As the city I’ve called home for the longest, Edinburgh is a special place to me. I think it’s a beautiful, fascinating city, with so much to explore – honestly, this post could have been twice as long as it is! The streets have so many stories to tell, and sometimes it’s my job to tell them… And considering there’s been a settlement here for thousands of years now, those stories are long, rich, and complex, spanning the centuries. Take a look for yourself….
Edinburgh Castle is one of the city’s most famous landmarks, perched on top of an extinct volcano, once home to royals, and a military fortress protecting the city.
The Old Town, with the Royal Mile running down the middle of it, is the ancient, medieval area of the city, brimming with history. Here you’ll find St Giles’ Cathedral, Holyrood Palace, and many more sights, as well as the closes, the hidden cobbled side streets, with steep stairways, leading to hidden courtyards and gardens!
Also in the Old Town, explore Victoria Street and Grassmarket for shopping, food, and pubs galore, tucked underneath the castle. Nearby, the Meadows offers a huge, grassy park, which is pretty to walk through in both summer and winter.
Check out some of the University buildings, like New College and McEwan Hall, stunning pieces of architecture! For some of the best views over the city, head to the bottom of the Royal Mile and climb Arthur’s Seat, or try the smaller Calton Hill, over in the New Town.
The New Town is full of Neo-Classical and Georgian architecture to admire and explore. Take a walk through Princes Street Gardens to see the Scott Monument and the Ross Fountain, with a different angle of the Castle. Continue north of the New Town to the Water of Leith, with the picturesque areas of Dean Village and Stockbridge along its banks.
Continue to Leith itself, once a separate town that has been incorporated into Edinburgh. This was the port area, where ships would come to trade around the world, and the area has its own distinct atmosphere. For more climbing and views of the city, also check out Corstorphine Hill and Blackford Hill.
Edinburgh is on the shores of the North Sea and Firth of Forth, so there’s miles of coast line to explore, from Portobello in the east, all the way round past Leith, and Cramond Island, and even as far as South Queensferry, where the Forth Crossings straddle the water over to Fife.
Edinburgh is a unique, somewhat chaotic city, where no two areas look the same. I’ve lived here for years and still haven’t explored every corner of this city I call home. And I think that quote, found on the side of the Parliament building, sums it up pretty well!