People looking through microscopes at the Edinburgh Science Festival

Edinburgh Science Festival

Edinburgh has long been renowned as a place of learning, innovation and scientific achievement – so it’s particularly appropriate that the capital was also the birthplace of the world’s very first public science festival.

The year was 1989 – Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space, was on hand to inaugurate a brand new addition to Edinburgh’s growing festivals line-up – The Edinburgh Science Festival.

Edinburgh Science Festival will return from 05 to 20 April 2025.

About Edinburgh Science Festival

Edinburgh Science Festival is the UK’s largest science festival and for 2 weeks each spring offers a range of amazing experiences for all ages, with a programme of exhibitions, events, workshops, performances, screenings and discussions between some of the world’s foremost scientific minds.

The festival’s programme takes over numerous venues and locations around Edinburgh and with one-third of the programme free to access, it offers the perfect opportunity to release your inner scientist.

Whether your interests lie in robotics, space, the diversity of life on earth, climate change or the deep oceans, each year’s programme offers something for everyone.

Children (and grown-ups too) will love the interactive exhibitions and workshops where participants can get their hands dirty while learning about the science behind spaceships, weather, dinosaurs, the human body and much, much more.

Meanwhile, adults can look forward to a range of entertaining evening events including discussions, debates, performances, food and drink and hands-on experiences, plus lots of audience participation.

Lady watching Biomimcry programme on the planetarium screen at Dynamic Earth
Boy building with Lego at the Edinburgh Science Festival in the City Art Centre
Ladies building foam dinosaurs at the Edinburgh Science Festival after hours event

2025 – Spaceship Earth

The theme of 2025’s festival will be Spaceship Earth. Join in a programme which will explore the challenges of living on a planet with finite resources, through the lenses of science fiction and space exploration.

The Festival will explore both practical and futuristic ideas, blending science fiction and real science. Topics will range from long-term energy solutions to cutting-edge healthcare technology.

The Edinburgh Science Festival runs from 05 to 20 April 2025. For more information and to view the full programme visit The Edinburgh Science Festival.

Edinburgh Science Festival in the global community

The Science Festival also goes beyond the city of Edinburgh, with initiatives like its primary school education programme that tours Scotland. Since 2011, it has also been the content programming partner for the Abu Dhabi Science Festival.

The festival has also sent representatives, shows and workshops around the globe to the likes of destinations such as India, China, Germany and Brazil.

Discover more about Edinburgh’s festivals

Edinburgh has a jam-packed festival schedule all year around. Whether you love the arts or are mad about science, there’s a festival for you.