Edinburgh Festival Theatre

Edinburgh Festival Theatre

Access information

The Address of the Festival Theatre is 13-29 Nicolson Street, Edinburgh EH8 9FT.

Nicolson Street is the continuation of North Bridge, heading south from the east end of Princes Street. The theatre is on the right hand side of the road, approximately 10 minutes walk from the east end of Princes Street.  It’s opposite Surgeon’s Hall.

If you are arriving by car please note that there are double yellow lines directly outside the main theatre entrance. Customers can be dropped off in Nicolson Square which is a short walk from the entrance or on Chambers Street which is a five minute walk uphill.

There are single yellow lines and Pay and Display spaces on nearby side streets and a small car park located on Niddry Street, about 5 minutes walk from the theatre. The car park is open every day from 7am – 11pm. For patrons with blue badges, two parking spaces are available in the theatre’s courtyard. A space can be booked in advance by calling the Stage Door on 0131 662 1112. You will be asked for your name, registration, blue badge number and which performance or event you are attending. Please display your blue badge clearly when at the theatre.

If you are travelling by bus the main Lothian bus routes which serve the Festival Theatre are numbers 2, 3, 3A, 5, 7, 8, 14, 21, 29, 31, 33, 37, 37A, 42 and 49. The nearest bus stop is at the Mosque Kitchen, next to Nicolson Square.

The nearest train station is Waverley.

Built in 1994 on the site of the old Empire Theatre, the Festival Theatre has an impressive glass facade. The main entrance is up six steps with one handrail, or up a pavement ramp. There are five sets of double glass doors. Level access is available at the side of the theatre through the entrance to Café Lucia.

The Box Office is situated on the right hand side of the foyer as you enter.  Please ask a member of the theatre staff for your headset and large print or Braille cast list.  If you would like to listen to the introductory notes 15 minutes before the start of the performance, you should collect your headset in good time to take your seat.

Inside the theatre there is lift access to all levels. Lifts have voice synthesisers to assist visitors. Braille and tactile signage is also located throughout the building.

There are unisex accessible toilets on levels one and two of the theatre and a cloakroom on the lower ground floor.  The bars are on Levels one and two.

The cafe is situated on your left hand side as you enter through the main doors.

The auditorium seats over 1900 people and has been restored in the style of the original Empire. The decor is a mix of art nouveau, beaux arts and neo-classicism. The seating is arranged on three levels, stalls, dress circle and upper circle.  The seats are red velvet which flip up when not in use. On the stalls level there is level access in the aisles, and on the upper levels the aisles have steps.

There are eight spaces in the stalls for wheelchair users, with adjacent seats for companions.

Please note that this information has been supplied by the venue and although every effort has been made to check details, you may still have some queries. In this case, we would ask you to contact the theatre direct for clarification.

Further information and contact details

Guide dogs are welcome at The Edinburgh Festival Theatre.  If you do not wish to take your dog into the auditorium, theatre staff will be able to look after your dog during the performance.

If you are bringing a guide dog, and you have not already advised the theatre, please call 0131 662 1112, or call the box office on  0131 529 6000,  Monday to Saturday 10am to 6pm. Please call either of these numbers if you require any further information about your visit.

The Festival Theatre brochure is available in Braille, Large Print, and Audio CD. You can sign up to the theatre’s mailing list to receive a free brochure in any of these formats. Please email:  [email protected] or call 0131 622 8108.