History and Heritage

Dunfermline is rich with history & heritage…

“Dunfermline signifies in Gaelic, the fort by the crooked rivulet; the fort refers to the building called Malcolm Canmore’s tower that was placed on the peninsular mount in Pittencrieff glen.  Dun signifies either a hill or a fort, because the strongholds were generally built on eminences.  Fiar means crooked or winding, and loin or lyn, a pool and running water. In later times dun in Gaelic, and tun in Anglo-saxon, came to signify a dwelling, a steading, a village, a town. From this tower, Dunfermline, as a town, dates its origin, and derived its existence; hence the arms of the Town are a tower supported by two lions, with the motto, “Esto rupes inaccessa”; ‘be thou an inaccessible rock,’ alluding to the rocky precipice on which the tower was erected.

Dunfermline City and Royal Burgh is one of the hidden jewels among places of interest in Scotland. Its history goes back over a thousand years with the residence of the Kings of Scotland and the history of the Church.” ~ Royal Dunfermline


Dunfermline Abbey

Dunfermline Abbey

The Abbey Church of Dunfermline is open every day from Monday 30th March to late October. At times when the Historic Scotland property of the Old Nave... »

Dunfermline Palace and Abbey

Dunfermline Palace And Abbey

The great abbey of Dunfermline was founded in the 11th century by Queen Margaret and the foundations of the original building lie under the stunning 1... »

Forth Pilgrim

Forth Pilgrim

The Forth Pilgrim experience lets you revisit medieval times by exploring Scotland’s rich history on location. Step back in time and discover a ... »

Royal Burgh of Culross

Royal Burgh of Culross

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Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries

Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries

Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries will be a spectacular new museum and art gallery in the heart of Dunfermline’s Heritage Quarter. Designed... »

North Queensferry Light Tower

North Queensferry Light Tower

Did you know that the world’s smallest working Light Tower sits on the Town Pier, North Queensferry, alongside one of the engineering wonders of... »

Royal Tombs, Dunfermline

Royal Tombs, Dunfermline

CHURCH OF THE HOLY TRINITY (THE NAVE) OF DUNFERMLINE ABBEY Dunfermline’s story in the history of Scotland, the Culdees link, and the effect of M... »

Royal Dunfermline

Royal Dunfermline

Dunfermline signifies in Gaelic, the fort by the crooked rivulet; the fort refers to the building called Malcolm Canmore’s tower that was placed... »

Discover Dunfermline Tours

Discover Dunfermline Tours

Prepare To Be Amazed By Our Tours! Dunfermline, Scotlands old capital city has such a rich history it has to be experienced to be understood. What mak... »

St Margaret’s Cave

St Margaret’s Cave

Queen Margaret came here to pray over 900 years ago. Then there was only a wooded path by a stream at the bottom of the valley with a short climb up t... »

Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum

Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum

Welcome to the Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum, Dunfermline’s fastest growing visitor experience. Come along and experience life in 19th century Dun... »

Old Dunfermline

Old Dunfermline

The website ‘Old Dunfermline’ features a wide selection of images from Dunfermline over the past one hundred years, including streets that are no long... »

Lochleven Castle

Lochleven Castle

This late 14th or early 15th century tower was the setting for the most traumatic year in the life of Mary Queen of Scots. It was here in 1567 that sh... »