Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office, Scottish visitor reception image, Architecture, Architect design news

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office News

Visitor’s Reception at Historic Building in Scotland, UK Images

post updated 7 July 2023 ; 3 August 2021

Location: Castlehill, Old Town, central Edinburgh

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office design
Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office design image from Scottish Executive 2006

Edinburgh Castle Visitor’s Reception

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office before & after images released 080906

Gareth Hoskins Architects won in Feb 2005 a project to design the Visitor’s Reception, circa £1.2m.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office – PR 2006

A £2.7m Welcome To Edinburgh Castle

Initiative welcomed by minister and VisitScotland

Design: Gareth Hoskins Architects, Glasgow

Historic Scotland is investing £2.7 million to cut queues and give visitors a warmer welcome when they arrive at Edinburgh Castle.

This project will halve the time taken to queue for tickets and transform the visitors’ view of Edinburgh Castle by removing the current ticket office from the esplanade.

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office
Esplanade visitor centre image from Scottish Executive 2006

The new Esplanade visitor centre project includes:

– a new terrace and gathering area offering spectacular city views.
– a new ticket office on the terrace.
– online booking and information on events via a new Edinburgh Castle website.
– a sophisticated and swift new onsite electronic ticketing system.

Planning permission and Scheduled Monument clearance have been granted and work on the terrace and ticket office is due to start towards the end of this year.

The aim is to have the new ticketing area up and running for the start of the 2008 visitor season.

Chris Watkins, Historic Scotland head of major projects, said: “This investment shows Historic Scotland’s commitment to giving visitors the best possible welcome when they arrive at Scotland’s premier attraction.

“We also want people to be able to enjoy the spectacular views of the castle when they arrive on the esplanade without having the existing temporary ticket office in the way.

“This will be achieved by creating a terrace inside the castle with a new ticket office. The new ticket office will make it easier for visitors to buy tickets and cut down queuing times.

“We will also provide visitors with more information about the castle and the events that are taking place during their visit.

“The new Edinburgh Castle website will enable visitors and groups to buy tickets online and avoid queuing for tickets altogether.

“Our research shows that once visitors are inside Edinburgh Castle there is so much to do and see that they feel it is excellent value for money.

“We are trying to make sure that this positive experience begins before they even reach the drawbridge.”

Edinburgh Castle visitor centre on the esplanade

This new visitor facility project will provide a reception team staff on the esplanade to meet and greet visitors as they arrive.

The introduction of electronic ticketing will also reduce the waiting times for tour groups who will be met on board their coaches and taken straight into the castle.

Historic Scotland’s initiative has been welcomed by both the Scottish Executive and VisitScotland.

Patricia Ferguson MSP, Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport, said: “Edinburgh Castle is an internationally famous icon and I am delighted that Historic Scotland is making such a significant investment in improving visitor services and facilities.

“A visit to the castle is often one of the highlights of a holiday in Scotland and this project will help ensure it gets off to the best possible start, with a warm welcome plus modern and efficient service.”

Philip Riddle, VisitScotland chief executive, said: “Opening up the esplanade so people enjoy an uninterrupted view of the castle will do a great deal to enhance visitors’ first impressions and their experience when they arrive.

“The castle is one of Edinburgh’s top attractions and it is essential visitors are met with a friendly and helpful reception.

“For these reasons efforts being made to cut queues and create excellent first impressions are very good news indeed.”

Edinburgh Castle from Princes Street
building image © Adrian Welch, 2006

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office Construction

Edinburgh Castle Ticket Office – Building News information received Sep 2006

The work programme has been planned so as not to interfere with visitors’ enjoyment of the castle.

Edinburgh Castle is located in central Edinburgh. Telephone 0131 225 9846.

Each year the castle welcomes around 1.2 million visitors.

Tickets are £10.30 for adults, £4.50 for children and £8.50 concessions.

Attractions inside the castle include: The Honours of Scotland (the nation’s crown jewels), the Stone of Destiny, the Royal Palace, the Great Hall, the Prisons of War exhibition, the National War Museum of Scotland, the Royal Scots Regimental Museum, the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards Regimental Museum, the Scottish National War Memorial, Mons Meg, the One O’Clock Gun, St Margaret’s Chapel, the dog cemetery, the Half Moon Battery and much more besides.

The new ticket office has been designed by Glasgow-based Gareth Hoskins Architects.

Edinburgh Castle: +44 (0)131 225 9846

Edinburgh Castle from the south
photograph © Adrian Welch, 2006

The oldest building at Edinburgh Castle is St Margaret’s Chapel, which survived various sieges due to its religious significance: it was probably requested by King David, following his mother’s (Queen Margaret, d.1093) death at this site. Members of Edinburgh Castle garrison still have the right to marry in the Chapel.

Edinburgh Castle Photo Edinburgh Castle tickets
photos © Adrian Welch

Opening times
check times: 0131 225 9846
1st Apr to Oct 31st
9.30am until 6pm, last admission 5.15pm
1st Nov to Mar 31st
9.30am until 5pm, last admission 4.15pm
Christmas Day & Boxing Day
Castle closed
1st Jan
11am until 5pm

Prices (current Nov 2005)
Adult £9.80 Child £3.50 Concessions £7.50

Edinburgh Castle Scotland
photo © Adrian Welch
Mills Mount Cafe, Edinburgh Castle
Mon-Sun. 9.15am – 5.15pm – contact: [email protected]
Edinburgh Castle: please check with owners for details such as access & charge

Contact Edinburgh Castle: +44 (0)131 225 9846

Other Edinburgh Castles include Craigmillar Castle, Dalkeith Castle, Lauriston Castle

Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Castle Esplanade
photograph © Adrian Welch

Buildings adjacent to the Ticket Office site, Castle Esplanade:
Ramsey Gardens & Outlook Tower

Edinburgh Architecture


Scottish Parliament

Missoni Hotel Edinburgh

New Town Harvey Nichols

No larger image:
Edinburgh Castle
photo © Adrian Welch

Comments / photos for the Edinburgh Castle Architecture – Ticket Office Building page welcome

Edinburgh Castle – Website Information www.historic-scotland.net