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Inchcolm Abbey and Island

| Hawes Pier, South Queensferry, Edinburgh EH30 9TB, Scotland
+44 7836 265146
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Inchcolm Abbey was established on this island originally as a priory by David I in 1235. It is the best-preserved group of monastic buildings in Scotland. It was the dream of Alexander I to establish a monastery on the island after he sheltered on it during a storm. But following his death, it was his brother David I who invited Augustinian canons to establish a priory, which was later given full abbey status. The abbey has a dramatic location which you can see from the boat before you arrive on the island. The medieval stone screens inside the belltower are rare survivals of medieval church fixtures and the 13th century well-painting is a rare medieval fresco. The island is also famed for its seals, wildlife and coastal defences from the two world wars.
  • Excellent75%
  • Very good21%
  • Average2%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“inchcolm abbey” (81 reviews)
“boat trip” (120 reviews)
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
| Hawes Pier, South Queensferry, Edinburgh EH30 9TB, Scotland
+44 7836 265146

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181 - 190 of 687 reviews

Reviewed July 31, 2016

If you want to escape the noise of Edinburgh, a trip to Inchcolm Island in the Firth of Forth is recommended. A boat takes you past the three Forth Bridges to the beautiful island of Inchcolm where there is an option to disembark. The island...More

Thank Christine Y
Reviewed July 30, 2016

if you know anything about the turbulent history of the united kingdom, you will know that all the abbeys were dissolved, looted, burned and their land turned over to the king during the reformation. there were huge, beautiful abbeys all over the country...but they are...More

Thank lushchica
Reviewed July 30, 2016 via mobile

When I told my two sons aged 13 and 8 we were going on a boat trip I was greeted with zero enthusiasm. Afterwards they both said they loved it. We all enjoyed seeing the seals, exploring the abbey and going under the three bridges....More

Thank Neil L
Reviewed July 27, 2016

Get away from the city on a short ferry ride to Inchcolm Island. View the 3 bridges over the Firth of Forth and see seals. Don't miss Gnome Island! The abbey is a well-preserved ruin. There are also ruined fortifications from WWI and WWII. Watch...More

Thank Anne C
Reviewed July 26, 2016 via mobile

Another fantastic trip to Inchcolm Island which is not advertised enough (in my opinion). Been visiting this Island for over 40 yrs and love every trip. The Island staff are always helpfull and polite and nothing is too much trouble. Well worth a visit even...More

Thank AlyAndrea
Reviewed July 25, 2016

Being able to wander around the ruins of the Abbey is a delight. There are so many nooks and crannies to explore and, being on an island, not so many crowds to deal with. Wandering about the rest of the island is a nice diversion....More

Reviewed July 24, 2016

I visited this Abbey on Inchcolm Island with my daughter and seven year old grandson. We initially were concerned about the length of time we were to spend on the island, until the boat returned to pick us up. We need not have worried as...More

Thank missush49
Reviewed July 21, 2016 via mobile

Lovely day out for all the family. Catch the Maid if the Forth from South Queensferry to the island. If it's nice weather, take a picnic as no food is available in the island. You can spend an hour and 45 minutes in the island...More

1  Thank Kelly-no1
Reviewed July 20, 2016

This was a neat place to explore and poke around. There is some information posted, but the real draw for this was the opportunity to climb around. There was one tiny circular staircase that was especially fun to try and get up and down. The...More

Thank aringdal
Reviewed July 20, 2016

It's not just the Abbey, though more remains than of most to give a good idea of its pre-Reformation days: tower, cloister and chapter-house are all impressive. The island too is a lovely spot, carefully tended, with secluded beach, great views all round to Edinburgh...More

1  Thank franchee60
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Questions & Answers
Lisa F
June 2, 2017|
AnswerShow all 8 answers
Response from l-a-christie | Reviewed this property |
A couple of hours would be fine to see everything but if it is a nice day you may want to spend more time, the beach is actually very sheltered. There are toilets and a tea-room although we took a picnic that the seagulls... More
Maureen A
July 22, 2016|
AnswerShow all 9 answers
Response from ian1811 | Reviewed this property |
Best to book in advance. You can just turn up but if it is busy you may not get on?
May 31, 2016|
AnswerShow all 10 answers
Response from TartanWanderer | Reviewed this property |
Hi there. I am from Edinburgh originally and I am not aware that there are any Puffins here. If you have been told that there are then I am obviously wrong. When I was there I didn't see any - sorry.