4 virtual ways to soak up some culture in Edinburgh

4 virtual ways to soak up some culture in Edinburgh


We may all be housebound at the minute, but that shouldn’t stop you from experiencing some of Edinburgh’s most popular attractions

It feels like COVID-19 has brought everything to a standstill. Having been advised for our own safety to stay indoors as much as possible, we’re all understandably missing simple pleasures such as going out for a meal, going to the cinema or hitting the shops.

Many of us are also missing our favourite cultural exploits, such as museums, galleries and sites of interest. This absence is particularly potent for Edinburgh residents, given the sheer amount of amazing cultural highlights located within the Scottish capital.

However, being stuck in the house doesn’t have to stop you from experiencing all that Edinburgh has to offer. From the famous Castle itself to the world-renowned zoo, many of the city’s most popular landmarks are opening their doors on a virtual platform, making it easier than ever to enjoy these iconic Edinburgh staples. Here are some of the best of the city’s virtual tours you can complete right now.


Edinburgh Castle

Edinburgh Castle is the jewel in the crown of the Scottish capital, and is arguably the most famous of all of the city’s many iconic landmarks. It sits at the head of the Royal Mile, overlooking the city below, and seems to represent just how much history and mystery lies beneath Edinburgh’s surface.

Dating back to the 12th century, the castle has dominated the city’s skyline for countless generations. It attracts more than 2 million visitors every year, and thanks to VisitScotland you can take an interactive flight over the castle and explore its grounds from the comfort of your own home.


National Museum of Scotland

Featuring incredible pieces from across the globe and across time, the National Museum of Scotland is – as the name suggests – one of Scotland’s most important cultural powerhouses. Countless people from near and far walk through its doors every day in order to boost their knowledge and fill their heads with real world wonders.

And the museum isn’t letting the current situation stop people from enjoying what it has to offer. In fact, the National Museum of Scotland was the first museum or gallery in the whole of Scotland to make its collection available for exploration online via the Google Arts and Culture Museum View experience.


Edinburgh Zoo

Thousands of adults and kids alike are delighted by the animals at Edinburgh Zoo, from the famous penguin parade to the cuddly pandas. And although it’s not possible for people to visit the zoo in person right now, the team’s live cams mean you can check in on its residents at any time, including Yan Guang the panda, Tanami the koala, the penguins and the tigers. Little ones in particular will love seeing how the critters behave when left to their own devices.


Scottish National Portrait Gallery

The Scottish National Portrait Gallery has been one of Edinburgh’s staple cultural institutions for more than 130 years. It is part of the National Galleries of Scotland public body, which also owns the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the Scottish National Gallery, also in Edinburgh.

And right now, fans of the gallery can explore its collection in depth in their own time via the institute’s website. This includes seeing all the incredible pieces from its Mirror, Mirror exhibition, which celebrates self-portraits by women artists.

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