Free guided tours for UK residents

Tour guide with guided tour group in voting lobby

Democratic access guided tours sponsored by a Member of Parliament (MP) or a Member of the House of Lords are available to UK residents only, free of charge.

What does the tour cover?

During this 75 minute tour, your knowledgeable guide will describe how the business and traditions of both Houses contribute to the day to day workings of UK Parliament. They will also highlight some of the dramatic history of the Palace of Westminster.

When the Houses are sitting, the full tour route may not always be available and can be subject to last minute changes or cancellation due to parliamentary business.

How can I book this tour?

UK residents should contact their local MP, or a Member of the House of Lords, to arrange a free guided tour. You do not have to know your MP personally or support them politically.

These tours can be booked up to 6 months in advance. Early booking is recommended if you want to book a tour on a specific date but is not essential if you are flexible about when you can visit.

Is there last-minute availability?

We often have last-minute availability for these tours. If you are a UK resident and can visit within the next seven days, please email us about spare places.

You can also ask at the Ticket Office located in front of Portcullis House on Victoria Embankment (postcode SW1A 2LW).

When can I go on this tour?

These tours start between the following times:

During parliamentary sessions 

  • Monday: 9.00am-12noon (full tour)
  • Tuesday and Wednesday: 9.00am-9.55am (full tour)
  • Tuesday and Wednesday: 10.00am-12noon (shorter tour including the House of Lords, Central Lobby, St Stephen’s Hall and Westminster Hall, but not the House of Commons)
  • Thursday: no tours
  • Sitting Fridays: 3.30pm-5.15pm (full tour)

During parliamentary recesses

  • Summer recess: Monday morning 9.30am-12.30pm (except Bank Holidays)
  • Short November recess: 9.00am-5.15pm
  • All other recesses: Monday 9.00am-5.15pm (except Bank Holidays when an alternative day will be made available)

Democratic access tours are not available on Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Other tours available to both UK residents and overseas visitors

UK residents and overseas visitors can book tickets for other tours which take place on Saturdays throughout the year and on most weekdays during parliamentary recesses.

Tickets can be purchased online, by calling +44 (0)20 7219 4114 or from the Ticket Office.

Image credit: UK Parliament / Roger Harris

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