Visit Westminster Abbey and St. Paul’s Cathedral for Free
Churches aren’t always a place of respite, sanctuary or escape – sometimes they are a tourist attraction and it costs £18 to get in. While the admission fees allow the upkeep and great services to continue, it’s not always within a budget travelers reach. Our pay-what-you-like tour model and London blog were created so that one’s budget wouldn’t totally dictate one’s experience while exploring London.
TIP: Westminster Abbey is included for free with the London Pass. St. Paul’s Cathedral is included for free on the Explorer Pass or you could get 20% off admission when you combine St. Paul’s with another attraction with the Explorer Pass’s Build Your Own Pass Option. Be sure to read our post on the London discount tourist pass.
You can experience the grandeur and beauty of these two iconic London houses of worships for free if you know when to go. Evening services at Westminster Abbey and St. Paul’s Cathedral are held almost daily and require no admission charge or ticket. The services are on a first come first serve basis. While you do get a guided tour or access into some of the far flung areas of the nave, you’ll get to experience the abbey the way pilgrims, kings and queens have for centuries – for a beautifully sung chorale service.
There is some time after the hour long service for a quick wander around the main area if the docents allow. For both places, it depends on who is working that evening!
If you can’t make it time for the Evensong, St. Margaret’s Church at Westminster Abbey is always free to visit as is the College Gardens and the Cloisters, though donations are appreciated for upkeep.
Visiting for St. Paul’s Cathedral for Free
As a house of worship, St. Paul’s Cathedral holds daily services. For those who wish to use the church for worship purposes, there is no fee to enter, providing guests arrive in time for the service.
Attending a service at St. Paul’s means you will NOT be allowed to explore the building, tombs, memorials and domes. These areas are blocked off during hours of worship. However, you WILL get to sit inside the church and enjoy its’ majesty, size, and beauty, all whilst taking in services steeped in centuries of historic tradition.
Be sure to read our full post on St. Paul’s Cathedral.
Opening Hours for Worshipers
- Daily Services at: 7:30, 8:00, 12:30 and 17:00*
- Sunday Services at: 8:00, 11:00, 15:15*, 16:45, 18:00
- [++Margaret’s Tip++ – The 17:00 weekday services and the 15:15 Sunday service contain the Choral Evensong. These services are sung by boys and gentlemen’s choirs that feature some of the most enchanting, haunting and impressive church performances in the world!]
- St. Paul’s Station on the Central Line
- Mansion House Station on the District and Circle Line
- Bus Nos. 4, 11, 15, 23, 25, 26, 100, 242
For more budget saving tips, check out our London tour blog.