Free Attractions in Edinburgh

Find a great selection of free attractions with our list of the best free attractions in Edinburgh

 

Calton Hill

Address: Edinburgh, EH7 5AA

Opening Times: Open year-round.

Telephone Number: N/A

Email Address: mailto:citycentreteam@edinburgh.gov.uk

Website: Calton Hill

About: An impressive hill situated at the eastern end of Princes Street, the site features popular attractions including the Edinburgh Monument, The Dugald Stewart Monument, The Royal Observatory and Nelson’s Tower.

 

Dean Village

Address: Dean Path, Edinburgh, EH8 8BH

Opening Times: Open year-round.

Telephone Number: N/A

Email Address: mailto:citycentreteam@edinburgh.gov.uk

Website: Dean Village

About: A beautiful district in only 5 minutes away from Edinburgh’s Princes Street, Dean Village is an oasis of tranquillity that resides alongside the picturesque Water of Leith. Once famous for a multitude of mills, the area now attracts tourists to its iconic architecture, such as that at Wells court.

 

Holyrood Park

Address: Queen’s Dr, Edinburgh, EH8 8HG

Opening Times: Open year-round.

Telephone Number: 0131 652 8150

Email Address: N/A

Website: Holyrood Park

About: A remarkable extinct volcano right in the heart of the city, Holyrood Park is an impressive 2.6 km area of mountain-like peaks (the famous Arthur’s Seat rises 251m above sea level), lochs and walking trails that allow for fantastic 360 views across the city and beyond.

 

St. Giles Cathedral

Address: High St, Edinburgh, EH1 1RE

Opening Times: May to Sept: Mon – Fri 09.00 – 19.00. Sat 09.00 – 17.00. Sun 13.00 – 17.00.

Oct to Apr: Mon – Sat 09.00 – 17.00. Sun 13.00-17.00

Telephone Number: +44 (0)131 226 0674

Email Address: mailto:info@stgilescathedral.org.uk

Website: St. Giles Cathedral

About: This Cathedral is centrally located on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile and is a must-see attraction for new visitors to the city. Founded in 1124, the cathedral has been an integral part of Edinburgh for hundreds of years, and it’s inspiring gothic tower can be seen for miles around.

The Forth Road Bridge

Address: South Queensferry, West Lothian, EH30 9SF

Opening Times: Open year-round.

Telephone Number: 0800 042 0188

Email Address: mailto:OCCR.FBScotland@amey.co.uk

Website: The Forth Road Bridge

About: A modern architectural wonder, this 2.5 km bridge stands 251 m above the Firth of Forth and provides stunning views of both banks towards Fife and Edinburgh. A specially installed walkway allows tourists to experience the city from an entirely different perspective.

 

The National Museum of Scotland

Address: Chambers St, Edinburgh, EH1 1JF

Opening Times: Daily: 10:00-17:00

Telephone Number: 0300 123 6789

Email Address: N/A

Website: The National Museum of Scotland

About: The National Museum is one of Scotland’s most popular tourist attractions with exhibitions and displays featuring a wide variety of objects from ancient artefacts to modern-day technology. The Victorian hall has been extensively upgraded, and the vast modern buildings will take most of the day to explore fully.

 

The Peoples Story Museum

Address: 163 Canongate, Edinburgh, EH8 8BN

Opening Times: Wed to Sun 10:00 (12:00 Sun) to 17:00

Telephone Number: 0131 529 4057

Email Address: mailto:museumsandgalleries@edinburgh.gov.uk

Website: The Peoples Story Museum

About: The Peoples Story Museum aims to educate and entertain visitors with tales about the residents of Edinburgh through a multitude of interactive displays. Learn how Edinburgh’s ancient residents lived and worked, what they did for leisure, and how they coped with the terrible living conditions of years gone by.

 

The Edinburgh Royal Botanic Gardens

Address: Inverleith Row, Edinburgh, EH3 5LR

Opening Times: November to January: 10am – 4pm, February and October: 10am – 5pm, March to September: 10am – 6pm

Telephone Number: 0131 248 2909

Email Address: mailto:visitorwelcome@rbge.org.uk

Website: The Edinburgh Royal Botanic Gardens

About: The Edinburgh Botanic Gardens are one of the grandest gardens in the whole of Britain. The gardens have been extensively upgraded since their initial founding in 1670, and today a variety of plants from across the world can be viewed across 70 acres of landscaped ground and greenhouses.

The Scottish National Gallery

Address: The Mound, Edinburgh, EH2 2EL

Opening Times: Open daily, 10am-5pm, Thursdays until 7pm

Telephone Number: +44 (0)131 624 6200

Email Address: mailto:enquiries@nationalgalleries.org

Website: The Scottish National Gallery

About: The Scottish National Gallery is located on The Mound in central Edinburgh, in a neoclassical building designed by William Henry Playfair, and first opened to the public in 1859. The gallery houses the national collection of fine art, spanning Scottish and international art from the beginning of the Renaissance up to the beginning of the 20th century.

 

The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

Address: 75 Belford Road, Edinburgh, EH4 3DR

Opening Times: Open daily, 10am-5pm.

Telephone Number: +44 (0)131 624 6200

Email Address: mailto:enquiries@nationalgalleries.org

Website: The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

About: Modern Art from the 20th and 21st centuries come alive across two impressive Scottish National Gallery buildings just outside the city centre. Browse hundreds of beautiful artworks in an ever-changing collection that live both inside the gallery buildings and outside in the immaculately presented gardens.

 

The Scottish National Portrait Gallery

Address: 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JD

Opening Times: Open daily, 10am-5pm.

Telephone Number: +44 (0)131 624 6200

Email Address: mailto:enquiries@nationalgalleries.org

Website: The Scottish National Portrait Gallery

About: The neo-gothic National Portrait Gallery stands proudly on Edinburgh’s Queen Street where the red sandstone façade has impressed visitors since its construction in 1889. Inside you will find important works of art depicting the story of Scotland and her people in a regularly changing and expansive collection.

 

The Scottish Parliament Visitor Centre

Address: Edinburgh, EH99 1SP

Opening Times: Monday, Friday, Saturday and on Public Holidays: 10.00 to 17.00 (last entry 16.30). Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday: 09.00 to 18.30 (last entry 18.00).

Telephone Number: 0131 348 5200

Email Address: mailto:visit@parliament.scot

Website: The Scottish Parliament Visitor Centre

About: A modern architectural wonder, the Scottish Parliament building was designed to represent the history and culture of Scotland through its combination of modern design and its location opposite Holyrood Palace and Holyrood Park. Visitors can tour the debating chambers and see for themselves where the important decisions that affect Scotland are made.

The Water of Leith

Address: There are various entry points. See website for details.

Opening Times: Open year-round.

Telephone Number: 0131 455 7367

Email Address: N/A

Website: The Water of Leith

About: A hidden oasis of tranquillity only a few minutes away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre, the Water of Leith stretches all the way from the distant Pentland Hills right through to the historic port of Leith. Along the walkway, you will discover a wide variety of wildlife hidden amongst the woodlands that surround the river.

 

The Writers Museum

Address: Lawnmarket, Lady Stair’s Close, Edinburgh, EH1 2PA

Opening Times: Wed to Sun: 10:00 (12:00 on Sun) to 17:00

Telephone Number: +44 (0) 131 529 4901

Email Address: mailto:museumsandgalleries@edinburgh.gov.uk

Website: The Writers Museum

About: Situated in a close just off Edinburgh’s famous Royal Mile, The Writers Museum celebrates the life and works of three of Edinburgh’s most revered storytellers and poets. Robert Burns, Sir Walter Scott and Robert Louis Stevenson are brought to life through displays of their personal artefacts and collections of their literary masterpieces. A must-visit attraction for literature lovers.

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