Edinburgh Tickets

Explore what's inside Edinburgh Castle | Main highlights & attractions


With over two million visitors flocking to Edinburgh Castle annually, it is arguably one of the most popular attractions in Scotland. Read on to discover what’s inside this iconic Scottish Castle steeped in culture and history.

What’s inside Edinburgh Castle?

The Great Hall

Built in 1511 for King James IV, the Great Hall at Edinburgh Castle is where state functions and banquets were held. Although King James IV was killed in the Battle of Flodden shortly after its construction, the hall now displays weaponry and armor reflecting the castle's military history.

The Royal Palace

The Royal Palace, constructed in the early 1500s, served numerous British monarchs. From the Crown Square within the quadrangle, it witnessed pivotal events in Scotland's history, including the birth of James VI, who later became the first monarch of England and Scotland. The birth chamber is a highlight of the castle.

The Stone of Destiny

Symbolizing Scottish regal heritage, the Stone of Destiny is linked to the coronation of Scottish monarchs. It's a pink-tinged limestone, steeped in folklore and mystery, with disputed origins. Its significance lies in its representation of Scotland's royal past.

St. Margaret’s Chapel

Built by King David I in memory of his mother, Queen Margaret, St. Margaret's Chapel is among the oldest structures in Edinburgh. Surviving multiple invasions and battles, including the Lang Siege in the 16th century, it remained untouched. Initially used for royal prayer, it was later repurposed as a gunpowder store.

Mons Meg

The Mons Meg, a colossal siege gun, was a technological marvel in its time, gifted to James II in the late 15th century. Legend has it that its immense weight limited its travel. Used in various castle attacks, it returned to Edinburgh Castle after a significant period in England.

Honours of Scotland

Known as the Scottish Crown Jewels, the Honours of Scotland comprise the Sceptre, Sword of State, and Crown. These regal artifacts were integral to royal ceremonies and coronations, representing the monarchy's history.

Prisons of War

A testament to historical conflicts, the castle's dungeons held prisoners of war from various battles, symbolizing the challenges faced by captives from conflicts like the American Revolutionary War and the Napoleonic War.

One o'Clock Gun

Fired daily, except on specific days, the One o'Clock Gun was historically used to signal time adjustments for ships in the Firth of Forth. Dating back to 1861, this tradition continues, drawing crowds to witness the spectacle.

The Half Moon Battery

Constructed to fortify the castle, the Half Moon Battery protected against enemy attacks, built upon the ruins of David's Tower and housing the Seven Sisters guns, a significant defensive measure.

National War Museum

Nestled within the castle walls, the National War Museum is a significant attraction, offering insights into Scotland's military history through artifacts, weapons, and memorabilia from various historical conflicts.

Queen’s Embroideries

Replicas of embroideries stitched by Mary Queen of Scots during tumultuous times adorn the ante-chamber of the Royal Apartments. Created during sieges, these embroideries reflect the perseverance of her supporters.

Regimental Museums

Primarily dedicated to The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, the museum also showcases the heritage of other Scottish military regiments. With displays of historic artifacts, it provides a nuanced understanding of military traditions and history.

How to go inside Edinburgh Castle?

There is little doubt that Edinburgh Castle is one of the most visited attractions in Edinburgh and Scotland. A hotbed of Scottish culture, tradition, and heritage, a visit to the Edinburgh Castle is an unmissable experience in the heart of Scotland. It is a good idea to book your tickets online and in advance to go inside Edinburgh Castle without any hassles. Choose between Tickets to Edinburgh Castle, Entry Tickets to Three Royal Attractions with Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tours, and a Walking Tour of the Royal Mile with Optional Edinburgh Castle Tickets to book your tickets and enjoy a seamless Edinburgh Castle experience.
Walking Tour of Royal Mile with Optional Edinburgh Castle Tickets
Free Cancellation
Mobile Ticket
1 hr. 30 min. - 2 hr. 15 min.
Guided Tour
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Entry Tickets to 3 Royal Attractions with Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tours
Free Cancellation
Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
Flexible Duration
Audio Guide
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Edinburgh Castle Guided Walking Tour with Fast-Track Entry
Free Cancellation
Instant Confirmation
Mobile Ticket
1 hr. 30 min.
Guided Tour
More details

Visitor tips

  • There are limited parking spaces available on a first-come first-served basis for visitors with Blue Badges on the Castle Esplanade. 
  • Big rucksacks (more than 30 litres) are prohibited for general security, to ensure visitor convenience and free-flowing movement.
  • Pets except assistance dogs are not allowed inside Edinburgh Castle. 
  • Book your tickets online in advance to skip long queues and enter the attraction without any hiccups. 
  • Two wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis. 
  • The One o’Clock Gun makes a really loud sound, so it is a good idea to get something to cover your ears or stand at a distance during the blast. 
  • Adapted toilets are available in Crown Square. 

Frequently asked questions about what's inside Edinburgh Castle

What is inside Edinburgh Castle?

You will find a range of historic buildings, museums, and attractions inside Edinburgh Castle, including the Queen’s Embroideries, One o’Clock Gun, Mons Meg, the National War Museum, and the Half Moon Battery to name a few.

Can I go inside Edinburgh Castle?

Yes, you can go inside Edinburgh Castle, provided you have a valid ticket.

Can I take a tour of Edinburgh Castle?

You can enjoy the various attractions within the castle and the entire experience at your own pace as long as you have a valid entry ticket.

What are some must-see highlights inside Edinburgh Castle?

Some of the must-see highlights inside Edinburgh Castle include the Megs Mon, the Queen’s Embroideries, the One o’Clock Gun, Regimental Museums, the National War Museum, Prisons of War, the Half Moon Battery, and the Honours of Scotland.

Do I need a ticket to go inside Edinburgh Castle?

Yes, you need a ticket to go inside Edinburgh Castle. You can book your tickets online or from the ticket counters at the entrance of the castle.

Can I take pictures inside Edinburgh Castle?

Visitors are allowed to take non-commercial pictures inside Edinburgh Castle.

Is there a dress code I should follow to go inside Edinburgh Castle?

Although there isn’t any dress code, it is a good practice to wear appropriate and respectful clothes while visiting historical places.

Is going inside Edinburgh Castle worth it?

Going inside Edinburgh Castle is worth it for different reasons including the rich cultural experience, educational value, historical significance, and the architectural beauty of the attraction.