At the other side of Green Park is Buckingham Palace, the London home and administrative headquarters of the Queen. A true architectural icon from the outside, this is a place to soak up the feeling of being at the epicentre of Britain’s royal history. It’s also possible to watch the Buckingham Palace Changing the Guard ceremony at 11:00 approximately four days a week. This is where the soldiers guarding the palace rotate so different members of the Queen’s Guard can move into position. It’s a spectacular ceremony accompanied by the music of a military band. From the middle of July until the end of September each year, it’s also possible to embark on a tour of Buckingham Palace, while the Queen enjoys her summer elsewhere. Throughout the year, it’s also possible to visit The Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace, which features a constantly changing exhibition from the Royal Collection of old master paintings, rare furniture and photos from the past.
Next to Buckingham Palace is another Royal Park – St James’s Park. This is where James I kept exotic animals – including camels, crocodiles and an elephant – when he ascended the throne in 1603. In the 17th and 18th century, cows even grazed in the park and their milk was sold locally! In the 1800s, renowned landscape architect John Nash remodelled the park and created the lake now in the park today.