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The Queen opens Buckingham Palace Gardens to the public

(CNN) – Green finger enthusiasts will be able to roam freely through the gardens of historic Buckingham Palace in London this summer, as Queen Elizabeth II allows self-guided tours of the park for the first time in the palace’s history.
The palace’s 39-acre gardens – which is the Queen’s official residence in London – will allow paying visitors to tour the garden and picnic on its ‘large lawns’ from July through September.

Access to certain areas of the garden has already been included as part of guided tours of Buckingham Palace, but visitors will now be able to explore a much larger area, the Royal Collection Trust told CNN on Thursday.

Members of the public will enjoy rare flora and fauna and meadows “carpeted with primroses and hyacinths … shrubs and flowering trees of camellias, magnolias and azaleas”, a said the Royal Collection Trust in a press release.

The current landscape design dates back to the 1820s when, on instruction from King George IV, Buckingham House became a palace, the Royal Collection Trust declared.

A striking 156 meter herbaceous border can be seen in the gardens.

John Campbell / Royal Collection Trust / Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2021

The site’s history dates back to the reign of Jacques I, who allegedly raised silkworms there. The building itself was originally built in 1705 as a large house before being extended into a palace.

It features a collection of mulberry trees and a range of ‘rare native plants rarely seen in London’, including a 156-meter herbaceous border and trees planted by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert and bearing their names.

Views of a large lake and the palace beehives can also be admired on self-guided tours.

Meanwhile, guided tours of the gardens will provide access to the Southwest Garden, which includes a summer house, rose garden and wildflower meadow.

In line with the relaxation of some coronavirus lockdown restrictions in England, guided tours will also be offered inside Buckingham Palace itself between May and September.

The Queen opens Buckingham Palace Gardens to the public

The rose garden and the summer house can be seen on guided tours.

John Campbell / Royal Collection Trust / Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2021

These tours, said the Royal Collection Trust, will give visitors access to the “magnificent” rooms of the palace, which have been furnished with “some of the greatest treasures of the Royal Collection”, including “the finest English furniture and French of the world ”and porcelain and“ exquisite ”works of art.

For those who cannot visit Buckingham Palace in person, online guides will also be streamed live from Buckingham Palace during the summer, as well as Windsor Castle and Holyroodhouse Palace in Edinburgh, Scotland.

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