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Best of Edinburgh


Best of Edinburgh Attractions

Museums and Galleries

Edinburgh has some of the best museums and galleries in Scotland. Admission to most publicly owned museums and galleries in Scotland is free, although sometimes venues may mount additional exhibitions that visitors can choose to pay to see. Here are the best that Edinburgh has to offer.

National Museum of Scotland

In our opinion, the National Museum of Scotland is Edinburgh's best all round museum. The attraction comprises two parts, the older Royal Museum (see photo above) and the newer Museum of Scotland (see photo below) which was opened in 1998.

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
National Museum of Scotland - Royal Museum
Chambers Street, Edinburgh EH1 1JF
Map

The National Museum of Scotland has now fully re-opened following a £46.4 million redevelopment of the Victorian Royal Museum building at Chambers Street, Edinburgh.  The Royal Museum Project has transform the iconic Victorian building into a world-class visitor experience with more objects on display, increased educational facilities and new galleries and exhibitions.

Tyrannosaurus Rex

The project was jointly funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (£17.8 million), and the Scottish Government (£16 million), with a further £12 million from fundraising.


Museum of Scotland

The Royal Museum houses collections spanning the arts, culture, nature and science, whereas the Museum of Scotland focuses on Scotland's history, people and culture. Together they offer fascinating and highly engaging exhibitions that will both delight and inform visitors of all ages.

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Dolly the Sheep

Take time to visit Dolly the Sheep, the world's first cloned mammal or follow Scotland's history from the Stone Age to the present. There is truly something for everyone in this wonderful free attraction.

Main entrance to the Royal Museum

City of Edinburgh Council Museums and Galleries

The City of Edinburgh Council Museums and Galleries is responsible for a fascinating range of museums, galleries and monuments throughout the city. Full details can be found on their website at:-

http://www.cac.org.uk/


City Art Centre
1-3 Market Street, Edinburgh EH1 1DE
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
The People's Story, 163 Canongate, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH8 8BN
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The Scott Monument
Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
The Museum of Childhood
42 High Street, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 1TG
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
The Writers' Museum
Lady Stair's Close (off the Lawnmarket), Edinburgh EH1 2PA
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Museum of Edinburgh
142 Canongate, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH8 8DD
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Brass Rubbing Centre
Trinity Apse, Chalmers Close, Edinburgh EH1 1SS
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Scottish National Portrait Gallery

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Scottish National Portrait Gallery
1 Queen Street, Edinburgh
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The Scottish National Portrait Gallery (SNPG) re-opened in December2011 after a two year £17.6 million restoration project which saw a 60% increase in its public space.

The SNPG opened in 1889 as the world's first purpose-built portrait gallery and is now an iconic landmark in the heart of Scotland's capital.  Over the past century, its collection of portraits has grown to become one of the largest and finest in the world, comprising 3,000 paintings and sculptures, 25,000 prints and drawings. This distinctive red sandstone building also houses the national collection of photography with some 38,000 historic and modern photographs.

For the first time since the Gallery was established, access to the exhibition spaces on all three levels has been opened up, while the restoration of the magnificent suite of top-lit galleries on the upper floor has created one of the most impressive display spaces in Scotland.  As a result, a much greater proportion of the collection will be on show, bringing to light a wealth of art works that has been, until now, largely hidden from view.

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Interior View

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
75 Belford Road, Edinburgh EH4 3DR
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Sir Henry Moore sculpture

Dean Gallery

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
The Dean Gallery
73 Belford Road, Edinburgh EH4 3DG
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National Galleries of Scotland


The Royal Scottish Academy
The Mound, Edinburgh EH2 2EL
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
The Weston Link
Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Rear of Royal Scottish Academy
Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
National Gallery of Scotland
The Mound, Edinburgh EH2 2EL
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Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
The Skating Minister by Sir Henry Raeburn

This iconic image of The Reverend Robert Walker skating on Duddingston Loch (c 1790) is one of the best known paintings in Scotland. Painted by Sir Henry Raeburn, it can be seen at the National Gallery of Scotland where it is an important attraction in the Scottish collection. Recently considerable controversy has been stirred up by a claim that the painting may not be by Raeburn, but instead by a relatively unknown French artist by the name of Henri-Pierre Danlaux. Debate continues to rage over the matter. (Copyright note - this image is reproduced from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, on the basis that that it is now in the public domain for the reasons stated on that website.)

Museum on the Mound


Museum on the Mound
HBOS Headquarters
The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ
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Located within the HQ of HBOS on The Mound, admission is free to this fascinating little museum which tells the story of Scottish Banking over the last 300 years. See what £1,000,000 in £20 notes looks like in a perspex case (potential robbers please note that the notes are cancelled!) and try to crack the safe and win a gold bar (of chocolate)! Hours of opening are as shown in the photograph above.

University of Edinburgh Museums and Galleries


Talbot Rice Gallery
The University of Edinburgh
Old College, South Bridge
Edinburgh EH8 9YL
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The University of Edinburgh has a wonderful collection of Museums and Galleries:-

Police Information Centre, Royal Mile


Police Information Centre
188 High Street, Edinburgh EH1 1QS
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The Police Information Centre on the Royal Mile (High Street) next to the Festival Fringe Office, combines a Police contact point and a small exhibition of matters relating to law and order in the City of Edinburgh down the centuries. This includes a business card case made from the skin of William Burke (of Burke and Hare fame). Admission is free.

Edinburgh Museums and Galleries
Restraints

Click here for more info on the National Museum of Scotland

Click here for more info on the the National Galleries of Scotland

Click here for more information on The Museum on the Mound









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