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Dominating the city skyline, Edinburgh Castle is Edinburgh‘s most visited tourist attraction and for good reason.

Edinburgh Castle was home to kings and queens for many centuries. Queen Margaret died here in 1093. The chapel built in her honour by her son, King David I, is Edinburgh’s oldest building.

There has been a royal castle on the rock since the reign of David I in the 12th century, and the site continued to be a royal residence until 1633.

From the 15th century, the castle’s residential role declined, and by the 17th century it was principally used as military barracks with a large garrison.

Though parts of it remain in military use, the castle is now a world-famous visitor attraction.

It is also an iconic part of the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh World Heritage Site.

We always seem to visit the Castle in wintertime when the days are short en the skyline of Edinburgh looks gloomy.

Whatever you do, make time to see the Scottish Crown Jewels (the Honours of Scotland), which includes The Stone of Destiny. Pause at the Argyle Battery, which offers incredible panoramic views of the city.


There are many great walks within the city centre and outside in the Lothians.

If you want to experience a proper hill walk in the heart of the city, then head for Arthur’s Seat in Holyrood Park. Its rocky summit towers over Edinburgh. With fabulous views in all directions, and the extensive parkland surrounding it is an oasis of calm.

Or venture out further south to the Pentland Hills Regional Park. A living, working landscape which consists of around 10,000 hectares of countryside and 100 km of footpaths.

Section 7 and section 8 of the John Muir Way passes the city of Edinburgh. Section 7 – 15,5-mile one way − will take you from South Queensferry to the city. It largely uses estate tracks, quiet pavements, paths, and the Union Canal towpath.

Why not explore Edinburgh’s hidden natural asset, the Water of Leith along the 13 miles of the Water of Leith Walkway.

The walkway passes through many areas of interest including Colinton Village and Dell, the Union Canal, Saughton Winter Gardens, Murrayfield Stadium, the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art, Dean Village, Stockbridge, the Royal Botanic Garden and Leith. Ideal for family walks, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Cool Places to Stay: Kimpton Charlotte Square.