Royal Albert Hall
- Take in the ambience of the Royal Albert Hall as it is designed to be enjoyed by the public with a show or an event.
- Take a grand tour of the iconic British landmark that’s filled not just with music, but history and culture as well.
- Feel the music in one of the Royal Albert Hall’s amazing interactive workshops, suitable for all ages.
Royal Albert Hall is a great landmark of British culture that is well recognised across the whole world. This iconic concert hall stages over 400 shows every year as well as holding tours and workshops in between. One of London's most recognisable buildings, it attracts an average of 1.7 million people from all over the globe every year. It’s a fantastic location to bring the kids for their first concert or even just for an afternoon to marvel at the architecture and history behind this grand venue.
Commissioned by Prince Albert in 1850, the Royal Albert Hall in London was meant to be called the Central Hall. The Prince envisioned it as a cultural hub that celebrates and appreciates the Arts and Sciences. Unfortunately, the Prince died of typhoid fever in 1861 when the construction of the hall had not even begun. Henry Cole overtook the architecture of the venue. Inspired by Ancient Roman amphitheatres, the building was intended to house around 30,000 people; however, it was reduced to the capacity of 5,500 that we see today. The architecture features the classic style of a domed roof, columns, a mosaic frieze and a tympanum. The Central Hall was renamed in honour of Prince Albert and finally opened to the public with an emotional ceremony led by Queen Victoria in March of 1871. It has since grown into a beloved venue not just in Britain, but all over the world.
In the last 150 years, the Royal Albert Hall has hosted hundreds of shows featuring famous musicians and other iconic figures from all around the globe including; Albert Einstein, Muhammad Ali, Eric Clapton, Adele and many, many more. There are always exciting events happening here, from classical concerts to celebrity interviews and comedy shows. Perhaps the most well-known event held in the hall would be the Proms. The annual eight week stretch of concerts was established in 1895 to bring classical music to the widest audience possible and has flourished into a global phenomenon that people all around the world tune into every year. Seeing one of these shows, or any other event in the hall would make for a brilliant first concert for your little ones. Taking in the ambience of the music in a building with great historical and cultural importance to England is an experience like no other.
There’s more to the Royal Albert Hall than just the shows. Delve deeper into the business with a tour of the building. You can choose from one of four different types of guided tours that each specialise in different areas of life at the Royal Albert Hall. The most available tour is the general Royal Albert Hall Tour that takes visitors through the rich history of the building and all the major events. The Behind the Scenes Tour takes the group through the inner workings of show business, and the Special Interest Tour looks at life in the venue through different lenses such as Film and TV, architecture, classical music and so on. Ask all the questions you may have to the knowledgeable staff on hand, delight in the hidden secrets of the iconic building and if you’re lucky you might even catch an artist in soundcheck!
If there’s anything the organisers at the Royal Albert Hall are experts in, it’s music and the way it brings people together. Alongside having shows and concerts, the venue also holds incredible workshops and events for the public to enjoy on a smaller scale. With events for younger kids like storytelling and relaxed performances, to master classes about music production and apprenticeships for teenagers and choir practises for adults, there is something on here that’s suited to everyone in the family. Whether you’re 2 or 102, the Royal Albert Hall events will include something that piques your interest and gives you a taste of culture.
What to know before you go
- There are a wide variety of restaurants near the Royal Albert Hall. From light refreshments at the Cafe Bar and afternoon tea at Verdi: The Italian Kitchen to sipping wine in Schweppes Alchemy bar and enjoying a three-course meal in the Coda Restaurant, there is something to delight everyone’s palettes here.
- There are toilets, including unisex and wheelchair-accessible toilets, available on site.
- The Royal Albert Hall is mostly wheelchair accessible, with lifts and ramps where necessary, however not all areas of the venue are accessible for wheelchair users.
- Pamphlets with large print and audio descriptions of the shows are available to visitors who may need them. Please call in advance to give the management some notice if you wish to avail of these services.
- Assistance dogs are welcome in the venue.
How to get there
- The closest Tube Stations to Royal Albert Hall are South Kensington and High Street Kensington; both a 10-15 minute walk away.
- The closest Rail Stations are Victoria and Paddington, both around a 30-minute walk away.
- If you are taking the bus, the following routes have stops nearby the Royal Albert Hall; 9, 23, 52, 70, 360, 452, 702, N9 and N52.
- In terms of parking, visitors can use the Imperial College Car Park, approximately a 5 minute walk from the Royal Albert Hall. Please note that spaces here must be reserved in advance and come at the cost of £10.75.