Follow us on

Visitor Access

Visitor Access

The Park is a place for adventures, exploring and relaxing, for walks in the fresh air, for retail therapy and for enjoying delicious food. Whatever your reason for visiting, we love to see all our visitors enjoying the park responsibly.

For years our visitors have paid a small fee to access the Park, most recently via a percentage of any purchase made. Clear as mud? To help explain this further, we’ve put together a few frequently asked questions on access:

How do I pay for access to the Park?

A small percentage of the value of your purchase from the Park, Fort Douglas or Restoration Yard will count as payment for access to Dalkeith Country Park and will help to meet the cost of maintaining the Park.

Why do we need to charge for access?

The charge is a legal requirement and ensures we continue to comply with the Land Reform Act 2003. By charging a small access charge, we retain the right to close the Park gates, allowing us to make sure we keep the Park safe for all visitors and its residents. Fear not, we only intend to close the gates at night so during the day you will definitely be able to get your hands on that emergency latte!

What hours will the gates close?

The gates are closed between 7pm and 7am, but pedestrian access is still possible out with these time with a Friends of Dalkeith Annual Pass or Dog Walker Pass.

How do I get an Annual Pass or Dog Walker Pass?

The ‘Friends of Dalkeith Country Park’ Annual Pass can be purchased over the phone using a credit or debit card by calling 0131 654 1666. Please leave us a message if we are not there and we’ll call you back. Alternatively you can also purchase one in person from the Fort Douglas ticket cabin across the bridge.

Where does my access fee go?

This goes towards the maintenance and security of the Park, helping us keep it a lovely place for our visitors and enabling us to operate a sustainable business for years to come.

Which gates are open and when?

Here goes….

The Town Gate:
– This remains the main entry and exit route for pedestrians.
– It is also the main exit route for public vehicles.
– The gate is closed to vehicles at night, but the pedestrian gate can be opened out of hours with the ‘Friends of Dalkeith Country Park’ Annual Pass or Dog Walker card.
– This gate will also continue to be used as an entry point for local vehicle access, such as the nursery drop off.

The King’s Gate:

This is normally the main entry route for all public vehicles and is usually closed only at night.

The Smeaton Gate (off Salters Road) and Monkton Gate (East Lothian gates):
– These gates are for local access only and will continue to be permanently closed to vehicles. You can access them on foot.


All pedestrian gates will be well lit and covered by CCTV and intercom. Download a map of the Park here.