National Museum of Scotland

National Museum of Scotland
Chambers Street




0300 123 6789

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
Main entrance, National Museum of Scotland c Andrew Lee
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The National Museum of Scotland is one of the Top 10 UK visitor attractions, and in the Top 20 most visited museums and galleries in the world.

Fresh from a £47m redevelopment, the museum houses a spectacular array of over 20,000 fascinating artefacts. Explore the diversity of the natural world, art and design, world culture, science and technology, and Scottish history, all under one roof.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Daily 10.00 - 17.00

Admission charges

Admission free

Additional info

See website for details

Come and explore the National Museum of Scotland. When did people first settle in Scotland? What are our oldest treasures? Discover some of the nation's most precious possessions alongside the everyday objects that throw light on Scotland throughout the ages.

Our collections represent astonishing diversity, from fossils showing evidence of the earliest forms of life, to the rich artefact collections representing world cultures. Material evidence of Scottish history and culture from the earliest times to the present day has been collected and preserved for the future.

You can take part in lots of activities every day at the Museum. To get the most from your visit, pick up a map and check our information screens for details of all events and activities.

Collection details

Weapons and War, Trade and Commerce, Social History, Religion, Industry, Coins and Medals, Archaeology, Agriculture, Science and Technology, Costume and Textiles, Design, Fine Art, Music, World Cultures, Aviation, Decorative and Applied Art, Medicine, Natural Sciences, Weapons and War

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Green Circles bangle by David Poston and Jonathan Cleaver, with welded stainless steel with tapestry inserts, 2011.

New to the National Collection

  • 19 September 2014 — 22 February 2015 *on now

New to the National Collection showcases the latest additions to the National Museums’ collections including objects that will feature in ten new galleries on decorative art, design, fashion, science and technology opening in 2016 at National Museum of Scotland.

Casualty of War: A Portrait of Maharaja Duleep Singh

Indian Encounters

  • 14 November 2014 — 1 March 2015 *on now

Explore the changing relationships between Great Britain and India during the 18th and 19th centuries through the lives of two men with very different experiences of British imperial rule: Captain Archibald Swinton and Maharaja Duleep Singh.

Game Masters

  • 5 December 2014 — 19 April 2015 *on now

The exhibition explores the development of videogames through interviews with game designers, rare original game artwork and interactives, as well as looking forward to how independently produced games are leading the way in design, aesthetics and game play.

The exhibition commences with Arcade Heroes,which focuses on the seminal arcade games of the late 1970s and early 1980s and spotlights pioneering designers such as Shigeru Miyamoto (Donkey Kong), Tomohiro Nishikado (Space Invaders), Ed Logg (Asteroids), and Toru Iwatani (Pac-Man).

The nature of gaming changed as it moved from the arcade to the home computer, console and handheld devices. Key designers whose work embodies these ‘game-changing’ transitions include Yuji Naka and the Sonic Team (Sonic the Hedgehog), Nintendo (Super Mario Bros), Blizzard Entertainment (World of Warcraft) and Paulina Bozek (SingStar).

Suitable for

  • Any age
Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

Themed tour

  • 1 June — 31 December 2014 *on now

Looking for a more in-depth experience? We offer a wide range of themed tours. Ask at the information desk or check our website for forthcoming tour titles

Tours leave from the Meeting Point, Entrance Hall, Level 0.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Scottish Galleries highlights tour

  • 1 June — 31 December 2014 *on now

Tours leave from the Meeting Point, Entrance Hall, Level 0
Follow the story of Scotland through fascinating objects on this highlights tour.

Discover the National Museum

  • 1 June — 31 December 2014 *on now

From stunning Victorian architecture to the Lewis Chessmen and Dolly the sheep, this tour will give you a flavour of all the National Museum of Scotland has to offer.

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Discover Celts and Romans at Birnie

Explore an Iron Age power centre uncovered during archaeological digs at Birnie (North Scotland), and find out why this site was important to both the Celts and the Romans.

Discovery Zones

Get your hands on history in our Discovery Zones. Follow a Viking journey, fire a medieval catapult of dress up in 16th century style!

How to obtain

Our free Discovery Zones are located on Levels 0,
1, 3 and 5. Ask a member of staff for more information!

Robert Burns: To a Mouse Family Footprints Trail

A new museum trail for families exploring one of Burns’ famous poems through exhibits in our Scottish collections.
Available from the Info Zone Level 3 Grand Gallery Balcony or download from our website.
Supported by Scotland’s Winter Festivals