We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Sydney
Level Contributor
1,197 posts
60 reviews
Save Topic
Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Hi All,

We want to see the Guard Horses either walking or parading I am assuming on the way to the actual Changing of the Guard? I have found this thread below and hope those instructions will work for us? Don't need to see the actual person changing section, more interested in seeing the horses dressed up and going by. What is the best way to do this? We can see them on Wednesday, 31 July or if not hopefully Saturday 2 August.

Thanks, Lozzie64

TxOffWeGo

Houston, TX

posts: 1,951

reviews: 25

Save this Post

4. Re: Best Vantages to See Changing of the Guards

09 April 2012, 23:51

We've always had good luck with this position. Stand diagonally across from the palace on Spur Road on the St. James side, with your back to St. James Park and the Victoria Memorial to your right. Stand closer to Birdcage Walk than The Mall. The guards form up at the Wellington Barracks along Birdcage Walk and march down Spur Road, where they turn into the palace forecourt. If you stand here behind the low railings, you have a perfect view of them marching along. Most people try to get up on the memorial or right at the BP gates, where you can't really see much.

After the guards enter the forecourt, I would recommend turning and walking down The Mall toward Trafalgar Square. As you do this, you will see the new contingent of Horse Guards riding toward the palace, and the contingent from St. James Palace marching to the ceremony. Seeing the guards come to the palace is the best thing about the ceremony for me. Once they enter the forecourt, unless you are right up there you don't see much.

Also, since everyone is trying to get up by the forecourt, it's easier to get a good spot on Spur Road than by the gates.

You don't say when you will be there. Be sure to check the schedule since in some months the change only takes place on certain days--even or odd. If it is really bucketing down with rain they don't do the ceremony.

Illinois
Level Contributor
17,134 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Those directions are for the regular (on foot) Changing of the Guard. There is a website for the various changings, and the Horse Guards will be on there. IIRC they change at 11AM. It's normally done on Horseguards Parade. It wasn't crowded when we went, but we didn't go in July.

changing-the-guard.com/london-programme.html

Sydney
Level Contributor
1,197 posts
60 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Thanks have printed off the schedule as I think we will be there for 31 July.

Any suggestion on where to go/stand for the best view of the Horse Guards Parade?

Only have a few days in London and they are all busy so don't want to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Thanks.

Lozzie64

Illinois
Level Contributor
17,134 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Horse Guards Parade is a place. It's the sandy (or it was sandy/gravel last time I was there, which was before the Olympics) area located behind the building (you walk through an arch) that is behind where the Horse Guards stand when they're guarding. When we went there was a roped off area in the middle for the horses and you could stand anywhere else. It's where the beach volleyball was in the Olympics.

New York City, New...
Level Contributor
151 posts
39 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

We were there on Monday. We went to the front of the building and watched them come out (before 11) and then followed them after they went through the arch to the roped off parade area. There were people there but we were able to get right up to the roe. At 11 the other horse guards came from the park area into the roped off area. Afterwards we were able to walk down to St. James Palace and see the horse guards pass by and then the guards came back (I would assume from Buckingham Palace) and we were able to see them change at St. James.

naperville, illinois
Level Contributor
1,596 posts
111 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

We, too, want to see the Horse Guards - going to the actual 'change' (we have seen the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace before and really don't wish to relive the mob scene). BUT - we will be there at the end of November, beginning of December. Looking on the website that bgtm provided, the shedule is for July and August. (And, I did read that the future schedules are posted closer to the actual month.) In the 'faq' section of the website it also stated that from August to April the change takes place on alternate days. SO... does anyone know if it is even or odd days - from previous experience/knowlege? And do they hold it on the weekends or weekday only during August - April? I was hoping to do the Horse Guards on a Saturday, which is hopefully when we can do a tour of Parliment (that schedule will be posted soon according to an email I received from that information office./ sightseeing around that area.

So, clarification for the winter months schedule of the Horse Guards?

Thanks

Sydney
Level Contributor
1,197 posts
60 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Does anyone please have a map of where they actually go? Just to make it a bit more understandable for Foreigners.

I am assuming if I print this thread out and hit my Concierge at the Hotel they may be able to make sure I am in the right place at the right time?

Thanks.

Lozzie64

Watford
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
41,601 posts
51 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

The Horse Guards change is daily throughout the year at 11.00 except on Sundays when it starts at 10.00.

trooping-the-colour.co.uk/lifeguard/index.htm

naperville, illinois
Level Contributor
1,596 posts
111 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

adamhornets.....THANK YOU!!! Everything I had read indicated that the Horse Guards were daily, but then I began to doubt my interpretation of everything. SO - now that you have cleared up my confusion, I can figure out where we will need to stand so that we can get a good view of this.... and continue with my scheduling.

And, I second the request put out by Lozzie64 - if anyone has a map or can give a bit more information on path that would be great!

Thanks~

Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
2,301 posts
Save Reply
9. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VDXGlWrEHJI

Houston, TX
Level Contributor
4,563 posts
23 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Horse Guards confusion, please help?

Lozzie64---you have made my day! I've now had one of my posts quoted by someone else on TA!

Those suggestions were indeed for the changing of the guard at the palace. The video that TexScott-II has linked is for the Horse Guards themselves. At the beginning of the video, the mounted sentries shown are in the guard structures along Whitehall. They are usually there until about 4 pm. You can stand there and have someone else in your party take a picture--they are quite used to that. The courtyard you see them walking into is on the opposite side of the building, along Horse Guards Road., where the volleyball was played. You may have noticed that the barricades or railing are up so that people who stand there to watch the change are actually staring at the horses' rear ends. If you can, instead stand with your back to Horse Guards Road, facing the building. This way you will see the entire ceremony without having it filtered through the tails and rumps of the horses. You might not be able to stand there at first, since the old contingent has to come through that way after they turn from The Mall, but once they are in place you might be able to move more in that direction.

Since they do this earlier on Sundays, if you really want to see both you can see most of what happens at Horse Guards and then hustle down through St. James Park to get a spot for the foot ceremony, if you aren't too picky about how good a view you get. Or you can walk quickly down The Mall and stop about halfway to the palace and wait and see the new contingent ride by.