Edinburgh Shore Excursion: City Highlights Tour

Shore Excursions in Edinburgh

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4.1 out of 5

Tour description provided by Viator

When your cruise ship arrives in Edinburgh, get to know Scotland’s capital on this full-day shore excursion. Board a comfortable coach and enjoy a panoramic tour of Edinburgh’s highlights as a prelude to three of its headline acts. Explore medieval Edinburgh Castle, once residence to Scotland’s monarchs; tour the Royal Yacht Britannia, the former floating home of Queen Elizabeth II; and pause for a photo stop at Holyrood Palace, the Queen’s official Scotland residence. Free time for lunch (own expense) and to explore the Royal Mile provide the finishing touches. Entrance fees not included. Ship: Crown Princess 10/05, 22/05, 03/06, 09/07, 21/07, 02/08, 14/08, 26/08, 07/09, 19/09 Ship: Norwegian Pearl 10/06 Ship: Brilliance of the Seas 20/07 Ship: Pacific Princess 15/08, 23/08 Ship: Norwegian Spirit 18/09
While your ship is in Edinburgh, meet your driver-guide at the port and hop into your air-conditioned coach. Then, click your camera as you enjoy a 1-hour panoramic drive around the Scottish capital’s must-see sites. As you travel, hear about the history of the city and admire landmarks such as Arthur’s Seat — the striking Scottish Parliament building — and Princes Street, the main shopping district in the UNESCO-listed New Town. Drive into the Old Town, another UNESCO-listed site, and visit Edinburgh Castle (own expense), the medieval fortress perched above the city. Once a fortress and prison, this 12th-century castle was also home to many Scottish kings and queens. Highlights include the Crown Jewels, the Great Hall and the room where Mary Queen of Scots gave birth to the future James VI of Scotland. After your visit, enjoy free time to have lunch (own expense) and to explore the Royal Mile, the heart of the Old Town. View the stone tenements and lanes and then drive on to nearby Holyrood Palace, Queen Elizabeth II’s official residence in Scotland. Enter the chateau-style palace (own expense) to explore its main rooms including the State Apartments, portrait-filled Great Gallery, and Mary, Queen of Scots’ Chambers, the scene of many dramas in Mary’s life. After roughly 1.5 hours here, travel to Leith, home of the Royal Yacht Britannia. This gleaming ship was a floating palace for the Queen from 1954 to 1997, and offers a unique insight into the royal family’s lives. Take an audio-guided tour (own expense) of the five decks, seeing everything from the luxurious State Apartments to the Bridge as you learn about life on board and the dignitaries who were welcomed here, including Winston Churchill. Lastly, rejoin your coach and finish your shore excursion with a drop-off back at your ship. Worry-free Shore Excursion:We will ensure your timely return to Edinburgh port for this activity. In the rare event your ship has departed, we will arrange for transportation to the next port-of-call. If your ship is delayed and you are unable to attend this activity, your money will be refunded. See our terms and conditions for full details.

What’s included

  • Port pickup and drop-off
  • Professional driver-guide
  • Transport by air-conditioned coach
  • Worry-free shore excursion guarantee

What’s not included

  • Gratuities (optional)
  • Food and drinks, unless specified
  • Entrance fees to Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Castle and Royal Yacht Britannia


  • Informative, friendly and professional guide
  • Free port pickup and drop-off included