Holyrood House – Edinburgh

The Holyroodhouse Palace was the Scottish residence of the Queen. It is situated on top of the Royal Mile, facing the stunning panorama of Arthur’s Seat. The palace is a fine example of baroque architecture, and is tightly linked to the rich Scottish history.

Holyroodhouse is best known as the house of Mary Stuart Queen of Scotland, and for being the scene of many dramatic episodes during her turbulent reign. Mary got married in the Holyroodhouse abbey, and in her private apartments she witnessed the cruel murder of her secretor, killed by Mary’s jealous husband Lord Darnley. During the riots of 1745 the palace lodged for a short time Bonnie Prince Charlie.

Today the State Apartments are regularly used by the Queen and other members of the Royal Family for state ceremonies and official banquets. By April 2008 an exhibition has been staged, dedicated to the Order of the Thistle, Scottish Highest Honor. The Order pays homage to the Scottish men and women who gave a particular contribution to the national life.
Next to the historic coat of arms stands a model of the cloak worn by the king during the ceremony of the Thistle inside St Giles, which the Queen attends during her summer stay at Holyroodhouse, in the month of July.

Opening hours
The House is open to visitors every day
From 1st April to 31st October 09:30am-18:00 pm(last admission 17:00 pm)
From 1st November to 31st March 09:30 am-16:30 pm (last admission 15:30 pm)
24th December 09:30 am-14:00 pm (last admission 13:00)
31st December 09:00 am -15:00 pm (last admission 14:00) 1st January 11:00 am-16:30 pm(last admission 15:30)

Closing times
21st March
From 14th to 21st May
From 2nd to 6th June
From 30th June to 4th July
25th and 26th December
During royal visits

Holyroodhouse Palace
Over 60/ Students (upon showing of valid identity card)
Children under 5 Free admission
Family package(2 adults and 3 children under 17)

Combined ticket for Palace of Holyroodhouse + Queen’s Gallery
Over 60/ Students (upon showing of valid identity card)
Young people under 17
Children under 5 Free admission
Family package (2 adults and 3 children under 17)

If you purchase the ticket and register your name at your visit, you’ll be entitled to unlimited access for one calendar year. Groups of at least 15 persons are granted a discount.

How to get to Holyrood House
By train: Edinburgh Waverley. The palace is 15 minutes walk from the train station (for info on British Railways see : www.nationalrail.co.uk).

By tour bus: tourist bus stop in the vicinity of the palace. A free parking is available.

By bus: line 35 and 36 stop in proximity of the palace.

Useful info
The palace visit takes about 1 hour and a half
Ticket price includes a multiple language head-phone.
A multilingual official brochure is also available.

Access to the Queen’s rooms is possible through a narrow spiral staircase with 25 steps. Unfortunately these rooms are not accessible by wheelchair. The palace shop offers a wide choice of gifts, many of which are exclusively made for the Royal Collection.

Due to the current security measures, liquid substances are not admitted inside the palace. The cafeteria, situated in the delightful frame of Mews Courtyard, offers a wide choice of food and drinks all day long, from snacks and soft drink to complete menu, prepared with fresh products.

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