Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh | Loch Lomond Waterfront

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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Testimonials

  • Wish we had longer

    'The ducks were very amusing, each day they waddled around the lodges looking for food, we bought some duck food for them in the local village shop. We just wished we were here for longer and hope to return in the future.'
  • The best wedding our guests had been to

    'Everyone has said it was the best wedding they have been too and the venue and staff are very much to take credit for that!'
  • Stunning from top to bottom

    'We booked this to relax after a family tragedy and it was the perfect tonic. Stunning from top to bottom. The rooms were perfect with all the facilities needed. The hot tub on a winters evening took it to another level. The blackout curtains, allied to no light pollution outside, meant wakening up was the most natural I had experienced for years.'
  • Outstanding location

    'The location is outstanding - right on the edge of Loch Lomond with private water frontage and beaches. As a location for exploring, again this rates very highly. We easily accessed central Glasgow by train from nearby Balloch and also explored Stirling (particularly the castle and Wallace memorial), the Falkirk Wheel and even Perth and Pitlochry by car. It is a very peaceful place, which can only be disturbed on occasion by your neighbours but with the Slumber Charter in place, we had absolutely no problems overnight.'
  • We knew it would be perfect

    'From our very first visit to this venue we knew that it was going to be perfect for our reception! The setting is magical, with enchanting views on even the most dreich of days. The staff are fantastic and so accommodating. We loved that we had so much flexibility over our choices, unlike at other venues! There was plenty of space within the private function rooms, which gave our guests plenty of room to socialise while hiding from the wet west coast weather on our big day! It was great not having to share our day with uninvited guests. The...
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