Big Ben in London: opening times, prices and tips and everything you need to know

Big Ben in London: opening times, prices and tips and everything you need to know 

O Big Ben in London it is the symbol of the capital of England and also of the whole country. The clock is the second largest in the world with four faces (the first is in Minneapolis, in the United States). During your trip to the United Kingdom, Big Ben will definitely be part of your itinerary and today we'll tell you all about it so you can get ready.

Or Big Ben in London

The Big Ben tower in London is 96 meters high and can be seen from various points of the city. The name of the tower is actually Elizabeth tower and Big Ben is the bell inside the tower. The bell is almost 14 tons and over 2 meters high.

Big Ben in London was built in 1858, next to the Palace of Westminster (seat of the British Parliament) and has a neo-Gothic style, with clocks on its four sides. The first time the bell rang was on May 31, 1859.

The tower is beautiful by day and even more so by night, all lit up. Every day, thousands of tourists photograph London's most famous landmark.

The Big Ben makeover

Due to its dozens of years, the Big Ben tower in London needed to undergo a maintenance reform, to fix cracks, leaks and also the functioning of the clock.

Renovation work began in 2017 and is due to end in 2021. The estimated cost of the entire work will be £29 million and will also include the installation of a lift to improve accessibility to the tourist spot.

Currently, access to climb the tower is via 334 steps in a spiral staircase. Those who have a trip scheduled to London need not worry, because a face of the clock has already been renovated and it is possible to take pictures of this historic moment from the Elizabeth Tower.

Big Ben in London: opening times, prices and tips and everything you need to know

The Silence of Big Ben

The last bell of Big Ben before the renovation was on August 21, 2017 and the traditional bells will only be heard again in 2021. With the exception of commemorative dates, such as New Year's Eve.

How to get to Big Ben

The tower is located in one of the central points of London, close to the London Eye, Westminster Abbey, Trafalgar Square and St James's Park.

Address: Westminster, London SW1A 0AA.

The best way to get to Big Ben in London is by tube and get off at Westminster Station (Westminster Station), on the Circle, District and Jubilee lines. When you get off the metro station, you will already see Big Ben in front of you. It's an amazing feeling when we get close for the first time.

How to Visit Big Ben in London

It is possible to visit the British Parliament through guided tours. At the moment it is not possible to visit Big Ben, due to the renovation works. But it is possible to visit several areas of the parliament, with a 90-minute tour, guided in English.


Tickets to visit the British Parliament have the following prices:

  • Adults: £26,50
  • Young people aged 16 to 18: £22,00
  • Students, over 60s and UK military: £22,00
  • Children aged 5 to 15: £11,50
  • Children under 5 years old: free

Tickets can be purchased online, by phone (+44 (0)20 7219 4114) or at the office located at Portcullis House on Victoria Embankment (postcode SW1A 2LW).

In addition to getting to know the parliament, you can take advantage and buy tours in advance through Get Your Guide. There are several options for combined tours, bus tours, walking tours and many London attractions.

Fun facts about Big Ben London

  • In 2012, the tower was renamed the Elizabeth Tower. Prior to that, it was known simply as the Clock Tower.
  • On July 27, 2012, the bell rang for 3 minutes on account of the opening of the Summer Olympics in London.
  • The weight of Big Ben's bell is 13.760 kilograms (almost 14 tons).
  • The climb to the top (belfry) is currently made by 334 steps.
  • The company that built Big Ben's bell was Whitechapel Bell Foundry, founded in the year 1570 and closed in 2017.

what to see nearby

There are several attractions close to Big Ben in London, but a tip that I want to give first is to where to take the best photo. In front of the tower, you must cross the street and almost in front of the Churchill statue (Sir Winston Churchill Statue), there is an English telephone booth, which you can take incredible pictures, with the entire Big Ben tower in the background.

From this point, you will already be able to see Westminster Abbey, the most important church in London and which is really worth visiting. Historical and very important facts for the country took place there, such as the coronations and burials of several monarchs of the United Kingdom.

On the other side of the tower is the famous Westminster Bridge and from this point you will already be able to see the gigantic Ferris wheel London Eye, one of the most incredible sights in London and which yields wonderful pictures.

Right next to Big Ben (towards Westminster Abbey) is Buckingham Palace, the official residence of Queen Elizabeth II. The walk from the tower to the Palace is only 1,3 kilometers, about 17 minutes and it is worth taking the journey on foot, because the area is beautiful.

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