Scottish Museums & Galleries

Scottish Museums & Galleries

Scotland’s museums and galleries house some of the most coveted and iconic art in history, and best of all, admission to these wonderful places is often free.

National Museums and Galleries are the jewel in Scotland’s cultural crown. There are opportunities to view art valued at millions of pounds, and priceless treasures from around the world. No trip to Scotland would be complete without a visit to one of these inspiring and thought provoking spaces and they’re the perfect place to gain an understanding of Scotland through art, science, history, engineering and culture.


Edinburgh’s National Gallery Complex covers five major galleries across the city, including The National Gallery of Scotland and The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and houses everything from Damien Hirst to Botticelli. Museums of interest include the National Museum of Scotland, Museum on the Mound and The Royal Yacht Britannia. The National Library of Scotland, on George IV Bridge in Edinburgh holds over seven million titles and is the world's leading repository of manuscript records of Scotland's history.


Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, generally believed to house one of the most impressive collections in Europe, is a much loved cultural landmark by locals and visitors alike. Scotland’s oldest public museum, The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery is here too. The Glasgow School of Art is Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s living legacy and visitors can take tours around the artist’s former school. The story of Glasgow and her people is examined in the fascinating People’s Palace and Winter Gardens. And no visit to Glasgow would be complete without a trip to the Burrell Collection in Pollok Park. The Mitchell – built in part by a donation from billionaire Scots philanthropist Andrew Carnegie – is one of the largest public reference libraries in Europe, with over one and a half million titles, including unparalleled collections by Scots authors like Robert Burns.


Perth Museum and Art Gallery is home to over a million exhibits of national interest and houses work ranging from Warhol to Beatrix Potter.


Aberdeen Art Gallery and Museums is home to an important collection of fine art from the 19th century to the present day. New acquisitions include a piece by contemporary artist, Tracey Emin. Aberdeen Maritime Museum charts the city’s connection with the sea from shipbuilding to extracting oil.


Housed in a splendid Gothic Revival-style building, The McManus museum is the jewel in Dundee's art crown. The display includes an impressive collection of archaeology, art, history, natural sciences, and world cultures exhibits.

Thinking of visiting Scotland's museums and galleries?

Find out more at the National Galleries of Scotland website

For more information visit Scottish Museums

Last updated 20 Nov 2012