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“Not sure what all the hype is about....”

Royal Yacht Britannia
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US$21.86*
and up
The Royal Yacht Britannia
Ranked #4 of 443 things to do in Edinburgh
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Step aboard The Queen's former floating palace and experience this iconic 5 star attraction for yourself. Rated Scotland's Best Attraction for 12 years running and in TripAdvisor's UK Top 10 for the last 5 years, Britannia is one of the most famous ships in the world. Sailing a million miles on a thousand official visits, during 40 years in service, the Royal Yacht played host to glittering state banquets and official receptions, but was also home to the Royal Family and crew of 220 Royal Yachtsmen. Explore Britannia's highly accessible 5 decks with highlights including the elegant Royal Apartments, Crew's Quarters, Engine Room and stunning Royal Deck Tea Room. Highly accessible for wheelchairs and buggies. Open year round .Only 15 minutes from Edinburgh city centre (local buses every 10 minutes - 11, 22, 34 and 300 to Ocean Terminal).
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

If you are into the Royal Family then this is for you for sure but if you aren't massive fans then i'd maybe give this a miss, there's much better attractions about Edinburgh's history and culture. Firstly, RYB is outside of the main centre of Edinburgh and located within a shopping centre in Leith so it's a little out of the way. I understand it has to be in water but they could maybe have their own building for it at the port rather than putting it in a shopping centre. A few Lothian buses and some of the Tour buses go there. For a boat that is no longer in use, I found it very restrictive, you could look into rooms and areas but not go into a lot of them which I found odd. The audioguide device is massive and clunky and after a while I just gave up using it. I saw one female staff member on deck and she assisted with taking photos for you which was nice and helpful but I didn't see a lot of staff on hand except in the gift shop which was filled with Royal and UK items. Personally I'd rather explore the old town and the museums there to learn about Edinburgh rather than about the Royal Family.

Thank Clara042
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Robert G, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Yacht Britannia, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Thank you for visiting The Royal Yacht Britannia. We are sorry to learn that the tour was “not your cup of tea”. As you mention, Britannia is docked alongside Ocean Terminal Shopping Centre in the historic Port of Leith, with our Visitor Centre accessed via the second floor of Ocean Terminal. This has allowed us to turn Britannia into a highly accessible attraction for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy. Ocean Terminal is easily accessible from Edinburgh City Centre, with bus numbers 11, 22 and Skylink 300 all departing regularly for £1.70 each way (correct change needed). The handheld audio guide, and tour route around Britannia have been designed to ensure that the route flows easily, and is as accessible as possible for all of our visitors, allowing access to most of the major rooms and apartments. This enables all our visitors to enjoy the tour as fully as possible, but does mean several of the smaller cabins can only be seen through viewing windows. For the information of others, Britannia has officially been rated by our national tourist board to be Scotland’s best visitor attraction for the last 12 consecutive years and in TripAdvisor’s UK Top 10 for the last five years, something we are very proud to have achieved.

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Write a ReviewReviews (17,877)
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"tea room"
in 1,347 reviews
"engine room"
in 850 reviews
"shopping centre"
in 721 reviews
"own pace"
in 975 reviews
"ocean terminal"
in 737 reviews
"audio guide"
in 1,168 reviews
"beautiful ship"
in 180 reviews
"crew quarters"
in 160 reviews
"other half"
in 398 reviews
"scones"
in 678 reviews
"top deck"
in 240 reviews
"fascinating insight"
in 234 reviews
"afternoon tea"
in 353 reviews
"interesting visit"
in 237 reviews
"fudge"
in 333 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 561 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 391 reviews
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112 - 116 of 17,877 reviews

Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We really wanted to visit Britannia as we are unlikely to ever be invited to a ‘Royal’ venue! Each deck held such interesting information told to you through the portable ‘earphones’ in a wide variety of languages, as appropriate. The things that struck us the most were: the cramped but well organised staff quarters for all the crew, ‘bodyguards’ and security personnel; the small but very efficient galleys where all the food for the entire entourage, including large numbers of high ranking guests, was prepared; and the relatively ‘spartan’ quarters for the royal family, including the Queen. We really expected this area to be more ‘opulent’ and so these choices were quite surprising. The ‘public’ entertaining areas clearly provided an appropriate standard of decor but, again, this was not ostentatious. It felt almost as if it was enough to be received by the Queen, or a member of the Royal family, and that they, quite rightly, didn’t have anything to ‘prove’. Quite!

Thank Ejodale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Robert G, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Yacht Britannia, responded to this reviewResponded 2 weeks ago

Thank you for visiting Britannia. We are pleased to learn that you enjoyed the tour, and that you found our complimentary audio guide to be so interesting. As you mention, the furnishings aboard Britannia are simple and elegant as chosen by HM The Queen and HRH Prince Philip. Britannia was built in the 1950s in a time of post-war austerity, which is reflected in the décor. The furnishings on board create the intended feeling of a country home afloat, rather than an opulent palace. Many thanks for taking the time to leave us a review.

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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Excellent value for money. A very well planned and directed tour with personal audio guide. The only exception was the lack of direction on the audio guide towards the additional exhibition at the lower level to the Royal Racing Yacht ‘Bloodhound’. We enjoyed refreshments in the Royal Deck Tea Room. All the staff throughout RYB were welcoming and helpful.

Thank ellisiana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Robert G, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Yacht Britannia, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Many thanks for recommending Britannia as a “must-do whilst in Edinburgh”, we really appreciate it. We are pleased to learn that you found the tour to be so well-organised, and we will certainly pass your feedback on to our Visitor Experience Manager, as we are always keen to improve our visitors’ experience. Thank you for visiting Britannia, and for taking the time to leave us a review.

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Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

I was initially very disappointed when I arrived and found I had to walk all the way through a shopping centre (ocean terminal), even to the extent of having to travel to the top floor, passed the shops, restaurants the the build a poxy bear shop to reach this excellent attraction in Leith.

The ship is brilliant, the audio guides excellent and the easy of travel through the vessel splendid.

Highly recommended! Would have been five stars ⭐️ if not for the most obvious retail push.

Thank tbolton123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Robert G, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Yacht Britannia, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thank you for visiting Britannia. We are glad that you found the tour, with our complimentary audio guide, to be so excellent. As you mention, our Visitor Centre is located on the second floor of Ocean Terminal. This has allowed us to turn Britannia into a highly accessible attraction for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy. Thank you for your kind recommendation of The Royal Yacht Britannia.

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Reviewed 3 weeks ago

A fabulous afternoon exploring the Britannia. So easy to get to - take bus 11 or 22 from George St in New Town to Ocean Terminal. Well laid out path around the yacht - great audio guide. Absolutely fascinating. Interesting for kids too. Do enjoy some food in the Tea Room.

Thank Virginia3960
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Robert G, Guest Relations Manager at Royal Yacht Britannia, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

It is good to learn that your afternoon aboard Britannia proved to be so interesting for all the family, and that you enjoyed our complimentary audio guide, which is available in 30 languages, as well as a child’s version in English. Many thanks for visiting, and for your five-star review.

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