the saddle, sword, helm and shield of Henry V; two panels of medieval glass; 12th century sculpture from the Norman abbey; Mary II’s Coronation chair; replicas of the Coronation Regalia for coronation rehearsals and the armor of General Monck carried at his funeral in 1670.
There are, however, several things to do and you should not miss them. If the abbey garden is open, take a relaxing stroll through it, there is a splendid view of Parliament from the garden and since you are once again outside, you can take snaps.
Photography is not allowed inside the abbey. As a result, you will not get a proper view of the interior of the Abbey through most audio-visual records of visits to the Abbey. However, there are great travelers’ accounts. We provide you with a few below:
http://www.travelpod.com/travel-blog-entries/ricki958/europe-99/938497620/tpod.html: For a first-hand account of a visit to the Westminster Abbey, read this travel account. It is both informative and interesting. Check it out!
http://realtravel.com/stratford_on_avon-journals-j3473295.html: Click on this link for another wonderful account of travel to the Westminster Abbey! You get additional information on travel to other parts of England as well.