Historic Scotland Explorer Pass - a Flexible Discount Ticket for Touring

Urquhart Castle
© Ferne Arfin

Tour Scotland your way with a flexible Explorer pass

When you tour with Visit Scotland's very flexible Historic Scotland Explorer Pass, there's plenty of time to enjoy Scotland's landscapes, lochs, coasts and mountains as well as its castles, abbeys, museums and prehistoric sites. Unlike some visitors passes that are only worthwhile if you commit yourself to a relentless trek from one landmark to another, the Historic Scotland Explorer Pass is good for a number of days within a longer period, giving you plenty of time for hill rambles, nature walks, loch fishing, golf and boating - all that good, outdoorsy stuff for which Scotland is best known.

During the period covered, the pass gives you unlimited free access to 78 paid properties that are among the most spectacular, fascinating and world famous sites in Scotland. Also included is free access to dozens of daytime events - celebrations, festivals, jousting and performances at Historic Scotland sites. And of course, you can wander through 5,000 years of Scottish history .

The pass comes with a comprehensive information pack that includes brochures, a guide book and a useful map of all tho locations you can visit. There's a downloadable brochure and map so you can pick out the highlights and fit key sites into your itinerary.

So how does it work?

You can buy a pass for yourself or as a gift:

  • 3 days within a 5-day period
  • 7 days within 14

You don't feel obliged to rush around seeing castles when you'd rather do a bit of fly fishing. The castles will still be there a few days later and so will the discount value to which your pre-paid Historic Scotland Explorer Pass entitles you.

What's included?

The pass provides for free entry to dozens of sites all over Scotland, its cities, its coasts, its highlands and islands. At busy sites like Edinburgh Castle and Stirling Castle, you get to jump the queue - in other words, skip the long lines and waiting times. Visit:

  • Caerlaverock Castle near Dumfries
  • Edinburgh Castle and Stirling Castle - including a 20% discount on their audio guides.
  • Arbroath Abbey
  • Dryburgh Abbey - burial place of Sir Walter Scott
  • Melrose Abbey - where legend has it that Robert the Bruce's heart is buried.
  • Prehistoric Norse settlements in Shetland
  • Dramatic Urquhart Castle - overlooking Loch Ness.
  • Orkney's impressive neolithic Maes Howe and Skara Brae

These and dozens more sites are included.

How can I buy one?

The pass is available to buy in US dollars from Visit Britain Direct or, if you are UK-based, you can buy it in Pounds Sterling from the Visit Britain UK website. The Price depends on the number of days purchased as well as the type of pass. The passes are available as adult, family, senior, student and child versions. And don't worry about waiting for your pass to arrive before you leave home.  Once you've made your purchase online, you'll be emailed an e-voucher. Print it and bring it with you to exchange for your pass on your arrival at one of the landmarks that are included. The e-voucher is valid for one year with the time period you've purchased it for beginning when you start using it.