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The Royal Parks

On Friday, the royal wedding procession will pass by some of London's most historical and visited sites. Follow along on the way to Westminster Abbey with this guide and photo gallery of the can't-miss attractions:




1. Buckingham Palace
Buckingham Palace is the official London residence for the British Monarchy. Set in the verdurous surroundings of St. James's Park, the Palace's East Front will be a fantastic location to witness the beginning and end of the wedding procession. A horse drawn parade will be led from its front gates and The Queen will host the wedding's reception celebration within its walls.

2. Clarence House
Designed by John Nash, Clarence House is the Royal residence home to The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, Prince William and Prince Harry. It was formerly the home of The Queen and Queen Mother between 1953 and 2002; this early 19th century home is attached to St. James's Palace. It features prominently on the Mall and will be subject to much attention prior to the wedding.

3. The Mall
Leading from Buckingham Palace to Trafalgar Square, the Mall is to be closed to traffic during the Royal wedding -- acting as the main route of the procession. Expected to become the centre of celebrations, it will be adorned with decorations to mark the occasion. More than one million people packed the Mall to witness the public displays that marked The Queen's Golden Jubilee.

4. Horse Guards Palace
Host to Trooping of the Colour and Beating Retreat, Horse Guards Parade is a parade ground backing onto St. James's Park. The national celebration point of the Monarch's birthday, it will host the volleyball competition in the 2012 Olympics. The Royal Naval Division Memorial and the Guards Memorial are both featured in the square.

5. Women of World War II Monument
A monument to the role of women in the war effort during World War II. Completed in 2005 and dedicated by The Queen, the monument's lettering reflects the typeface used on ration books during the war. Featuring the uniforms of women workers this monument has come to represent a testament to equal rights in modern Britain.

6. Downing Street
The most famous address in Britain, Downing Street hosts the official residences of the most senior British cabinet ministers. While traditionally number 10 hosted the Prime Minister, recent government leaders have chosen to be domicile at number 11. A few minutes walk from the Houses of Parliament, and close to Buckingham Palace, this address will be passed on the procession.

7. Foreign and Commonwealth Office
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is responsible for promoting the interests of the United Kingdom overseas. Designed by George Gilbert Scott, the Italianate classical architecture of the building is punctuated by ornate internal decorations and has played host to important international ceremonies like the signing of the Locarno Treaties.

8. Cenotaph
Originally designed to commemorate the victims of World War I, The Cenotaph was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and features the dedication "The Glorious Dead," chosen by Rudyard Kipling. Later adopted as a memorial for all fallen British servicemen, the portland stone construct is flanked by flags of the United Kingdom and features on the procession route.

9. HM Treasury
Originally functioning as a personal vault for Crown wealth, The Treasury was later transformed into the holding pin of the British economy. The building, completed in 1917, was designed by John Brydon and was adopted by The Treasury as a base of operations in 1940. A stunning piece of architecture overlooking St. James's Park, it will be passed during the procession.

10. Houses of Parliament and Big Ben
Maintaining its status as a Royal residence for ceremonial purposes -- the Palace of Westminster, also know as the Houses of Parliament, is the home of British Politics. The east face overlooks the London Eye and the River Thames, straddled by Westminster Bridge. The west face features Big Ben and a wonderful view of Westminster Abbey at the heart of the Royal Wedding celebration.

11. Westminster Abbey
The Collegiate Church of St. Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is the traditional ceremonial site for Monarchs of the Commonwealth Realms. A beautiful historical site employed for the coronation of British Monarchs, the church will be host to the Royal wedding. Overlooked by Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, the Abbey is a national treasure.

Map and historical information courtesy of The Royal Parks.

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