Christmas at the Botanics

Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh - Entrance at West Gate

The magical, botanical, illuminated trail

It’s the most wonderful time of the year as the treetops of Edinburgh begin to glisten and shimmer. There’s something for everyone as a one mile sparkling path winds its way through the world famous Botanics in a magical after dark experience. Following a highly successful first year, our winter trail returns with over a million twinkling lights and plenty of new things to see. Enter a world festooned with seasonal cheer as you wander beneath unique tree canopies and alongside the iconic Glasshouses drenched in Christmas colour.

New for 2018, the winter trail is a place where fairy tale meets fantasy. Glowing larger-than-life incandescent flowers rise high into the night sky leading you on a path towards illuminated tree sculptures with delicate beads of light clinging to each branch. There are hidden surprises too – watch out for shards of light, frosty snowflakes, stars and baubles, marching reindeer and gingerbread men where you least expect to see them. Amid all the festive fun don’t forget to glimpse Santa and his elves along the way. Surround yourself with playful ribbons of colour changing globes and stop at the scented Fire Garden for a moment of tranquil reflection. In the distance spot the towering Tunnel of Light festooned by over 100,000 pea-lights.

This year’s Botanics trail culminates in a spectacular Festive Finale on Inverleith House Lawn where brightly coloured projections dance in time to much loved Christmas classics. Why not complete your stroll under the stars with spiced cider, mulled wine or hot chocolate whilst the aroma of roasting chestnuts fills the air. Gather to toast your own marshmallows at one of the fire pits and enjoy other traditional fare before finishing your Christmas shopping in the gift shop at the John Hope Gateway.

Phone and counter service

Tickets can also be purchased over the phone on 0131 226 0004 and in person at The Fringe Box Office, 180 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1QS. The phone and counter booking services are available Monday to Friday 10:30am – 5:30pm.

Additional ticketing information

The illuminated trail is approximately 1 mile in length. Christmas at The Botanics is designed so that it can be viewed solely from tarmac flat paths, some interactive elements may invite the audience on to grass where additional pedestrian matting will be provided. Staff will be on hand to help with a moment of a particularly steep incline.

If weather conditions mean that the trail is not fully accessible for people using wheeled mobility aids, consideration will be made on a case by case basis to allow tickets to be transferred to an alternative date when the ground conditions are more appropriate.