A day of free fun at Edinburgh’s museums
the National Museum of Scotland
the People's Story at the Canongate tolbooth, Royal Mile
The Writer's Museum
the green dome of the Museum on the Mound
National Museum of Scotland
The Old Town is home to the National Museum of Scotland which was re-opened in July 2011 following a major re-development and now exhibits over 20,000 objects spread across 36 galleries. Adults and children alike will enjoy making their way through the stunningly bright Victorian Grand Gallery, and others such as the Natural World gallery which features an awe-inspiring Tyrannosaurus Rex. As well as having interactive exhibits and children’s galleries, the museum’s architecture is fun and playful, with little nooks and crannies to hide in throughout the adjoined modern galleries which tell Scotland’s story. It’s all free, of course.
The Writers’ Museum
The Writers' Museum, near the top of the Royal Mile, contains fascinating first editions, portraits and objects relating to the lives and work of Scotland’s great literary figures including Robert Burns and Robert Louis Stevenson. Outside the museum be sure to visit Makars’ Court (Scots for poet), a peaceful courtyard which has carved paving stones celebrating writers from the 14th century to the present day.
Museum on the Mound
Cross the road at the bottom of Makar’s Court to make a trip to the innovative Museum on the Mound which displays a million pounds in cash, Scotland's oldest banknote and looks at the role of money in art, design, technology, crime, trade and security.
Experience the sights, sounds and smells of Edinburgh throughout the centuries at The People’s Story, or enter the Museum of Edinburgh which is packed with local artefacts and city history, from the earliest settlement to the present day. You can also discover a treasure house crammed full of toys from childhood past and present at the Museum of Childhood.
Free museums out of town
Towns and villages often have their own local museums which are normally free. One of these is Queensferry Museum which lies to the north west of the city. The museum traces the history of the local people, the historic ferry passage to Fife, the construction of the iconic Forth rail and road bridges and spotlights the estuary wildlife.
Find out about more museums in Edinburgh and the Lothians.
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Edinburgh and the Lothians sits on the eastern side of Scotland's central belt, in the heart of the country.