Camera Obscura & World of Illusions allows visitors to enjoy an original camera obscura that produces moving images of the city, more than 100 mind-bending optical illusions and the awe-inspiring Rooftop Terrace that offers a panoramic view of Edinburgh. The attraction spans 5 storeys, but there is no lift available, so the space is not wheelchair accessible. 

You should allow at least 2 hours for your visit, but many guests easily make a full day of their visit. This is an entertaining and fun place for families and couples alike, and there are fun opportunities for visitors of all ages to enjoy. Hands-on play is highly encouraged within the multitude of illusions and activities that include a shrinking room, vortex tunnel, light fantastic, holograph room and magic gallery.

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions in Edinburgh - one of the highlights of 11 Best Family Things to Do in Edinburgh and 10 Best Things to Do After Dinner in Edinburgh (Read all about Edinburgh here)

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions highlights

Camera Obscura is the highlight of this attraction and is sure to impress with its distinctive perspective of the city. From a peculiar rooftop chamber, visitors will witness stunning photos of Edinburgh projected through a periscope. The World of Illusions is filled with mind-bending illusions and special effects that will fill you with awe and wonder, including interactive environments with stunning visual effects. You can enjoy a little fresh air and take in impressive views of Edinburgh from the Rooftop Terrace. Free long-range telescopes allow you to zoom in close to city landmarks, people watch and even see the beautiful countryside beyond Edinburgh.

photo by Wendy (CC BY 2.0) modified

Attractions of Camera Obscura & World of Illusions

The fun illusions are spread out through several themed sections. In Bewilderworld, you'll experience a variety of the most popular, largest and most interesting optical illusions, including the Mirror Maze and Chaotic Pendulum. The Magic Gallery highlights even more shocking illusions and interactive activities, such as plasma dome play, walking on water or shaking hands with a ghost. When you visit Light Fantastic, you'll encounter illusions and tricks that will blow your mind. Here, in the Ames Room, your image will shrink and grow in an instant, and you can wander through impressive 3D images in the hologram room, including a gigantic spider and Frankenstein’s Monster. Finally, in Eye Spy Edinburgh, you can operate live cameras to take a virtual tour of the city, learn about Edinburgh’s history and laugh at your warped reflection in Victorian bendy mirrors.

Good to know when visiting Camera Obscura & World of Illusions

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions offers countless opportunities for impressive photos, so be sure to bring your camera to capture the wonder and amusement. The venue is open every day and often has extended vacation and summer hours. You can stop by the gift shop for souvenirs of your experience or to grab a light snack. Tickets are good for a full day, so you can take a break and stop for lunch at a nearby restaurant or bring a picnic to enjoy in Princes Street Gardens. You can find the attraction located at the top of the Royal Mile near Ramsay Lane. While you are in the area, you may want to visit Edinburgh Castle or the National Museum of Scotland, both of which are located less than half a mile from the attraction.

photo by Mike Pennington (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

Camera Obscura & World of Illusions in Edinburgh

Location: Castlehill, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 2ND, UK

Phone: +44 (0)1312 263709