In this article we briefly introduce the Tower. Unfortunately, the queues at the famous Tower of London are often very long. We recommend to buy the tickets in advance on the internet on a great website:
Tickets on the Internet are paid for in euros. This is usually even cheaper than at the cash desk on the spot.
What’s the tower?
The London Tower is a large castle in the heart of London right next to the River Thames. The Tower of London is almost 1,000 years old and thus the oldest most important sight in London. The British crown jewels are housed and exhibited in the Tower. For many tourists, the jewels of the Queen are the highlight of their visit to the Tower. Next door is the famous bridge Tower Bridge.
The Tower of London has had many functions in the past. Until the 17th century it was at times the residence of kings. Even better known is its role as a prison, torture prison and place of execution.
Until the Second World War, the Tower was at times a high-security prison. One of the last inmates was Hitler’s deputy Rudolf Heß, who was temporarily housed here after his spectacular escape to Scotland.
Why should I visit the Tower?
The Tower of London is undoubtedly one of the most visited sights in England. On our list of sights London it is the number 1. During the visit to the Tower, one sees the world famous British crown jewels – the real reason why many come here. Also the Royal Arms Chamber, the Royal Armouries and the former functions as prison, castle and place for torture and executions find many visitors very interesting. For quite a few tourists, the Tower of London is one of the big highlights of a trip to London. We think the visit is worthwhile.
What are the problems when visiting the Tower?
Long queues: Not infrequently the horror. Often the queue from the entrance is very long. Who wants to spend several hours of a valuable holiday in a queue for a ticket? Below we will show you how you can usually avoid this.
Entrance fees high: As already mentioned elsewhere in this travel guide, in London, the big sightseeings either do not cost any entrance fee at all or one pays a lot. Unfortunately, the tower costs a lot. Adults pay (as of the beginning of 2020) at the cash desk at the entrance almost 30 pounds admission. But we think that the visit of the big castle is worthwhile despite the high entrance fees.
Come without long waiting in the tower. Is that possible?
Tower Tickets: A good idea is to buy the tickets on the Internet in advance. I can’t say that often enough: The waiting time at the cash desk in front of the entrance to the Tower of London is often hours. On this website you can buy the tickets for the Tower London. Cancellations up to one day before the visit are free of charge at this provider. If one books in advance in the internet, the entry is even cheaper.
Free admission with London Pass: The London Pass ticket is often worthwhile for tourists who want to visit several sights in a few days. Also in the Tower of London the entrance with the London Pass is free: >>> More information about the London Pass on this page
Opening hours Tower of London 2023: The buildings are open seven days a week all year round. The Tower can be visited from 9 a.m. (Sunday and Monday from 10 a.m.). In summer (March to October) the castle complex is closed for visitors from 17:30, in winter already at 16:30. There is a lot to see in the Tower of London – at least three hours should be planned. As far as we know, the Tower is closed for visitors only on Christmas Eve (Christmas Eve and both holidays) and on 1 January. (as of January 2020)
How to get to the Tower of London: The Tower is located next to the Tower Bridge in the middle of the city. The city centre of London is subject to tolls, parking spaces are scarce and extremely expensive. Therefore, we recommend public transport. The next underground station is Tower Hill. One can also get there with the Dockland Light Railway. Also here, the next station is only five minutes walk from the entrance of the tower. It is called Tower Gateway Station. The following bus lines go to the London Tower: 15,42,78 and 100. Also ships (ferries) of the Thames Boat Service stop nearby.
Our excursion tip:
Tower Tickets: A good idea is to buy the tickets on the Internet in advance. I can’t say that often enough: The waiting time at the cash desk in front of the entrance to the Tower of London is often hours. On the link down you can buy the tickets for the Tower London online. Cancellations up to one day before the visit are free of charge at this provider. If you book in advance on the internet, the entrance fee is a few percent cheaper.
Audio-Guide: For a fee of about 4 Euro you can borrow an audio guide in different languages, also in German. In our opinion this makes sense.
Toilets / Access for disabled / Wheelchair 2023: To our knowledge, one area, such as the crown jewels, is accessible to people in wheelchairs, others only accessible via stairs. There are several toilets, including one for the disabled. Among the tours offered in the Tower is also a tour for blind people. There is also a place for “baby care” (changing diapers, etc.). The friendly staff at the London Tower will be happy to help you with any problems you may have.
Tip: Harry Potter excursion (Warner Brothers Studio Tour)
One of the popular excursions in London is to the film studios where the Harry Potter films were shot. The Warner Brothers studios are located about 30 kilometres north of London near the town of Watford. The tour includes a bus transfer from central London and has very good reviews. A “must” for every Harry Potter fan on holiday in London. The trip by bus and the visit to the film studios takes about 7 hours. You should book early,the popular Harry Potter excursion from London is often sold out.The alternative journey by public transport is not that easy.The excursion to Warner Brothers Studios is the highlight of the trip for manyLondon holidaymakers.
You can find more info and book the tour on this page.
Restaurants / Catering in the Tower of London: For the many tourists there is a cafe with hot meals, sandwiches and so on. There are also some kiosks with snacks, pastries, ice cream and drinks.
Tower of London: History
The Tower of London is a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London, England. It served as a royal residence, prison and fortress and played an important role in British history.
The Tower of London was built by William the Conqueror in 1066, shortly after the Normans conquered England. The original fortress was made of wood, but was rebuilt in stone in the late 11th and early 12th centuries. Over the centuries it was extended and remodelled, with new buildings and walls added to meet the changing needs of its inhabitants. One of the most famous events associated with the Tower of London is the execution of Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife. Anne was accused of treason and adultery and beheaded in Tower Green in 1536. Many other notables were also imprisoned and executed in the Tower, including Lady Jane Grey, who was Queen of England for only nine days in 1553.
The Tower of London was also used as a royal residence, with several monarchs significantly expanding the complex. One of the most notable figures was King Henry III, who built the Chapel of St Peter ad Vincula, which still exists today. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the Tower of London was mainly used as a prison and housed many famous prisoners. These included the notorious pirate Captain Kidd and the Jacobite rebel Sir John Perrott.
In the 19th century, the Tower of London was extensively restored and many of its medieval buildings were restored or rebuilt. The Tower was also used to store the Crown Jewels, which are still kept there today.
Today, the Tower of London is one of the most popular tourist attractions in London, attracting millions of visitors every year. Visitors can explore the Tower’s many buildings and exhibitions, including the White Tower, the Crown Jewels and the Royal Armoury. The Tower also has a team of Beefeaters who act as tourist guides and guardians of the Tower’s history and traditions.