Rooms Behind Royals' Vaunted Balcony Open to Public

$96 tickets sold out in hours, following years-long restoration
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 10, 2024 2:06 PM CDT
Rooms Behind Royals' Vaunted Balcony Open to Public
Britain's King Charles III, with Queen Camilla, is joined by Prince George, left, Prince William, Prince Louis, Princess Charlotte, and Kate, Princess of Wales, on the balcony at Buckingham Palace after attending the Trooping the Color ceremony, in London, Saturday, June 15, 2024.   (AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali)

If you've ever wondered about the room where the British royal family disappears to after waving from their Buckingham Palace balcony to the throngs below, well, wonder no longer. In fact, you can tour it: As the BBC reports, the east wing of the palace underwent a very expensive years-long renovation, and will be open to visitors starting next week. The Guardian reports that the area of the palace has been private for the royal family since it was built 175 years ago. Areas on tour include the Yellow Drawing Room, where Queen Elizabeth II sat for portraits and recorded Christmas messages.

For the price of about $96, tourists can now trample through the palace's east wing—or they could have if they'd been on their game, because the year's tours have already sold out. Visitors aren't allowed on the balcony itself, which the BBC notes has dangerously low railings, but they can get the view that waving royals see from peeping out the windows. The rooms on tour are rejuvenated and ornate, with Chinese-themed decor that includes a lotus flower-shaped chandelier. Both the BBC and Guardian have extensive photos of the renovations. Or Today will give you a video tour. (More Buckingham Palace stories.)

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