Palace of Holyroodhouse

Visit Holyrood Palace

The Palace of Holyroodhouse or Holyrood Palace is a wonderful place to visit on an Edinburgh day trip, during your stay at Loch Lomond Waterfront. You can visit Edinburgh by train or drive there in an hour and a half. This palace is still used today for royal functions, and it is the Queen’s official residence in Edinburgh. However, when not in use by the royals, much of the palace and abbey is open to the public for tours throughout the year.

Royal Palace History

Holyroodhouse sits at one end of Edinburgh’s famous Royal Mile (with Edinburgh Castle at the other). Surrounded by beautiful parkland, this is an official royal residence.

Holyrood was founded in 1128 as a monastery and the abbey still survives in ruins. James IV ordered the construction of the palace beside it in 1501. Over time, the structure has changed and developed into the grand building we see today.

Many significant events have taken place at Holyrood throughout history, such as weddings and coronations. Mary, Queen of Scots lived in the palace and got married there twice. Also, her private secretary David Rizzio was murdered in her private apartments in 1566. Bonnie Prince Charlie briefly set up court there in 1745, after seizing Edinburgh during the Jacobite Risings. And it was a frequent resting place for Queen Victoria, on her way to Balmoral in the late 19th century.

Things to see at Holyroodhouse

On a tour of Holyrood Palace, you can explore the state apartments, throne room and the great gallery. See Holyrood Abbey and the Palace Gardens. There is a gift shop and café within the grounds. You can also visit the Queen’s Gallery, an art gallery housing exhibitions from the Royal Collection. However, there is an additional ticket price to visit the gallery.

Find out more about opening times and ticket prices here.

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