Changing the Guard | Windsor Castle / Guards Route

Although the ceremony takes place inside the Castle, for which tickets are required, you can watch the Guards, normally led by a Regimental Band, as they march to and from Windsor Castle.

For their march to and from Victoria Barracks traffic is stopped, transforming the bustling High Street into a parade route lined by residents and visitors waiting, for the New Guard to march past on their way to and from Changing the Windsor Castle Guard.

Where to watch

The steps of Guildhall, being slightly raised, is a popular spot, where you can get some great pictures of the guards as they march past on their way to and from Windsor Castle, but good views are available along the entire route.

At approximately 10:45 hours the New Guard, normally accompanied by a Regimental Band or Corps of Drums, step off from Victoria Barracks, they march up Sheet Street, wheeling left into the High Street, past the Parish Church and the Guildhall, then wheel right onto Castle Hill, by Queen Victoria's Statue, and enter the Castle through the Henry VIII Gateway.

During Easter Court and Ascot Week find a spot on the opposite side of the road to the Castle, near the junction with St Albans Road, to see the Old Guard leave the Castle through the Henry VIII Gateway, between 10:40-10:45, turning, left they march up Castle Hill and back into the Castle.

Soon after the New Guard, led by a Regimental Band will march past you on their way up the hill to the George IV Gateway.

After the Guard Mount ceremony the 'Old Guard' and Band return to Victoria Barracks, following the same route in reverse.

The March in Pictures

  • Victoria Barracks
  • Victoria Barracks
    Guards and Band waiting for the order to fall in at Victoria Barracks
  • Victoria Barracks
    The Band of the Coldstream Guards march out of Victoria Barracks
  • Sheet Street
    As the New Guard wheel left from the Barracks into Sheet Street the Captain's Escort double forward to take up position.
  • Sheet Street
    The Coldstream Guards marching up Sheet Street on their way to Windsor Castle
  • Sheet Street
    Marching up Sheet Street
  • Irish Guards Memorial
    When the Irish Guards are on duty they will salute, when mounting or dismounting the guard, as they pass the Irish Guards Memorial.
    The Memorial, a life-size figure of a Guardsman wearing Osprey body armour, is dedicated to all Irish Guardsmen, Past, Present and Future.
  • High Street
    The New Guard march up the High Street.
    Here they are being led by Domhnall the Regimental Mascot of the Irish Guards
  • High Street
    Normally led by a Regimental Band or Corps of Drums the New Guard are occasionally accompanied by Pipers.
  • High Street
    Wheeling onto Castle Hill from the High Street
  • Victoria Memorial
    Coldstream Gaurds Corps of Drums wheel round the Victoria Memorial onto Castle Hill
  • Castle Hill
  • Henry VIII Gate Windsor Castle
    The New Guard enter the Castle
  • The Guard Mount
    The Guard normally mount in the Lower Ward of the Castle
  • Easter Court
    During Easter Court or when HM The Queen is in official residence at Windsor the Guards march to the top of the hill to mount in the Upper Quadrangle.
  • Easter Court
    The Band enter the Upper Quadrangle
  • Winter Dress
    During the Winter months the Guards parade in Grey Greatcoats instead of their iconic red tunics.
  • Wet Weather Mount
    In wet weather the Guards march to the Castle without musical support.

Photographs, by David Whitecross, taken along the route the Guards march

Visitor tipVisitor Tip

A tip, from David Whitecross our photographer in Windsor;
"To see more and get some great pictures head for Victoria Barracks then follow the Guards up Sheet Street and along the High Street, on the Parish Church side then a quick dart through either through Market Street or Church Street, to right of the Guildhall, will bring you to Castle Hill as the Band is still turning round the Queen Victoria Memorial".

"During Easter Court and Ascot Week follow the New Guard as far as the Irish Guards Memorial then turn right, past the old wishing well, into St Albans Road, (which runs parallel to the High Street), where, a brisk walk will bring you to Castle Hill where you will be able to see the Band and Guards marching up to the top of Castle Hill."


Easter Court

Traditionally Her Majesty The Queen stays at Windsor Castle over the Easter period, known as ?Easter Court?. During this period, the Windsor Castle Guard march to the top of Castle Hill and enter the Castle through the St George's Gate to change the guard on the lawn of the Quadrangle.

Inside the Castle

Find out more about the ceremony and suggestion on where to watch the Guard Mount inside Windsor Castle.

Getting to Windsor Castle

Windsor is 30 miles (50km) West of London.

By Train

From London you can get to Windsor from both Waterloo and Paddington stations.

Trains from Waterloo to Windsor & Eaton Riverside Station depart every half hour throughout the day, hourly on Sundays.
The journey takes about an hour and 20 minutes.
Windsor & Eton Riverside - About a 10 minutes walk.

Trains from Paddington to Windsor Central depart every 10 to 15 minutes throughout the day.
The journey takes about 35 minutes. You have to change trains at Slough.

By Bus

Greenline bus number 702 leaves from Victoria Colonnades, near London Victoria Coach Station every half hour, approximately, during the day. The journey takes about an hour.

By Car

Windsor is accessible via the major motorway networks of the M3, M4, M25 and M40

The journey time from London is approximately 40 minutes and Heathrow airport is about 15 minutes away.

Parking throughout Windsor is controlled and quite expensive.

Consider the Long Term parking if you are visiting Windsor Castle as a 20 minute walk saves about a third of the cost of short term parking in Windsor centre.

Another option is to use the Park and Ride services at Legoland Windsor or Windsor Home Park. Parking at Legoland is free.
Parking at Windsor Home Park is "pay and display". There is a small charge for bus fare.

Coach Tours / Tickets

Coach tours and open dated tickets to Windsor Castle are available through Visit Britain, the official shop of the British Tourism Authority.
These tours include entry tickets to the Castle.

Map of the Guard Change Route