Edinburgh Castle
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Edinburgh Castle: Tours & Tickets

See all tours & things to do in Edinburgh Castle

Top sights in Edinburgh

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Find the Best View of Edinburgh Castle

If you're looking for picturesque, you'll love Edinburgh. The cityscape of the Scottish capital is a feast for the eyes, topped by the imposing Edinburgh Castle at its highest point. To get the best view of this beautiful city, head to these five points.

Calton Hill

One of the oldest public parks in Scotland, Calton Hill is a local favorite. It's also an easy climb – in just five minutes, you'll be able enjoy the spectacular views.

Princes Street Gardens

This lovely, perfectly-maintained public garden offers a breathtaking view of the castle from below. Just head to the Ross Fountain to the West and look up, you'll be amazed.

Arthur's Seat

A dormant volcano sitting 251m above sea level, Arthur's Seat offers a magnificent aerial view of the city and castle. Be sure to check out the historic fort there, too.

Photo: Tai Kedzierski @flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Blackford Hill

It may not be as famous as Calton Hill or Arthur's Seat, but Blackford Hill has views that are just as gorgeous. It's also home to the Royal Observatory, a favorite of astronomy lovers.

Dorothy's Eye View

This view of the castle inspired George Gibson to paint the Emerald City from Wizard of Oz. Head to the corner of Bread Street and Spittal Street and behold: Emerald City!

Edinburgh Castle: Our Tips

Sunset over Edinburgh Castle

For a view that you'll remember for the rest of your life, watch the sun set over Edinburgh Castle. The best spots for this are Arthur's Seat and Calton Hill, both located to the East of the city center. The deep-red sun, the colors in the sky, and the black silhouette of the castle come together in an absolutely magnificent panorama.

Fireworks

If you're lucky enough to be in Edinburgh when there are fireworks going off over Edinburgh Castle, for example on Hogmanay or at the end of the Edinburgh Festival, then make sure to head to one of these viewpoints to admire the show and snap some amazing photographs. Princes Street Gardens and Calton Hill are likely to be the most popular spots to watch the fireworks, so if you're looking for a less crowded experience, Blackford Hill and Arthur's Seat are better bets.

Good to Know

  • When to visit
    Opening hours from 9:30AM - 6PM year-round, except for December 25th and 26th.
  • What is the price?
    Free to look at from the outside, £17 for adult entry.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Only if you want one.
  • How to get there
    Hop-on-hop-off buses stop at the Castle. You can make your own way by taking bus 24 to Waverly Bridge and walking.
  • Additional tips
    • It never hurts to carry an umbrella when in Scotland!
    • Since you'll be climbing hills, good walking shoes are a must.

What People Are Saying About Edinburgh Castle

It was such a fabulous experience visiting Edinburgh Castle.

The pre-booked tickets gave us quick entry avoiding a very long queue at such an iconic attraction. It's definitely worth exploring this magnificent castle and plan for a few hours at least.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Reviewed by Teresa, 09/27/2017

Provides a good panoramic experience of Edinburgh.

Great tour for newcomers wanting a nutshell glimpse of each site in a short timeframe. Excellent value, knowledgeable guides.

Royal Edinburgh 2-Day Attractions Ticket Reviewed by Cecilia, 09/27/2017

Lots of information and thoroughly enjoyed it

Was a great opportunity to see the main Edinburgh attractions easily but also spotting other places on the bus round that you may have missed. . The back Street running parallel with Princes Street was fabulous for little bars /restaurants and cafes

Royal Edinburgh 2-Day Attractions Ticket Reviewed by Carol, 09/18/2017

The castle was fantastic, the tour guide exceptional

The castle is very impressive and is well varied across time zones in history. I also liked how different everything was for each section. The facilities are good too. We were lucky with good weather, I could imagine it is not fun at all with poorer weather. The best part of the tour was the guide - Fergus. He was so knowledgeable and his personality and delivery of the tour was absolutely fantastic. He was quietly very funny and really knew his stuff, I was very impressed with this.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Reviewed by Ross, 09/11/2017

lots to walk and see inside and outside the gate.

The ticket definitely save me time from the long line by the ticket office that day, and I was able to catch the 1pm canon shot. All I need to do was to pass the crowd, and walk up a little, find the Visitor Center Office on the right side of the pathway. There were about three agents available, you will be asked to show the print out then get the actually entrance ticket in return. There were lots to walk and see, the view of Arthur's Seat and Salisbury Crags was amazing. Do not miss the red truck by the Prisoner's Museum.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Reviewed by QI, 09/05/2017

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