Camera Obscura

At the top of the Outlook Tower is the Camera Obscura, which is made up of a number of reflecting mirrors in a dark room that project a “virtual” tour of Edinburgh.  

Camera Obscura and World of Illusions are popular tourist attractions in Edinburgh’s Old Town: designed by Maria Theresa Short in 1835.

The object was originally located in a building on Calton Hill, until In 1892, Patrick Geddes, a renowned sociologist, bought a tower near Edinburgh Castle and named it the Outlook Tower. He decided to move the Camera Obscura here.

Original and highly enjoyable

The six floors of the Edinburgh Camera Obscura have interactive exhibitions full of puzzles, optical illusions, colors, a mirror maze, a tunnel, and holograms. All these hands-on exhibitions create a world of magic and fun both for adults and children.

Great for children

Although the Camera Obscura is no longer as surprising as it was 124 years ago, it's interesting to see how advanced it was for its time and how it was used to spy on the lives of Edinburgh’s citizens without being seen.

Bear in mind that if the weather is gloomy and it's raining, the visibility of the Camera Obscura is poor.

The other hands-on exhibitions are extremely enjoyable, especially for little ones. The Tower’s terrace also offers a fantastic view of the Old Town.


Daily from 9 am to 10 pm
Opening times may vary depending on the season


Adults: £ 18.95 (US$ 23.50)
Seniors and students: £ 16.95 (US$ 21)
Children (aged 5 – 15): £ 14.95 (US$ 18.60)
Children under 5: Free


Buses: Market Street or George IV Bridge, 23, 27, 41, 42, 45, and 67.