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Edinburgh Castle entry time

What is the best time to visit Edinburgh Castle? We will be visiting on a weekday, May 26th. I’ve read that it is best to purchase tickets for first entry in the morning, but I am questioning this advice. When I look online at ticket availability, I see there are only 30 tickets left at the 9:30AM time slot. Could there be school groups visiting at this time of year? Has anyone ever visited mid / late afternoon? If so, was it crowded?

Posted by
514 posts

I've always planned to visit as early as possible to avoiud coach tours!

Posted by
5669 posts

I like to visit early because it's such a great way to start a trip to Edinburgh. You can see the city laid out before and all the way to the Firth of Forth if you have good weather.

Posted by
21334 posts

I didn't go to Edinburgh Castle while in the city in July 2019, but my travel mate did. She's a big castle and history buff. She enjoyed it, but she complained about the crowding. I think she must have gotten there very early; she's a morning person.

The reason the first time slot can be best even when all tickets are sold for every entry time is that there are no holdover visitors already present when the first ticketed group walks in. That gives you some time to enjoy the place before the later ticket groups join you. If you arrive at 11 AM, all the people with tickets for 9:30 - 10:45 will still be there.

Posted by
2 posts

Thanks! I really appreciate your suggestions - they will be helpful with planning.