Choose Edinburgh this Easter for family fun

Now that spring is finally here, let Museums & Galleries Edinburgh entertain the family throughout the Easter holidays, with indoor and outdoor entertainment for whatever weather there might be.

Easter lauriston
Lauriston Castle receives a Spring clean as it prepares for Easter visitors

With free entrance for all, the museums offer the perfect family day out whether you’re looking to experience what wartime life in Edinburgh was like for its residents, see how far technology has come since the first Xbox, play dress up, learn about Scotland’s literary past, or enjoy the outdoors.

Councillor Donald Wilson, Culture and Communities Convener, said: “The Easter break is a chance for families to try something different and experience Edinburgh’s great selection of museums and school break activities. The challenge of balancing budgets and keeping the kids entertained is no easy task for any parent, but with so much on offer at our museums and galleries – much of it for free - nobody should feel stuck for something to enjoy.

“This year’s packed programme provides the perfect opportunity to rediscover the newly refurbished Museum of Childhood, enjoy the sights of the city from the top of the Scott Monument, or to celebrate the start of spring with a family picnic, egg and spoon race, Easter crafts and treats in the grounds of Lauriston Castle.”

The Museum of Childhood reopened its doors this March, with a complete refurbishment of Gallery One, including a brand new tee-pee, dressing up materials, building blocks and more to get the kids’ imaginations running wild as they play and learn amongst the 60 newly-displayed objects in the gallery.  New items on display include an original Gameboy as part of a technological display, a Buzz lightyear action figure and a Fisher Price chatter telephone that featured in many a family home. The interactive exhibits take families through time, showing how school, fashion, play and more has changed and evolved, and asking when does childhood end? Beyond the new gallery, the museum has a collection of toys, games and artefacts relating to British childhoods spread over five floors, making it the perfect place to spend an afternoon this Easter with something for all the family to discover and enjoy.

In a maze of 16th Century buildings on the city’s historic Royal Mile, the Museum of Edinburgh offers a glimpse into Edinburgh’s fascinating history through its wide and varied collections. The new Costume Gallery showcases clothes from World War 1 and 2, and the way the wars altered how ordinary people dressed, with replica clothing for all the family to try on and step into the shoes of war pilots, evacuees and the women at home. Throughout the rest of the museum, centuries of Edinburgh’s history are waiting to be discovered, from the National covenant of 1638 which led to civil war, to the collar and bowl of Greyfriars Bobby.

Running throughout the Easter holidays, the Our Story exhibition showcases the different faiths and communities connected within Edinburgh, taken by local photographers.

Moving along the Royal Mile and into Lady Stair’s Close, the Writers’ Museum celebrates the 100th anniversary of Muriel Spark’s birth with Muriel Spark A Centenary Celebration sitting alongside the museum’s permanent collection which includes Robert Louis Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verses. Spend a couple of hours exploring the museum and Makar’s Court before heading home to read the stories created by these fabulous Scottish authors.

As the weather turns nicer why not pack a picnic and explore the free grounds and woodland trails of Lauriston Castle? Laid out in the 1840s by William Henry Playfair, the architect behind so many of Edinburgh’s beautiful buildings, much of the planting can be dated back to that time.  The Japanese Friendship garden onsite is a great place to find a little peace, too. Entrance to the house itself if you’d like to explore inside is £5 for adults and £3 for kids.

On Easter Sunday there’ll be an Eggstaordinary Easter at the Castle, with tickets at £7, including egg and spoon races, crafts and Easter treats.

Outside of Edinburgh, teenagers looking for Easter holiday activities should look no further than the Travelling Gallery, currently touring Are Teenage Dreams So Hard To Beat? around Scotland, appearing in Aberdeen, West Lothian and Glasgow throughout the break. The exhibition investigates the contrasting past and present of adolescence with work from Arpita Shah, Alice Theobald and Holly White.


Venue Details:

Museum of Childhood

Address:                    42 High St, Edinburgh, EH1 1TG

Telephone:               0131 529 4142


Twitter:                     @EdinCulture


Opening hours:        Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday 12pm – 5pm


Museum of Edinburgh

Address:                    142 - 146 Cannongate, Edinburgh, EH8 8DD

Telephone:               0131 529 4143


Twitter:                     @EdinCulture


Opening hours:        Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday 12pm – 5pm


Writers’ Museum

Address:                    Lawnmarket, Lady Stair’s Close, Edinburgh, EH1 2PA

Telephone:               0131 529 4901 


Twitter:                     @EdinCulture


Opening hours:        Wednesday - Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday 12pm – 5pm


Lauriston Castle

Address:                    2 Cramond Rd S, Edinburgh, EH4 6AD

Telephone:               0131 529 4901 336 2060 


Twitter:                     @EdinCulture


Opening hours:        Monday – Sunday 8am – 5pm


Travelling Gallery

Friday 30 March - Transition Extreme, Links Road, Aberdeen AB24 5NN 10am - 5pm

Tuesday 10 April - West Lothian College

Saturday 14 April - Platform The Bridge, 1000 Westerhouse Road G34 9JW times tbc

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