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Christmas displays open at the Palace of Holyroodhouse

Release date: Friday, 24 November 2023

Christmas decorations in the Throne Room at the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

Christmas decorations in the Throne Room at the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Royal Collection Trust /© His Majesty King Charles III 2023. Photographer: David Cheskin.

From today, visitors to the Palace of Holyroodhouse will see the State Apartments transformed with shimmering Christmas trees, garlands, and a magnificent table display to celebrate the festive season.


Highlights of Christmas at the Palace of Holyroodhouse:

  • A magnificent Christmas tree in the wood-panelled Throne Room is the centrepiece for the displays. Another glittering Nordmann Fir tree and two decorated mantelpieces create a festive atmosphere in the storied Great Gallery.
  • Velvet garlands, vibrant berries and seasonal foliage adorn the Great Stair leading to the historic State Apartments, and wreaths are hung in the windows in the enfilade of the King’s Rooms.
  • In the Royal Dining Room, the grand table is laid with a silver service and with sugared fruit and foliage.
  • In the Café at the Palace in the Mews courtyard, visitors can enjoy homemade mince pies, Christmas cake and mulled wine surrounded by wreaths and garlands. Decadent Christmas-themed Afternoon Tea can also be booked in advance.
  • Visitors interested in learning how monarchs have celebrated Christmas over the centuries – from exchanging Christmas cards and personal gifts to holding festive pantomimes – can hear short talks held on Thursdays throughout December.
  • A programme of festive music will be performed in evening Christmas concerts on Sunday, 10 and Monday, 11 December, concluding with a glass of wine and mince pies.
  • On Saturday, 2 December, a festive session of the Abbey Strand art club will allow families to see the beautiful decorations and discover some Christmas stories before decorating their own porcelain Christmas tree decoration.
  • A special version of Royal Rhyme Time on Monday, 4 December will give toddlers and their parents or carers the chance to celebrate through interactive storytelling, festive songs, and rhymes.
  • On Mary, Queen of Scots' birthday, Friday, 8 December, a special evening event at the Palace will explore life at Mary's court. Visitors will have the chance to join an intimate curator-led tour of Mary’s chambers as well as experience the sights and sounds of Mary’s court at Christmas through festive talks, music performances, and activities.
  • The Carols and Crafts: Christmas Activity Day on Saturday, 16 December gives families the chance to try their hand at making either clay decorations, inspired by the Palace's 17th-century interiors, or Christmas


For more information about Christmas at the Palace of Holyroodhouse see here.

Christmas at the Palace of Holyroodhouse
  • Palace of Holyroodhouse
  • This event is in the past