Visiting and tours

Parliament is open to all UK residents through a variety of different programmes and events. Guided tours take visitors into both the Commons and Lords chambers and historic Westminster Hall. Separate tours up the Clock Tower - more popularly known as Big Ben - can also be arranged. Visitors can also attend debates in both Houses and watch committee hearings.

Parliament's Education Service runs a year-round programme of school visits, which may include a question and answer session with the school's MP. The Parliamentary Archives, which hold millions of records from both Houses and other historical material, are open to all members of the UK public and overseas visitors.

UK visitors

UK residents can attend debates, watch committees, take a tour of Parliament and climb the Clock Tower

Overseas visitors

Overseas visitors can attend debates and watch committees when Parliament is in session, and can tour Parliament every Saturday and during the Summer Opening

Saturday and Summer Opening

On Saturdays and during the Summer Opening, UK residents and overseas visitors can buy tickets to tour Parliament

Art and architecture tours

Specialist tours are available focusing on the art and architecture of Portcullis House, the only new building commissioned by Parliament since the Palace of Westminster in the 19th century

Open House

Parliament opens its doors to the public as part of the annual Open House weekend

Education service

There are a number of programmes for different student age groups in addition to teacher training days.

Visit the Parliamentary Archives

The Parliamentary Archives holds millions of records from both Houses and other historical material relating to Parliament.

Arrange a tour

See both Houses of Parliament and the historic Westminster Hall

Clock Tower tour

UK residents can arrange a tour of the Clock Tower through their local MP or member of the House of Lords. Regretfully, such tours are not available to overseas visitors

Westminster Hall information desk

Information staff in Westminster Hall are available to provide visitors with assistance and directions and to answer any questions about their visit, or the work of Parliament

Jubilee Café

The Jubilee Café provides refreshments for all visitors to the Palace of Westminster

Online tours of Parliament

If you can't visit Parliament in person, why not take a tour online?

Where do I go?

Lost in the wilds of Westminster? Find your bearings with our maps of the parliamentary estate and the surrounding area.

Virtual tours

Can't visit Parliament in person? Why not climb the Clock Tower, have a look around the Commons or visit the House of Lords library with this series of online tours.

Podcasts

Listen to our series of audio tours of Parliament. You can listen to them online, with an accompanying slideshow, or download them to listen to later.

Related information

Security information

A number of simple security measures have been put in place for the safety of all our visitors. Please take note of them before and during your visit.

  • Searches, similar to those used in airports, will be conducted on entry.
  • Mobile phones must be turned off.
  • Cameras cannot be used, except in Westminster Hall.
Saturday and Summer Opening

Tours of Parliament are available to all on Saturdays throughout the year and during the Summer Opening period. Tickets can be purchased in advance or on the day itself (subject to availability).