No matter when you’d like to time travel to in Scotland’s vast history, the National Museum of Scotland can likely transport you there – even if only for a moment. This awe-inspiring hub of history, art and culture is among the most visited museums in the world; it boasts thousands of fascinating artefacts and displays spanning from Scotland’s prehistoric times to present day.
In the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, the National Museum of Scotland features dozens of galleries to intrigue and delight. When you walk in to the museum’s Grand Gallery, prepare to be dazzled. Lined with towering white pillars and an arched atrium that lets the natural light flood in, it lives up to its name as a grand starting point for your visit.
Among the museum’s other popular sections are the Natural World galleries, where you can say hello to an enormous Tyrannosaurus Rex (or at least his skeleton) and learn about Ching Ching the giant panda – one of the world’s most endangered species. The World Culture galleries bring to life the many ways that humans have communicated and connected through art and music over the course of history.
The National Museum of Scotland is open 10am to 5pm year-round, except Christmas Day. To get here, there are a number of buses from the city centre that will drop you off outside on Chambers Street. Alternatively, you can take the train to Waverley Station (Edinburgh’s main station), and it’s about a 10-minute walk from there. The museum has several other popular Edinburgh attractions in the vicinity, including Edinburgh Castle, Arthur’s Seat, Holyrood Park and Old Town’s historic thoroughfare, the Royal Mile.