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Christmas at the Palace of Holyroodhouse

Palace of Holyroodhouse in the snow
  • This event is in the past. To view similar upcoming events click here.

Map & directions

Palace of Holyroodhouse, Canongate, The Royal Mile, Edinburgh, EH8 8DX
By car

There is a public car park adjacent to the Palace at Broad Pavement. Please visit the Historic Environment Scotland website for more details.

Accessible parking spaces are located on Horse Wynd, just outside the Palace, on a first-come first-serve basis.

By train

Edinburgh Waverley. The Palace is a 15 minute walk from the station.  Visit National Rail Enquiries for times and fares.

By tram

The nearest tram stop is York Place. The Palace is a 20 minute walk from the station. Visit Edinburgh Trams for times and fares.

By coach / bus

Bus numbers 6 and 35 stop near the Palace.  Open-top tour buses stop nearby.

Limited free coach parking is available adjacent to the Palace. Alternative pay-and-display coach parking is available on nearby Regent Road.

  • Palace of Holyroodhouse
  • Daily (Friday, 6 Dec 2019 - Monday, 6 Jan 2020)
  • Some events are included in standard admission tickets, others need booking specifically. Find out more details on individual event pages. 


This winter the Palace of Holyroodhouse will be adorned with glittering decorations to celebrate the festive season.

A Christmas tree at the Palace of Holyroodhouse. ©

The festive decorations at the Palace of Holyroodhouse will include a 15-foot high Christmas tree in the Great Gallery, adorned with shimmering decorations and sparkling lights, while the Great Stair leading to the historic State Apartments will be draped with twinkling velvet garlands, glistening berries and seasonal foliage.

In the Royal Dining Room, the table will be laid with pieces from a silver service presented to George V and Queen Mary in 1935 to mark their Silver Jubilee, and decorated with flowers, wreaths and spires of faux candied sugared fruits.

Christmas at the Palace ©

Exclusive Evening Tours

If you're looking for the perfect present consider booking an Exclusive Evening Tour as a gift this Christmas. On selected dates in December, enjoy a Private Evening Tour of the Palace when it's normally closed to the public. The tours are led by an expert guide and offer a special behind-the-ropes experience. 

For adults

Start the festive season off on Sunday, 8 and Monday, 9 December, when the Scottish Vocal Ensemble will provide an evening of Christmas carols and seasonal music in the splendour of the Great Gallery.

On Saturday, 14 December we have a lunchtime lecture at the Palace, exploring the festive traditions of the royal family through the centuries, many of which have influenced the Christmas customs we know and love today.

Our Christmas audio-descriptive tour of the State Apartments on Sunday, 15 December, specifically for blind and partially-sighted visitors, weaves historic stories with descriptions of the interiors which are dressed for the festive season.

For children

Throughout December we have a Christmas trail specially for the little ones. Pick up a copy and complete challenges as you visit the Palace's many rooms. Find out all about royal Christmas traditions and the fascinating history at the Palace. 

Recitals for Wrigglers return on Sunday, 8 December for a special family-friendly Christmas concert in the Great G​allery.

Don't miss our special Christmas celebration weekend on 14-15 December, where families visiting the Palace can enjoy musical performances, short talks, hands-on activities and a family-friendly performance by theatre company Some Kind of Theatre, telling the story of a stubborn pixie trapped in Queen Mary’s Dolls' House.


Christmas celebration weekend
  • Palace of Holyroodhouse
  • This event is in the past

Festive afternoon tea. ©

Christmas Afternoon Tea

Visit the Café at the Palace in the historic Mews courtyard, where you can can enjoy homemade mince pies, Christmas cake and mulled wine.

Treat yourself to a Christmas-themed afternoon tea: our hand-crafted treats will serve as the perfect indulgence to share with friends and family. 

Book online


Afternoon tea gift vouchers are also available. They can be purchased in the Café or by calling +44 (0)131 652 3685.


Gift ideas

Browse for Christmas gift inspiration at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in the Royal Collection Trust shops or online at, where ranges of jewellery, cuddly corgis and festive food and drink make perfect presents.

For book lovers, A Royal Christmas is the first official publication to explore the festive traditions of generations of the royal family, through more than 150 objects, photographs and documents from the Royal Collection and the Royal Archives. 

Christmas tree decorations. ©