Tantallon Castle
Tantallon Castle
4.5
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
About
Set on the edge of the cliffs, looking out to the Bass Rock, this formidable castle was a stronghold of the Douglas family. Ascend Tantallon’s towers for spectacular views of the Bass Rock and to watch gannets plunge into the North Sea. Then descend into the depths of a particularly grim pit prison. The castle was home to the powerful Red Douglas dynasty, which often clashed with the Crown. It was besieged by both James IV and James V but was ultimately destroyed by Oliver Cromwell’s troops in a siege of 1651. Many artefacts are displayed to help tell its dramatic stories.
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  • JoEastMidlands
    274 contributions
    Excellent place to visit
    We really enjoyed our visit here. Struck lucky and called by on their first day open this season and also had beautiful sunshine and blue skies to appreciate it all the more. We bought the guide book but there are also plenty of info boards to keep you informed as you go round the site. It’s not obvious atm where to go to get to the ramparts but it is definitely worth the climb up the spiral steps (not many) to get to the top and get the views across country and sea. Fabulous place to see Bass Rock just off the coast too. Highly recommend.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 2 July 2023
  • SteadyS
    Corpusty, United Kingdom102 contributions
    Impressive castle
    Free entry as work beig done on interior so access only to outside and grounds. Still worth a visit, impressive castle and surroundings, and close views of Bass Rock. Small shop.
    Visited July 2023
    Written 15 July 2023
  • Elaine T
    2 contributions
    Tantallon castle
    We spent a lovely afternoon here. My girls had never been to a castle ruin before and were very sceptical but they loved it especially as they were able to get right up to the battlements, where the view was stunning. A couple of areas were closed for renovation but that didn't spoil our day at all. The staff were great, friendly and really knowledgeable. The entry fee was fantastic especially as things are so expensive these days. We would definitely return. My only complaint would be that the shop is quite expensive however that is not an important part of the day so didn't worry us too much.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 20 July 2023
  • amink000
    Oakville, Canada71 contributions
    Fantastic
    It is one of those places that are easily overlooked when one is visiting Scotland, but it is worth the visit. The castle itself is lovely and majestic. The location is amazing, right on the cliff with fantastic view of the sea. It is going through some renovation and parts of it maybe of bounds. However, this is not a deterrent as the grounds themselves are great. In addition to walking around the castle we had coffee and snacks at café near by called the Drift. It is made of empty shipping containers overlooking the water. We also enjoyed walking around the beach called Seacliff. Overall, it was a wonderful afternoon. It is located about 45 minutes from Edinburgh and the drive is very scenic and enjoyable. We rented a car which gave us flexibility to enjoy the trip and is recommended.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 1 August 2023
  • Ann H
    York, United Kingdom2,463 contributions
    Well worth a visit
    We spent a while exploring this magnificent castle ruin. We were fortunate with the weather and were treated to stunning views through the ruins towards Bass Rock and the North Sea. Part of the ruins were cordoned off due to investigative surveys going on. The grounds are beautiful and there is still plenty to see for a very reasonable price. Toilets, shop with drinks and snacks completes this great place.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 3 August 2023
  • George S
    Herford, Germany23 contributions
    A must see in East Lothian
    The views of Bass Rock were amazing, the staff were helpful and knowledgeable about the castle and the surrounding area. Hint part at the first car park and walk. The story of the castle is interesting and on a good day the views are spectacular
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 24 August 2023
  • Wendie M
    Lincolnshire, United Kingdom95 contributions
    Fantastic Views
    We were staying nearby so made the decision to go first thing, before the hoards. Lovely location with stunning views of Bass Rock and surrounding coast line. Two of the towers were currently closed due to maintenance but this didnt spoil things in any way. Great morning spent here
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 3 September 2023
  • Amy Hadden M
    9 contributions
    Tantallon!
    This is the most beautiful place I've ever seen. The castle is huge and you can go inside on your own. Some areas are closed but this did not detract from the experience of being in a very old castle with an incredible history. It's more of a wild castle than, say, Edinburgh or Stirling. The views are stunning of the sea and the countryside. It's very dramatic, esp with the wind blowing and the waves crashing... Staff at the visitors' center are friendly, knowledgeable, and open to questions. It's not difficult to get to without a car. From Edinburgh, take the train to N Berwick. Then, grab the 120 bus and ask the driver to drop you at Tantallon. Take your time approaching the castle and take in the history and the landscape.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 12 November 2023
  • Mike the Diver
    Edinburgh, United Kingdom84 contributions
    Brilliant Attraction
    Been here a few times with my now 8 year old. Very impressive ruin, big enough to easily spend a good couple of hours and a really fascinating insight into medieval history. As my child remarked "How come they built this 500 years ago and it's still standing but houses they build nowadays fall apart?" Lovely grounds too and a fantastic view down onto Seacliff Beach and across to the imposing Bass Rock. Great value for money too and plenty of (free) car parking
    Visited February 2024
    Travelled with family
    Written 11 February 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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Mike the Diver
Edinburgh, UK84 contributions
Feb 2024 • Family
Been here a few times with my now 8 year old.
Very impressive ruin, big enough to easily spend a good couple of hours and a really fascinating insight into medieval history.
As my child remarked "How come they built this 500 years ago and it's still standing but houses they build nowadays fall apart?"
Lovely grounds too and a fantastic view down onto Seacliff Beach and across to the imposing Bass Rock.
Great value for money too and plenty of (free) car parking
Written 11 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Amy Hadden M
9 contributions
Oct 2023 • Solo
This is the most beautiful place I've ever seen. The castle is huge and you can go inside on your own. Some areas are closed but this did not detract from the experience of being in a very old castle with an incredible history. It's more of a wild castle than, say, Edinburgh or Stirling. The views are stunning of the sea and the countryside. It's very dramatic, esp with the wind blowing and the waves crashing... Staff at the visitors' center are friendly, knowledgeable, and open to questions. It's not difficult to get to without a car. From Edinburgh, take the train to N Berwick. Then, grab the 120 bus and ask the driver to drop you at Tantallon. Take your time approaching the castle and take in the history and the landscape.
Written 13 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Wendie M
Lincolnshire, UK95 contributions
Aug 2023 • Couples
We were staying nearby so made the decision to go first thing, before the hoards. Lovely location with stunning views of Bass Rock and surrounding coast line. Two of the towers were currently closed due to maintenance but this didnt spoil things in any way. Great morning spent here
Written 3 September 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Vik T
40 contributions
Aug 2023 • Friends
What a wonderful castle to visit, well preserved ruins with some spectacular views. Loved it and would highly recommend, at only £3.80 you can't go wrong.
Written 27 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

George S
Herford, Germany23 contributions
Aug 2023 • Couples
The views of Bass Rock were amazing, the staff were helpful and knowledgeable about the castle and the surrounding area. Hint part at the first car park and walk. The story of the castle is interesting and on a good day the views are spectacular
Written 24 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gail Pryde
Edinburgh, UK4 contributions
Jul 2023 • Family
Just stunning. All the staff were so informative, helpful and knowledgeable. A beautiful day out with our family. Thankyou
Written 7 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Michael S
Cologne, Germany120 contributions
Jul 2023 • Family
Tantallon Castle is a captivating historical gem nestled on the rugged cliffs of East Lothian, Scotland. This awe-inspiring fortress stands proudly, bearing witness to centuries of Scottish history, and offers visitors an enthralling journey through time.

Upon arrival, one is immediately struck by the sheer grandeur of Tantallon Castle. Its imposing stone walls and soaring towers evoke a sense of medieval power and resilience. As I walked through the remnants of its once bustling courtyards, I couldn't help but imagine the medieval lords and their retinues who once roamed these very grounds.

The castle's strategic location overlooking the North Sea provides breathtaking panoramic views that alone are worth the visit. Gazing out at the vast expanse of the sea from the castle's battlements, I couldn't help but feel a profound connection to the past, envisioning the battles and sieges that once played out against this striking backdrop.

Inside, the castle walls seemed to whisper the stories of its rich history. Informational plaques and displays thoughtfully placed throughout the ruins provide valuable insights into the castle's past, bringing to life the tales of nobility, rivalries, and political intrigue that shaped Scotland's past.

One of the highlights of my visit was climbing the narrow stone staircases to the top of the towers. Though challenging, the reward was the breathtaking view of the surrounding countryside, including the famous Bass Rock just offshore. The sense of achievement I felt upon reaching the top was unmatched.

Tantallon Castle's well-preserved architecture and extensive grounds offer an excellent opportunity for photographers and history enthusiasts alike. As I explored the ruins, my imagination transported me back in time, contemplating the lives of the people who once called this formidable castle their home.

The visitor center provides valuable context and background information, enhancing the overall experience. The friendly and knowledgeable staff were more than willing to answer questions and share intriguing anecdotes, making the visit all the more enjoyable.

One piece of advice for prospective visitors would be to check the opening hours beforehand, as the castle occasionally hosts events and functions that may affect public access.

In conclusion, Tantallon Castle is a must-visit destination for anyone with an appreciation for history and architecture. Its imposing presence, rich history, and breathtaking views make it an unforgettable experience. Whether you're a history buff, a photographer, or simply seeking a glimpse into Scotland's storied past, Tantallon Castle will undoubtedly leave a lasting impression.
Written 5 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ann H
York, UK2,463 contributions
Jul 2023 • Couples
We spent a while exploring this magnificent castle ruin. We were fortunate with the weather and were treated to stunning views through the ruins towards Bass Rock and the North Sea. Part of the ruins were cordoned off due to investigative surveys going on. The grounds are beautiful and there is still plenty to see for a very reasonable price. Toilets, shop with drinks and snacks completes this great place.
Written 3 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

amink000
Oakville, Canada71 contributions
Jul 2023 • Family
It is one of those places that are easily overlooked when one is visiting Scotland, but it is worth the visit. The castle itself is lovely and majestic. The location is amazing, right on the cliff with fantastic view of the sea. It is going through some renovation and parts of it maybe of bounds. However, this is not a deterrent as the grounds themselves are great. In addition to walking around the castle we had coffee and snacks at café near by called the Drift. It is made of empty shipping containers overlooking the water. We also enjoyed walking around the beach called Seacliff. Overall, it was a wonderful afternoon.

It is located about 45 minutes from Edinburgh and the drive is very scenic and enjoyable. We rented a car which gave us flexibility to enjoy the trip and is recommended.

Written 1 August 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jacgehr
28 contributions
Jul 2023 • Friends
I really enjoyed it and think it's worth a visit if you happen to be in the area. Reasonable prices.
Written 26 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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