Seek Out the Spectacular, Memorable Sights of the City of Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a great city for sightseeing. From the delightful medieval cobbled streets of the Old Town complete with Gothic spires and the imposing form of Edinburgh Castle to the sleek and distinguished classical lines of the New Town, visitors are spoiled for choice.

Edinburgh’s skyline is dominated by the castle, and it is not for nothing that this fascinating building (the site of so much bloody history) is one of Scotland’s most visited attractions. To delve further into Edinburgh’s, often turbulent, history why not pay a visit to the hauntingly beautiful Greyfriars Kirkyard to hear tell of the loyal terrier Bobby who refused to leave the grave of his master? While you are there, spare a thought for the unfortunate Covenanters imprisoned, tortured and executed there, and keep a watchful eye out for the Mackenzie Poltergeist – claimed by some to be the world’s best attested ghost!

Perhaps now a change of pace and a visit to the stately and majestic Palace of Holyroodhouse or a chance to explore the Royal Yacht Britannia for a glimpse of the many benefits of regal privilege. Alternatively, head for the Royal Botanic Gardens to enjoy the rich cornucopia of nature’s bounty and take in the spectacular views of the city.

Much of the city is best viewed on foot, although you can also take advantage of regular bus tours and hop on and off as you pass an attraction which catches your eye.


The penguins are one of the main attractions at Edinburgh Zoo. See them walking or swimming in the globe's largest penguin pool. It is also the only place in the UK where you'll find giant pandas. The couple, called Yang Guang and Tian Tian, is...  Read More

Outside the City

This ruined medieval castle was built in the 14th century and gradually added to over the centuries until it fell into disrepair in the 1700s. Mary, Queen of Scots recuperated here after an illness following the birth of her son, James VI, who...  Read More

The Scott Monument, dedicated to the prolific bestselling author Sir Walter Scott, is one of Edinburgh's most famous structures. It is also the largest monument dedicated to a writer anywhere in the world. Rising heavenwards from the verdant...  Read More

The Royal Family used this yacht as a means of transportation to places all over the world. After 968 royal journeys, ownership changed hands. The boat now belongs to and is maintained by The Royal Yacht "Britannia" Trust. Today visitors can...  Read More

The Scottish Parliament at Holyrood officially opened in 2004. This is where Members of the Scottish Parliament (MSPs) meet to debate Scottish issues. It is open to the public and there are free guided tours available, generally on Mondays,...  Read More

Royal Botanic Gardens
Photo courtesy of Calum McRoberts

Any plant or flower, rare and common, can be seen and enjoyed at the Royal Botanic Gardens. It was originally developed as a learning conservatory for students, but it has grown to become an example to the world. The rock garden, arboretum, and...  Read More

Greyfriars Kirk is a beautiful sixteenth century church located in the heart of Edinburgh's Old Town. It is surrounded by a churchyard in which over 80,000 people have been interred since it was dedicated in 1561. One of its most famous...  Read More

The Palace of Holyroodhouse was built in 1128 and served as the main residence for the Kings and Queens of Scotland from the 15th century onwards. It is in fact still the Queen's official residence when she visits Edinburgh. When she is not...  Read More

National Museum of Scotland
Photo courtesy of Simon Hill

The diverse collection at the National Museum of Scotland encompasses the history of Scotland along with exhibitions of international interest. You can learn all about Scotland's past from the age of chivalry through to the industrial revolution...  Read More

Edinburgh Castle was a royal residence until the late 16th century and Mary Queen of Scots gave birth to James VI there (he went on to be James I of Britain). The 12th-century, Norman-style St. Margaret's Chapel still stands in its original...  Read More


Meet Simon Hill

Simon has lived in various corners of Edinburgh over the last 18 years. He fell in love with the city as a small child after visiting the castle and returned to study Scottish History.

After...  More About Simon