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Many historic places are still open for visitors, outwith Level 4 COVID protection areas. Book in advance and check if Scottish Government travel restrictions apply before travelling.

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Access

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

Parking

There is no visitor car park at the site. It is possible to drop visitors off near the entrance to the site.

There is on-street parking around 100m from the entrance to the abbey nave. There are no accessible bays.

Visiting the site 

Visitors will be able to explore the medieval abbey nave freely, before moving through into the parish church – still an active church, it was built on the site of the east end of the earlier church. In this space, visitors will follow a one-way route that will be explained to them by a guide.

  • The abbey nave is reached through the graveyard, which has tarmac paths
  • The nave is entered through the south west door. There are three steep stone steps with a metal handrail. If you require level access to the nave, please contact us in advance to arrange this
  • Face coverings must be worn within the space, unless visitors are exempt. Hand Sanitiser will be available
  • Inside, the nave is on the level, with a floor of historic stone slabs. The nave is usually quiet and light levels can be low. The stained glass windows can look beautiful with light shining through them
  • After exploring the nave, visitors may enter the abbey church, which is an active church run by the Church of Scotland. Access is up 6 stone steps with a handrail. There is no level access at present into the abbey church
  • A guide will explain the one-way route through the abbey church to visitors
  • The inside of the abbey church is well lit, with a mixture of natural and artificial lighting. It is mainly level. The flooring is a mixture of wooden boards with carpeted areas
  • The wooden pews will be roped off, but plastic seating can be arranged by the guide if required – please make the guide aware
  • Visitors then leave out the north east door, down 6 historic, shallow stone steps, without a handrail

Toilets

There are no visitor toilets available on site. The nearest toilets, including adapted toilets and a Changing Places toilet, are in Dunfermline Carnegie Library and Galleries, approximately 100m from the site. Visitors to the Library and Galleries must currently pre-book, so please contact them in advance to ensure that you will be allowed access. It is free to enter.

Dogs

Assistance dogs are permitted at all our sites and within 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.

Visitors' dogs are not permitted in roofed areas. 

Historic Scotland

Opening times

The Abbey Nave is open (the palace remains closed at this time).

The abbey is in a Level 3 COVID protection area and local visitors are welcome.

1 Nov to 31 Mar:
Daily except Sun & Mon, 10am to 4pm

Advance booking required.

The nave may close for lunch.

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