Inchcolm Abbey was established on this island originally as a priory by David I in 1140. It is the best-preserved group of monastic buildings in Scotland.
Due to access restrictions in place as a precautionary measure while we undertake high level masonry inspections, there is currently no visitor access inside the abbey or to the west of the island. The grounds to the East, the exhibition area and shop are open. Find out more about our conservation work
It was the dream of Alexander I to establish a monastery on the island after he sheltered on it during a storm. But following his death, it was his brother David I who invited Augustinian canons to establish a priory, which was later given full abbey status.
The abbey has a dramatic location which you can see from the boat before you arrive on the island. The medieval stone screens inside the belltower are rare survivals of medieval church fixtures and the 13th century well-painting is a rare medieval fresco.
The island is also famed for its seals, wildlife and coastal defences from the two world wars.
Getting there by railway:- A short walk to the jetty in South Queensferry from Dalmeny Station.
Getting there by ferry:- From Hawes Peir, South Queensferry sailing to the island telephone 0131 331 4857 for details of sailings.
Boarding and leaving the ferry may be difficult for visitors using wheelchairs but once on site, the shop, display area, all gardens and the ground floor of the abbey are accessible. The upper floor of the abbey is not suitable for visitors using wheelchairs as access is by turnpike stair.
Very occasionally the property has to close at short notice due to adverse weather conditions or other reasons out with our control. Please check the Historic Scotland closures page for any unexpected site closures https://www.historicenvironment.scot/visit-a-place/check-for-closures/ .You can also follow closure tweets from @welovehistory using #hsclosure. Alternatively please call the site before setting off to check they are open.
Transport and Parking
On Public Transport Route
Public Toilet Facilities
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