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The Scottish Parliament

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Horse Wynd, Edinburgh EH991SP, Scotland
Phone Number:
+44 131 348 5200
09:00 - 18:30
Open now
See all hours
Mon 10:00 - 17:00
Tue - Thu 09:00 - 18:30
Fri - Sat 10:00 - 17:00
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Fee: No

In the heart of Edinburgh's Old Town and UNESCO World Heritage Site, the...

In the heart of Edinburgh's Old Town and UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Scottish Parliament building opened in 2004 and has since welcomed over 3 million visitors. Usually open from Monday to Saturday, visitors can join a free guided tour or see parliament in action, depending on which day you visit (booking essential). Discover the parliament through our exhibition, and enjoy our cafe and shop. A free creche is also available, Monday to Friday. We look forward to welcoming you to this 'landmark for 21st century democracy'.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,207 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 426
  • 346
    Very good
  • 119
  • 42
  • 52
Just walked past

But interesting architecture on the outside that is well fitted into the old town while being modern and standing out of the ordinary.

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 weeks ago
Prague, Czech Republic
via mobile
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1,207 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 985: English reviews
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
100 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

Unfortunately It wasn't open to go inside on our visit, but just wanted to comment on the outside structure. What a strange looking building in my opinion. We were told by a guide on a bus tour that the architect had passed away before he could fully explain his thoughts behind the structure. He did say that the roof on... More 

Thank diam0nd123
Rossendale, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

Interesting visit to the parliament. See the debating chamber and learn about Scottish politics. Interactive information. Quick security checks. Good cafe.

Thank Emma S
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

We will go back and spend longer, but as a start I wanted to see the architecture. First impressions were that its a mess. It detracts greatly from the beautiful historic buildings adjacent to the site. Its no Gaudi and it'll not win any accolades in years to come. It reminded me of the 60's concrete architecture of Stevenage new... More 

1 Thank Zeeez
Blackpool, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
35 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Very interesting, free entrance and very helpful guides, the modern building is very unusual with concrete mingling with wood. You can go right into the parliament chamber and sit in the gallery.

Thank Edwina M
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

My self and 17 year old son booked on a tour of the parliament. The tour was run by Graham, who definitely knew his stuff. He was funny and informative. From the outside the building looks a bit of a mish mash but Graham explained the architect behind it and it all makes sense. It is definitely worth a visit... More 

Thank Heide B
Prague, Czech Republic
Level Contributor
85 reviews
58 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

But interesting architecture on the outside that is well fitted into the old town while being modern and standing out of the ordinary.

Thank dmcc1973
Level Contributor
65 reviews
54 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Democracy is a participatory event. With nominal planning you can get free tickets into the debating gallery and see the parliamentary process in action. ( or show up a bit early and see the portion of the building were the action happens without interrupting the session.) This is worth checking out and comparing to historic houses of parliament. Some lovely... More 

Thank cc1Canada
Wiltshire, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
51 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Very enthusiastic guide. A lot of the tour was about the architecture of the building which was interesting. Would have preferred to learn more about what goes on within. Unable to take photos during most of the tour but there are plenty online and many postcards you can buy that do it for you. Highly recommend booking online.

1 Thank jennycosens
Harrow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
53 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

The whole building complex is very interesting architecturally and conceptually, both inside and out. Make sure you go when the parliament is in session, so you see the action in the main hall. And join a guided tour, if you can, that gives you a much better feel for the place than going DIY. PS: If you have time, the... More 

Thank spe03
Level Contributor
113 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Visited here on a very chilly November morning. Booked online which was easy. Guide was very informative answered all questions put to him. The building is very interesting and worth looking around.

Thank lastminutebobyork

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Staying in Old Town

Neighbourhood Profile
Old Town
Few Edinburghers live in the Old Town, but its labyrinth of dank alleys and steep streets suggests this was not always the case. Today, it’s mostly visitors, tartan-flavoured souvenir shops, and pipers that you’ll find on its cobbled streets. This is the place to get a feel for Auld Reekie (Old Smelly), as the town was once nicknamed, and stroll the Royal Mile, the thoroughfare that links the castle with the royal palace – two of Edinburgh’s great set-piece attractions. But there’s lots more exploring to do here down dozens of little alleys, or wynds, while at night the city’s busiest clubs erupt along the Cowgate which is closed to traffic for this purpose.
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