Holyrood Palace

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Among all the celebrated memorials and attractions of Great Britain, the famous residence of Queen Elizabeth II located in Scotland is definitely worth noting.

The Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh is the state property which passes over to the usage of the next monarchs.

Holyroodhouse green courtyard
Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh © Songquan Deng / Shutterstock

A little bit of history

Once, there used to be the Holyrood Abbey on the site of the Palace. It was founded by King David I of Scotland in 1128. The legend says that during the hunting, the King saw a vision in the shape of a deer. The rood was glowing between his horns. This became the sign to found a monastery and that’s why it was called like that. However, almost after 600 years, the building of the abbey crumbled. Thus, nowadays we can only admire the beautifully renovated picturesque ruins.

The used to be a hotel attached to the abbey back in the XV century. It was the non-official residence of the Kings of Scotland. Later, James IV of Scotland ordered to build a castle on its site. It was a building in the Renaissance style which became the main royal palace. In the XVI century, it used to be the private residence of Mary, Queen of Scots. Her apartment is well-preserved with all the details. At the order of King Charles II, the castle was slightly rebuilt in 1679.

As a rule, the Queen of Great Britain uses the residence during her official visits to Scotland. By the old tradition, she must spend one week in the palace. Here, she appointed the First Minister of Scotland and arranges various royal receptions.

When the Queen is not visiting, the palace which is one of the most popular attractions in Edinburgh, open its doors to the tourists.

Holyrood Palace - Queen's Residence
Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh © Aeypix / Shutterstock

What to see in Holyroodhouse:

  • The Royal Apartments which are used by Duke of Edinburgh and Her Majesty during their official visits to Scotland;
  • The throne room which is used giving the knighthood of the Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle;
  • The Historic Apartments which used to be the private apartments of Mary, Queen of Scots and her husband Lord Darnley;
  • The exposition in the chapel for the Order of the Thistle. This reward is given to the Scots who make a significant contribution to the life and history of the nation, and people obtaining public positions.

During summers, tourists can enjoy a full tour around the territory of the Abbey. The professional guide will tell you the fascinating detail about the monarchs’ lives. Interesting stories, picturesque landscapes, and stunning architecture will leave an indelible impression about the famous Scottish attraction.

All the fans to wander along the museum halls, diving into the history of the country and city, should also visit the National Museum of Scotland with a huge collection of antiquities.

 

Photos Holyrood Palace

Holyrood Palace on the map

Holyrood Palace - attractions nearby

Entrance tickets & Tours

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7 to 8 hours
Edinburgh Luxury Private Tour with Scottish Driver
1 review
Your Edinburgh Private Day Excursion takes in the stunning capital of Scotland. Edinburgh is our hometown, and like a lot of locals we're proud of our city.As your excursion is private you call the shots, enjoy the sights & attractions of Edinburgh at your pace. You will take in all the major sights & attractions our capital has to offer, from our mighty castle and cobbled back streets to The Royal Palace along with stunning views from Holyrood Park and over the Forth of Firth we can cover all locations and as it is your day if there is something you want to see Aura will ensure it is added to your itineraryWith so many places to visit our tour allows you to visit the parts of Edinburgh you want to see, just remember this is Your Day, Your Way!With Door to Door service from Edinburgh and customisable your day is planned in advance to ensure you visit the locations you want, the itinerary lists the possible locations and must be agreed prior to arrival.
from 318
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from 318
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8 hours
Chauffeur Driven Private Sightseeing Tour of Edinburgh
2 reviews
Chauffeur driven sightseeing hire. * PLEASE NOTE: This chauffeur driven service is based on sightseeing only not guided. Our chauffeur will drive you around town pointing out all the main sites and he will also give you advice on some of the best places to eat in Edinburgh.Are you looking for things to do in Edinburgh? Then why not treat yourself to one of our chauffeur driven sightseeing hires. With stunning views and magnificent architecture, Edinburgh is arguably one of the world's greatest cities. It's no wonder that Edinburgh's Old and New Towns have been designated a World Heritage Site.  *Please Note: Price per vehicle - Max 7 people 
from 562
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from 562
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1 hour
Palace of Holyroodhouse Admission Ticket
10 reviews
Open throughout the year, the Palace of Holyroodhouse stands at the end of Edinburgh's Royal Mile. Explore the Palace's close associations with some of Scotland’s most well-known historic figures such as Mary, Queen of Scots and Bonnie Prince Charlie, and learn how today it is used by The Queen when carrying out official engagements in Scotland.From 14 June to 6 October 2019, The Duchess of Sussex’s wedding dress and Prince Harry’s uniform will be displayed at the Palace in the special exhibition A Royal Wedding: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
from 19
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from 19
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8 hours
Private Edinburgh City Tour in a Minibus
2 reviews
Explore Edinburgh, which has been the capital of Scotland since the 15th Century and stands proudly on seven hills, from the comfort of your own private minibus. Compare Edinburgh’s medieval Old Town, where people lived in cramped conditions, to the elegant Georgian New Town. Enjoy undivided attention from your private guide and learn all about this fascinating city on this 8-hour tour.
from 591
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from 591
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Hotels near Holyrood Palace

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