Five great free places to visit in Edinburgh


The Museum of Childhood in Edinburgh. Photo credit: Martin Moscosa/Flikr

The Museum of Childhood in Edinburgh. Photo courtesy of Martin Moscosa/Flickr

1. The Museum of Childhood

Hiding right in plain sight on the High Street, is the Museum of Childhood. As the first museum in the world dedicated to childhood, it hosts a collection of games and toys from across the generations. It is currently displaying the exhibition 26 Children’s Winters. 26 writers have been asked to write words on certain objects describing what emotions they evoke. Whether you’re a family or just someone looking for a bit of a nostalgia trip, the Museum of Childhood is sure to make for a fun filled afternoon.

The Scottish National Museum of Modern Art, photo credit: Spencer Means/Flikr

The Scottish National Museum of Modern Art.  Photo courtesy of Spencer Means/Flickr

2. The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art

There are plenty of art galleries in Edinburgh. With so many situated within walking distance of Waverley Station, it is easy to understand why some are overlooked. However if you have enough time to go a little further into Edinburgh, the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art is a must see.  With plenty of displays including Pop Art, Cubism and the spectacular Artist Rooms: Roy Lichtenstein, it is definitely worth the cost of the bus fare to visit.

Something you might see at the Anatomical Museum, photo credit: University of Liverpool Faculty of Health & Life Sciences/Flikr

Something you might see at the Anatomical Museum. Photo courtesy of University of Liverpool Faculty of Health & Life Sciences/Flickr

3. The Anatomical Museum

Definitely one of the weirder experiences Edinburgh has to offer, The Anatomical Museum plays host to many interesting exhibits. Some of its more famous displays include a display about Edinburgh grave robbers Burke and Hare, and an impressive collection of life and death masks. Sadly it is only open on the last Saturday of the month so make sure you give it a visit when it is open!

The Royal Observatory on Blackford Hill, photo credit: Karen Bryan/Flikr

The Royal Observatory on Blackford Hill. Photo courtesy of Karen Bryan/Flickr

4. The Royal Observatory

Located up on Blackford Hill, The Royal Observatory is a great place to visit if you don’t fancy a night time trawl through the pubs. Their weekly winter Public Astronomy meetings are a highly entertaining way to spend the night, with stunning views of the capital and the clear night sky. Only thing is they do sell out fast, so it’s best to book in advance.

Dubar's Close Garden, photo credit: Nigel's Europe & beyond/Flikr

Dunbar’s Close Garden. Photo courtesy of Nigel’s Europe & beyond/Flickr

5. Dunbar’s Close Garden

So maybe you don’t have time to do much in Edinburgh. Maybe you have to stay close to Waverley Station. Well don’t worry a hidden gem is within walking distance. Behind one of the many closes on the High Street, just a few blocks down from the Museum of Childhood, is the beautiful Dunbar’s Close Garden. Laid out in the style of a 17th century garden, it provides a breath of fresh air, for those looking for a quick escape from the bustle of the city. Surrounded by the architecture of the Old town, this living time capsule is definitely a sight to behold.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: