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Access

Special arrangements are currently in place at Craigmillar Castle, to comply with Scottish Government guidance during the Covid-19 pandemic. These arrangements are detailed below, and will be regularly updated. Last updated: 28 July 2020.

Although things may be a little different, we hope that you will have an enjoyable visit and will be greeted with a warm and friendly smile by staff.

Safety measures

  • Our staff have been trained in hygiene and physical distancing and have been provided with the necessary PPE
  • Signage is on site to guide visitors, including one way systems and marked areas that are currently closed to visitors
  • We have introduced enhanced cleaning measures, including our toilet facilities, to make visitors feel comfortable while visiting
  • In line with Scottish Government legislation and guidance, face coverings are now mandatory if you are visiting any indoor/enclosed spaces at our sites including retail and catering areas (subject to some exceptions)

Watch our video on what to expect when you visit our sites

Carers tickets

In line with best practice in the visitor attractions industry and as advised by Capability Scotland, visitors with disabilities are treated on an equal basis with all other visitors and entry is charged at the appropriate admission category rate - Adult/Concession/Child. Proof of disability is not required.

We offer free entry for carers accompanying visitors with disabilities. To book a free carer ticket, please email ticketing@hes.scot and quote your order number.

Parking

The car park next to the visitor centre is smooth tarmac and has one accessible space. 

Parking is limited at the castle and spaces are on a first come first served basis and where possible if visitors can arrive via public transport or on foot this would help alleviate issues. Visitors can also call the castle (0131 661 4445) in advance for further details on alternative nearby parking. Alternatively, there are good public transport links to nearby Old Dalkeith Road (Edinburgh Royal Infirmary) or Peffermill Road.

Approach to site

The visitor centre is on ground level and has a level threshold.

The castle is reached from the visitor centre by a gently inclined 100m long tarmac path. There is a wooden bench with armrests halfway between the visitor centre and the castle.

Dogs

Assistance dogs are permitted at all our sites and within roofed areas.

Visitors' dogs are allowed at Craigmillar Castle, but are not permitted in roofed areas.

Dogs must be kept on a lead at all times and not left unattended at any time. Owners must pick up after their dogs.

What will be open during your visit 

One-way system in operation

  • Courtyard
  • Tower House
  • East and West gardens
  • Gilmour Range
  • Preston Range
  • Shop
  • Toilets
  • Limited parking (first come first served basis). Please use public transport/bike/walk to the castle where at all possible

What will remain closed/unavailable during your visit

  • Some small chambers in Preston Range
  • Pit prison
  • Bakery

Visiting the site

One-way systems will be in place in the castle, exploring the three different areas of the east range, Gilmour range and tower. Physical distancing measures will be in place, and access to some of the more confined spaces may be limited. Visitors will be able to explore the grounds freely.

  • The castle is situated on relatively level ground. There is a steep grassed approach to the inner courtyard, which can be slippery in wet weather
  • The courtyard is reached via a stone threshold
  • The castle has five levels:
    • The basement, containing pit prison and bakehouse, will be closed at this time
    • The ground level contains the Dovecot (exterior view only), Inner Courtyard, Stables, Drawing Room and bottom level of the Towerhouse
    • The first floor has a kitchen, old dovecot and bedchambers. The second floor has the great hall, wall walk and a kitchen. These one-way route to floors is up a narrow, historic stone staircase, returning down a wide spiral stone staircase with uneven steps and a single rope handrail. If this route is not suitable for you, please ask staff for assistance
    • The third floor has the great hall gallery, and bed chamber. The fourth floor offers good panoramic views of Edinburgh. These floors are accessed by a narrow spiral staircase with uneven steps and a single rope handrail
  • Light levels can be low inside the castle, especially on the spiral stairs
  • There is a bench in the castle courtyard

Toilets

There is an adapted toilet in the castle, about 120m from visitor centre

Historic Scotland

Opening times

1-31 Oct:
Daily, 10am to 4pm

Advance booking required.

Winter opening times to be confirmed.

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