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We want everyone who comes to our museums to enjoy their time with us and make the most of their visit.

Coronavirus Update

Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 restrictions some of our usual additional support programming, tours and resources are temporarily unavailable. However we are working on alternative methods of support, so please check this page for updates.

For info about our safety measures please see our reopening FAQs.

Museum Socials

Museum Socials are free sessions for anyone living with dementia, their relatives, friends and supporters.

Our Museum Socials are now online!

Friday 15 October-"A Viking Saga" 11:00-12:00 

Join members of our learning team as they share with us a dramatic Viking Saga live from the National Museum of Scotland with fascinating objects from our collections along the way.  


Book now on Eventbrite


Friday 19 November-   "‘If Not Now, When’ Our Climate Emergency" 11:00-12:00 

National Museum of Scotland’s exhibition ‘If Not Now, When’ asks what our cities would look like if we put our planet’s health and biodiversity first? This exhibition coincides with the 2021 United Nations Climate Change conference, COP26 being held in Glasgow in Nov 2021.  


Book now on Eventbrite


Friday 17 December.   ‘My Favourite Objects’ 11:00-12:00

Karen Clulow (Volunteer Guide) shares with us some of her very favourite objects across our collections at the National Museum of Scotland and why they are so special to her. 


Book now on Eventbrite


Friday 21 January "Mindful Sketching" 11:00-12:00 

Look closer at some of the amazing objects at National Museums Scotland, be guided through some simple and fun sketching skills and discover mindfulness techniques while you draw.


Book now on Eventbrite


Our Socials have been running since October 2015 and are a partnership with the National Galleries of Scotland and the National Library of Scotland.

You can read more about Museum Socials in this blog post.

Museum Socials on film

Watch a film made in 2016 by Edinburgh Napier University student Laura Briggs about the Museum Socials.

Our Socials programme was a finalist in Scotland's Dementia Awards 2017, together with the National Galleries of Scotland, the National Library of Scotland and Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, for Best Dementia Friendly Community Initiative.

We were nominated by Julie Baikie whose mum, Rae, has been coming to the Socials every week for the last year. 

Julie wrote:

“It’s the highlight of her week…. the variety of Friday activities are right up her street. It’s a fabulous program doing really important work and definitely contributing greatly to my Mum’s mental health and wellbeing.”

Scotland's Dementia Awards Finalist

Resources for autistic visitors

National Museums Scotland is committed to encouraging autistic people to visit and enjoy our museums. You can find out more about resources and support for autistic visitors here.

Audio described tours for blind and visually impaired visitors

Free, audio described guided tours are also available by request and subject to availability. This is an audio description of our Discover the National Museum Tour and it is delivered by our Learning staff or Volunteer Guides. To find out more and book, please call  0131 247 4041 or email

Check our Exhibitions and Events calendar for audio described tours of special exhibitions.

BSL Interpreted Tours

Free British Sign Language interpreted tours are available by request. To arrange please email or call 0131 247 4041, giving at least three weeks’ notice.

Check our Exhibitions and Events calendar for ticketed BSL tours and events.

Hearing Helpers

All of our tours offer the use of the Hearing Helper Tour Guide system. These help visitors with hearing difficulties overcome background noise and distance from the guide. They can be used with hearing aids. This can be asked for on the day but if you have any queries, please email or call 0131 247 4041.


There is level access to the Museum via the main doors to the Entrance Hall on Chambers Street and the Tower entrance at the corner of Chambers Street and George IV Bridge. Lifts are available to all floors and accessible toilets are available on most floors, as well as a Changing Places (U) toilet in the Entrance Hall on Level 0. Guide dogs, hearing dogs and other recognised assistance dogs are admitted. You can find more access information here.

Header image: Museum socials © Ruth Armstrong Photography.

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