Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle

Standing on its great rock, Edinburgh castle dominates Scotland’s capital. Great events have taken place within its wall and it has witnessed many sieges. To control the castle was to hold the keys to the kingdom.

Iron Age warriors understood the rock’s military potential and built a hill fort here. Our oldest poetry tells of a war band which feasted here for a year before riding to death in battle. During the Wars of Independence the castle changed hands many times. In 1314 it was retaken from the English in a daring night raid by Thomas Randolph, nephew of Robert the Bruce.

The castle was home to kings and queens. Queen Margaret (later St Margaret) died here in 1093, and Mary Queen of Scots, gave birth to James VI in the royal palace in 1566. Her great-great-great grandson Charles Edward Stuart – Bonnie Prince Charlie – captured Edinburgh but couldn’t take the castle during the 1745-6 Jacobite rising.

In 1996, the Stone of Destiny, on which kings were enthroned for centuries, was returned to Scotland and is displayed in the Crown Room. From the 1600s onwards the castle was a military base with a large garrison. Later it also held prisoners of war.

Parts are still a military base, but the castle is now a world-famous visitor attraction and a key element of the Edinburgh World Heritage Site.

To find out more call the Box Office on 0131 668 8831 or visit the official website www.edinburghcastle.gov.uk

Other Local Events

Tours & Activities in Edinburgh and beyond!

Welcome to Edinburgh!

Edinburgh is Scotland’s capital and comprises a whole lot of history with a palace, castle, monuments and memorials. The elegant Georgian New Town is complete with bustling cafés and shops housed in neoclassical buildings. Walk around the many parks and gardens, or take a hike up to Arthur’s Seat and take in fantastic views back towards the city.

If you are looking for activities in the nearby area and beyond, look at our full list of available tours and activities HERE, provided by Tourdesk. Take a trip on Edinburgh’s Hop on Hop off buses, sample the local tipple at The Scotch Whisky Experience, or go further afield with a full day trip exploring Loch Ness, Glencoe and The Highlands.

Find more activities and sites to explore on Visit Scotland!

The Scotch Whisky Experience

The Scotch Whisky Experience

The Scotch Whisky Experience is a five star visitor attraction at the top of Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, where they’ve been inspiring visitors to Edinburgh about the joys of Scotch whisky for over 25 years.

Whether you take a tour, visit the shop or restaurant, or enjoy an event or tasting here, they guarantee a sensational experience.

To find out more visit the official website www.scotchwhiskyexperience.co.uk

National Museum of Scotland

National Museum of Scotland

From meteorites to monsters from the deep, the Natural World galleries tell the story of our planet, while the World Cultures galleries link people and possessions across the globe. Follow the story of Scotland from prehistory to the present day in the Scottish galleries, marvel at a spectacular array of over 800 objects in our Window on the World and meet the Scots whose ideas, innovations and leadership took them across the world in the Discoveries gallery.

Open up a treasure trove of decorative arts in the new Art, Design and Fashion galleries. Explore the ideas that have shaped design through the centuries and get front row seats at a catwalk of creativity in textiles and style. Over in Science and Technology, get hands on with inventions and innovations as science is brought to life through displays and interactives.

Admission free. To find out more call on 0300 123 6789 or visit the official website www.nms.ac.uk

Scottish National Gallery

Scottish National Gallery

The Scottish National Gallery displays some of the greatest art in the world, including masterpieces by Botticelli, Raphael, Titian, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Constable, Turner, Monet, Van Gogh and Gauguin, amongst many others. The most comprehensive part of the collection covers the history of Scottish painting – all the major names, including Ramsay, Raeburn, Wilkie and McTaggart, are represented.

The Scottish National Gallery comprises both the National Gallery Building and the Royal Scottish Academy Building. Both of these buildings, designed by William Henry Playfair, stand in the heart of Edinburgh. Although originally built as separate structures, their histories have long been intertwined, and, since 2004, they have been physically connected by the underground Gardens Level.

To find out more call the Box Office on 0131 624 6200 or visit the official website www.nationalgalleries.org