Festive Heritage Sites Around Scotland

Scotland is a great place to spend the festive season. From glittering lights and Christmas trees in town centres, to snow-covered mountains and fields, there are many amazing places to visit for festive cheer around the country.

Check out some of our top picks for great festive places to visit in Scotland and make the most of our £1 entry offer at National Trust for ScotlandHistoric Environment Scotland and Historic Houses destinations.

Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle

The capital's castle is a great place to view the Christmas lights that adorn the city of Edinburgh, and a good way to combine Christmas markets. Scotland’s crown jewels are among the national treasures on display within the castle walls. Get a beautiful panoramic view of the city, as well as discovering the history of the area.

Check out the festive Castle of Light Event (not included in £1 entry discount), for amazing light installations recounting the history of Edinburgh Castle.

Where: Edinburgh Castle, The Esplanade, Edinburgh, EH1 2NG.

Edinburgh Castle is a short walk away from Waverley train station which has trains from all across the country.

Winter opening hours

Winter opening hours are 9.30am- 5pm with last entry at 4pm. Closing commences 1 hour before the actual closing time.

Drum Castle

Outside of Drum Castle

Discover a great historical site and learn more about one of Scotland’s oldest tower houses at Drum Castle. Find out all about the endeavours of the noble Irvine clan from their beginnings right up to the current day. You can also view contemporary Scottish art in the gallery on the second floor. Get cosy while wandering around this castle, whilst learning more about the heritage of Scotland.

Where: Drum Castle, Drumoakby, Banchory, Aberdeenshire, AB31 5EY.

Drum Castle is 3 miles west of Peterculter, 10 miles west of Aberdeen and 8 miles east of Banchory. The nearest train station is Aberdeen.

Winter opening hours

2 Nov–22 Dec, Sat & Sun, 10.30–16.00

23 Dec–3 Jan 2020, closed

4 Jan – 31 Mar 2020, Sat & Sun, 10.30-16.00

Last entry to the castle is at 16.00.

Dumfries House

Large Christmas Tree at Dumfries House

Enjoy the beautiful festive decorations inside this stunning Georgian gem. The house features opulent furnishings and a collection of famous Chippendale furniture. Both inside and out, Dumfries House has a wealth of exciting history to enjoy. The grounds are a delight to explore, featuring a maze, walled garden and a Chinese bridge as well as an adventure playground.

Where: Dumfries House, Cumnock, Ayrshire, KA18 2NJ.

The nearest bus station is in Cumnock. The nearest bus stop is on the B7036 at the Barony Rd entrance, approximately a one mile walk from the house on an unmade road. The nearest train station is in Auchinleck.

Winter opening hours 

Estate Grounds are open 365 days per year from dawn to dusk. The Queen Elizabeth Garden is open at the discretion of the Gardeners dependant on prevailing weather conditions. Dumfries House, House Tours and Grand Tours are available throughout the summer season but only offer limited access through the winter season on a Saturday & Sunday. Find out tour times.

Travelling by train or bus?

Remember to use your Young Scot card to save money on travel and accommodation! All Young Scot cardholders can get 20% off Citylink fares or if you're aged 16 - 18 you can get 1/3 off single fares on the bus or train.

If you fancy making a trip of it, check out our discount at Hostelling Scotland!

Your Rewards points code is: IABWNDJQ. Go to Young Scot Membership to redeem your points.