Christmas opening times

Over the Christmas period the Royal Observatory, National Maritime Museum, Cutty Sark and Queen's House will be open as usual. We are closed to the public from 24-26 December. Plan your next visit

Essential information

Admission: 
Free
Location: 
Royal Observatory, Queen's House

See some of London's most iconic architecture at the Queen's House by Inigo Jones and the Royal Observatory Greenwich by Christopher Wren, plus stunning modern architecture at London's only planetarium.

Greenwich is the location of some of London's most interesting architecture, with vistas of everything from classical design to award-winning new buildings. The area, under the name Maritime Greenwich, was designated a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1997.

Find out more about Maritime Greenwich

The Queen's House by Inigo Jones

The Queen's House was designed by Inigo Jones and is known as the first Classical building in England.

In the 1600s, English architect Jones was inspired by books by Andrea Palladio, one of Italy's greatest and most imitated architects, and brought Palladio's ideas to England, so beginning a new style of beautifully proportioned, symmetrical buildings called palladian.

As Surveyor of the King's Works, the Queen's House was one of Inigo Jones's first designs for James I's wife, Anne of Denmark. The Queen's House was built in the grounds of the Tudor Palace of Placentia at Greenwich. The design Jones produced was in the new style, and the completed building looked very different from the red brick, rather higgledy-piggledy Tudor palace.

More about the Queen's House

The Royal Observatory by Sir Christopher Wren

See Sir Christopher Wren's work in the original Royal Observatory building of Flamsteed House, which was home to the Astronomers Royal. This includes the famous Octagon Room.

Flamsteed House was constructed from spare building materials from the Tower of London, and a Tudor fort at Tilbury to save money. Wren was also the designer of the Old Royal Naval College, which stands opposite the National Maritime Museum and is now home to the University of Greenwich and Trinity College of Music.

Discover more about the Royal Observatory Greenwich

Find out more about the Old Royal Naval College

Modern architecture at the Peter Harrison Planetarium

At London's only Planetarium it's not just the shows that are breathtaking. The Planetarium has won awards for its design by architects Allies & Morrison, which features a bronze cone made from nearly 250 pieces, welded together and patinated to look like a single piece. It is one of single largest uses of bronze in the world.

More about the Peter Harrison Planetarium