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St Giles' Cathedral

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Address: High St | Historic Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 1RE, Scotland
Phone Number: +44 131 225 9442
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Closed now
See all hours
Sun 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Mon - Sat 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Fee: No

St Giles’ Cathedral is the historic City Church of Edinburgh. With its...

St Giles’ Cathedral is the historic City Church of Edinburgh. With its famed crown spire it stands on the Royal Mile between Edinburgh Castle and the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

Also known as the High Kirk of Edinburgh, it is the Mother Church of Presbyterianism and contains the Chapel of the Order of the Thistle (Scotland’s chivalric company of knights headed by the Queen).

Please do not book any tours through TripAdvisor, as they are not endorsed by the cathedral.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 3,464 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 1415
  • 895
    Very good
  • 168
  • 13
  • 8
Most beautiful architecture I've ever seen!

Must see! Give yourself an hour to take in the beauty inside and out. Free to walk around inside but 5 pounds for a "photo pass" which is completely worth it. It was so... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed yesterday
Chardon, Ohio
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3,464 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 2,499: English reviews
Chardon, Ohio
Level Contributor
23 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

Must see! Give yourself an hour to take in the beauty inside and out. Free to walk around inside but 5 pounds for a "photo pass" which is completely worth it. It was so breathtaking we almost went back again but didn't have time during our four days in Edinburgh.

Thank ColleenKathryn
Level Contributor
72 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

Not being in to religion, but open minded ,after listening to Johnny the tour guide we thought we would give it a go.In the thistle challenge to see the unicorn,the waters,and the historic building was a plus.

Thank patslass
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

I have been to many Cathedrals , but I feel here is calming, wondrous, the windows are beautiful, I am not a regions person but after being here I feel as if the world is just right and I can cope again....... right in the heart of the Royal mile, with Greyfriers Bobby sitting close by.......after strolling along looking at... More 

Thank TrudiRosanna
west coast of Scotland
Level Contributor
139 reviews
64 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

As you walk down from the Castle,just pop into this Cathedral and admire the beautiful ,Gothic Architecture.It is a peaceful haven amongst all the hustle and bustle.B beautiful stained glass windows to admire , especially on a sunny day. Just as an aside there is a really,realky nice cafe in the Crypt. Wheelchair accessible

Thank rubyme
Harrogate, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

We went twice during our stay. Once as tourists to look round and once for a Sunday morning service. It is a welcoming cathedral with beautiful stained glass windows some new and some very old indeed. The service was well attended and the sermon enjoyable and informative. The singing was beautiful and the organ playing superb.

Thank mikeandsallybeer
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

After being in Paris, Brugge and Amsterdam, we were a little done with seeing Churches, but it was nice.

Thank Antonio D
Level Contributor
46 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW via mobile

Having taken guests to the Cathedral we were just in time for the mid day service. I honestly hope the people responsible for the church read this and do something about it. my concerns are honest and meant as constructive. the small congregation was met with a monotone reading from the Bible, From a member of clergy who had no... More 

Thank Gerry M
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
118 reviews
61 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

We stopped in to visit St.Giles Cathedral while exploring the Royal Mile. The church has breathtaking architectural features, beautiful stained glass windows and a wealth of history. It has a peaceful,calming atmosphere. It is a great place for a quiet break or a brief reflection.

Thank Kiamom
Scottsdale, Arizona
Level Contributor
558 reviews
320 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

This famous and historic Church was a pivot point in 1560 for the people of Scotland and John Knox ending the Roman Catholic domination of Scotland. Mary, Queen of Scots, who was Roman Catholic is known to have visited hear at least four times. She had to abdicate and flee the country after military losses. John Knox preached from the... More 

Thank Richard S
Antwerp, Belgium
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

I saw and heard a choir sing in this beautifull place. Never experienced something like this before, absolutly beautyfull

Thank Michael860304

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Staying in Old Town

Neighborhood Profile
Old Town
Few Edinburghers live in the Old Town, but its labyrinth of dank alleys and steep streets suggests this was not always the case. Today, it’s mostly visitors, tartan-flavored souvenir shops, and pipers that you’ll find on its cobbled streets. This is the place to get a feel for Auld Reekie (Old Smelly), as the town was once nicknamed, and stroll the Royal Mile, the thoroughfare that links the castle with the royal palace – two of Edinburgh’s great set-piece attractions. But there’s lots more exploring to do here down dozens of little alleys, or wynds, while at night the city’s busiest clubs erupt along the Cowgate which is closed to traffic for this purpose.
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