Step back in time as you walk through 125 years of turbulent history inside "Scotland’s Toughest Jail".

The former Victorian HM Convict Prison Peterhead is unique in that it sits within a 6 acre site, had the first state owned railway in the UK and part of the history saw the only time the SAS (Special Air Service) were used to end a domestic siege in mainland Britain.

The museum highlights the work of the brave personnel that served here between 1888- 2013, you will visually see what “real” prison life was like, whilst listening to the officers speak of their experiences as part of the audio tour that accompanies your tour and your sense of smell will be stimulated as you enter the laundry, shower block and hospital areas’. A family fun, day out in Peterhead

Peterhead Prison crest


During your tour you will walk the halls and corridors of the former “HM Convict Prison Peterhead” the only “convict prison” in Scotland (To come here you would have been sentenced to penal servitude).

Our tour includes audio headsets and usually takes 1.30 – 2 hours, however there are no time restrictions, therefore come along and enjoy the experience at your own pace. Due to graphic audio content, 5 and under are not provided with headsets, ages 6 to 12 at parental discretion.

You will see the cells, halls, kitchen, laundry, barbers shop, booking in area and shower block, before hearing about the “A Frame” used to give inmates 10-20 of the “lash” from 1888 – 1939. You will then enter the court room and punishment block, before stepping into the “silent cell” then across the former exercise yard and into the hospital.

On the upper floor of the hospital sits our “Refuge Café” named after the “Harbour of Refuge” built in part with convict labour to create a safe haven for shipping during stormy weather conditions.

You can then “take refuge” in our Scottish themed café, where you will over- look the harbour and town of Peterhead, while enjoying some tasty treats and reflect on your “experience within these walls”

If you have children aged 5 or under please ask admissions team for a copy of our “Hunt the Teddy Bear”.

Visitor Map