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Parliament House
Vacation Travel Guide

Edinburgh’s original parliament building is often missed by most tourists, but it’s well worth a visit for the art and architecture. 

As you travel through the streets of The Royal Mile and its narrow alleyways take a slight detour and step into Parliament Square, next to St. Giles’ Cathedral. On one side of the square is Parliament House, home of the Scottish Parliament from 1639 to 1707.

Following the union of England and Scotland in 1707, Parliament was dissolved and the politicians moved to London. Today, this grand building houses the Supreme Courts of Scotland.

Amble around Parliament Hall to see the lawyers when they’re not in court. You will usually see them pacing up and down the ancient hall in their wigs and gowns. This cavernous room used to be the chamber where politicians discussed affairs of state.

Look up at the hammer-beam ceiling made of Danish oak. It’s one of the few surviving internal structures of this early 17th-century building.

Watch for some of the hall’s other standout features such as the Great South Window. This is a stained-glass depiction of the inauguration of the College of Justice and the Court of Session by King James V in 1532.

Examine the statues dotted around the hall. They include the marble statue of Duncan Forbes, a politician and judge, captured in mid-gesture. You can also see a number of portraits of 18th- and 19th-century lawyers.

The courtrooms are open to the public, but primarily they hear civil cases. Criminal trials take place in the High Court.

Parliament House is located on Parliament Square in Edinburgh’s Old Town. Parking is limited but buses service the area. As Parliament House is a working court building, visitors’ bags are subject to a search. The building is open year-round.

Top Hotels Close to Parliament House

Malmaison Edinburgh City
Malmaison Edinburgh City
4 out of 5
Buchan House, 21-22 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $78 per night from Feb 3 to Feb 4

Located in New Town, this hotel is steps from St. Andrew Square, Princes Street, and George Street. Edinburgh Playhouse Theatre and Princes Street Gardens are ...

4.4/5Excellent! (166 reviews)

"It was very romantic and big room with loads of space."…"

Reviewed on Dec 14, 2020

Malmaison Edinburgh City
The Scotsman Hotel
The Scotsman Hotel
4 out of 5
20 North Bridge, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $142 per night from Feb 7 to Feb 8

Located in Old Town, this boutique hotel is steps from City Art Centre, Princes Street, and Royal Mile. Edinburgh Dungeon and Real Mary King's Close are also ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (990 reviews)

"Enjoyed everything from the check in to the beautiful room with the added complimentary malt whisky, Breakfast was of a high standard ,service was excellent,definitely my favourite hotel and can’t wait to return."…"

Reviewed on Oct 11, 2020

The Scotsman Hotel
Fraser Suites Edinburgh
Fraser Suites Edinburgh
4 out of 5
Fraser Suites Edinburgh, 12 - 26 St Giles Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $95 per night from Feb 16 to Feb 17

Located in Old Town, this eco-friendly aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of St. Giles' Cathedral and Princes Street Gardens. Greyfriars Kirk and Edinburgh ...

4.4/5Excellent! (2,159 reviews)

"Lovely hotel, enjoyed stay, excellent for overseas visitor's, close to all the historical buildings of Edinburgh,"…"

Reviewed on Dec 25, 2020

Fraser Suites Edinburgh
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top Parliament House Flight + Hotel Deals

Destiny Scotland - The Rutland Residence
The Edinburgh Castle Suite
Authentic Central 3-Bedroom Apartment
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Best Lodging Options Near Parliament House

Malmaison Edinburgh City
Malmaison Edinburgh City
4 out of 5
Buchan House, 21-22 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $78 per night from Feb 3 to Feb 4
Malmaison Edinburgh City
The Scotsman Hotel
The Scotsman Hotel
4 out of 5
20 North Bridge, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $142 per night from Feb 7 to Feb 8
The Scotsman Hotel
Fraser Suites Edinburgh
Fraser Suites Edinburgh
4 out of 5
Fraser Suites Edinburgh, 12 - 26 St Giles Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $95 per night from Feb 16 to Feb 17
Fraser Suites Edinburgh
Apex Grassmarket Hotel
Apex Grassmarket Hotel
4 out of 5
31-35 Grassmarket, Edinburgh, Scotland
Apex Grassmarket Hotel
Hotel du Vin & Bistro Edinburgh
Hotel du Vin & Bistro Edinburgh
4 out of 5
11 Bristo Place, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $108 per night from Feb 3 to Feb 4
Hotel du Vin & Bistro Edinburgh
Market Street Hotel
Market Street Hotel
4 out of 5
6 Market Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $127 per night from Feb 8 to Feb 9
Market Street Hotel
Jurys Inn Edinburgh
Jurys Inn Edinburgh
3 out of 5
43 Jeffrey Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $44 per night from Feb 14 to Feb 15
Jurys Inn Edinburgh
Cheval Old Town Chambers
Cheval Old Town Chambers
5 out of 5
Roxburgh's Court, Off 323 High Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $135 per night from Jan 31 to Feb 1
Cheval Old Town Chambers
ibis Edinburgh Centre Royal Mile – Hunter Square
ibis Edinburgh Centre Royal Mile – Hunter Square
3 out of 5
6 Hunter Square, Edinburgh, Scotland
The price is $45 per night from Jan 21 to Jan 22
ibis Edinburgh Centre Royal Mile – Hunter Square
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.