Rosslyn Chapel, Midlothian, Scotland

Rosslyn Chapel board

A few weeks ago we had friends from England staying with us and they wanted to visit Rosslyn Chapel which was made famous by Dan Brown’s book The Da Vinci Code. So off we set, in sunshine, but as we got closer to Rosslyn the heavens opened and it was a very wet walk for us from the car park. The chapel was originally called the Collegiate Chapel of St Matthew, and dated from the 15th century. It’s situated not very far south of Edinburgh.

Rosslyn Chapel, Midlothian

After a brief look around the packed out gift shop and buying our tickets we raced out to the chapel, obviously getting even wetter on the way. The chapel was much smaller than I had imagined it would be and it was absolutely mobbed, but we managed to get seats and were enjoying an interesting and amusing talk from the guide. Then another guide came in and asked her to stop as another busload of tourists had just turned up! We all had to budge up and make more room for them, even William the resident cat was evicted from his comfy abode on a pew above a hot air vent in the floor, he wasn’t best pleased.

Rosslyn Chapel, Midlothian

Sadly and stupidly, they don’t allow people to take photos inside the chapel, but all the foreign tourists immediately forgot that they could speak English and went about snapping anyway. We didn’t of course which is a real shame as the decorative stonework is fantastic. However all those taking naughty illegal photos have kindly put them on the internet so you can see them here.

Mind you, the official Rosslyn Chapel website has an explore the carvings section.
Rosslyn Chapel , Midlothian, Scotland
When I mentioned to various friends how crowded the chapel was when we were there it turned out that we were incredibly unlucky as they had all had the place almost completely to themselves which especially suited the cat lovers among them.

Rosslyn Chapel,Midlothian

4 thoughts on “Rosslyn Chapel, Midlothian, Scotland

  1. I love Rosslyn Chapel. We’ve been there twice – the first time it was magical, with just a few other people there. That was before they built a Visitor Centre and there was scaffolding around the Chapel – but you could go up on the roof. We went again a few years later and what a difference! It was packed and you could hardly move for other people. It spoilt it for me as I didn’t feel the same atmosphere as before and it was difficult to see its beauty properly as it was so crowded. But on that visit was also went to Rosslyn Castle, the ruins of the original 14th century castle, built in the 1330s. Hardly anyone else was there and it was so dramatic and atmospheric.

    • Margaret,
      It seems that some places have reached maximum tourist capacity, like Skye and Arran. On a dry day we’ll definitely visit Rosslyn Castle, which I didn’t even realise existed so thanks for the info – so many castles to visit.

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