Free tickets being given away for Scottish tourist spots

Historic Environment Scotland have thousands of free tickets to give away to some of the country’s best-loved historic abbeys, palaces, castles and cathedrals.

It comes as Ticket Giveaway returns for 2019 on Saturday 30 November and Sunday 1 December.

The registration for free tickets is now open at Members of the public will have until 5pm on Thursday 28 November to register online and apply for tickets to the attraction of their choice.

Over 30 top Historic Scotland sites throughout the country will be taking part, including iconic castles in Edinburgh and Stirling; the awe-inspiring Border Abbeys and the remarkable Neolithic settlement of Skara Brae in Orkney.

This year’s campaign was launched at Jedburgh Abbey, just one of the sites participating in the giveaway. The theme of this year’s photoshoot was Abbeys, inspired by the Beatles Abbey Road album which celebrates its 50th year anniversary this year.

Stephen Duncan, director of Commercial and Tourism at HES, said: ‘I’m delighted to announce details of this year’s Ticket Giveaway, which offers free entry to a host of our winter-opening ticketed attractions over the St Andrew’s Day weekend.

‘We want to encourage communities to Come Together and explore Scotland’s history and heritage this St Andrew’s Day. Whether it be abbeys, castles, churches or palaces, there’s Something for everyone.

‘Sadly, the only thing we don’t seem to have is an Octopus’s Garden, although there are gardens at some of our sites which are just as impressive!

‘If you’ve never visited your local historic site, this is the perfect opportunity to get out and discover Scotland’s fascinating past for free.’

For a full list of participating sites and to apply for tickets, visit

The Blackhouse, Arnol and Iona Abbey will open on Saturday 30 November only. A maximum of two adults and three children are allowed per site Visitors are required to pre-book timeslots at Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle, Doune Castle and Maeshowe.