Buckingham Palace welcomes an estimated 15 million tourists per year and is also the well-loved, well-kept private residence of Queen Elizabeth II. Since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out however, some changes have to be made about tours in this enigmatic palace. Self-guided tours have become the thing, but some visitors find these a "rip-off."

According to Express UK, "Visitors were also promised a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to picnic on the lawn," with these self-guided tours. Visitors expected that even in the middle of an unrelenting pandemic, they would be able to enjoy the 39-acre site and its several notable features, including trees planted by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

However, they reportedly did not and some could not resist complaining. They went to the travel review site, TripAdvisor to reveal what they thought of the tour, and how little of the gardens was just made accessible to them.

Some said they kept paying to acess certain parts of the garden and yet they were not getting their money's worth at the same time.

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Some specifically revealed that they were asked to forked out extra £6.50 for a tour of the rose garden and wildflower meadow, and these visits have to be coordinated and arranged in advance.

One visitor who was obviously not happy with the trip claimed that it's not even because of COVID-19 that they have to keep certain areas closed down. Had it been the case, why are these accessible for extra fees? 

"Buckingham Palace has opened its gardens to the public for the first time this year - it really shouldn't have bothered," the dissatisfied visitor said. 

"For your £16.50, you gain access to a large lawn with one herbaceous border. We expected the garden to be spectacular, but it was totally underwhelming," the person added.

"The (potentially) more interesting parts of the garden were roped off and only accessible if you parted with yet more cash on a guided 'tour," he further revealed. He concluded that people can have more enjoyment and value for their time if they spend it on free parks instead.

One was even more straightforward and described the whole tour as a "complete rip-off."

"I paid £16.50 for access to the gardens only hoping to lazy around, see beautiful flowers and trees and what I experienced was first a long queue to security check and then seeing a piece of lawn surrounded by standing stewards watching your every step and ropes segregating rest of the garden," the commenter shared.

"This small fragment of the park that you have access to is easily walkable around in 10 minutes and nothing is interesting to see there," he said, concluding with an advice too that people should just visit other parks around London.

A third complained that apart from most parts of the gardens being cordoned off, the foods being offered can break a bank. 

"Takes less than one hour to get around. Also expensive coffee and cake," the person said. 


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