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The Tower Entrance to the National Museum of Scotland

National Museum of Scotland

Our flagship museum, the National Museum of Scotland is a five-star visitor attraction in the heart of Edinburgh. Over 20,000 objects are on display with collections covering World Cultures, Natural World, Art, Design and Fashion, Science and Technology and of course Scottish History.

Travel Trade Information

Groups can choose from five unique tours delivered by award-winning Mercat Tours. Ideal for bespoke requirements.

T1 A history of Scotland in 10 objects Follow the story of Scotland’s history through key objects in the collections.

T2 What makes a Scot? This tour will explore Scottish identity, from the earliest people to Scots in the 21st Century, including the Scottish diaspora.

T3 Scotland’s Dark History The museum is rich in objects which tell our darker tales. From the mysteries of Pictish stones to the intrigues of Arthur’ Seat Coffins

T4 Exploding the myths. Were Scotland’s early people savages or civilised? Were Vikings really horned helmeted raiders? And was Bonnie Prince Charlie truly a romantic hero? All this and more is explored.

T5 Symbols of Scotland This tour will look closely at images and objects that people associate with Scots. What do the Saltire, the Lion Rampant and the thistle truly signify?

Rates:  Net from £17pp (base on max 18 pax per group}. Time - 1 hour

Full terms and conditions with Mercat Tours.

How to book:

 +44 (0)131 225 5445

"Tour Talk" guide audio devices used.

We welcome self-guided tours. To help you we have maps of the museum in several languages plus if you have accompanying tourist guides, make sure they are aware of managing the space around other museum visitors. They should steer groups away from busy passages. We also ask groups with their own guide to be split into around max 20 pax for tours.

Groups over 10 pax 

Please book your groups into the museum via -

There is no need to update us further, but to ensure all visitors have a great visit it is advisable to notify the museum. Include the following details in your email – date of visit- AM or PM/ nationality/ with guide Y/N/ anticipated numbers. Thank you.

Groups of 10 + do also receive a discount on exhibition tickets. There can be no external guiding in the special exhibitions.

Under 10 pax no need to notify the museum

Daily free tours to explore Scotland’s stories in our celebrated Early People and Kingdom of the Scots galleries. No booking required but limited to 10 pax.  (lasts 1 hour)

Scotland Galleries Highlight Tour

These free tours are a great tip for any clients doing their own thing in the city.

See the groups section for tours of the Museum with Mercat Tours. Full tours can be coordinated for FITS at relevant rates.

Coach Parking

Coach drops off outside the museum on Chambers St and Coach Parking is available on Johnston Terrace, the same as for Edinburgh Castle.

Shop  - Online shop available for museum souvenirs or gift bags:

Meals at the Museum – For snacks, lunches, or afternoon teas. Set menus available

To book catering for groups in the Museum Kitchen (open from 10:00 – 16:45 every day), please email Milena:

If you are interested in using one of our unique and prestigious spaces for your group please contact Elaine Elder at National Museums Scotland Enterprises:

Discover the full range of venue hire opportunities at National Museum of Scotland. 

For travel trade factsheet and updates please contact Liz Young

Things to see and do

The museum offers free general admission, as well as special exhibitions, shops, cafes and a restaurant, The Museum Kitchen.

Discover Scotland’s must-see treasures in one spectacular museum including Mary Queen of Scot’s jewellery; Dolly, the sheep; Vivienne Westwood suits and The Lewis chess pieces.

Magnificent Victorian architecture including the spectacular Grand Gallery and impressive Window on the World display.

Enjoy stunning city views of Edinburgh Castle and the city skyline from the seventh-floor Roof Terrace.

Explore the galleries

Top 10 Things to See and Do

The Roof Terrace at the National Museum of Scotland.

Discover Scotland

Stepping into the magnificent Victorian architecture including the famous Grand Gallery, visitors begin a journey which reveals the story of Scotland and its place in the world.

Our Scotland Galleries guide you from the Palaeolithic era to the present day, from early cultures to the space age and pop culture and tell the tale of Scotland's social history through to a modern 21st-century nation.

Precious icons not to be missed include Mary, Queen of Scot's jewellery., Bonnie Prince Charlie's Travelling Canteen, Iron Age torcs and the Lewis Chesspieces, Scotland's most significant archaeological find.

The National Museum of Scotland is the perfect place to start a visit to Scotland.


Iron Age gold torcs at the National Museum of Scotland.

Five of the Lewis Chesspieces at the National Museum of Scotland.

Pendant associated with Mary, Queen of Scots, part of the Penicuik Jewels.

Visitors exploring the history of Mary, Queen of Scots at the National Museum of Scotland.

Silver travelling canteen belonging to Bonnie Prince Charlie.


Scottish History and Archaeology Galleries
Come face-to-face with iconic historic artefacts, learn how Scottish innovation has helped shape the modern world, and see how the lives of everyday Scots have changed through the centuries.

National Museum of Scotland

Chambers Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1JF
Tel: 0300 123 6789


Free entry

E-gift vouchers: Purchase an e-gift voucher, which can be used for tickets to paid exhibitions and events at the National Museum of Scotland, in addition to the National Museum of Flight and the National Museum of Rural Life. Our e-gift vouchers can also be used to buy National Museums Scotland Membership to allow free, unlimited entry to all of our museums and exhibitions.

Opening times

Museum open
Open daily, 10:00 - 17:00


We take pride in maintaining the highest standards to make your visit as rewarding as possible.

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