Holyrood Palace: The Queen’s lesser-known Scottish residence in heart of Edinburgh

Kate Middleton and William arrive at Palace of Holyroodhouse

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The Queen adores Scotland and has familial links to the country through the late Queen Mother, a member of the aristocratic Bowes-Lyon family. Throughout her reign, the Queen has made the trip to Scotland every summer to spend her holidays there, and she has two main residences that she uses during her stay.

Holyrood Palace is an official Crown Estate property in Edinburgh that the monarch visits around late June/early July every year.

The Palace is where the Queen resides when she celebrates Scottish culture and community during ‘Holyrood Week’, or ‘Royal Week’ as it is known in Scotland.

The start of Holyrood Week is marked by a ceremony where the Queen is offered the keys to the city by the Lord Provost.

An investiture is held in addition to a special garden party where the Queen meets with members of the public.

Several members of the Royal Family join the monarch in Scotland for Holyrood Week and they complete royal engagements in the local area.

However, the Queen’s beloved Balmoral Estate in Aberdeenshire is where the Queen spends the majority of the summer.

Unlike the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Balmoral is a private royal estate that the Queen inherited upon the death of King George VI in 1952.

Balmoral first became a royal residence in the 19th Century when it was purchased by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

Where is the Palace of Holyroodhouse?

The Palace of Holyroodhouse is located at the end of the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital city.

Nearby to the Palace is Edinburgh Castle, a historic landmark which stands on Castle Rock.

The Palace, including its State Apartments, is open to the public throughout most of the year.

The Palace is also home to the Queen’s Gallery, which displays several pieces from the Royal Collection.

The site also includes the famous Holyrood Abbey, where the Queen’s granddaughter and her new husband Mike Tindall had their wedding photos taken in 2011.

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When was the Palace of Holyroodhouse built?

The Palace of Holyroodhouse was built in the 12th Century and was founded as an Augustinian monastery by David I.

Many Scottish monarchs resided in the Palace of Holyroodhouse, including the famous Mary, Queen of Scots, before she fled to England.

In the last 100 years, the Palace of Holyroodhouse was a firm favourite of the current Queen’s grandparents, King George V and Queen Mary.

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