Discover our virtual palaces

We are lucky enough to look after extraordinary palaces, spaces and objects in our palaces. We look after Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace, Banqueting House, Kew Palace and Hillsborough Castle and Gardens in Northern Ireland.

Between them, the six extraordinary historic buildings in our care have witnessed 1,000 years of history. They have survived many tumultuous moments in the past. 

Take a look at some highlights and stories that we can share with you during these challenging times.

Lucy Worsley, Joint Chief Curator, Historic Royal Palaces

Lucy Worsley's Royal Palace Secrets

Take a tour of three of our palaces with Lucy Worsley in the programme Royal Palaces Secrets, available on BBC iplayer in the UK on PBS in the US. 

With the palaces closed, Lucy takes you on a tour of the Tower of London, Hampton Court Palace and Kensington Palace as she uncovers the dramatic events that changed the course of British history. 

With a £100 million shortfall in our finances this year, we need your support now more than ever, to sustain the charity through this difficult period. If you love the palaces and believe in what we do, please donate today. Simply Text PALACES to 70085 to donate £5. Texts cost £5 plus one standard rate message. Thank you.

Virtual tours

Behind the scenes

Beyond Palace Doors

Our palaces are full of hidden secrets. Take a peek behind the scenes in our video series.

Palace stories

Read stories from our curators about our palaces and the people who lived in them.

Illustration of the medieval poet Chaucer in black and white

Blog: Poets at the Tower of London

7 October was National Poetry Day in the UK which encourages all to enjoy, discover and share poetry. The special theme this year is ‘Choice’. Curator Charles Farris explores the lives of just some of the poets who have lived and worked at the Tower of London… not always by choice.

Blog: Templars at the Tower

Postdoctoral researcher Rory MacLellan writes about this fascinating story of the imprisonment of the Templars at the Tower of London.

Illustration of John Gerard in black and white

Blog: Torture at the Tower

On the anniversary of the birth of John Gerard, Curator Alden Gregory reflects on the dark history of the Tower of London and how it resonates today. Please be aware that this blog post contains descriptions of torture that some people might find distressing.

More stories

Past exhibitions

Photograph of George III's waistcoat inside Kew Palace in the George III: The Mind Behind The Myth exhibition
Things to see

To celebrate the achievements of King George III, a display in 2021 considered the real man behind the much-peddled myth. This exhibition has ended.

Closed

Kew Palace

Included in Kew Gardens admission

Henry VIII (1491-1547) June 1526-June 1527, by LUCAS HORENBOUT (C. 1490/5-1544)
Events Things to see

Immerse yourself in Tudor history as we reunite stunning works of art, gold, weapons, manuscripts and clothing from the Field of Cloth of Gold, Henry VIII's legendary encounter with his great rival François I of France.

Closed

Hampton Court Palace

Included in palace admission (members go free)

The Lost Dress of Elizabeth I exhibition, showing curator Eleri Lynn looking at the Bacton Altar Cloth in a case. The Rainbow Portrait hangs in the background of the green exhibition space.
Things to see

See the Bacton Altar Cloth, a rare survival of Elizabethan dress worn by Elizabeth I, and the iconic Rainbow Portrait at Hampton Court Palace.

Closed

Hampton Court Palace

Included in palace admission (members go free)