Spending a Regal Weekend in London

The Royal Coronation in London

Celebrate the coronation bank holiday 2023, with a visit to some of London’s top royal attractions. Rent a car this summer to celebrate the Royal Coronation. There’s no better time to explore London’s iconic royal residences, galleries and gardens.

Whether you plan on making the most of the long bank holiday weekend from the 6th to the 8th of May 2023 to catch some of the exciting events in the city or fancy a royal trip throughout the year, start your regal tour of London with Hertz car hire. Not sure where to start? We’ve picked our top eight spots for your regal coronation weekend and beyond.

Book car hire in London with Hertz today and start planning your royal tour of the British capital. Check out our special spring and weekend car offers for an even better deal for your royal break or pick one of our electric car hires to avoid London’s congestion charges during your stay.

What’s happening on Coronation Bank Holiday 2023?

Here’s a rundown of some of the key coronation dates to pop in your diary in case you decide to visit during the coronation itself:

  • Saturday 6th May 2023: The Royal carriage sets off from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey, where the coronation ceremony takes place. Afterwards, the royals return to Buckingham Palace to finish off with more celebrations.
  • Sunday 7th May 2023: The Coronation Concert at Windsor Castle, with global music stars coming together to celebrate the new King. On the same day The Coronation Big Lunch will happen, with picnics and tea parties taking place across the UK.
  • Monday 8th May 2023: The Big Help Out takes place, a charitable event celebrating the impact of volunteering across communities throughout the country.

Road closures on Coronation Bank Holiday 2023
Expect heavy disruption with road closures starting around May 4th due to route rehearsals. There’s likely going to be heavy disruption in The West End and Buckingham Palace, with most closures happening around the Westminster area.

There is also likely going to be many street parties across London Boroughs. We suggest checking the local Borough’s websites for more information regarding these closures closer to coronation day.

A Royal London Tour

Tower of London’s Crown Jewels

Tower of London, London, EC3N 4AB

The Tower of London has held various roles within its almost 1,000-year history, including a secure fortress, royal palace and infamous prison. Today, it’s home to the Crown Jewels, a collection of more than 23,500 gemstones that adorn crowns, robes, sceptres and swords – all used by English royalty throughout history.

After the King’s coronation ceremony, the crown jewels are returned to the Tower of London. They are transported from Westminster Abbey under strict security and kept on display to the public in Jewel House.

The Tower of London is open daily, with admission times varying throughout the year. Hop in your Hertz car hire to check it out for yourselves.

Please note, the Tower of London is closed on Coronation Day (Saturday 6th May 2023).

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buckingham palace

Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Gate, London, SW1A 1AA

You can’t plan a royal tour of London without stopping by the one of the city’s biggest attractions. Visitors from around the world make the pleasant walk through St. James’s Park and along The Mall to see His Majesty’s beautiful royal residence in London.

Surrounded by its famous wrought iron gates, the palace is one of the capital’s most iconic sights. The Victoria Memorial and Changing of the Guard are situated just outside, meaning that the area is a hive of activity each day with throngs of tourists.

The park is a perfect spot to walk, picnic, and take photos all year round - especially in the spring and summer. Hire a car for the weekend to find your way around the capital.

On coronation day, The King and The Queen Consort will set off in a procession from Buckingham Palace in ‘The King’s Procession’ towards Westminster Abbey.

Visitors won’t be able to visit the State Rooms on Coronation Day. 

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The Queen’s Gallery

Buckingham Palace, London, SW1 1AA

From Buckingham Palace, it’s just a five-minute walk to The Queen’s Gallery on the southwest corner of the palace. The building was originally designed as an Ionic temple-inspired conservatory, then repurposed as a private chapel for Queen Victoria.

Following an air raid in 1940, it was finally repurposed as an art gallery for the Royal Collection in 1962. Works from this vast body of fine and decorative arts can be viewed in the galleries, which can be found within the Palace grounds.

The latest exhibition is the ‘Style and Society: Dressing the Georgians’ and runs from Friday 21st April 2023 to Sunday 8th October 2023 as way to celebrate attire during the Georgian period. Hire a car and drive over to see how royals of the past dressed with some of our weekend deals throughout the spring and summer.

The attraction will be closed to visitors on Coronation Day.

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Royal Mews’ Golden Coaches

Buckingham Palace, London, SW1 1AA

Our final stop in the Buckingham Palace grounds is the Royal Mews, built in 1825 as the main stables, riding school and coach house for the Royal family. This year it opens to the public from 2nd March to 30th October 2023, closing only on Tuesdays and Wednesdays during that period.

Venture inside to see the carriages and cars used by the King for special State events and ceremonies, including the Gold State Coach used for the coronation itself. You’ll also find the Diamond Jubilee State Coach, which was built for Queen Elizabeth’s 80th birthday and first used in 2014.

Dress up as a footman in tailored livery or live like a royal in a replica Semi-State Landau. There’s a chance to learn about the two types of horses that pull the royal carriages too – Windsor Greys and Cleveland Bays. If you decide to travel during the coronation bank holiday weekend you might be lucky enough to meet some. Make 2023 a year to remember.

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westminster abbey

Westminster Abbey

20 Deans Yard, London, SW1P 3PA

The crowning of King Charles III is set to take place at Westminster Abbey on coronation day – Monday 8th May 2023. The Archbishop of Canterbury will perform the ceremony with longstanding tradition and pageantry. Take advantage of our weekend car hire deals and be part of a moment in history.

Follow in the footsteps of royalty as you wander the halls of Westminster Abbey. This Gothic church has hosted every coronation since 1066, held more than 16 royal weddings and has 30 Kings and Queens buried within its grounds.

See the spectacular shrine to King Edward the Confessor behind the High Altar, before visiting the Lady Chapel. This is where you’ll find the tombs of Elizabeth I, Mary I and Henry VII – be sure to look up and admire the medieval architecture and intricate fan vaulted ceiling.

The Abbey also has its fair share of stained-glass windows, spanning from the 18th century to modern day. The Abbey is normally open to visitors from Monday to Saturday, while services are held daily, free of charge, including on Sundays.

The Abbey will be closed from 25th April until re-opening on Monday 8th May 2023 to prepare for the Coronation.

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Household Cavalry Museum

Horse Guards Parade, Whitehall, London, SW1A 2AX

Go behind-the-scenes of the Household Cavalry, who guard His Majesty at ceremonies and special events in London and across the UK. It’s located in Horse Guards, close to St James’ Park and a short walk from Downing Street – with the London Eye sitting the backdrop.

The Household Cavalry Museum lets kids and adults alike see inside the famous stables. Visitors can try on Cavalryman uniform and learn the inner workings of the mounted regiment, while there’s also a museum and guided tours of the grounds available.

Time your visit right and you may even get to see the guards in action. There are hourly sentry changes, daily morning guard changes and daily afternoon Garrison inspections.

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hampton court

Hampton Court Palace

Hampton Court Way, Molesey, East Molesey, KT8 9AU

Brush up on your royal history with a trip to Hampton Court Palace – home of Henry VIII. Learn about the lives of Henry and his wives and explore significant moments that occurred within these Tudor walls, from the Chapel Royal to William III’s State Apartments.

Don’t forget to take a tour of the Great Hall, where King Henry VIII would entertain and impress his court with banquets, balls and performances. Fancy some fresh air? Your admission also includes access to Hampton Court’s pristine formal gardens. Enjoy a stroll through the sunken gardens, then challenge friends and family to navigate the world’s oldest puzzle maze. Or pack up a picnic and enjoy the sunshine with friends and family. During the weekend you’ll only be able to visit the Chapel Royal on the Saturday, as it’s only open from Wednesdays to Saturdays.

You’ll even be able to view the coronation on big screens at Hampton Court Palace. If you visit during the coronation bank holiday 2023, you can share the historic occasion with fellow crowd members.

The Palace will be closed on Coronation Day, with only the gardens remaining open.

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Kensington Palace

Kensington Gardens, London, W8 4PX

Welcome to Kensington Palace, the home of King William and Queen Mary, birthplace of Queen Victoria and the official London residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Explore the perfectly preserved State Apartments, complete with silk hangings, carved fireplaces and opulent carpets. In the Jewel Room, discover spectacular gems commissioned for Queen Victoria by Prince Albert, including a dazzling diamond and emerald tiara, with matching necklace, earrings and brooch.

If you’re wanting to visit during coronation weekend, please note that it’s closed on Saturday 6th May 2023 for the event.

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Picnics in the Royal Parks

One way to make the most of your Hertz car hire in London is to pack up a picnic and enjoy the many public parks available during the long coronation weekend. Enjoy some sandwiches in the sun in Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens or St. James’ Park, right next to Buckingham Palace.

You can explore all these and more today when you hire with us. We have plenty of branches at key locations across the city and at all the major airports serving the capital.

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Ready to live like royalty on your next visit to the capital? Book Hertz car hire in London.