National Museum of Scotland

Edinburgh, United Kingdom

The National Museum of Scotland is one of the Top 10 UK visitor attractions, and in the Top 20 of the most visited museums and galleries in the world. The museum houses a spectacular array of over 20,000 fascinating artefacts. The National Museum incorporates the collections of the former National Museum of Antiquities of Scotland, and the Royal Museum. As well as the national collections of Scottish archaeological finds and medieval objects, the museum contains artefacts from around the world, encompassing geology, archaeology, natural history, science, technology, art, and world cultures. The 16 new galleries reopened in 2011 include 8,000 objects, 80 per cent of which were not formerly on display. One of the more notable exhibits is the stuffed body of Dolly the sheep, the first successful clone of a mammal from an adult cell. Other highlights include Ancient Egyptian exhibitions, one of Elton John's extravagant suits and a large kinetic sculpture named the Millennium Clock. A Scottish invention that is a perennial favourite with school parties is The Maiden, an early form of guillotine.

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Founded: 1861
Category: Museums in United Kingdom

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Daniel Ross (2 years ago)
Loved the Scottish exhibits. The building itself is artful and interesting. The exhibits were thoughtful and well arranged. I wish I could have stayed longer. Most notable was the staff. They were all knowledgeable, courteous, and helpful.
Ally Maxwell (2 years ago)
Excellent place to while away the day. Hugely informative, very interactive, great exhibitions and fantastic for kids. Cafe does good coffee - perhaps a bit pricey but you don't have to pay to visit the museum so it seems fair. Love this place!
Katie Luxmoore (2 years ago)
I always love this place! It's freaking huge, interactive and super varied in the exhibits it has at any one time. My favourites however are always the natural history ones and the fashion section (maybe it's not for everyone but please just take a walk through its Gorgeous!)
Laura Quin (2 years ago)
Really enjoyed the Robots exhibition. Just a pity there are only two small lifts and we had quite a long wait to get in with my wheelchair because it was busy with a lot of pushchairs. That is my only real complaint because the museum is very interesting and a lovely building. A fantastic place to lose a few hours in Edinburgh without spending a lot.
Mark Prime (2 years ago)
Well..what can I say...refreshingly brilliant!! LESS REALLY IS MORE!! By not packing stuff in to the rafters, like they do in London museums, it allows time to really see and absorb the items. Far far better engagement, especially for youngsters. Great mix of everything, things, like tech, really stimulating. Even had art and cultural iconic mix of ceramic, furniture, glass...just inspiring. To whomever coordinated and selected you did a great job!!
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Heraclea Lyncestis

Heraclea Lyncestis was an ancient Greek city in Macedon, ruled later by the Romans. It was founded by Philip II of Macedon in the middle of the 4th century BC. The city was named in honor of the mythological hero Heracles. The name Lynkestis originates from the name of the ancient kingdom, conquered by Philip, where the city was built.

Heraclea was a strategically important town during the Hellenistic period, as it was at the edge of Macedon"s border with Epirus to the west and Paeonia to the north, until the middle of the 2nd century BC, when the Romans conquered Macedon and destroyed its political power. The main Roman road in the area, Via Egnatia went through Heraclea, and Heraclea was an important stop. The prosperity of the city was maintained mainly due to this road.

The Roman emperor Hadrian built a theatre in the center of the town, on a hill, when many buildings in the Roman province of Macedonia were being restored. It began being used during the reign of Antoninus Pius. Inside the theatre there were three animal cages and in the western part a tunnel. The theatre went out of use during the late 4th century AD, when gladiator fights in the Roman Empire were banned, due to the spread of Christianity, the formulation of the Eastern Roman Empire, and the abandonment of, what was then perceived as, pagan rituals and entertainment.

Late Antiquity and Byzantine periods

In the early Byzantine period (4th to 6th centuries AD) Heraclea was an important episcopal centre. A small and a great basilica, the bishop"s residence, and a funerary basilica and the necropolis are some of the remains of this period. Three naves in the Great Basilica are covered with mosaics of very rich floral and figurative iconography; these well preserved mosaics are often regarded as fine examples of the early Christian art period.

The city was sacked by Ostrogoth/Visigoth forces, commanded by Theodoric the Great in 472 AD and again in 479 AD. It was restored in the late 5th and early 6th century. When an earthquake struck in 518 AD, the inhabitants of Heraclea gradually abandoned the city. Subsequently, at the eve of the 7th century, the Dragovites, a Slavic tribe pushed down from the north by the Avars, settled in the area. The last coin issue dates from ca. 585, which suggests that the city was finally captured by the Slavs. As result, in place of the deserted city theatre several huts were built.

The Episcopacy Residence was excavated between 1970 and 1975. The western part was discovered first and the southern side is near the town wall. The luxury rooms are located in the eastern part. The 2nd, 3rd and 4th rooms all have mosaic floors. Between the 3rd and 4th rooms there is a hole that led to the eastern entrance of the residence. The hole was purposefully created between the 4th and 6th century.