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Mobility access

Temporary lift closure

There will be no step-free access to the State Apartments in the Palace of Holyroodhouse from Thursday, 3 January 2019 until late March 2019 while the lift is undergoing major upgrading. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding while we work to improve step-free access to the Palace and better accessibility for our visitors.

For the best experience, we recommend you plan your visit for after the lift works are complete. However, if you cannot delay your visit, Holyrood Abbey, the Palace Forecourt and the Quadrangle will be accessible to all visitors daily and the royal gardens will be accessible at weekends. Please contact our Specialist Sales team on +44 (0)303 123 7324 to talk through your requirements and book a free ticket to see these areas only.

The Queen’s Gallery remains fully accessible throughout this period.

Wheelchairs and lifts

Manual wheelchairs and rollators (wheeled walkers) are available to borrow free of charge on a first come, first served basis for the duration of a visit. Mobility scooters can be used in the Palace grounds, and are permitted in the Palace providing they can fit in the lift – the lift measures 108cm in depth by 107cm in width and has a weight limit of 375kg.

The Palace lift

The Palace lift ©


There are 27 steps in the Great Staircase. If you require step-free access please speak to a Warden.

The Great Staircase.

The Great Staircase. ©

There is no wheelchair access to Mary, Queen of Scots’ Chambers, which are accessed via a steep spiral staircase consisting of 25 steps. A virtual tour is available using the computer screen in the Great Gallery.

Stairs to Mary, Queen of Scots’ Chambers

Stairs to Mary, Queen of Scots’ Chambers ©

Flooring and Surfaces

The floors inside the State Apartments are either wooden or carpeted with thick pile carpet.


The floor in Holyrood Abbey has gravel chippings.

Holyrood Abbey.

Holyrood Abbey. ©

As the Palace is an historic building, the floors may be uneven so please take care.


Respite seating

Benches are available in the Forecourt, Abbey Yard and in the Gardens during the summer months, and in the State Apartments all year round. There are café facilities at the Café at the Palace in the Mews Courtyard.

The Café at the Palace.

The Café at the Palace. ©

Assistance animals

Assistance animals are welcome and water is available on request.



The shop is located opposite the Café and next to the entrance to The Queen’s Gallery. The shop is on one level with wooden flooring.

The Palace shop.

The Palace shop. ©


Accessible toilets are located in the Café and in The Queen’s Gallery.


Parking and transport

The nearest disabled parking bays are located on Horse Wynd, just outside the Palace. For further information please see map & directions.

For more information or to feed back please e-mail [email protected]