Discover our virtual palaces

Updated 29 May. In line with government guidance, our palaces remain closed. We are working on detailed plans to safely re-open our sites, starting with our outdoor spaces. Thank you for your patience. Read our statement

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. 

While the palaces are closed, take a look at some highlights and stories that we can share with you during these challenging times. 

Virtual Tower of London tour

The East Front Gardens wildflower meadow, showing red poppies (Papaver rhoeas), white campion (Silene latifolia) and other wildflowers and grasses, 2 July 2019. A low-angled view, looking north-west towards the East and South Fronts.

Blog: Creating your own wildflower garden

You can create your own wildflower meadow in a small patch of garden.

Tracey Tooley investigating Hampton Court Palace with Tudor figures from history.

Five brilliant history resources for home schooling

Discover curriculum-linked history resources for all Key Stages that will keep your kids learning about the Tudors, Victorians and more while you're staying home together.

Beyond Palace Doors

Our palaces are full of hidden secrets. Whilst our palace doors are closed, take a peek behind the scenes in our video series.

Take a virtual 360 tour

While our doors are closed, take a virtual tour around Hillsborough Castle and Gardens

Palace stories

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

Detail of the stained-glass in the west window showing a likeness of King Henry VIII in the Great Hall. The glass was installed in 1845 to the designs of Thomas Willement.

Blog: Henry VIII and the sweating sickness

Henry VIII is usually remembered as the uber-confident, intimidating megalomaniac who touted his magnificence on an international stage. But in 1528, a terrifying epidemic of ‘sweating sickness’ brought out his vulnerable side. Tracy Borman explores this strange disease and Henry’s surprising reaction to it.

Queen Victoria's childhood bedroom at Kensington Palace.

Blog: Researching and redecorating Queen Victoria’s childhood home

On 24th May 1819 at Kensington Palace, Queen Victoria was born. in 2019, as part of the work to recreate the rooms where Victoria grew up, Historic Royal Palaces curators carried out extensive research into the decorative schemes she would have known as a little girl.

The White Tower exterior at the Tower of London under a blue, partially cloudy sky. Visitors can be seen exploring the grounds beneath the tower

Blog: The Tower of London: a thousand years of resilience and strength

The Tower of London has witnessed some of our nation’s most testing moments and is a symbol of our collective resilience. This blog explores some of these trials, and the small but important part the Tower and its people played in tackling them. We begin our story in the Middle Ages…

More stories

Revisit past exhibitions and rooms

Portrait of Queen Victoria on a green background
Things to see Highlights

Explore Queen Victoria’s private life behind her carefully-managed public image in this major new exhibition at Kensington Palace.

Closed 5 Jan 2020

Kensington 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 Highlights

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 23 February 2020

Hampton Court Palace

Included in palace admission (members go free)

The Tudor Great Hall at Hampton Court Palace, showing the Abraham Tapestries and the room set out for day visitors.
Things to see

Experience the splendour of the Tudor court in Henry VIII's Great Hall, complete with his magnificent tapestries.

Open daily

Hampton Court Palace

Included in palace admission (members go free)