Rotunda MuseumVisiting

A gem on the stunning Yorkshire coast. A must-visit in Scarborough. That museum you went to with school. Yeah, The Rotunda! Come on in, we're a treat.

Opening Times
Tuesday – Sunday | 10am – 5pm

Admission Prices
£3 Annual Pass – admission to both Scarborough Art Gallery and the Rotunda Museum

Free – Under 18s and registered carers.

Rotunda Museum
Vernon Road
YO11 2PS

01723 353665
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Hands pouring milk from a silver jug into a cup of coffee

Visit our café

Just a short walk through the Valley Gardens to Woodend you’ll find Sitwell by Eat Me, a place for tasty treats for all the family.

Open Tuesday – Saturday / 10am – 4pm

A Warm Welcome to the Rotunda – the Museum of Coastal Heritage and Geology, located right on the wonderful Yorkshire coast. We’ve got a great view of the sea!

Opened in 1829, the Rotunda Museum is one of the world’s first purpose-built museums and was built to a design suggested by William Smith. The interior, with its fascinating Georgian gallery, features a frieze showing the geology of the local coastline designed by Smith’s nephew, John Phillips.

The original cases tell the history of the museum and they explore the stories of the nineteenth century Scarborough Philosophical Society which brought the collections together.

See remarkable 11,000-year-old artefacts from our Star Carr Collection and come face to face with the wonderful creatures which once called Yorkshire home in the Ancient Seas of the Yorkshire Coast gallery.

Getting here

Rotunda Museum
Vernon Road, Scarborough YO11 2PS

Located on Vernon Road, off Valley Road, less than 5 minutes from Scarborough’s South Bay beach and 7 minutes the town centre.

The Rotunda Museum is a stone building with a cylindrical tower located on Valley Road, looking out to Scarborough South Bay.

Access to the entrance is from the main road with the option of steps or gradual inclined walkways.

The Rotunda is located next door to Gala Coffee and Bar.

There is no car parking on site at the Rotunda Museum.

Accessible parking for Blue Badge holders is on Valley Road, 2 minutes walk away.

South Bay underground car park is a pay and display car park close to the Rotunda Museum

The Palm Court Car Park is a multi-storey, pay and display car park, 5 minutes walk away.

On street pay and display parking is available on Valley Road and The Crescent.

There are two park and ride services in Scarborough. Find out more.

Scarborough railway station is a 15 minute walk away. This is a step free station. Taxis are available at the station.

The nearest bus stop is opposite the entrance, across the road on Valley Road.

East Yorkshire Buses provide bus travel services around Scarborough borough.

Yorkshire Coastliner bus service provides travel links from Leeds, Whitby and Bridlington.

Arriva provide bus travel into Scarborough from Middlesbrough, Whitby and Robin Hoods Bay.

Virtual Tour

Explore the Rotunda Museum

This self-guided tour of the Rotunda Museum covers all floors and spaces, currently open to the public.


There is step free access to the front door of the Rotunda Museum. Inside there is a Welcome Desk and our friendly staff will be ready to greet you.

The Welcome Desk, shop and toilets are on the ground floor. The ground floor is fully accessible to wheelchairs and pushchairs.

The attraction
The Museum is on three floors. There is a lift on the ground floor to all floors. There are no steps into the galleries.

Assistance animals
We welcome guide dogs, hearing dogs and assistance dogs in the museum. Drinking bowls are available on request from the information desk. When visiting, please take responsibility for your assistance animal as it should remain under your care and control throughout your visit.

Well behaved dogs, kept on a lead throughout your visit, are welcome in the Rotunda Museum.

If you are wishing to visit in a group of 10 or more people we ask you to get in touch in advance so that we can ensure you have a pleasant visit to the Rotunda Museum.

Please email us to plan your visit.

Toilets and baby changing
There are separate female and male toilets at the Rotunda. There is an accessible toilet with baby change facilities.

Accessible toilet
There is a fully accessible unisex toilet on the ground floor.

The Rotunda Museum Visual Story aims to explain and describe ‘what will happen’ and ‘what to expect’ when you visit. It has been written with children with autism in mind, but could also be useful for parents and young adults. You can download it here or pick up a copy when you visit.

A Large print guide for the Star Carr exhibition is available from the Welcome Desk.

Sensory Map
This map aims to give a visual representation and help visitors to identify spaces where there may be changes to their sensory experience, supporting them to plan their visit. You can download it here or pick up a copy when you visit.

Ear defenders are available upon request from the reception desk during your visit. Please ask for assistance at any time during a visit and call ahead if you have any questions.

Music, sounds and videos
There is sometimes background music and sounds in the gallery spaces, depending on the exhibition.

Booking is not required to visit the museum.

You are welcome to wear a face covering and we encourage you to do so in busy areas, but it is not mandatory.

You will find lots of places to clean your hands. If you need to cough or sneeze, please catch it in a tissue, bin it and clean your hands.

To keep everyone safe our staff are doing lots of cleaning.

Please be mindful of others as you move around the venues.

Hand sanitiser will be available on entry and as you exit the museum.

A perspex screen is installed at the Welcome Desk.