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Exploring Edinburgh with Kids: 12 Must-See Attractions

Edinburgh, Scotland’s beautiful capital city, offers plenty to see and do for families with children. From medieval castles to interactive attractions, there is something to keep every kid entertained. We’ve hand-picked a selection of the best kid-friendly attractions in Edinburgh, that promise to make your family trip extra special.

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle is the city’s most iconic landmark and has been a royal residence since the 11th century. Although this imposing fortress may not seem like the most obvious family day out, there is actually plenty here to keep the kids entertained. The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards Museum is the perfect place to start, where they can dress up in uniforms and learn about the history of the regiment. The Military Prison, where prisoners were kept during the 19th century, also offers up a fascinating insight and is sure to captivate the kids.

Don’t forget to explore the castle’s open spaces, where you can get some great views of the city. And before you leave, make sure to check out the Honours of Scotland – the oldest crown jewels in Britain – and the Stone of Destiny, which was used in the coronation of the Scottish Monarchs.

For a unique experience, why not take part in one of the castle’s Underground Tours, where you can explore the dark tunnels and get a taste of what life was like during the 16th century.

Dynamic Earth

Dynamic Earth is one of Edinburgh’s most popular attractions and offers an immersive journey through the history of the Earth. Kids will be enthralled by the interactive exhibits and awe-inspiring visuals. Plus, they can also take part in the Earth Rangers programme, which will teach them all about the planet and how to care for it.

The Time Machine is a must-see attraction, as it takes visitors on a 4D journey through time. From the Big Bang to the Ice Age, you can explore the evolution of life on Earth and discover some interesting facts along the way. And don’t miss the Shark Mission experience, where you can get up close and personal with some of the ocean’s most fearsome predators.

If you can, make sure to take part in one of the Behind the Scenes Tours, where you can go backstage and explore the inner workings of the museum.

National Museum of Scotland

The National Museum of Scotland is a great place to visit with the kids, as it offers a wide range of interactive exhibits that are sure to keep them entertained. From dinosaurs to mummies, there is something here to suit every interest. And the Explorers’ Garden has plenty of fun activities for younger kids, such as a climbing frame and a sandpit.

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The museum also offers a range of educational workshops, where kids can learn about science and technology in a fun and interactive way. Plus, there are regular special events, such as a Chocolate Making Workshop and a Robotics Workshop.

Be sure to check out the museum’s Themed Tours too, which will provide an in-depth look at some of the most interesting exhibits.

The Scotch Whisky Experience

If your kids are old enough, why not take them to The Scotch Whisky Experience, a fascinating tour that takes you through the history of Scotland’s national drink. Kids will love the interactive exhibits and trivia games, and they can also learn how whisky is made and sample some of the finest varieties.

For a truly memorable experience, why not take part in the Whisky Blending Experience, where you can create your own unique blend of whisky. The tour also offers a range of food and drinks, so you can refuel after a long day of sightseeing.

Edinburgh Zoo

Edinburgh Zoo is home to over 1,000 animals, so it’s a great place to take the kids for a day out. Plus, there are plenty of interactive exhibits, such as the Penguin Walk, which allows visitors to get up close and personal with the birds.

The zoo is also home to some of the world’s rarest species, such as the Sumatran Tiger and the Red Panda. You can also take part in the Zoo Encounter programme, which will give you an insight into the inner workings of the zoo and let you get up close and personal with some of the animals.

Royal Yacht Britannia

The Royal Yacht Britannia is a must-see attraction for all visitors to Edinburgh. This majestic vessel was the floating home of the Royal Family for over 40 years and is now open to the public. Kids will love exploring the luxurious cabins and discovering the many secrets of the boat.

On board you can also take part in a range of interactive activities, such as the Treasure Hunt, which will take you on a journey around the boat’s many decks. Plus, there is a range of food and drinks available, so you can refuel after a long day of exploring.

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions

The Camera Obscura & World of Illusions is a great place to take the kids for a fun and educational day out. This interactive attraction is packed with optical illusions and mind-bending exhibits, so there is something here to suit every interest.

The Mirror Maze is a must-see, as it is filled with hundreds of mirrors that will give the kids a unique perspective on the world around them. And don’t miss the Laser Labyrinth, which will take you on a journey through a dizzying array of lasers.

If you can, make sure to take part in one of the Live Shows, which will take you on a journey through the history of photography and the science of light.

Holyrood Park

Holyrood Park is Edinburgh’s largest public park and is the perfect place to take the kids for a day out. The park is home to a range of animal and plant life, so there is plenty to explore and discover. Plus, the Arthur’s Seat offers breathtaking views of the city, so it’s a great place to take some photos.

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The park also has plenty of activities to keep the kids entertained, such as the Mountain Bike Trails, which are great for budding cyclists. And there is a range of hiking trails, so you can explore the park’s many hidden gems.

Royal Botanic Garden

The Royal Botanic Garden is a great place to take the kids for a day out, as it is packed with plants and flowers from all over the world. Kids will love discovering the many exotic species and exploring the various gardens. Plus, there are plenty of interactive exhibits, such as the Children’s Garden and the Interactive Water Feature.

The garden also offers a range of educational activities, such as the Wildlife Safari and the Nature Trail, which will teach kids all about the natural world. And there are regular special events, such as Storytelling and Gardening Workshops, which will give them an insight into the world of plants.

Real Mary King’s Close

The Real Mary King’s Close is a fascinating attraction that offers an insight into the life of Edinburgh’s citizens during the 17th century. Kids will love exploring the secret tunnels and discovering the many secrets of the city. Plus, there are plenty of interactive exhibits, such as the Interactive Ghost Hunt and the Tales of the Close tour, which will take them on a journey through the city’s past.

The close also offers a range of educational activities, such as the Edinburgh Dungeon Experience and the Edinburgh Ghost Tour, which will teach them all about the city’s rich history. And don’t forget to check out the Living History programme, which will give them an insight into the lives of the city’s inhabitants.

The Edinburgh Dungeon

The Edinburgh Dungeon is a great place to take the kids for a fun and spooky day out. This interactive attraction is filled with interactive exhibits and terrifying special effects, so there is something here to suit every interest.

Kids will love exploring the Scream Tunnels and discovering the many secrets of the city. Plus, there are plenty of interactive activities, such as the Live Shows and the Haunted Labyrinth, which will give them a unique insight into the city’s past.

If you can, make sure to take part in one of the Behind the Scenes Tours, which will take you backstage and explore the inner workings of the dungeon.

The National Gallery of Scotland

The National Gallery of Scotland is a great place to take the kids for a day out, as it houses a wide range of artworks from across the ages. Kids will love exploring the galleries and discovering the many secrets of the art world. Plus, there are plenty of interactive exhibits, such as the Kids Corner and the Digi Lab, which will give them an insight into the history of art.

The gallery also offers a range of educational activities, such as the Family Tours and the Art Detective programmes, which will teach them all about the world of art. And there are regular special events, such as the Drawing Workshops and the Storytelling Sessions, which will give them an insight into the lives of some of the world’s greatest artists.

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The Royal Mile

The Royal Mile is a great place to take the kids for a day out, as it is packed with interesting shops and attractions. Kids will love exploring the winding streets and discovering the many secrets of the city. Plus, there are plenty of interactive exhibits, such as the Edinburgh Castle and the Scott Monument, which will give them an insight into the city’s past.

The Mile also offers a range of educational activities, such as the Historic Walking Tours and the Royal Mile Tour, which will teach them all about the city’s history. And don’t forget to check out the Street Performers, which will provide an entertaining insight into the city’s culture.

From the iconic Edinburgh Castle to the immersive Camera Obscura & World of Illusions, there are plenty of kid-friendly attractions in Edinburgh that will keep your family entertained. Whether you’re looking for an educational day out or a fun-filled adventure, you’ll find something to suit every interest. So, why not explore the city with your kids and discover all that it has to offer?

Summary

Edinburgh, Scotland’s beautiful capital city, is home to a range of kid-friendly attractions that are sure to keep your family entertained. From Edinburgh Castle to the Camera Obscura & World of Illusions, there is something here to suit every interest. And don’t forget to explore the city’s many parks and gardens, as well as the iconic Royal Mile. So, why not take your family on a journey through Edinburgh and discover all that it has to offer?