The Royal Yacht Britannia

Right at the top of the ‘things to do in Edinburgh’ list is a visit to the Royal Yacht Britannia in Leith. Getting the guide book stuff out of the way first, the Royal Yacht Britannia has been berthed in Leith Docks since 1998 when she was decommissioned after serving the Royal Family for 40 years. Step on to Britannia and you are instantly transported back 50 years to a more sedate time…

It’s all rather gorgeous and shiny! We wandered the decks for an hour & a half wandering with our audio guide – I actually found the ‘below decks’ the most interesting; who knew there were so many bars on the royal yacht? Yotties obviously like a wee dram! Above decks, well here’s a big spoiler, there is a lot of chintz!


Now I won’t give you the full photographic guided tour, instead let’s take a look out to sea to Leith. It was my favourite part…

The Royal Yacht Britannia

No, not that way! Walk to the very back of the ship and look out over the docks.

Can you spot him?

That is 6 TIMES by Anthony Gormley.

6 Times

Six Times

“For me, it’s about using the Water of Leith as a living bloodstream”
Gormley 2010

6 Times was a series of figures by Antony Gormley (yes that one) installed in the Water of Leith. The first sculpture is at the Gallery of Modern Art and the other 5 figures were placed along the river within Edinburgh communities where access to public art was most limited. Sadly, the power of the Water of Leith made them unstable and they have currently been removed for repair, after they went missing a few times! The last remaining sculpture is in Leith Docks and standing alone I think it is particularly evocative especially when viewed from the glamour of The Royal Yacht. Isn’t it funny what you’d miss if you had no idea it was there…

Visit the Royal Yacht Britannia at Ocean Terminal, Leith / To get there take the 22 bus from town for £1.50 or there is free parking / The Yacht is open all year round but closes earlier in winter / cost £15 adults / £8.50 for kids with a free audio tour/ good food is served at The Roseleaf at the shore if you are hungry after your visit.

Love from, Scotland x

More things to do in Edinburgh.

Linking up with Jo’s Monday walk

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  1. This is another of those things I was always going to do! Funnily enough my daughter will be in Edinburgh next month for their 3rd wedding anniversary. I’m supposed to be compiling a list of ‘to dos’ for her, but haven’t got past Holyrood House and Calton Hill yet. They only have a couple of days. She’s a V&A museum kinda girl so if you have any suggestions? (in case it rains, or worse 🙁 )
    Many thanks for joining my walks!

    1. Congrats to your daughter, it is our 3rd wedding anniversary next month too!

      As for visiting Edinburgh, If she is into the V&A then i’d suggest

      – the Scottish Galleries on the Mound (for the classics),
      – the Gallery of Modern Art (for sculpture in the grounds) and then a walk in Dean Village, the Water of Leith & Stockbridge which are my very favourite parts of Edinburgh.
      – the Museum of Scotland (they built it around a full train!)
      – the Portrait Gallery (amazing refurbishment).

      There are a few more traditional Edinburgh spooky/history things to do here as well:

      Hope she has a lovely time 🙂

  2. As an afterthought I decided to send my daughter your link to the mini guide. 🙂 I’m sure she’ll like the Apps and Cocktail bar suggestions. The History link, I found just takes me back to your main page, so maybe you haven’t finished working on this yet? Chin! Chin! 🙂

    1. I just found that myself when i tried to link to the history guide. How strange. I have fixed it now!

  3. Sounds good. I’d love to have a look around Britannia, but only if one of those bars is still open. A cocktail on board sounds very fitting. I have been on (and stayed overnight) on the Queen Mary where the bars are still open 😀 And Gormley’s statues are so interesting.

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