Edinburgh Castle
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Edinburgh Castle: Tours & Tickets

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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

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

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

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.

Blackford Hill
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

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!

Our insider 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 should I visit?
    Opening hours from 9:30AM - 6PM year-round, except for December 25th and 26th.
  • Is it expensive?
    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 information

    • 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

Breathtaking castle with five star staff

I am a wheelchair user and cannot thank enough your thoughtful arrangements and your wonderful caring staff. The gentlemen who used a car to help me were so kind. The greeters at your entrance, too, could not have been kinder.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Reviewed by Marilyn, 10/30/2018

It was well worthwhile visiting the castle

Directions were clear and staff very helpful. We thoroughly enjoyed the tea room it was so pleasant, staff helpful and reasonably priced.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Reviewed by Jacqueline, 10/26/2018

A wonderful and versatile way to see a phenomenal city

A huge bargain by wrapping the bus tours, Castle, Holyrood and Yacht into one. It covered 3 days activities for £57 each. Brilliant!

Royal Edinburgh 48-Hour Attractions Ticket Reviewed by J, 10/23/2018

It was great to visit Scotland again, the land of my Ancestors.

I enjoyed the History of Edinburgh Castle and at the War Museum I sighted my Grandfathers name in one of the large red books to Commemorate him being killed in France on the 15th November 1916 in the 1st World War. I also continued my Genealogy research at Scotlands People.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Reviewed by June, 10/20/2018

Edinburgh is an amazing city, the Royal Tour made it even better!

We only had 3 days in Edinburgh and could have spent more time there for sure! The city is full of history and is so easy to get around in. We went to a little place called Oink and had the best pulled pork sandwich ever! We enjoyed a lot of food and attractions including the Royal Tour which was fabulous; plus it included 2 days on the hop on hop off bus; which made getting around so easy!

Royal Edinburgh 48-Hour Attractions Ticket Reviewed by a GetYourGuide customer, 10/18/2018

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